Over the last 10 years I have fallen in and out of love with various web comics, many try to be different but just devolve into the writers own thoughts about humanity. Don’t get me wrong that can be great, but when I read a story I want to be taken away to another world and forget about the real life I have to face once the turn of the page (or in this case click of the mouse) is all over. With this wonderful series I not only get the chance to be taken away to other worlds but other galaxies also. Now for the first time we can get our hands on a physical copy of the book all you need to do is check out their kickstarter here. If that doesn’t convince you then read this interview below with one of this wonderful books creators, Garth Graham.
Your comic is just breathtaking and vibrant, it’s a real treat to look at. On your kickstarter you mention that you both have some backgrounds in this field before, would you mind telling us a bit about them?
Sure thing! Michael worked on a webcomic called Dominic Deegan: Oracle for Hire for 11 years before we teamed up. It was a high fantasy comic about a grumpy seer and his attempts to prevent the really awful visions he had from coming true. Michael wrote and drew the comic, and what people really enjoyed about it was the character development. Story arcs actually affected people. Characters would never be the same at the end of a storyline as they were at the beginning. There was no reset, there was no retconning. The things that the characters did mattered to themselves and to the world around them.
I originally got into webcomics with a slice-of-life comic called Comedity that I started more or less on a whim. It was a very whimsical comic, and looking back on it, I’m surprised it made sense to anyone. And perhaps that’s why people liked it: it reminded them of their own antics and injokes between their own circle of friends. Also it had a penguin, and everyone loves those, right? Eventually, I realized I wasn’t so much writing a comic about the antics of my own life but rather making up antics to take the place of my life, so I decided if I was going to be writing fiction it might as well not bother masquerading as “nonfiction.” So I delved into an urban fantasy comic called Finder’s Keepers which is pretty much a love note to Neil Gaiman. Unfortunately, life took it’s toll and I found it necessary to stop the comic. Thankfully, Michael approached me shortly after about teaming up on Star Power.
To really kick us off what is the basic premise of your book?
Star Power is about a young astronomer in the far future who becomes imbued with an ancient alien power and finds herself the last of the Star Powered Sentinels. The Sentinels were the peacekeepers of the old Galactic Empire, but now both they and the empire are but ghosts and dust. Our heroine, Danica Maris, resides in the last pocket of civilization that managed to avoid the collapse of the old empire, but now she finds herself having to protect her home from the ancient enemies of the Sentinels, an alien invasion from beyond time and space: the 9th Wormhole.
I can see that your story seems to pay homage to some sci-fi greats, while still being incredibly unique, was this intentional and if so what series really inspired you?
We’re always influenced by the great story tellers who came before us. Star Power at its core is an attempt for us to return to the kinds of stories of adventure and wonder that we grew up on. We try to not be terribly blatant, but we do like to tip our hats to our big influences when and where we can.
You both seem like a great team, what drew you two together? (forgive the unintentional drawing pun)
Michael and I met at a convention called ConnectiCon back in 2005. Over the years and conventions, we became friends, and admirers of each other’s works. Despite a lot of our differences, we have a lot in common, and we found we had something of a shared vision and passion for sci-fi.
Danica seems like a pretty strong female lead, was this always intentional and do you think science fiction could stand to have more leads who are not Caucasian males?
Absolutely. Even though science fiction has an arguably better track record of interesting female characters than a lot of other genres, there’s always room for greater diversity. One of the unfortunate things we’ve noticed, with comics in particular, is that female characters inevitably serve some ulterior purpose. Either they exist primarily as sex objects, or they exist as some sort of commentary or ideological ideal. Male characters don’t have to deal with that. If they’re attractive, it’s not assumed because it’s to pander to the audience. If they’re strong and brave and smart and compassionate, it’s not because it’s some commentary on how men should behave. They’re just men. We wanted a female character who could just be a woman. Not as some sex symbol, even though she’s pretty. Not as some fountainhead of femininity or feminism, though she is independent. Just as an interesting character in her own right.
Your web comic obviously has a strong fan base and the series is really thriving, care to let us in on what’s in store for the future?
More adventures in space! We actually have Danica’s next several adventures plotted out, even though they haven’t been scripted yet. Right now we’re coming up on the end of the first issue in her second adventure: The Search for Black Hole Bill. With a bit of luck, we’ll be able to continue bringing the world amazing sci-fi superhero adventures for years to come.
Within a short period of time you have already surpassed all your original goals and are now into your stretch goals, there are still probably some people out there who think that they can read your comic for free online, what do you have to offer that will maybe make them want to back this project?
Make no mistake, they certainly can read it online for free, and we have no problem with that. However, the book comes with a lot things you just can’t get online. We’re packing the book with a bunch of extras you can’t find online: in depth information about life in the Millennium Federation, concept sketches and developmental drawings. And even more fundamentally: there’s something about reading a comic book that just can’t be duplicated online. Turning a page, and waiting for a page to load just isn’t the same, no matter how wide the bandwidth.
What been the most rewarding part of this project for you?
Really, just knowing that we’ve created something that people have enjoyed. Yeah, there’s something nice and prestigious about being published, but knowing that we’ve enriched people’s lives even in the smallest of ways, that’s the best feeling.
And finally are there any messages out there for your backers and fans?
THANK YOU! We couldn’t have come this far without you guys.
Once again check out their kickstarter here.