You started Alterna Comics in 2006…what type of comics did you want to bring out?
I wanted to help support quality books that were slipping through the cracks. Alterna’s always been kind of a “dead zone” sorta publishing company. We don’t have mainstream books but we also don’t have books that are generally associated with being “indie” material.
Since super heroes have basically been done to death, did you want to stay on the darker side of comics?
It wasn’t a conscious choice but that seems to be what we’ve done.
You have done every part of the comic industry; writer, illustrator, editor, inker, colorist, letterer..of those, which is your favorite?
When it comes to making comics, I love writing and lettering. I love drawing as well but I love seeing another artist bring an idea to life, that’s always an exciting time.
In 2008, you wrote “The Chair,” which was later made into an indie movie. What was the transition like from writing a comic, or graphic novel to writing a screenplay?
I actually started writing The Chair in 2006 and it was originally a print on demand series with some small runs. In 2008, the graphic novel came out that compiled the entire story. As far as the writing process goes, a comic script is very similar to a film script so there wasn’t that much difference in terms of approach.
Did you have any input during the filming? Such as adjusting characters or changing scenes around?
During filming, I had very little input. The production just kind of ran with things – some things changed quite a bit from what was in the script.
“The Chair” was Roddy Piper’s last film. What was your experience working with him?
Roddy was a wonderful guy. His joy was infectious and his dedication went above and beyond.
He was a childhood hero of mine because he was so larger than life and as an adult, he’s a hero of mine because of the humble and gracious attitude he exuded even though he was a living legend. He’s definitely missed.
I know it was a quick shoot–only two weeks–how did you manage Alterna and being on set? Or did Alterna take a backseat for those two weeks?
I actually wasn’t on set at the time. There was a massive snowstorm in New England and I was snowbound during most of the filming.
Would you ever adapt another of your graphic novel for an indie film? Mr. Hester has said he’d love to work with you again, if you ever decided to do that.
Kyle was great but I’m honestly not to keen to do another film. I’d much rather stick with comics!
How closely would you say indie comics and indie film are related? Does one nurture the other?
Generally, the two aren’t really related. I think the mindset and the heart of it all is essentially the same, but that’s about it. The two mediums are as different as they are similar.
How important are indie comics to the comic book universe?
Indie comic creators are the risk-takers; the ones that go out on the edge and take the leap without a safety net. There wouldn’t be a mainstream without indie creators taking that initial dive and testing the waters.
You make a lot of appearances all over the country…do you have any plans to introduce them across the pond? Well, after this interview, the London folks will know who you are.
We’ve currently got The Chair submitted to about 5 film festivals in the UK. Fingers crossed!