Aokigahara – Something Wicked 2017 – now available


Something Wicked 2017 from FutureQuake Press ( is now available for purchase from the FutureQuake Press webstore! Featuring many fantastic tales, including on from myself and artist Luigi Criscuolo. Follow this link to check it out.

The full list of stories appearing in this issue include:

  • Aokigahara by writer Travis Stunt and artist Luigi Criscuolo
  • Dark Net by writer Jimmy Furlong and artist Andrew Hartmann
  • He calls you home by writer Roddy McCance Sharp and artist Denis Vermesse
  • Hurt by writer Matt Sharp and artist Aileen Oracion
  • Jotun Fury by writer Karl Brandt and artist David Parsons
  • One Hell of a night by writer Chris Redfern and artist Johnathan Scott
  • Regular Deposits by writer Dave Wednesday and artist Kristian Carstensen
  • Sky Burial by writer Alec Robertson and artist Brian Corcoran
  • St@lked by writer Umar Ditta and artist Daniel Bell
  • Stupid Fuzzy Thing by writer Steven Fraser and artist Brian Rankin
  • The Civilised Hunt by writer Dan McKee and artist Carlos Angeli
  • The Coffin by writer Jason Brawn and artist David Spickett
  • The Cottage In The Woods by writer Alec Robertson and artist Rui Mendes
  • The Runaway by writer Marcello Bondi and artist Mattia Marini
  • The Void Of by writer Rodd McCance and artist Denis Vermesse


Writing CV

I added a writing C.V. to the left hand menu on the main page of this blog. It will make it easier for any potential collaborators to quickly see what I have in production or currently available.

Unfortunately, a the time of writing, it is all still in production, so I can’t show any of the artwork I have seen at this time. For now, you’ll just have to take my word – what I have seen looks awesome. Very awesome indeed.

New Years Resolutions 2016

It’s time for a reflection of the past year and to lay out my hopes and dreams for the coming one.

Reflections of the Year Past:
Wow. There were some pretty big highs for me this year. And, fortunately for me, the lows were very mild.

Star Wars: The Force Awakens blew my mind. It was everything I hoped it could be. It wasn’t perfect, don’t get me wrong. I had some issues with it. But, overall, it was fantastic. I can’t wait to see it again.

‘Daredevil’ and ‘Jessica Jones’ – both were fantastic shows I binged watched (is that even a proper expression?! Can’t think of the right one off hand). The storylines were great. I’m not particularly familiar with Daredevil (apart from the concept and storyline basics) and I knew next to nothing about Jessica Jones. I loved every minute of both and can’t wait for season two.

‘Making of a Murderer’ (Netflix exclusive series also) was a fascinating look at the life of Steven Avery, a man from the U.S. wrongly convicted of rape, and only exonerated after spending eighteen years behind bars. Two years after his subsequent release, Avery again finds himself accuse of a horrible crime, this time a murder. Avery again plead his innocence, claiming a conspiracy by the local sheriffs department. The series follows Avery from his release and through the new trial. Great stuff if you enjoy true crime. (On an interesting note, internet group ‘Anonymous’ have taken up Avery’s cause and claim to be about to release information proving his innocence.

Writing-wise, I’ve had a great year. I got paid for writing for the first time ($US100! for eight pages). I have artists lined up for two other short pieces which I have previously mentioned here (there is no time line for the release of these as yet). I have also a series called ‘The Phantom Ranger’ coming soon from Hooligan Alley Comics.

I’m finding writing easier now that I have been practising for a while. I still struggle to come up with that ‘killer concept’, but the concepts I am coming up with are stronger and more refined than ever before.

I’d like to improve my pitching ability though. Crafting a good pitch still eludes me – they always feel dry and stale to read. I have a few different stories I’d like to pitch, but whenever I write a pitch, I can’t seem to … create the right hook? I need to read through some to the writing books on my shelves and try and distil the essence of what they are saying.

I have found it difficult to work on projects where the ideas don’t originate with me. I attempted to write a mini-series with a great artist, based on his art and concepts. Unfortunately, the passion just wasn’t there. Without the passion, the words just wouldn’t flow. I eventually had to give up the project because I figured if my heart wasn’t in it, wouldn’t be fair to either party to continue on without dedicating one hundred percent.

