So the talk in the comment section has focused a lot on Kickstarter projects being the breeding ground for hot new comics. I ran a piece on one that was picked up by Top Cow / Minotaur (Publisher of ‘Think Tank’) that will be released this November called ‘Voice in the Dark.’ I got a chance to interview the amazing creator tonight and find out a lot more about this book. (Also big thanks to those who ordered his Kickstarter addition in the past 24 hours, you guys are the greatest!)
Also, big thanks to Larime Taylor for taking the time out to do the interview. I really see this as something that will be big. Not only did Top Cow pick this up, creators are swooning over Larime’s story and art.
Comicsheatingup- So for those unfamiliar, what is the premise behind ‘Voice in the Dark’?
Larime Taylor- It’s about a young woman who is becoming a serial killer, kind of a female DEXTER, but from the origin instead of years after. She’s a freshman in college, and trying to have a normal life and balance that with these compulsions she has to kill.
CHU- Was this something you had been thinking of for a while? What is the origin of the premise?
LT- It started out as a campy horror parody, but in development I realized I had a real story and could do a lot with it, so it’s much more serious and intense now. I’ve been developing it for about 5 years, but only seriously making it a comic for about a year.
CHU- Your art style is very clean and reminds me a bit of Terry Moore, I am sure you get that a lot, are you a fan?
LT- I do, and I am! he’s also, apparently, a fan of mine, which trips me out. He gave me a great blurb for the book and contributed a pinup to a Kickstarter. He’s a great guy.
CHU- Who are your other influences?
LT- Los Hermanos Hernandez, Jamie McKelvie, Duncan Eagleson – he drew SANDMAN and SHADE: THE CHANGING MAN for Vertigo back in the day, and is a mentor of mine.
CHU- Did you study art, if so where, or are you self taught?
LT- In high school, and for a year at Arizona State, but mostly I’m self-taught. Years and years of practice.
CHU- You started this out on Kickstarter, how was the process? What were your original goals and how did you make out?
LT- It was amazing. I set out to fund a single-issue comic to use as a submission to publishers, and because I hit 600% of my goal, it ended up becoming a 3-issue mini that I printed as a trade. That trade became my submission package, and I got picked up by Top Cow.
CHU- How did you get picked up by Top Cow/Minotaur press? That had to be a major ego boost since the only other book they currently publish is ‘Think Tank’.
LT- By using the trade as my submission. I pitched in person to Matt Hawkins at Wonder Con, and he told me up front that they don’t take creator-owned books, but let me give my pitch, anyway, since I was there and he was intrigued. As we talked, he kept finding reasons to make an exception and take it anyway.I could see him talking himself into it despite what he said up front. It was a huge boost, yeah.
CHU- ‘Voice in the Dark’ is going to be an ongoing series. How did you bypass the mini to ongoing process?
LT- It’s funny, I said I wanted an ongoing, and Matt said ‘Okay’. People in the industry can’t believe it, since almost everything is minis that get renewed if they sell well. I asked for an ongoing and got it.
CHU- How many issues are you shooting for in the series? How far along are you?
LT- I don’t have a set ending in mind just yet, so no idea how many issues. I’ve outlined 13 so far, written 7, and drawn about 3. I’m working on 3-7 right now in a block, and have about have of #3 and #4 drawn.
CHU- You have on your site that you are a disabled artist and story teller, can you go give us some back ground?
LT- Sure. I was born with Arthrogryposis, which left me with little use of my arms and legs, so I do pretty much everything by mouth. I draw digitally on a Wacom Cintiq.
CHU- The Kickstarter edition has Gimp as the publisher, with the logo as a handicap symbol, what’s up with that?
LT- I thought it was funny, turning the symbol into a G for Gimp. I have a sense of humor about it.
CHU- Can you tell me about your art process? I understand that you use a tablet and draw with your mouth. I can’t even eat with my mouth without making a mess, how long did it take for you to hone your style?
LT- I’ve been drawing with my mouth since I was 4, holding the pencil in my teeth. When I drew on paper, I’d have to be hunched over at a table, drawing flat, and was very limited in my range and strokes. Now that I draw digitally, I can draw sitting up, and I can rotate the image and zoom in and out to get the best lines possible. It’s really freed me up, and my art has grown vastly.
CHU- Do you type by mouth as well? How are you doing your scripts?
LT- I do, yeah. I type with a stick in my mouth.
CHU- What else are you working on?
LT- Right now, just this. I can do about 1 and a half to 2 issues a month, so I COULD take on a second book, but I want this one to be the best I can make it, so it gets all my attention right now.
CHU- Last question, Who do you see playing Zoey Aarons in a movie?
LT- Amandla Stenberg, the girl who played Rue in HUNGER GAMES. By the time a TV series or movie would get optioned and go into production, she’s be the right age.
CHU- Is there anything else you would like the readers to know?
LT- Yeah, actually. I’m trying to raise funds to get my wife a new laptop. My wife, Sylv, is bed-bound with Lupus and her laptop is the only link she has to the outside world. That laptop is also what she uses to create art, including coloring comics. It’s dying – it shut off 10 times in 3 hours today – and when it’s dead she’ll be utterly isolated and unable to create.
I’d ask your readers to PLEASE consider helping in getting her a new laptop. If you can’t pledge, PLEASE share this and tell your friends. If her laptop dies and I can’t replace it, she’s going to have nothing to do and no one but me to talk to, all day, every day. This laptop is literally her life and her world.
I’m running an Indiegogo for it right now at: http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/art-laptop-for-sylv/x/1218935
There you go folks. This book looks ripe for heating up. Larime is an amazing guy. Pick up this book in November. Order his Kickstarter edition TPB before the book blows up in November at http://larimetaylor.com/ . And if you can, please help him out with the laptop fundraiser he is doing at http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/art-laptop-for-sylv/x/1218935
The Top Cow edition can be preordered at Tfaw.com