Top Shelf 2.0
I’ll be the first to admit I am covering Kagan McLeod‘s Infinite Kung Fu a tad bit later than most, considering it was released in the middle of last year, and already included in numerous best of lists for 2011 (including our anniversary edition of What Are You Reading). But considering that the 464-page action/adventure romp took 10 years to complete, I think McLeod demands some coverage longer than the average book release. To get an idea of the scale and ambition of the story, his publisher, Top Shelf, was kind enough to offer sample pages of the book over at Top Shelf 2.0. McLeod is a unique creator, and his work is worth considering from several different angles. So once you’re done with this interview, please be sure to check out his own website, as well as Alex Deuben’s June 2011 CBR interview with McLeod. Back to this interview, though, his final answer requests audience participation, so please be sure to contribute in the comments section.
Tim O’Shea: The Toronto launch party for your book was a mixture of book discussion and music. Did you listen to music while you work, or is that too distracting for you?
Kagan McLeod: No, I always listen to music or audiobooks while working. Not during planning stages, but after I know what I have to do, I can just sail through it while listening to something. It’s the constant urge to check emails which is distracting.
In addition to those at her own site, UK cartoonist Lizz Lunney has created a lot of webcomics for Top Shelf 2.0, including The Truth About Dinosaurs, Dungaree Lion and The Magical Unicorns of Keith the Wizard. Her latest one is about a love-stricken bison, the rabbit of his dreams, and her jealous, feline girlfriend. Isn’t that always the way?
Kagan McLeod began publishing single issues of his martial arts/horror extravaganza Infinite Kung Fu way back in 2000, but as he told JK Parkin in an interview last summer, he hasn’t given up on it. He’s been hard at work and all 464 pages of the epic are coming out from Top Shelf in July.
For anyone who read those single issues, this is great news. But what’s even better is that Top Shelf 2.0 has more than half the book posted right now for free. Whether you’re already a fan or yet to be converted, that’s a hell of a lot of awesome.
It’s happened again (last time it was Michael May), I am interviewing one of my fellow Robot 6 pals. This time it’s writer Sean T. Collins, regarding Destructor, the webcomic described as an “ongoing story of villainy byCollins and Matt Wiegle, updated Mondays and Thursdays … ‘Alone he fled, and came in from Outside. Upon the seething streets of Planet D he landed, in his armor and his rage. With General at his side and Wall behind, he wrote his name in blood across the worlds, worlds he would conquer, filled with foes to crush. He formed the Mob and set their star alight, the guns and gangs, machines and magic theirs, the red ambition his and his alone, until the System shuddered at his name: Destructor—the most dangerous man alive.’” As engaging and sometimes maddening a co-worker (we have vastly different critical minds, an observation that I hope he takes as the compliment it is) as Collins may be, I was not surprised in the slightest to find him to be a great creator to interview.
Tim O’Shea: You are a faithful reader of Tom Brevoort’s Twitter account, do you think he returns the favor and is an avid reader of Destructor?
Sean T. Collins: Hahaha! Aw, I’m sure we don’t have nearly enough commenters asking us who would win in a fight, Jean Grey or the Blue Marvel, and given how much he looooooves that sort of thing we’re probably not high on his reading list. He’s a reader I’d love to have, though. Are you there, Tom? It’s me, the guy who makes posts out of your tweets.