Interview with Don McGregor
Don thanks again for agreeing to the interview. I've been a fan of yours
and also enjoyed seeing your work for Eclipse in the '80s. Congratulations
on the upcoming projects.
Enough of the fawning. On to the questions:
Mile High: What details can you tell us about the movie version of Detectives Inc.: A Terror of Dying Dreams premiering at the San Diego Comic Con, Friday, July 20? What can your fans expect? What about those who may be new to Detectives Inc.?
What the fans of DETECTIVES INC. can expect from the movie version is seeing the Denning and Rainier they know from the comics. That was one of the prime reasons for my writing the screenplay and directing the movie, so that the film version would be true to the spirit of the characters and the verisimilitude of the stories that have seen print.
The second DETECTIVES INC graphic novel was supposed to be A HORROR OF BURNING PLACES, and dealt with the bombing of abortion clinics. I cannot tell you how many times that series has almost become a reality, only to be dashed at the last moment. It's the kind of situations that makes a writer breathe deep, take the blow, and try to get on with the next story! You can learn more on the specifics of this at the www.donmcgregor.com website, along with graphics from many books as well as my daughter Lauren as LADY RAWHIDE speaking comic dialogue balloons! If I dwelt on this, Bob, we'd be all day on just your first question.
When the opportunity came that I could write a DETECTIVES INC movie, it was a massive undertaking, and let's say, there were folks who thought I was crazy to take such a thing on! I'm not saying that they weren't, in some respects, probably correct. Still, the first thing I knew was, there would be no way I could go around filming the blowing up of buildings, so whatever that DETECTIVES INC story would be, it couldn't be A HORROR OF BURNING PLACES.
And thus, was created DETECTIVES INC.: A TERROR OF DYING DREAMS. I had run across a documentary of some sort on domestic violence while channel surfing one night, and some of the facts startled me wide awake. It was seeing that that made me start researching the topic, and became the initial thrust of the case that Deirdre Sevens hires Denning and Rainier to investigate.
Despite the fact that a number of movies and television series are based on comics, the medium is still often suspect to those that don't read comics. When we had the initial reading with the actors for the film, I kept getting asked how I could go from writing comics to a movie script, as if movie scripts were somehow superior and more difficult to do, when, at least for me, exactly the opposite is true. If you are writing a dialogue scene for instance, you don't have to consider what you are going to tell the artist to draw for those series of pages, what the design of each page might be, how to capture the subtle expressions you want for the characters.
It was still my intent to do the abortion clinic story-line as the next DETECTIVES INC. graphic novel, but Dean Mullaney, the publisher of Eclipse Comics, thought it would make more sense to do a comic adaptation of the movie. And he had many reasons that were right in many ways. It would promote the film as well as the graphic album (which ended up becoming a mini-series in the first printing). Beyond that, there is a definite continuity to DETECTIVES INC., and so if I did not do this story in comics, it would almost be as if the events that happen there, never were a part of Rainier and Denning's lives.
So, I agreed.
But that meant writing a 72-page comic script from a 130-page movie script.
At one point, I almost lost the Coney Island stake-out sequence. I just couldn't figure a way to fit it into that page count. I was disconsolate. I called Dean and told him I needed that sequence where Rainier and Deirdre watch for the unfaithful husband and discuss their own relationships. To lose it, was to lose too much. If Eclipse couldn't find it in the budget, I'd pay for the extra pages for Gene Colan to draw! This was an example of the craziness mentioned above, since I could scarce afford to do this. Dean found a way to increase the number of pages to 72, and I got to keep much of the Coney Island Boardwalk intimacy.
