RICH INTERVIEWS: Gene Selassie Writer for The Ghoul Agency 

1st: How did you get into writing comic books?

Gene Selassie: I’ve loved comics since I was eight years old. I dabbled in writing here and there, before seriously pursuing it over the last 15 years. I’ve written a few short stories for anthologies before getting an ongoing series off the ground.

1stWhy do you enjoy writing so much?

Gene: I have a wild imagination. The things that I could never get the budget for in live action, I can do in comics.

1st: In “The Ghoul Agency” what is the storyline?

Gene: Shay Melendez is a hard-working creative for a unique advertising firm, one that caters to clientele ranging from mad scientists to creatures of the night. The “macro” of The Ghoul Agency is a story about an advertising agency for the undead. However, the “micro” is a tale about a young woman of color trying to navigate the world of business and advertising.

1st: What type of creatures or mythical beings will we see in the pages of “The Ghoul Agency”?

Gene: In issue two, we meet the new H.R. Manager (Cthulhu). Zhu (the pig/human hybrid) deals with his manipulative brothers that also work at the agency, one of them is the fabled Monkey King. There are many more, but I don’t want to spoil too much.

1stHow did Shay come to join the Ghoul Agency firm?

Gene: Also a spoiler for further down the road, we will see a flashback to Shay’s first job interview with the Agency.

Rich: Why did you decide to make the business an advertising one?

Gene: Mad Men is one of my favorite television shows, so that had a little to do with it. I’ve had ideas in the horror and in the comedy genres utilizing an ad agency as a backdrop. At some point, I just decided to utilize both horror AND comedy.

1st: Why will people love Greer?

Gene: Issue two really gets to the core of what inspires Greer to pursue a career in advertising. The Ghoul Agency made monsters feel seen and heard, which left an indelible mark on him.

1st: What is it about Shay that stands out the most for you?

Gene: The fact that Shay will face down monsters, demons, or killer robots from across a boardroom, but sometimes doesn’t have the courage to face her overbearing family makes her an intriguing character to write. Hopefully, fans will feel the same when they read.

1stWhat type of creature featured in “The Ghoul Agency” are you most like?

Gene: I try to be the father figure like Esteban, but I tend to have Greer’s naivete at times.

1st: What do you have lined up next in your career?

Gene: Working on a fantasy action comedy with the awesome penciler, Orlando Baez, and on a manga with colorist extraordinaire, Sam Nang. There’s also an animated feature I wrote that’s in pre-production.

1stWhat supernatural creature would you most like to be?

Gene: Whichever one has the power to manipulate time.

1st: What would you like to say to anyone who has enjoyed something you helped create?

Gene: Besides thanking Orlando, Sam, and letterer Micah Myers for all of the hard work they’ve put into this book, I also want to thank the fans for being as supportive as they’ve been. I’m in awe that such an outside-the-box concept has developed the buzz that it has.

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