“Frankenstein: A World of Gods and Monsters is the exploration of what it means to be a monster in a world populated by greater than life characters from classic literature, mythology, and urban legend.” I’ve worked with artist Justin Shauf with the Canadian Comic Book Alliance and we had a quick chat about the Kickstarter for his new project.
Martin Boruta: Justin, your take on Frankenstein looks awesome. Thanks for answering a few questions today.
Justin Shauf: Thank you. I appreciate you taking the time to help spread the word about the Kickstarter.
Martin: Well, you know me and my love of Canadian comics. What’s the background of how you and Graeme Williams got together on this project?
Justin: Graeme and I met a few years back, at the Saskatchewan Entertainment Expo in Saskatoon. This is the first time Graeme and I have worked together. Frankenstein: A World of Gods & Monsters is actually Graeme’s first foray into the world of writing comic books. Graeme is a rabid comic book fan. And once you begin analyzing the how’s and why’s behind a comic book, and truly digging deep into what makes them tick, I think the natural progression for any creative-minded person is a desire to tell your own stories. Graeme combined his love of comic books with his love of movie monsters, that’s where our version of Frankenstein was born.
Martin: Have you collaborated on any other comic projects that our readers might want to check out?
Justin: Well, I drew a few stories in issue #1 of Jeff Burton’s the Adventures of Auroraman. But you knew that already as you edited that book. I have also collaborated with Donovan Yaciuk on his Spacepig Hamadeus comic and Andrew Lorenz on the first two issues of Canadian Corps.
Martin: Frankenstein: A World of Gods & Monsters Issue #1. Number one indicates there is more to come. What’s the plan for subsequent issues?
Justin: The original concept was to release the entire first story as a 100-and-some page graphic novel. I guess we were impatient. All kidding aside, I think releasing the story in single issues allows us a chance to build the brand and grow an audience. It also gives us a physical product to sell at conventions or in stores or to hand to a prospective publisher.
Martin: Justin, give us the background on the story.
Justin: It has been 200 years since a lightning bolt gave Frankenstein the gift of life. Those years haven’t always been kind, and neither has his family. He has been labelled a monster and shunned by society. But Frankenstein is working to change all that. He now works as a monster hunter in order to distance himself from the label and is doing what he can to reconnect with the Frankenstein Family and rediscover a sense of normal.
Martin: Why are you putting this project on Kickstarter specifically?
Justin: Kickstarter is a fantastic platform. I’ve supported numerous Kickstarter campaigns in the past. All were books, I would’ve never been exposed to had they not been on Kickstarter. It’s a fantastic way to discover if your product even has an audience. And by crowdfunding, we can offset some of the expenses from the onset.
Martin: Kickstarter is all about the rewards, can you fill us in a bit on your different reward levels?
Justin: Sure, the main reward, obviously is the book itself, which will be available in a digital or physical format. We also have some original art tiers, sketches and actual pages from the book are available as well. We also have t-shirts featuring the fantastic Frankenstein: A World of Gods & Monsters logo, designed by Donovan Yaciuk.
Martin: Every Kickstarter contributor is always eager to know how close is the project to being finished. Pretty sure it is to gauge how likely is the project to ship.
Justin: The first issue is nearly complete. There are a few pages left to ink, but the colours are well underway. The book is slated to be at the printers for the end of March.
Martin: Again, thank you for taking a few moments and best of luck. I have already contributed but I should change my pledge and get in on some of these great rewards.
Justin: Thank-you for taking the time to do this, your support is greatly appreciated.
Frankenstein: A World of Gods and Monsters is written by Graeme Williams, pencilled and inked by Justin Shauf with colours by Greg Menzie. The logo was designed by Donovan Yacuik. Frankenstein’s Monster created by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley. Check out the rewards and make a pledge at https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1742552648/frankenstein-a-world-of-gods-and-monsters-issue-1