I’m sure that our readers are no stranger to superheroes and stories of supernatural powers. So when another of those stories come along, and when one catches my eye, it’s always because that story has taken the extra time to put us in the shoes of its main character. Its focus is the drama and its priority is for us to empathise with the hero before anything else. SEASONS, a superhero/supernatural adventure series is now crowdfunding on IndieGoGo for its second volume Summer. It has shown to have those same priorities with its main character Fletcher. We caught up with writer Nandor Fox Shaffer to hear a bit more about what’s in store for the series’ hero.
A Place To Hang Your Cape: Where does the story in SEASONS Volume 2: Summer pick up?
Nandor Fox Shaffer: Literally right where we left off in SEASONS Volume 1: Spring; on the first day of Summer, June 21st. Opening to page one, mere seconds have passed. It’s as if you were turning the page after the very final page of the first volume. Where is that, exactly? With Fletcher, the protagonist of the series, falling through a skyscraper. We’re guns blazing right out of the gate.
AP2HYC: How has Fletcher changed since the start of the series and what sort of direction does his story take this chapter?
NFS: Now more than ever, Fletcher is a fish out of water. At the beginning of Spring, he was a very desperate and depressed character. Throughout the first arc, he starts to realize and accept his emotional, mental, and spiritual state and his overall lack of purpose and wholeness. With Summer, he’s navigating his next move and the person he wants to be. Will he continue on his own self-destructive path of isolation and shame, or move forward towards a new path of potential and possibility? And what would that look like for him? That’s the fundamental question he faces and he’s struggling to find a clear answer.
AP2HYC: For fans of Volume 1, what’s new and familiar in Volume 2?
NFS: Most of what fans will find in this volume is new and exciting. We’re introducing a whole cast of fresh characters, a new setting, as well as Fletcher’s new power-set that he puts on display: super-strength and the ability to control and manipulate the earth itself. There’s nothing in Summer that feels like a retread. What fans will find familiar and consistent is the narrative structure and visual style from the first volume. SEASONS is all about character and revolves around Fletcher. His motivations and growth are explored even more so, and the striking, detailed artwork from Anthony Gonzales-Clark is back and better than ever. There’s also some Easter eggs that only people who have read Spring will catch. If you loved Volume 1, you will adore Volume 2. It’s a better book on every level.
AP2HYC: You’ve said this is the second chapter of a four volume series. Do you already have plans for Autumn and Winter? I’m sure the positive reception to Volume 1 is encouraging. Has the response to the comic affected your ideas for the direction the story will take?
NFS: Yes to the first question. The majority of the rest of SEASONS is planned out. As the writer and creator, I knew the series would only work if it had a definitive endgame and the best stories in my opinion are the ones that have a roadmap and feel intricately constructed. Otherwise, you’d lose so much cohesion and the ability to layer individual storylines and so forth. I want readers who finish the entire series to revisit it and go, “Oh my gosh! This part later on was foreshadowed from the very beginning!” That’s the goal.
And not so much in regards to the second question. I love feedback (especially when it’s positive, haha) but I know what direction I want to take the series and I try not to let numbers or suggestions influence me too much. I don’t want to cater for the sake of it, but definitely take into account what resonates with readers and always want to make sure they get the best graphic novel and story possible.
AP2HYC: Finally, can you please tell us a bit about the creative team on SEASONS?
NFS: For sure! It’s a two-man team, just myself and my artist and letterer, Anthony Gonzales-Clark. We prefer doing everything between the two of us and are really in sync creatively. It’s a lot of work, but it keeps us focused and on top of things. We’ve created a really great partnership and friendship over the past four years and can’t wait to keep making this series as well as finish it together. What’s really amazing is that neither of us went to school for this sort of thing, so we seem to be naturally prone to carry the same mindset when it comes to storytelling. Which is pretty insane when you think about it. Feels like a one-in-a-million destined duo in a lot of ways.