An Aberdeen comic book writer is hoping his newest release will be a smash – after signing up with a US publisher.
Alex Giles, 40, from Cove, has teamed up with friend and graphic designer Ammar Al-Chalab to produce Ella, a story aimed at all ages, which he describes as a “coming of age tale”.
Ammar and Alex met when they worked on a comic anthology and the two have remained friends since.
Alex said: “I just sent him a message and told him that I was a big fan, and he said he really liked the story I had written.
“We were both wanting to work on an all-ages story, because a lot of stuff in the genre is for adults, and it’s all about blood and gore and stuff like that.
“So I had this story, which started as a four-page short story, but I really wanted to extend it into a longer book.”
The short story, entitled the Amulet of Sharzim, morphed into Ella.
Alex said: “He loved it and said that we should go for it.”
The pair initially thought the comic would be made up of four, smaller issues, but have since scrapped the plans in favour of a larger book.
The book has been picked up by, what Alex describes as, “a really, really well-known” American publisher which is called Scout Comics. General release of the book is hoped to come at the end of February or beginning of March 2019.
The pair have also started a £3,000 crowdfunding campaign to help.
Alex said the money would not be used to fund the book itself, but to buy time for the creators to be able to finish it off.
Alex works full-time in IT and Ammar is a graphic designer, so any work has to be conducted in their spare time.
However, Alex is hoping generous fans will dip into their pockets to help fund time off work, without having a negative effect on his family.
He said: “A lot of the stuff that we’ve been doing is in our spare time.
“So our own work, that we’re not getting paid for, has been last in line for us to work on.
“But now, with a publisher behind us pushing for a finished product, both of us really want to get it completed.
“So we decided to go for the crowdfunding option. We think it will really help us to focus on finishing the book.
“This will allow us to take two weeks off and get our heads down to finish it.”