Misc Anthology is a wonderfully odd new graphic novel featuring seven tales of the weird and wonderful. We caught up woth creator Martin Simpson to find out more:
AP2HYC: Why the title Misc Anthology? Does it speak for itself?
Simpson: Pretty much! Misc Anthology is a collection of seven miscellaneous short comic stories that I’ve produced over that last few years. I never originally intended them to be presented together as one book. So I thought, ‘honesty is the best policy’ and I called it ‘Misc’.
AP2HYC: The opening of the Kickstarter video had quite a grim tone, is this the kind of feeling that you’re aiming for with the comic?
Simpson: Well, I was going for more of a melancholic feel than grim, but yes, that Kickstarter trailer and the music I chose is an accurate reflection of the general tone of the book. (There are some funny bits too though!)
AP2HYC: Can you talk about the variety of the stories?
Simpson: There’s all sorts going on in this book… some sci-fi and gothic horror tropes, but also dark comedy and even comics reportage. Hopefully, something for everyone!
AP2HYC: Can you talk about the styles of artwork? By the looks of it, you’ll have some very unique imagery.
Simpson: Hey thanks! The way I work has developed over eight years as a freelance illustrator. Depending on the story, I’ll alter my style accordingly but I always try to work as intuitively as possible. Colour is key to mood and atmosphere but lighting is just as important… I try to always bear these things in mind when I’m working.
AP2HYC: Will the seven stories be connected?
Simpson: All the work came from the same brain… so in a way it can’t help but all be connected. While these stories were created without any intended relationship to each other, it was really interesting for me to see how many accidental connections, re-accruing themes and imagery I saw when I first collated everything together. It was then I thought I might have a little book on my hands, rather than just a collection of seven random stories.
AP2HYC: Are these stories that you have wanted to tell? Are they personal to you in any way?
Simpson: Absolutely! No one asked me to tell these stories. There was no brief or theme I was working towards in anyway. Some of them are very personal to me indeed. But rather than say too much about that, I would prefer that people make them their own, irrespective of what I intended it to be about.
AP2HYC: What’s next for you?
Simpson: I primarily work as a freelance illustrator, so I have various ongoing jobs at the moment. But as far as comics go, I’m well into the process of creating my first full length graphic novel which I’m very excited about. It’s going to be called Crickerlick and should be my main big job for next year. I’ll also be exhibiting at this years Thought Bubble Comic Convention for the first time (14th – 15th November 2015).
Will you be seeing Martin at Thought Bubble? Let us know in the comments section or send us a Tweet!