RICH INTERVIEWS: Brea Grant Writer for Mary: The Adventures of Mary Shelley’s Great-Great-Great-Great-Great-Granddaughter

First Comics News: Who is the main star of “Mary: The Adventures of Mary Shelley’s Great-Great-Great-Great-Great-Granddaughter”?

Brea Grant: That would be Mary, a modern-day (fictional) descendant of Mary Shelley. She comes from a long line of authors and is having trouble living up to that legacy..until she discovers that she had an entirely different legacy to live up to.

1st: How was Adam able to find Mary?

Brea: Everyone in the monster community is aware of who is next in line to help them. Mary’s mother was the last person but chose to not be involved with the monsters in any way, but Mary doesn’t know that. Adam can sense that Mary is in a crisis and he goes to find her because he himself is in a bit of a bind as well.

1st: Do you have a favorite monster in this comic and if so why?

Brea: Yes. I love the ghost of Shirley Jackson who lives in the body of a stuffed rabbit. It’s such a silly idea but Yishan created the cutest stuffed animal who has a very acerbic personality.

1st: How has writing and directing films helped you in writing comics?

Brea: Yes and vice versa. I often think of directing in terms of comic panels. Comics are similar to storyboarding in films. It’s all about the box and what’s inside. With both, I start with the character and move out from there. I try to get inside my character’s heads to figure out what their next decision is. I did that with Mary from the start.

1st: Would you say Mary in your story has a similar personality to the real one?

Brea: She does actually. Mary Shelley was a somewhat quiet, sensitive, and rebellious young woman and my Mary is the same. Mary Shelley had a lot of goth-like qualities and I wanted my Mary to have those as well.

1st: What exactly is Mary’s gift or special ability?

Brea: Mary has the ability to help hurt monsters. We meet a number of different monsters in the book – a harpy, a man put together from other people’s body parts, a Loch Ness Monster (which is more of a cryptid). In this book, she is just learning to access it and doesn’t know exactly how it works. She only knows that it does work.

1st: Why are so many monsters getting hurt all the time?

Brea: Good question. It’s tough being a monster, trying to keep yourself and your life a secret! I think many of the monsters are on their own without others like them so they depend on someone like Mary with special abilities to help them.

1st: Who are a few of Mary’s family?

Brea: Her immediate family is full of well-known authors. Her mother, Tawny, writes mystery novels about a woman with the same name called Crimes She Solved. Her Aunt Macy is a non-fiction author who writes about great women throughout history and her grandmother is a famous cookbook author.

1st: If you could give other writers one tip what would it be and why?

Brea: Write every day. Even a little bit, even if you’re just revising what you wrote yesterday. Treat it like eating breakfast or working out. Some days you don’t want to but you have to because you know it’s good for you.

1st: What did you find hardest and easiest about writing “Suicide Girls”?

Brea: I loved writing that one. It was weird because it’s based on a property with no lore or storyline so we (my brother Zane and I) made one up. I had never worked with a brand before and they also had a lot of input about where the story should go. So, it was both fun and difficult to take all of those different ideas and try to make one coherent story.

1st: How did playing Daphne Millbrook on “Heroes” enrich your life?

Brea: It changed my life! I went from waiting table to making my living as an artist and have never looked back. Heroes took a huge chance on me because I was a completely unknown actor. They gave me an amazing part and I am forever grateful.

1st: Will there be a part two of “Mary: The Adventures of Mary Shelley’s Great-Great-Great-Great-Great-Granddaughter”?

Brea: I hope so! I have a lot more of the story to tell. I want to explore Mary’s relationship with the monster community, the riffs within it, and the development of her powers.

1st: How do you like to spend your free time?

Brea: Reading. I’m a big reader. I also like watching movies. Two things that have to do with what I do but neither have lost their magic to me.

1st: Any final words for your fans?

Brea: Pre-order Mary! It helps us so much!

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