Chris Waterman writes for Bleeding Cool
I had the opportunity this last weekend to walk the Long Beach Comic & Horror Con. The past 3 years I have attended as a budding young (well old) artist and enjoyed my time in the Artist Alley. From the veteran creators of the comic industry to the new faces looking to tell their own stories, there is an overall drive of creativity, energy and passion for the comic medium. The diversity of styles, content, ages and viewpoints just show how much people love comics. I took this time walking the isle of the Artist Alley to interview a wide range of creators, all of whom are very driventhughtful and extremely passionate.
Tell me a little about yourself:
Robert: I’m a self-published comic book writer. I’ve been studying, learning and practicing the craft of comic writing for almost three years now. In my day job I’m a television assistant editor in the glorious world of reality TV. I write comics because I enjoy it and hopefully have a couple interesting stories to tell.
Giulie: I’ve written short stories, screenplays, and most recently comics. I gravitate towards more character driven stories and my work reflects that.
Robert: My favorite thing about being a comic creator changes on any given day. Somedays it’s the excitement I get from figuring out the ending of a story, somedays it’s when I get a package in the mail containing my freshly printed comic, somedays it’s getting to talk to comic readers and other fellow creators at a convention. There’s almost no end to my list of favorite things about being a comic book creator, or at least I’ve yet to find it. On the other hand, my least favorite thing about being a self published comic book creator is the large amount of financial responsibility; it can be frustrating and honestly, a little disheartening at times.
Giulie: Favorite thing: Getting pages back from the artist. That’s when you start to see your story come alive. Least favorite thing: Promotion. I’m more modest and least vocal about my projects. Although it’s vital to get your work out there, it’s really time consuming for me.
Robert: My first comic, Clown Fight, took about a year from script to printed page. The comic itself is a 12 page silent story about two clowns, um, well, fighting! Every step of the way our largest battle was against the every day demands of our personal lives. Like all new indie comic creators we have day jobs that take up the bulk of our time, forcing us to steal whatever free time we can find on nights and weekends to work on our comics. A team of full time comic book professionals could have knocked out Clown Fight in well under a month, but unfortunately the reality for us was that the process was a lot slower.
Giulie: My first comic, By The Slice, was originally a homework assignment for a class I was taking at Meltdown Comics in Los Angeles. I took a shot at hiring an artist to execute my script, fortunately she turned out great and worked really fast. It took about 3 months from finalized script to completed artwork.
What does success mean to you in regards to creating comics?
Robert: Honestly, I wish I knew. I’m just making comics because I want to and I love doing it. I don’t think if I went out searching for success I would be able to find it. I’m just hoping that someday it’ll bump into me.
Giulie: Success to me means being busy. I have a day job and would like to create comics full time. Hopefully finishing more comics will lead me to a publisher who will take over the distribution/promotion aspects. I’d rather spend my time writing new material than dealing with the business side.
What should people expect from your work?
Robert: This is a pretty simple answer to me. I want people who read my books to have fun. Nothing fancy or highfalutin, just have fun.
Giulie: No matter what genre I write, expect to see good characters and good dialogue.
Chris Waterman lives in Southern California. He is a life long comicbook fan and artist. You can check out some of his work at: http://radixrising.deviantart.com/