Gorillas Riding Dinosaurs | Getting to know Kelly Sue DeConnick
When we were over at Newsarama, I used to do these creator profile pieces that were a lot of fun. They were fun for me at least, because I always came away from them with an insight into some of my favorite creators that I never got from the typical project-oriented interviews. I mean, where else are you going to learn about a writer’s work-out routine or an artist’s favorite shirt?
So, once a month I’d like to use this space for a different kind of look at the creators of the fun kinds of comics we usually talk about here. I hope you’ll dig it as much as I do.
First up is Kelly Sue DeConnick who got started in the biz translating manga for VIZ and Tokyopop before doing some Image anthologies (most of which featured robots) and 30 Days of Night: Eben & Stella for IDW. Nowadays, of course, you’ll find her name all over Marvel comics in anthologies like Age of Heroes and Girl Comics and one-shots like Sif and Rescue. You may have also noticed that Osborn, her first mini-series for Marvel, just launched today.
Let’s get to know her:
Q: Who’s your personal hero?
A: Man. After far more deliberation that I really should cop to, I’m going to go with Laurenn McCubbin. There are about a bazillion ways to interpret “personal hero.” I’m going with the person from whom I think I have the most to learn, the person I wish I were more like.
Laurenn’s exceptionally courageous and open-minded, two areas where I think I could be improved. More impressive still, she has the extraordinary willingness to be wrong. Do you know what I mean by that? Laurenn is one of the few people you’ll ever meet who will go into an argument with you willing to change her mind. She doesn’t seem to have her ego wrapped up in any of that. You don’t really realize how rare that is until you meet someone like her. I think it’s tremendously evolved.
I suck at being wrong. I’m embarrassed by it.
Good thing it happens so very rarely.
Q: What’s your morning routine?
A: Wake up in a panic, make coffee, pack HL’s lunch, unload the dishwasher, check email, nurse Tallulah, feed HL, dress the kids, dress me, take the kids to “school.” Come home and make a pot of coffee, go downstairs to my office.
I’m still, uh, refining it.
Q: What’s your favorite item of clothing?
A: Right now? Matt’s bespoke suit. Henry’s orange, slim cut jean. Tallulah’s black, tiered-ruffle onesie.
Oh, of mine? Tough call. There’s a white Armani Exchange trench coat that I dearly love, but I need to finish getting the baby weight off before I can wear it again. I should be back in it by Spring.
Q: What do you always have with you?
A: My phone.
That’s so sad, isn’t it?
Q: What’s always in your refrigerator?
Q: What’s your favorite food?
A: Tabasco sauce.
Q: What’s your fitness routine?
A: My what…?
Oh, right! I used to have one of those. These days, it’s chasing the kids. I’d love to get back to running, swimming and/or Ashatanga, but making the time is difficult.
Q: What superstitions do you have?
A: Any time I back the car out I imagine getting T-boned. It’s a horrible vision, but I’m afraid that if I forget to do it it’ll actually happen.
Q: What do you do to procrastinate?
A: Clean. Answer emails.
Q: What’s your biggest self-indulgence or guilty pleasure?
A: Chocolate, maybe? Coffee. Swearing. Magazines I don’t actually have time to read.
I feel guilty about all of those.
Q: What gadget can’t you live without?
A: Again with the iPhone. Though… the iPad is making its case.
Q: What’s your most prized possession?
A: Hm. I’d be very sad if anything ever happened to my pink typewriter. Or my Mason-Pearson hairbrush. Or my Walt Simonson-signed Thor #380.
Q: What kind of vehicle do you drive?
A: Black Honda Odyssey.
Q: What’s your next big purchase going to be?
A: Probably a treadmill.
I hate making big purchases. I get very stressed out by the research.
Q: What’s your favorite place in your home?
A: My office.
Q: What’s your greatest artistic strength?
Q: What’s your greatest artistic weakness?
Q: Do you play a musical instrument?
Q: What talent do you covet?
A: The ability to plot.
Q: What’s your best memento from your work?
A: I guess probably that Walt Simonson-signed Thor #380. It’s honestly the only “momento of my work” I can think of and I do love it dearly. It’s sitting right here on my desk next to me. Say hello, Thor #380.
It says, “Aye.”
Q: What household chore do you absolutely hate to do?
A: Checking voice mail.
Q: What obsolete item can you not part with?
A: I have several dead people still in my address book. They’re not at those numbers any more but I can’t bear to delete them.
Q: What’s the best recent gift you’ve received?
A: Laurenn sent me a little red-headed doll that she called a “Kelly Sue Action Figure.” It’s winking and holding a purse.
Oh! And Alisa bought me some Kate Spade sunglasses. She remembered that I’d liked them when we tried them on in the store and she went back for them for me when they went on sale. I love that she remembered. That was sweet.
Q: What’s your retreat?
A: Wow. That’s a good question. I have no idea.
NPR, maybe? I like to zone out and listen to the radio while I’m cleaning.
Q: Do you collect anything?
A: Manual typewriters, I guess. But I only have two. I’ve owned three in my life, but my black one was stolen. Similarly, I have two racehorse bobbleheads, but Henry broke the head off one.
Q: Do you have any hobbies?
A: I used to knit. I loved it, but I haven’t picked up my needles since I was pregnant with Henry.
I still bake pretty frequently.
Q: What movie have you seen more than any other?
A: Hm. Probably either The Jungle Book or Footloose. The former because it’s Henry’s favorite and latter because I worked in a video store for four years or so and Footloose was one of the few movies we were allowed to play on the big screen. The Golden Child would be on that short list too.
I’m not proud, I’m just sayin’.
Q: What book have you read more than any other?
A: Easily The Sun Also Rises.
Q: What are you always asked at parties?
A: “Do you draw the pictures?”
Q: What’s your evening routine?
A: Pick up the kids, have a little adventure on the way home (sometimes this means feeding the ducks or something exciting, sometimes it means stopping at the grocery store for “Baby Coffee,” which is what we call a steamer), I make dinner, we eat together at the table, we have some family play time, then Matt takes HL to have his bath and I clean the kitchen, load the dishwasher, whatever. Henry and I brush our teeth together, then Matt reads Henry his bedtime stories while I nurse Tallulah to sleep.
Q: What do you always have at your bedside?
A: Lip balm.
Q: What do you obsess over?
A: What’ve you got?
(Seriously. I’m an obsessive personality.)
Q: What’s your travel routine?
A: 1) Book trip. 2) Get excited. 3) Have something come up or someone get sick. 4) Cancel trip. 5) Mope.
Q: What’s the worst thing about traveling?
A: The canceling.
Q: Which historical figure would you most like to meet?
Q: What’s the greatest misconception about your life?
A: Man, I’ve tried answering this three times and I keep coming off like a jerk. Can I answer something else instead?
Q: What are you going to work on tomorrow?
A: Osborn. And a little bit on another thing. Oh, and some insurance stuff.
Thanks so much to Kelly Sue for indulging me with these. Next Month: Atomic Robo‘s Brian Clevinger!