Plans for 2016? Continue with the improvement I have been making. Practice pitching. Write. Write. Then write some more. Spend more time with the children – they are growing so fast! I don’t want to miss a thing. Get a promotion at work (pretty sure this is in the bag, but stranger things have happened).

Enjoy 2016. Live life to the fullest. You only get to do it once.



Time to get writing again

My writing output has severely dropped off lately, mainly because of **lame excuses**. I think it has been at least two weeks since I actually wrote even a single page. This is simply not good enough. I need to write, and I need to write EVERY DAY if I am going to improve.

Being a shift working and having two young children will make it hard, but excuses aren’t going to cut it. It is time to get serious, time to put my fingers on the keys and pump out a story, ten stories, whatever … as long as I am writing.

I was flicking through Facebook (another reason I don’t get done what I need to get done – but, unfortunately, a necessity for networking these days) when I came across the following post from Erik Larsen:

Erik’s post (which is linked here ):

My best advice to anybody who wants to break into comics is to produce comics. Just start cranking them out. Put them up online.

If you’re “just a writer” then write a handful of imaginary books, month after month. Create characters–or just pretend to write the fucking X-Men. Write full scripts. Post one every Monday. Get cranking. Get in motion.

If you’re an artist–improvise. But crank them out!

A big part of it is simply figuring out “can I do this?” So–try. Do you have that many great ideas? Show me. And by “show me” I mean “DON’T show ME.” I mean show yourself–prove it to yourself.

It doesn’t matter if anybody sees them. Post them in Facebook if you must. Post them elsewhere. Start a blog. It’s not even about getting seen–it’s about getting that rhythm. It’s an exercise to see if you can do it.

We all have to work through the bad shit to get to the good shit. There are kinks to be worked out and it won’t happen watching TV.

I wrote and drew almost 70 full comics, many as long as 100 pages, before anything saw print. When I broke in I was already a vet. It just helped.

Every comic I’ve ever done starts with me saying, “how the hell am I going to DO this? It’s impossible!” That feeling never goes away. You just have to do it.

With these inspiring words for a writer I have much respect for, I will try publish here an ongoing story. I will add four pages a week (not a great deal, but enough to get me started). It will be titled: The Incompetents. It’s an idea that has been floating around my brain for a while. The first four pages will go up later today. They next four will be published on Friday (18 September 2015), and then every Friday until the story is told. I have no real story plan for this yet, so I’m not locked into anything – I can let the story flow however it wants.

If I can work out how to do it, I’ll make a link on the front page of this blog to go directly to the story.

Even just writing this post has made me excited to get working …

Comic script: Where There Be Thieves

This is a script I finished a few weeks back. It’s a first draft, so please ignore spelling or grammar issues (if there are any – I think it sorted them all out). It’s called ‘Where There Be Thieves’ and is a superhero/horror comic. It is the first eight pages, plus the cover page. I really enjoyed writing, especially the names of the bad guys. They were a hell of a lot of fun to come up with.

This post is going to be a lengthy. The formatting doesn’t look exactly like it does in Word, but it is pretty close.


By Travis STUNT

Eight page crime/horror comic script.

Date of last revision: 5th January 2015


PAPA FREAK:                     Overall leader of the gang. He is huge, violent looking thug of a man, who                                                                               has been in a thousand fights and won them all. There are knives all around him – in the                                                       chair/throne he is sitting on, in his belt, jacket, everywhere.

BIG KILLA:                           Big, mean motherfucker. Leader of the crime group (which includes the                                                                                   next three).


RAGGITY WORM:             Generic thugs. Still look pretty bad-ass though.

DIZZEE BOOTAY:               PAPA FREAK’s right hand man. Looks like a pimp. Distinctive glasses.

THE FORSAKEN:            Could be the spawn of Hell, could be a lunatic dressed up as a demonic                                                                                   creature. Go crazy. No real guidelines needed.

PATROLMAN:                    Typical patrolman.

DETECTIVE:                         Typical, cliqued detective. Grizzled.


Occasionally I’ll use camera angles, descriptions of particular shots I have envisioned. Please take these only as a guide. Use whatever works best. If my description sucks, chuck it out. I’m not sensitive like that.



