While I’m not sure this will be the first of my new working projects to actually find its way into the mailbox (or the email outbox in this day of technology!), that chance is pretty good. So let me tell you a little about it—I look forward to your comments!

Citizens began a long time ago for me. I started the project with a different artist and a different STORY in mind. When it didn’t happen then, it languished in the filing cabinet—the way projects like that tend to do for creative sorts.

But it was one of those projects that never quite hid in my memory. As a student of history, particularly US history, I’ve never been that drawn to the Vietnam War. I can’t explain why—even though I had two uncles to serve in that nasty conflict. But when I think about all the wars my ancestors have participated in (Rev. War, War Between The States, Seminole Indian War, WW2, and Vietnam), I kept thinking how different their participation in war was different from my other kin. One thought led to another to another and there it was: an idea for a story.

In a nutshell, Citizens is the story of a soldier who joined the military in order to earn his citizenship, the same reason for many who joined. The problem is that when he returns ten years later, a new political party is in power and his rights to citizenship is denied. Essentially, the main character (and other soldiers) lose ten years fighting a war and earned nothing—they are basically discarded and have no value in the societal atmosphere to which they return.

To make matters worse, they’ve become steamborgs (it’s a steampunk story) in that half of their body was replaced with robotic weaponry, weaponry which belonged to the government and is promptly repossessed as soon as they arrive home. Thus, they’re left with deformed physical bodies, no citizenship—and a world of hurt.

Joe Badon is the incredibly talented artist who’s breathing artistic life into the story. In an age where it can sometimes be difficult to distinguish one artist from another, that’s not possible with Joe. Like his work or don’t, you’ll never confuse his work for someone else—it is incredibly unique—as I think you’ll see by the few images here.

I “met” Joe on the internet—spotted his art and was intrigued at the thought of his unique style bringing Bedford (the main character) and other to life. And he hasn’t disappointed. Click the link to his work on his name above and check out some of his other work.

The logo was designed by Mike Belcher!

And let me know in the comments below your thoughts on Citizens. Does it have a chance at finding at home? Any thoughts or suggestions along those lines?


Filed under Projects, writing

13 responses to “WIP=Citizens

  1. I do like the artwork. Seems like an interesting story!

  2. Roland – your direct and clear style of storytelling is well-served by this unique style! The concept is powerful and timeless–even timely–and I will be the first to go on record to say I see it as winning big awards.

    Can I prognosticate so quickly over a logo and one panel with a brief concept?

    I think so.

    Please put me in Acknowledgements as first to say “Congratulations on your many awards!”

    In His Grip
    Justice Carmon

  3. Keith Jones

    The story sounds like it could be great and the artwork really lends itself to the story I think. I can hardly wait to read it!

  4. Anne Arbour

    This is brilliant. Please take my money.

  5. Anne Winchester

    Cool story line! Go for it!

  6. Pingback: An update ala a Blog Hop | Roland Mann's Ramblin' Weblog

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