Elric: The Balance Lost
Hello and welcome once again to What Are You Reading? This week our special guest is Von Allan, creator of the self-published graphic novel series Stargazer. The first volume is still available, while the second one is due in shops in October.
To see what Von and the Robot 6 crew have been reading, click below.
Hello and welcome to What Are You Reading? Today our special guest is Kelson Vibber, Flash fan and proprietor of the Speed Force blog. To see what Kelson and the Robot 6 crew have been reading, click below.
The first issue of BOOM!’s Elric: The Balance Lost, by Chris Roberson and Francesco Biagini , hit comic stores and digital outlets today, along with a dedicated website that’s aimed at not only promoting the book but also educating non-comics fans about the medium.
The site, elriccomic.com, includes a 10-page story starring Elric, as well as information on where to buy it (both in print and digitally), a backgrounder on Elric and creator Michael Moorcock, and an FAQ that answers questions about the publication frequency, how trade paperbacks work and even what a variant cover is. Much like they did with their Hellraiser PDF, which was aimed at horror fans in general and Clive Barker fans in particular who might not read comics, BOOM! is attempting to introduce potential new comics fans to how things work in the world of comics.
In the press release they emphasized how digital comics are more than just an iPad thing:
“With ELRIC, we’re not only focusing on print and mobile devices exclusively, but getting out onto internet browsers that billions of people use every day,” says Marketing & Sales Director Chip Mosher. “While there are only 25 million iPads out in the marketplace, there are billions of potential readers that have the ability to find comic books through their internet browsers. With our ELRIC microsite at www.elriccomic.com we’ve not only included a complete prelude for free, but information on how and where to buy our comics both in print and digital — linking to both print, mobile vendors, and the lesser-known web-based option where you can buy and read through the browser as well.”
Welcome to Food or Comics?, where every week we talk about what comics we’d buy at our local comic shop based on certain spending limits — $15 and $30 — as well as what we’d get if we had extra money or a gift card to spend on a “Splurge” item. We’re coming a little late today due to a power outage in my neck of the woods — due to a blackout, not because I spent the money for the electric bill on Flashpoint or Fear Itself tie-ins.
If I had $15, my first pick off the shelf would be Vengeance #1 (Marvel, $3.99); I love Joe Casey, and especially when he’s given a long leash and room to play in a big universe. Seeing Nick Dragotta drawing this is an added bonus. Next up would be comics’ dueling summer blockbusters, Flashpoint #3 (DC, $3.99) and Fear Itself #4 (Marvel, $3.99). After that, I’d get the excellent Flashpoint: Batman, Knight of Vengeance #2 (DC, $2.99); when Azzarello is on the ball he’s great to read, and this seems to be that.
Regular readers of Talking Comics with Tim, before you ask yourself “Chris Roberson, didn’t you just interview him last month?” Yes and no. This interview focuses solely on Roberson’s plans for the new BOOM! Studios series, Elric: The Balance Lost, which will be previewed for readers this Saturday, May 7, via the company’s Free Comic Book Day offering. As noted by BOOM! Studios: “For 40 years, the exploits of Elric have thrilled comic book fandom, beginning with his introduction to the world of comics in Marvel’s Conan The Barbarian #15 in 1972. Now, Michael Moorcock, the godfather of the Multiverse concept, brings one of the most critically acclaimed and recognizable figures in the history of fantasy fiction back to sequential art! This Free Comic Book Day (FCBD) edition heralds the new ongoing Elric series featuring a crisis across multiple worlds that will involve Moorcock’s other famous fantasy franchise characters: Corum of the Scarlet Robe and Dorian Hawkmoon. Meet the Pale Prince in an epic that could only be called The Balance Lost! And make sure you don’t miss the new ongoing series this summer!” Thanks to BOOM! Studios’ Chip Mosher and Ivan Salazar for helping arrange this email interview, and (of course) thanks to Roberson for indulging another round of questions. Once you’ve read the interview, please be sure to check out CBR’s preview of the FCBD offering. If you find yourself in the Austin area this Saturday, be sure to catch Roberson at Austin Books from 10AM to 5PM.
Tim O’Shea: Ian Brill recently wrote of the Free Comic Book Day Elric issue, “Whether you’re new to the Elric mythos or a longtime fan you will dig it.” A) very brave of Mr. Brill to use a 1970s term like “dig” (I kid) and B) What is the key to writing a story that can equally appeal to new readers and longtime readers?
Chris Roberson: Well, to be fair, he could have used “grok” in the place of “dig,” which might have been a LITTLE braver.
But really, the trick is to give just enough information about the characters and the concepts to get new readers up to speed, without boring all of the longtime readers with stuff they already know. Based on my own experiences coming into long-running comic, TV, and novel series when I was younger, I don’t think new readers need to know EVERYTHING. They just need to know the basics, enough to understand who the characters are in general terms and what the basic conflict is. Reading to find out more is one of the things that keeps it interesting!