There is a sequence, for those familiary with the first DETECTIVES INC. graphic novel, A REMEMBRANCE OF THREATENING GREEN, where Denning is caught in a violent turn of events that cause him to have to shoot a teenager. In this second DETECTIVES INC novel, A TERROR OF DYING DREAMS, his reasons for not carrying a gun are much more extensive in the movie version, than in the comic version. I just didn't have room to keep it all. And I wasn't able to pull off the visual of Rainier's gun in the foreground, continually, bullets being loaded into the chamber, as Denning discusses his complex reactions to having to live with that night. In fact, what people can expect from the film version of DETECTIVES INC. is more of everything in A TERROR OF DYING DREAMS. The opening sequence where Denning and his father sit in a hospital waiting room is much more extensive. Billy Graham, the artist I worked with on SABRE and THE BLACK PANTHER, plays father to Alex Simmon's Ted Denning. I wrote the part especially for Billy. There is much more commentary on surviving in the comics business than I would ever have had room to do in the graphic album. And it's a chance for people to see Billy Graham, the actor, whom most from comics will know as Billy Graham, the art director or penciller. Anyone familiar with DETECTIVES INC. knows that Manhattan and N.Y.C. environs are as much a part of the series as the people in them, and the film is the same way. We filmed in just about every borough. We even traveled out to Dobb's Ferry to film the charity function to raise money for the children's clinic. That was an ambitious shoot. Yes, I know, from reading this, you might be wondering, but I thought this was about domestic violence. Well, it is. And also adultery. And also the cost of relationships. And many other things. Including charity scams. And, since this is a story with private investigators in the lead, also murder. You have to read the book, though, to learn how that all fits together. By the way, did it take all day to answer that question, Bob, despite leaving out what's on the website?
Staying on the topic of Detectives Inc., how difficult was it to sell a story of 'non-super' heroes to a comic book public spoon-fed colorful capes and masks for years?
It wasn't difficult, at all, because of the existence of Eclipse comics and Dean Mullaney at that time. He had no objection to the title I wanted to do next. I didn't have to clear anything with anyone. The most difficult thing to contend with was the 46 page count of that story. That had a strong dictate on what would, or would not, appear in the story. Many scenes just had to be cut, and I was doing that continuously throughout the writing of that first DETECTIVES INC.
I had created DETECTIVES INC. as early as 1969, as roles for Alex Simmons and myself to play in Super 8 mm movies I was making. I also had the series concept for RAGAMUFFINS, a series about little kids growing up in the 1950s set, knowing it would be a comic about kids for adults.
When I first thought about doing a creator owned series published independently, I would have loved to do DETECTIVES INC. or RAGAMUFFINS, but I felt I was already going into mostly uncharted publishing quarters that people on the business end of comics thought would make us go off the edge of the planet. I wanted to give that first book a chance to succeed, and at that point in time, around 1976, most comics readers had forgotten I'd started my comics career writing horror genre stories for Warren Magazines, and associated me with SF, in KILLRAVEN, or superheroes, with THE BLACK PANTHER!
And that's how I started working on SABRE.
I thought, let me do a heroic fantasy character that would break many of the unwritten rules but were nevertheless firmly established in the medium.
If I started with RAGAMUFFINS and it didn't succeed; it could possibly mean I wouldn't get to do anymore. So, there was a progression, from SABRE to DETECTIVES INC. and finally to RAGAMUFFINS, which had no safe genre labels.
I don't believe anybody but Dean Mullaney would have taken a chance on that series at that time. Dean tells me, RAGAMUFFINS is still his favorite book of all the books he did at Eclipse. The series will always be dedicated to him because he gave it the chance to exist.
Gritty realism, 'buddy' stories, mean streets -- all late '60s and '70s media concepts that have gotten a real shot in the arm since the mid-'90s with Pulp Fiction and Lethal Weapon. Do you think modern reading audiences are ready for a Detectives, Inc. revival? What kind of a reader does the title ask for?
I'm not sure an audience ever went away from DETECTIVES INC. Some folks have such a deep passion for those characters that I felt it was a real challenge to create a character like the social worker Deirdre Sevens and thrust her into the middle of them, and have the audience not resent her presence. She didn't take away from the two guys. She added to the mix of personalities, but not at the expense of what is the chemistry and affection between Denning and Rainier.
So, the series may have gritty realism, it may have two buddies at its center, it may have mean streets, but if the stories are human and strike some emotional truths, I believe they'll always be welcome.
A nice compliment recently from someone who doesn't traditionally read comics and had experienced DETECTIVES INC.: A TERROR OF DYING DREAMS was that he hadn't any idea the graphic album was written years earlier, until he was told after talking about it.
I have no idea what kind of a reader the title asks for.
I don't know that about any book, exactly.
