Category: Interviews

With Further Ado #015: Cat Scratch Fever

With Further Ado #015: Cat Scratch Fever

A Conversation with Stuart Moore

AHOY Comics has burst onto the scene and is quickly becoming known as the comic company that’s a welcome breath of fresh air. And comic shops are increasing their orders for AHOY titles, so they must be doing something right. I caught up with Stuart Moore, who’s an integral part of the AHOY team to learn more.

ED CATTO: How’d you ever get involved with AHOY Comics? Given the initial critical support and comic shop reordering, what’s it been like?

STUART MOORE: Well, I got involved because Tom Peyer called me up. Initially he asked if I would edit his titles, High Heaven and Wrong Earth. The company evolved a bit differently, with each of us basically editing our own titles and providing backup for each other as needed. Tom is editor-in-chief, and he’s also editor of all the books that AREN’T written by him or me.

When we lost a crucial member of the initial team—Sven Larsen, who’s currently doing great things at Marvel—I stepped into the Publishing Ops position on a freelance basis. Wrong Earth has been quite a hit—AHOY has just gone to a second printing on issue #2—so we’ve all been scrambling to deal with success. Which is nerve-wracking, but a hell of a lot better than scrambling to deal with failure.

EC: What do you think is the secret sauce for a new comic company to thrive, or just survive, in today’s difficult publishing landscape?

SM:  I think every new company has to find its own way, its own voice. For AHOY, it’s a combination of engaging lead stories and a wealth of backup features—giving the reader as much value as possible for their $3.99. Tom is also very determined that every book have elements of humor to it.

This is just my guess, but I suspect AHOY is appealing somewhat to lapsed comic readers—without pandering overtly to nostalgia or fanboy trivia. If you have fond memories of the early Vertigo titles or of 1963 (the comic, not the year), you’ll probably want to check out these books. Whatever we’re doing, it seems to be working so far.

Also, of course, we’re hoping to attract cat fans.  Continue reading “With Further Ado #015: Cat Scratch Fever”

With Further Ado #014: Writer or Entrepreneur?  A conversation with Ron Marz

With Further Ado #014: Writer or Entrepreneur? A conversation with Ron Marz

Ron Marz is a creator who has been around the block a time or two.  He’s worked on so many favorites (Silver Surfer, The Shadow, Green Lantern and more) for so many publishers (CrossGen, Valiant, Dynamite, Marvel, DC and more). With that in mind, it’s fascinating to me to see how he pivots and keeps not only his writing fresh but also his entrepreneurial freelance mojo fresh too. 

I enjoyed his latest graphic novel, Beasts of the Black Hand from Ominous Press. It’s a great read, but I’m equally intrigued by the format and Marz’s go-to-market strategy.  Despite his hectic schedule, I was able to catch up with Ron to learn more.  Continue reading “With Further Ado #014: Writer or Entrepreneur? A conversation with Ron Marz”

Spotlight Interview: Talking Web Comics and the Red Hook with Dean Haspiel

Spotlight Interview: Talking Web Comics and the Red Hook with Dean Haspiel

At Baltimore Comic-Con this year, we were able to catch up with comic artist and writer Dean Haspiel. Dean, a New York City native,  grew up in the comic industry working with luminaries such as Howard Chaykin and Harvey Pekar. He has produced award winning work in both television and web comic media. He is know for works such as Billy Dogma, The Quitter, American Splendor, Beef with Tomato, Bored to Death, The Alcoholic, The Fox, and his current epic saga, The Red Hook.

The Red Hook is a webcomic that was original released on the LINE WEBTOON platform and won the 2017 inaugural Ringo Award for Best Webcomic. It was released this year in a collected print format by Image Comics.

The second season of the Red Hook was released as War Cry, also on LINE WEBTOON in 2018. It was also nominated for a Ringo Award.  The third season titled StarCross is expected to be released early 2019.


Webcomics: You can’t avoid it. You can’t deny it. Start to embrace it!

PopCultureSquad: Hi Dean. Thanks for doing this. Let’s start with, “When are we going to get to see StarCross, the third volume of the Red Hook saga?”

Dean Haspiel: The initial date that we decided on was Valentine’s Day 2019. It is a very ambitious project for me. Ideally, I would like to have about sixteen chapters in the can before we launch. I hope to have that done by mid-February. If not, then we may push it until March or April, and then it will run for about five and a half months consecutively.

PCS: There are times when things get announced on LINE WEBTOON as “Coming Soon”, and then it takes quite awhile before we get to see them. Continue reading “Spotlight Interview: Talking Web Comics and the Red Hook with Dean Haspiel”

Spotlight Interview: Don McGregor

Spotlight Interview: Don McGregor

A few weeks ago, Ed Catto sat down with Don McGregor for a lengthy chat

 

Continued After the Next Page #004: When Thor Rode the Bus

Continued After the Next Page #004: When Thor Rode the Bus

Comic books today are made in vastly different ways than the were in years past. Scripts are emailed; pencils are done on tablets and then emailed or shared again across the internet; colors and letters are handled digitally. Of course, I am generalizing, but the point is that, in the world we live in, the creators of comic books have evolved to take advantage of the technology available to them. In this column, I want to remind us of the interesting events that surrounded the physical creation of the comics we read in the past.

I had the great opportunity to meet legendary artist/writer/letterer John Workman at a convention last year. He shared an amazing story with me, and recently we spoke again about it and many other comic and non-comic topics. In the coming weeks, here on Pop Culture Squad, I will be sharing the interview as a whole, but today, I would like to share with you a few humorous and fascinating stories related to the methods that John employed in getting the art, words, and color on the Bristol board pages that made the comics of old.

John Workman has been a frequent collaborator with the great Walter Simonson throughout the years. John was the letterer on the entirety of Walt’s remarkable run on Thor in the 80’s (1983-1987). They are still working together on the creator-owned Ragnarok, for which John is nominated for both Eisner and Ringo Awards this year. I asked John to recount the tale of how he and Walt would pass the comic pages back and forth back in the day:

Thor Rode the Bus Continue reading “Continued After the Next Page #004: When Thor Rode the Bus”

Spotlight Interview with Ron Marz

Spotlight Interview with Ron Marz

Ed Catto caught up with Ron Marz at Syracuse’s Salt City Comic-Con to talk about his  long career, explore the realities of the current industry and innovative new ways to get comics into the hands of fans.