'Common Grounds' brewed up at Top Cow

Official Press Release

Independent writer Troy Hickman has found a new home for his independent project, Common Grounds, which is set to debut at Top Cow in January 2004. This regular series will have two self-contained stories each issue, featuring Hickman as the writer. The series' regular artist, Dan Jurgens, will draw one story per issue. The other story will be drawn by a different guest artist, and such industry heavyweights as Chris Bachalo, Ethan Van Sciver, and Michael Avon Oeming have lined up to provide artwork for this series. Each issue will also feature painted covers by talented artist Rodolfo Migliari.

"Ten years ago, with no idea how to get my foot in the door, I started publishing my own digest-sized, photocopied comics called Holey Crullers," says writer Troy Hickman. "They were rough, but they were mine, and people seemed to think they were good."

Holey Crullers, retitled Common Grounds, is set in a chain of coffee shops across the country, where super-heroes and super-villains gather to sip coffee, munch on donuts, and hang out without causing a major brawl. It's in this neutral setting that stories are created focusing on the "human" side of the superhuman.

Editor Jim McLauchlin relates: "I picked up the mini-comic at the 1997 Wizard World Chicago convention and instantly fell in love with it. The stories were told with more heart, soul, and humanity than anything I had ever read. When I came to Top Cow, I made it my first priority to contact Troy Hickman and get rights to the property." Top Cow arranged to buy the property from Hickman, name him the series writer, and then worked with artists throughout the comic industry to bring his stories to life. "The best part is seeing that these artists, guys like Michael Avon Oeming, Ethan van Sciver, Dan Jurgens and Chris Bachalo, dig these stories as much as I do."

Top Cow was founded in December of 1992 and currently publishes its line of comic books in 21 languages in over 55 different countries. The company has launched 20 franchises (18 original and 2 licensed) in the industry's Top 10, seven at #1, a feat accomplished by no other publisher in the last two decades. Its flagship franchise Witchblade was TNT's #1 original film of 2000. Virtually all of Top Cow's other properties are in development as feature films, live action television or animation. Top Cow has also successfully licensed and merchandised its franchises into toys, statues, clothing, lithographs, puppets, posters, shot glasses, lighters, lunch pails, wall scrolls, mouse pads, die cast cars, calendars, Christmas ornaments, Halloween masks, trading cards, standees, video games and role playing games.

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