In December 2010 artist Beck Seashols and writer Brad Duncan launched the Sweeten Village webcomic. At first it seemed like a nice, innocent story of a small town, but a few weeks later there were Zombie Gingerbread Cookies running around the town. Two years later the town has survived the Zombie Gingerbread invasion and Vampire Cupcakes. At the moment the town is under attack from Were-Donuts. Making things even stranger (if that’s possible) is the fact that these possessed baked goods seem to be focusing on young Sally Winston.
You might wonder where the idea of baked goods turned monsters came from. The idea actually started with a tweet from Beck. “Well I tweeted something about “how do you make zombie gingerbread cookies?” and Brad read my tweet and said “this would make a great webcomic…don’t talk about it…let’s do it together!” So it was sort of an accident, a happy accident! Brad and I had been Twitter friends for a few months before that and when decided to work together it just felt natural. Now we are like the Wonder Twins! Form of a giant gingerbread zombie! Form of a giant glass of milk! Hahaha”. Of course that’s Beck’s side of the story. Brad remembers is a bit differently. “Beck (@ reply to someone else on Twitter): “how do you make zombie gingerbread cookies?” (or something similar) me [Brad] “that would make a great webcomic.” Beck (@ reply to me [Brad]): “you write it and I’ll draw it.” and then I did, in fact, tell her to stop talking about it. At least on Twitter. We skyped a couple of times to talk specifics and the rest is history. It did happen really quickly though. I think that was in September 2010, and the strip debuted on December 1, 2010.”
As I mentioned before, Sweeten Village isn’t just the story of a town invaded by possessed baked goods. It’s also the story of young Sally Winston and her family. Turns out Sally’s mom mysteriously disappeared three years ago, not long after she topped the town’s Christmas Tree. In 2010, Sally topped the Christmas tree and not soon after that is when the evil baked goods started to appear. Coincidence? It’s all speculation at this point as Brad is being tight-lipped on where the story is going.
Brad is keeping some of the story points so close that he hasn’t even told Beck how chapter 3 is going to end. According to Brad “I’ve been stringing her along like we have the readers, giving her a script a week to draw. However, I think in the next week or so, I’ll write the rest of this chapter and send to her ahead of time. We don’t know what chapter 4 will be yet, but certainly it will be a lot of fun.”
You’ll be able to meet Beck and Brad and talk all things Sweeten Village at the following conventions: Heroes Con (June 22 -24), Cincinnati Comic Expo (Sept 22 – 23) and Mid-Ohio Con (Sept 28-30). You might even be able to buy some “adorkable” Sweeten Village merchandise from Beck. She has drawn up some pattern ideas for stuffed Sweeten Village Villains; it’s just a matter of her finding time to make them.
There’s also a chance you’ll be able to purchase a print edition of Sweeten Village at the September conventions. The current plans call for only 100 copies to be printed which will contain all of chapter one. Depending on how sales of that initial book go, Chapters two and three may be also collected in printed editions. For now, you can read all of Sweeten Village online at http://www.sweetenvillage.com. A new page is released every Wednesday but make sure you’re not just reading the comic page. You also need to read the Sweeten Village Chronicles to read entries from some of the town’s residents. It gives some additional insight into the world of Sweeten Village.