Upon launching its open submissions initiative last year, Oni Press received applications from over 25,000 creators — and after much deliberation from their editors, we now know five of the ten titles that were selected by the revered indie publisher.
As revealed by their editorial staff at Emerald City Comicon — but now with the addition of new artwork — five of the upcoming Oni titles from their open submissions project include:
“Black Mage,” by Daniel Barnes and DJ Kirkland, a fantasy action story about the first black student at a school for magicians.
“The Searchers,” by Jonathan Hill, a story about three Asian-American siblings searching for their mother after a devastating earthquake.
“Podi,” by Navin Ratnayake, Deshan Tennekoon, and Isuri Merenchi Hewage, a fantasy tale about three children who shrink to the size of ants.
“Unplugged & Unpopular,” by Mat Heagerty and Tintin Pantoja, a sci-fi graphic novel about a teenager whose parents take away her electronics-leaving her the only person on earth who realizes the aliens are invading.
“Pilu of the Woods,” by Mai K. Nguyen, a story about a girl who befriends a tree spirit in the woods.
In addition to the five books listed above, Natalie Reiss’s “Space Battle Lunchtime” was announced in November 2015.
According to Publishers Weekly, “the editors compiled a shortlist of artists and colorists whom they will call on for new projects.”
“It can be too easy to hire people you’ve worked with previously, or who come recommended by people you know,” Oni managing editor Ari Yarwood told the site. “It’s important to break out of that circle.”
She added, “We found books that I wouldn’t have necessarily loved from the logline, but the execution was fantastic. And there were books that had great concepts that fell short.”
The publisher spent every Friday “for months” looking over submissions, as the process entailed two editors reading over each pitch, and subsequently sharing them with the rest of the team, if they were deemed fit to print.
Stay tuned to CBR for word on the other four titles that were picked up by Oni.
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