INTERVIEW: Glenn Fleming Talks About His New Comic, Hatch : The Next Day
"I began drawing and writing stories from a very early age..."
Glenn Fleming is a comics creator who is currently funding a new book, Hatch : The Next Day, over on Kickstarter.We chatted to him about Hatch, his past work, and what he likes about Kickstarter as a crowdfunding platform:
Could you please tell us a little about yourself? What first gave you your interests in art, writing and storytelling in general?
I began drawing and writing stories from a very early age; I’ve always been fascinated by this medium. To me, it’s better than film because film is restricted by the cost of actors, designers, CGI, etc: the graphic artist is held back only by his or her imagination; I can set my story anywhere I choose and in any era I choose. As a kid I watched Doctor Who and all the Gerry Anderson series’ such as Stingray, Thunderbirds and Captain Scarlet. In fact, I wrote my first ‘book’, aged 9, about Stingray: 25 pages in an exercise book! Not bad for a nine year old! I later went into advertising and graphic design as a career, drawing visuals, storyboarding, art direction, anything to do with sequential art. I recently released a film of my trips to see Jack Kirby, the King of the Comics, creator of the Hulk, the Fantastic Four and Captain America amongst just about all we see on the big screen today. (People can obtain a copy of the film on DVD here).
Could you give us a quick overview of Hatch? What makes it a unique comic?
Hatch is unique character. He lives alone on his little asteroid, bothering no-one, yet being bothered all the time by odd and strange events on his little world that really puzzle him. His ‘adventures’ are humorous to say the least, and he finds himself in all sorts of mad predicaments. Hatch endures in us all; struggling to come to terms with himself, his world and his universe. A universe he marvels at, embraces and is ultimately frustrated with. The comic edition of ‘Hatch : The Next Day’ comes in at 32 A4 pages all full of humour and the insanity of his life. I’ve also produced a 20 page ‘sketch’ booklet of black and white images of Hatch to go with the comic. The Hardback ‘De-Lux’ Edition comes in at a 62 pages and has the same laughs and features PLUS scans of original ‘Hatch’ strips. I’m also offering six pages of original art from the comic and the chance to have an original page of a Hatch strip drawn especially for that particular backer(s).
What’s the number one reason that someone should pledge to ‘Hatch: The Next Day’?
The number one reason to pledge on ‘Hatch : The Next Day’, I think, would be that he is so unusual and very funny at the same time. As far as I am aware, there is nothing like him around. That makes him unique. There are no words in the comic, except for sound effects, so it’s quite easy to follow for anyone in the world, whatever language they speak. ‘Hatch’ is like the old silent movies – the key is the storytelling. To me, that was the challenge when I created him in the first place; I wanted him to be different and unique. He’s certainly different!
What do you like about Kickstarter as a crowdfunding platform? What are your thoughts on crowdfunding in general?
Kickstarter is, for me, the best place to go for crowdfunding: easy to follow, good support and the leader in the field. As for thoughts on crowdfunding in general – they are a great way for ‘indie’ artists and writers to get their projects out into the world. People are very supportive and want these projects to appear. Without the Crowdfunding platforms, artists and writers (and inventors, etc) would be fighting largely a losing battle just to be seen or heard; with Crowdfunding, it’s all in the creators control, apart from the actual pledging – which pushes the creator to produce something great.
Are there any other projects that you’re currently working on?
I am hoping to publish my illustrated science fiction novel ‘Iapetus Rising’ this year; it’s finished (60,000 words) and over 60 illustrations. ‘Iapetus Rising’ will be my fifth published book and my second SF. I’ll let you know the details when I do!
Thanks to Glenn for taking the time to chat with us! You can pledge to the Kickstarter for Hatch here.