13 Years of Warlord
In August 3, 2006, I took a chance and uploaded the very first cover of the Fred Peterson: The Mighty Warlord webcomic onto a site I had recently discovered named Drunk Duck Webcomics.
I had been uploading TMW on the the main forums originated in Puerto Rico, Comix PR and Paquines Son Comics.
Warlord was a pretty good hit in those forums, but sometimes it could be a bit messy the whole uploading the images on to photobucket and then post it on the forums. Commenting was also a bit of a mess, forums really aren't that great to be posting webcomics.
Then I saw that there were sites dedicated to webcomics and a more smooth commenting system.
I didn't have my own website nor domain, so when I saw Drunk Duck, I decided to start uploading there, thinking that even if I don't get many views or comments at all, at least it's a good place to archive my pages in the event any of the forums fold.
To my surprise, I actually had like maybe 100 views after uploading the first cover (image above). After 2 more pages, I got comments. And then repeat readers. Then new readers. And before I know it, it was a top 500 webcomic, then top 200, and then a consistent top 100 comic. It even cracked the top 20 within the next few years.
This little webcomic that started in these forums suddenly went to a platform that had more eyes on them and soon there were readers from as far as the UK and Japan. That. Is. Crazy.
It also opened new opportunities for me.
I wrote a couple of short stories for NovusGenesis. That led to writing Project: New Wave for TC cofounder Manuel Carmona.
Warlord briefly was under the umbrella of Don Algaro, Artificium, Astral 22, Studio 22, before all those folded and then found a permanent home at Truthful Comics.
I also wrote for Silver Island Studios, which I still do today as well, writing short stories for Blindsight and Dragonfang, and then the origin issues of El Matatan and Blindsight.
All this stemming from a comic I created in 8th grade.
It wasn't without hassle and challenges, though.
In 2009-2010 I had a lot of hardware failures that kept messing with the updating. Then the Platinum Studios/Drunk Duck debacle happened.
On top of that, there was also the HUGE server crash that crippled Drunk Duck for a while, as well as the big two PR forums closing down.
Once everything started getting back to normal on Drunk Duck, I was involved in a car accident that put me on the shelf for about 6 months.
I had a pretty bad concussion, at first doctors said I was never going to be the same again. I was seeing double for about 2 months with a crippling headache. Then, against doctors orders, I said screw that, and laying down on my bed or on the sofa, I willed myself to draw again.
I slowly recovered and started feeling more myself again and I got back on Warlord.
I resumed work updating on Warlord, and to my surprise, it was doing better than ever. The views skyrocketed into the thousands and cracked the top 20 again. It got a couple of reviews and a spotlight on a webcomic centric website, as well as online news pages retweeted Warlord various times. And then I burned out.
I was so laser focused on coming back physically, that I left behind and underestimated the toll of the mental and emotional toll it would take. I would only do about 1 update every other month. I was tired. I was emotionally tired.
In the middle of all this, Manuel Carmona decides to make an actual website for TC.
The TC website came about and I started blogging again, something I had not done in years. Then I moved all the archives of Warlord (and my other webcomics) to this here site, and it actually led to other readers checking it out.
After much deliberating and thought, I eventually decided to move back to my birthplace, New York. The big move and transition was a tough one. After slowly starting to update again, the move really slowed my updating again to updating every other month.
Then I started working and going to school again. Slowly, but surely, I started uploading for frequently again. Drunk Duck changed their name to simply The Duck and was having a sort of rebirth at the same time Warlord did too.
Since uploading consistently again, Warlord for the first time ever cracked the Top 10 at The Duck, got more reviews, and was nominated for the first time for Best Super Hero Comic for the Drunk Duck Awards.
I was planning on doing a recoloring/relettering job to be able to do a print version of Warlord, but some mayor events happened again.
A couple of floods by a broken pipe destroyed many of the original pages. Hurricane Maria struck PR, the eye passed by my hometown. My mother lost her house. All of the original pages of 90% of the webcomic were in my old room. Gone.
After a lot of thought again, I decided I would just redraw the whole thing again, from scratch.
I've been working hard to redo this series for a printed edition because the webimages are so low resolution, the printed edition would look WAY too bad.
So, I have been working on the webcomic and the print version at the same time.
Meanwhile, coinciding with the 13th anniversary, Warlord just finished chapter number 25, and chapter 26 just started, bringing me closer to the goal of reaching 35, which is the number of issues the longest running PR comic, Turey El Taino, had.
Turey was one of the first PR comics that I loved and respected. Turey to me is what Cerebus is to Todd McFarlane and Spawn. The goal, the standard to reach.
So, what now?
Well, there's going to be Warlord for a good while, still. Aside from The Duck and the TC site, I have a Patreon where I do a lot of free behind the scenes stuff. There's also the FaceBook page, InstaGram, linkedin, Twitter, etc.
Fred Peterson: The Mighty Warlord has been with me through the up and downs, through incredible journeys. And it makes me so happy and humbled that many of you have been with me on this long journey. And for that, from the bottom of my heart, thank you all. I will do my best to do the best work I can, please look forward to what Warlord and Truthful Comics has in store for you!
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