I know I set out to write the best book I can. A DETECTIVES INC. book should appeal to mystery readers, since it deals with private investigators as central characters, but hopefully to anybody who loves comics and wants stories that may speak to them on more than one level.
A real strength of your writing is the deep backstory for each character. What devices do you use prior to writing a scene for a particularly character in order to ensure that backstory makes its way into action and dialogue?
Thanks for the compliment, Bob. I don't know if I think of anything I do when writing as a device. I try to keep open to the characters, who and what they are, and how they might respond to any given situation. Thus, the scene can often change rapidly on the day I write that scene, from the way I'd thought about it, perhaps days, weeks, sometimes months before I actually reach doing the final draft of the scene.
This is all a very organic process, even though I may know the end, or the structure, and certainly be aware thematically of what I would hope to achieve. I'm not always sure how to go about achieving all that, but its all rather amorphously contained in my head, some of it hand-written in notebooks, other portions in typed drafts in folders.
I know I have written this before, in some form, but for me, as a writer, it's getting up the guts to face the blank sheet of paper and keep important what I put down there.
And never to think of comics as a second rate medium.
I love comics!
I always have!
And there are times when an artist like Gene Colan or Dwayne Turner or P. Craig Russell or Tom Yeates or Billy Graham -- well, I'm going to leave some names out and regret it, but you get the idea. They bring some small element to life, perhaps give it more than you'd ever hoped, and all the difficulties in doing comics are gone in that moment of great pleasure. This is great! I'll do this again! I'll fight the fight again! I'm off the mat!
With characters that already have a firmly established backstory (e.g. Black Panther), where can you embellish, enhance and otherwise improve on their history?
There was a major difference in doing, say, a character like the BLACK PANTHER back in the early 70s and doing many of the superhero characters these days. They've been around a lot more years, in some cases there have been hundreds of stories done on the characters, and they may have been in different titles, and different editorial regimes and writers and come to the character with change as the prime motivation.
I don't recall when assigned to do the BLACK PANTHER for JUNGLE ACTION thinking I would embellish, enhance, or improve on the characters history. It was much easier to read everything that had been done on the character, because, quite simply, there hadn't been that many books done on T'Challa, and I had them all in my own collection.
I was aware that Wakanda was more a concept to put T'Challa against and that how such a place would work really hadn't been gone into. If you were going to set an entire series in Wakanda, and how T'Challa worked as a King within that culture, then that had to be a prime area of focus and research.
I guess I often look at what I don't like, and I did feel that to do separate stories each issue, bringing a new villain every other month to this hidden, technologically advanced nation would strain all credibility, so it should take place within Wakanda, and not betray the nature of the place.
Since JUNGLE ACTION was probably the first comic book series from a mainstream American company that had practically an all-black cast, not just a black lead with a mostly supporting white cast of characters, I was asked more than once when I was going to bring white people into the strip. Taku and Venomm were the first gay characters I ever wrote, but I never got the chance to bring them out of the closet, so to speak. When I was teaching writing at the School of Visual Arts, I would often tell the students, it is not enough for a writer to want to do something in this medium, it is not enough to get it down effectively on paper, you have to find a way that it can actually see print and reach an audience. I was already under attack on that series for so many other elements, if I had pushed there, you would have seen less Panther stories written by me at that time.
The Essential Ragamuffins will be released by Vanguard Press, encapsulating your series, illustrated by the great Gene Colan, about little kids growing up in the 1950s with flash forwards to their lives in the '60s, '70s and '80s. The culture of Westerns obviously had a strong impact on your life and your writing. What is it about the heroes of the Westerns that you find so appealing?
Wow! That's a jump, Bob! From RAGAMUFFINS to Westerns. I guess you've made that association because Randy often pretends to be a cowboy.
In a lost RAGAMUFFINS story that had been drawn and lettered, THE PACK RAT INSTINCT, Randy is a pirate for many pages in the beginning. He's a kid always imaging something.
I'm really excited that Vanguard Press and Dave Spurlock want to do a complete RAGAMUFFINS book, and perhaps even find a way to restore that lost story.