Exterior – night. Three gang members are walking down a dirty alleyway, heading back to their clubhouse. They are large, tough, angry looking people. One is carrying a bag of some description. They all are carrying guns concealed under their clothing. These can be seen – gun grip popping out the top of the belt or poking out from under a shirt. They all seem pretty happy with themselves.

  1. BIG KILLA: We smoked his ass, yo!
  1. RAGGETY WORM: Ya, we did, man!
  1. SHEISTY: And got a fat bag of loot to show for it.


All three have arrived at a door leading from the alleyway into a warehouse. There is a closed viewing hole at eye level. BIG KILLA is reaching out to knock.

  1. BIG KILLA: The boss man is gunna love us.


BIG KILLA raps his knuckles on the door.


Close up on the view hole. It has slid open. A pair of angry looking eyes are now peering through. The eyes belong to DIZZEE BOOTAY.



BIG KILLA is looking closely through the hole at DIZZEE. BIG KILLA looks extra angry.

  1. BIG KILLA: Yo! Open the damn door, you idiot! Tell Papa Freak Big Killa is here.


The door is opened and the gang members are moving inside. Above, on the roof of the warehouse, we can catch a glimpse of our anti-hero, THE FORSAKEN



Large panel. BIG KILLA, RAGGITY WORM and SHEISTY are standing in front of a large gang member and leader of the gang, PAPA FREAK. He is huge, violent looking thug of a man, who has been in a thousand fights and won them all. There are knives all around him – in the chair/throne he is sitting on, in his belt, jacket, everywhere. DIZZEE stands next to him. If room permits, other random gang members can be seen doing gang member stuff.

  1. PAPA FREAK: Big Killa, my main man. What have you got for me?
  1. BIG KILLA: Some major cashola, Papa Freak. Knocked over a gas station.


Close on PAPA FREAK. He doesn’t look impressed.

  1. PAPA FREAK: A gas station?
  1. PAPA FREAK: A little … small scale for you, isn’t it? Big Killa?
  1. BIG KILLA (OP): Well … I mean we … the cash was good –


PAPA FREAK and BIG KILLA look up as they here a crash somewhere in the warehouse.

  1. SFX: CRASH!
  1. PAPA FREAK: What the f –



PAPA FREAK begins organising his troops to meet the potential threat. DIZZEE BOOTAY and RAGGITY WORM and heading off towards out of the room and towards the noise. Both have handguns drawn.

  1. PAPA FREAK: Dizzee Bootay, Raggity Worm – you two find out what that                                                                          noise was.
  1. DIZZEE BOOTAY: Yes Boss.


More commotion from off panel. DIZZEE and RAGGITY WORM stop at the door, hesitating.

  1. SFX (OP): BAM! BAM! BAM! BAM!


PAPA FREAK is out of his throne now. He is screaming in anger at DIZZEE BOOTAY and RAGGITY WORM.



Closer on the door that DIZZEE and RAGGITY WORM are going through. They move through is guns aimed straight out in front. They look terrified.




DIZZEE and RAGGITY WORM have moved into a darkened area of the warehouse complex. It is a larger room, with packing crates and boxes stacked high. Shadows are everywhere. DIZZEE has reached out to a light switch on a nearby wall. It doesn’t work.



Both men spin towards a noise, guns aimed.

  1. SFX: creek


Both men swing around again towards another noise. This time they open fire.



They approach the area they just shot up. There is nothing there except destroyed crates and boxes. RAGGITY WORM is standing slightly behind DIZZEE.

  1. DIZZEE BOOTAY: Nothing.


The clawed hand of THE FORSAKEN reaches out from the darkness behind RAGGITY WORM and grabs him by the shoulder. He half turns to see what it is.



THE FORSAKEN yanks RAGGITY WORM out of the panel, so that his legs and feet are the only things showing.




Back in the room with PAPA FREAK, BIG KILLA and SHEISTY. BIG KILLA is holding a small machine gun at hip height. SHEISTY has a hand gun. Both have the guns point off panel towards the noises. PAPA FREAK has several knife blades held in between his fingers, ready to launch them at the killer when he makes his appearance.

  1. BIG KILLA: What the fuck is going on out there?!
  1. PAPA FREAK: Shut the fuck up.


Something is thrown through the door and into the room. We see it bounce several times, without really being able to tell what it is (it’s DIZZEE’s head, but don’t tell anyone yet).

  1. SFX: BUMP! Bump bump


The item stops, and, sure enough, it is DIZZEE’s head. BIG KILLA and SHEISTY look terrified.

  1. SHEISTY: Oh, fuck me.
  1. SHEISTY: That’s Dizzee’s head, Killa!
  1. BIG KILLA: I can see that, Sheisty, you idiot. I seen heads before.


Darkness. Someone has turned out the lights.

  1. BIG KILLA: Where’d the fuckin’ lights go?
  1. SHEISTY: We gunna die. We gunna die.
  1. SFX: creeek


Gun fire lights up the room. They hit nothing, but we can see another glimpse of THE FORSAKEN. Maybe a leg this time.



Darkness again as the gun fire stops.




Larger panel. PAPA FREAK has lit a flare which has bathed the room in a red glow. There are still heavy shadows all around. BIG KILLA is looking down at the corpse of SHEISTY, whose head is now backwards. SHEISTY is very dead.

  1. BIG KILLA: fuck me


Again, a noise causes a reaction. PAPA FREAK spins around, looking for something behind him. BIG KILLA continues to stare at the corpse of SHEISTY.

  1. SFX: creek
  1. PAPA FREAK: Come out and face me, coward!


Close on BIG KILLA and a clawed hand punches through his chest. BIG KILLA’s face is contorted in agony, but no sound comes out. Blood and guts spray everywhere.


PAPA FREAK has turned to face BIG KILLA’s killer. He has blood and gore dripping from him.

  1. THE FORSAKEN (OP): I am your reckoning.


Small inset panel. Extreme close up on PAPA FREAK’s eyes. For the first time, there are showing fear.

  1. PAPA FREAK: Oh sweet Jesus …



Large panel. THE FORSAKEN stands in the room, facing PAPA FREAK. PAPA FREAK is still motionless, too terrified to move.

  1. THE FORSAKEN I cast judgement on you, Papa Freak.
  1. THE FORSAKEN And that judgement …


PAPA FREAK regains his composure and starts flinging his knives at THE FORSAKEN. Multiple knives fly out, seemingly simultaneously.



THE FORSAKEN puts his forearm in front of his face and the knives slam into it.


Front on shot of THE FORSAKEN. He painlessly pulls a knife out of his arm.


Close up on the chest and face of THE FORSAKEN He looks pissed.

  1. THE FORSAKEN Pathetic.


A shot from outside the warehouse, similar to the shots on Page One.





Outside the warehouse. Same shot as panel six page seven, except the sun is coming up. And there are lots of police cars with lights flashing stopped in the area.


A grizzled detective steps out of a car. A patrolmen approaches him. The patrolmen looks stressed.

  1. PATROLMAN: Sir! You gotta come see this.


The detective is entering the door to the warehouse. The patrolman follows him in, briefing him of the situation.

  1. PATROLMAN: A bum called it in. Said he heard gunfire.
  1. PATROLMAN: I got here a short time ago. Like I said on the radio, I haven’t                                                                       touched nothing.


PAPA FREAK’s throne room. PAPA FREAK has been nailed to the wall with his own knives. He has been gutted, or similar. Whatever you want, really. He needs to look like someone has really done a number on him. On the wall behind him, in blood, has been painted the words ‘THE SINNERS WILL BE PUNISHED’. The detective looks shocked. In all his experience, he has never seen anything like this.

  1. DETECTIVE: Dear god…

New Years Resolutions 2015 style

I’ve seen a lot of people posting New Years Resolutions (NYR from now on). Inspired, I figured I look at my year in review and plans for 2015.


This year was the first time I have actually made a serious attempt to get my writing career off the ground. I made several submissions this year:

Decay (Dark Oz publisher) – I completed a three page horror zombie story for submission which was accepted by the editor (after a few changes). The editor stated he hoped he may be able to find an artist for the story and get it in the April edition (Decay #19). Still waiting to see what happens, but, fingers crossed. This was my first comic submission and it would be absolutely fantastic to see it published.

Flux Fiction – they requested a writing sample, which I supplied (via this blog) and was accepted. This was to be a paying gig (only $US25, but still). My name went up on their website, but I have never heard anything further from them. They stopped replying to emails, and I now see the website has changed completely and the Flux Fiction Anthology has disappeared completely. Disappointing, but that’s part of life, I guess.

Monsters, Mutants and Mayhem – a comics anthology based, strangely enough, around monsters, mutants and mayhem. I submitted a five page story which was accepted by the editor. The entire anthology was unfortunately plagued with problems finding sufficient artists of the appropriate standards, and several months later, the editor was forced to pull the plug on the whole endeavour. Again, another disappointment.

I submitted an eight page horror short to an open call for another horror anthology advertised via the Digital Webbing forums. This is probably the story I am most proud of for this year. It is a psychological horror story based around the Aokiahara forest in Japan. I really like it a lot. If it doesn’t make the cut, I post it here.

TOR Publishing: I submitted a 11,000 word short story (prose) to Tor for consideration. It’s a fun fantasy romp based around the main character I use when writing fantasy. I haven’t heard anything back from them yet.

Future Shocks (2000 AD): I submitted a short five page story back in March, but, as yet, no word has been heard. Not holding my breath on this one though. Looking back, it wasn’t my best. The formatting is very basic and completely different to the far more professional format I am using now. Still, you never know.

I am about to submit a crime-noir story for a Somer Art Studio. It’s not my best work, so I am still debating whether to submit and rewrite. I don’t want to risk missing out either way.


At this stage of my writing career, it is really hard to make concrete plans as to what I want to achieve. I guess there are a few things I would like to see happen soon, so that seems to be the best place to start.

This is the working title of a graphic novel I am currently developing. I have a basic (read here: very basic) outline of the story, but I am struggling with the ending. Once that is worked out, I may write it as a three or four issue mini for submission to Dark Horse or similar. I really, really like the story. I think it is original and from a unique point of view. It is now a matter of working on the synopsis to get it as perfect as possible before the first issue can start.

Heaven’s Yesterday
This is the first full issue I have completed. I like the basic premise behind the issue, but I think the issue would struggle to hold the readers attention. I have written A LOT since completing issue one, so I think a re-think and re-write will be on the cards. Tighten the story and characters a lot, then maybe submissions or an artist search can begin.

I would love to get to know a few artists, editors and writers in the comic industry. Living in Australia makes this a little difficult as we don’t have a particularly strong Con scene here (they do happen, though). That, combined with my social anxiety/awkwardness, make networking difficult. Still, this is probably the area I want to work on the most, and is going to be the most difficult. Not sure what I am going to do with it yet.

I’m really happy with Rambling Words at the moment. There are a steady stream of visitors, which is gratifying to the ego. Even if the visitors aren’t reading what I am writing, just seeing the stats is enough to keep me jotting down more random thoughts.

Published?? – hopefully this dream can come true.

Hopefully everyone can make realistic and achievable goals for 2015. Good luck and hard work will get you there.

To take a writing course or not to take a writing course …

I am currently considering signing up for an online writing course (Creative Writing Stage One – Australian Writer’s Centre) to improve my writing skills and get a writing qualification under my belt. I have completed a Bachelor of Arts (Communication Studies and Ancient History) and a Bachelor of Laws, but I am thinking now I really need a writing course to ‘iron out the bugs’ and improve my writing skills, hopefully to a standard for publication.

The course runs over a four week period an is totally online, which suits me as I have a young family and it would be difficult to travel and stay in a major city for extended periods. The price is reasonable, though, for me, as a single income family of four, a big decision. I’d like, no, I’d love to do a course like this, but, as with all things, money is a major factor and will heavily influence my decision.

I’ve read a lot of feedback and reviews from people who have completed not only this course, but other similar courses offered by similar institutions. They are mostly all positive, and nearly all said the course benefited their writing. The biggest encouragement they received was one on one feedback from the teachers/tutors running the course. I imagine this type of assistance would be invaluable for a person learning the craft of writing.

So, I guess I am left with a decision – do I spend and suffer a financial hit in the short term for a probable long term improvement in my writing, or do I save the money, keep reading ‘How To…’ books and writing, writing and writing? Pretty sure I know the answer (sign up for the course), I’m just not 100% sold on the expenditure yet.