If I'd had a chance to do enough RAGAMUFFINS, you would have seen that there were stories that would go back to the teens, 20s and 30s, when the parents were RAGAMUFFINS, and eventually, as much as being a series about what adults teach little kids and what they really learn, and how their lives turn out, and what shapes them, it is also a tapestry of America, what's changed, what hasn't, what appears to have changed, but normally has just changed its name.
As for the Western -- well, I don't love all Westerns -- and I have a love for many genres, as evidenced by DETECTIVES INC. and ALEXANDER RISK and NATHANIEL DUSK, for private eyes, to horror, to SF, but that is no denial that I do love Westerns, especially HOPALONG CASSIDY. One of the great pleasures of my life is meeting Grace Bradley (Mrs. Hopalong Cassidy) Boyd. What a wonderful woman, what an exuberant story-teller, what a terrific human being!
If you asked me what is it that appeals to my about HOPALONG CASSIDY (as played by William Boyd) I'm certain it has to do with the look of the character, the accessibility in Boyd's face and eyes, the strength of character. What did I take from it? I hope, the idea that if a man gives his word, you don't need no stinking contract, you can take it to the bank, the man will keep his word. If a friend is in trouble, and you can help, you try. If something terrible is happening, you don't turn your head and look the other way and pretend you don't see it. I don't know if I always manage to attain that, only others can truly say that, but I know the Westerns, and especially Hoppy, made those things important to me.
Your characters (from Killraven to T'Challa to Sabre, and on) are all principled loners for the most part who adhere to a higher moral code no matter how low their foes stoop. Yet they are also rebels who stand outside of mainstream society. Could you ever write a Captain America story, for example, about an upstanding public symbol who plays by the rules (and keeps his hair clipped)?
I'm not sure I agree that my characters are 'principled loners.' SABRE, for instance, may be choosy about who he associates with, but his love for MELISSA SIREN is at the central core of SABRE; I have often thought of it as my PRINCE VALIANT. I am not comparing myself to Hal Foster. It is only, in my mind, an important part of that series is the love of a man and woman, and their family, as it grows, and that no matter what happens in the society about them, as time passes, nothing can corrupt what they feel for each other.
And someone once wrote about SABRE, 'unlike many comic heroes, he relates to everybody.' He doesn't like everybody; he doesn't agree with everybody; but he certainly isn't disassociated from them.
Unless I do something really, reeaallly bad, in an upcoming story.
Which, of course, I'm sure you know I won't do.
Rainier and Denning aren't the kind of guys who join groups, maybe, but they trust and respect and rely on each other.
You've just finished a story of the Batman for the Batman Black & White series called "Thin Edge of a Dime." What do you like about writing Batman stories? What are the challenges?
Years ago, right after finishing NATHANIEL DUSK: APPLE PEDDLERS DIE AT NOON for D.C., with Gene Colan (Still one of my favorite all-time series!)
Dick Giordano asked me if there was any character at DC I wanted to write. I immediately thought of THE BATMAN, although I always had a fondness for GREEN LANTERN.
Anyhow, when Mark Chiarello called to ask me about doing a THE BATMAN: BLACK AND WHITE story, I had already spoken to Bob Schrek about doing a lengthier THE BATMAN series, tentatively titled NIGHT OF THE DREAM STEALERS. It deals with kidnaped children. A lot of the sequences deal with a young boy, and what goes on inside his head, from the initial approach and abduction to what happens to him afterward. One of the upsides to being a writer of comics is you get to meet some great people, and many who you can use as a sounding board. I've read the passages inside the kid's head to a friend who deals with kids like this every day. He's says he believes I've nailed it dead on.
I hope we get to do it. If we help one kid, then my job as a story teller and facing the blank sheet of paper is worth it. But it must be a good story, a good THE BATMAN story, and I believe this uses him effectively!
Given your love for Zorro stories (Image will be printing the first year of your Zorro newspaper strips sometime later this year), Batman isn't a stretch at all (Mask of Zorro is what the Waynes went to see that night at the theater when they were killed). Do you have an affinity for stories about rich men who forsake the comfort of their homes at night to fight injustice? Or do you prefer your heroes poor, scraping to get by (such as Luke Cage, Power Man)?
I don't believe I've ever been asked that before. And it's not something I've ever thought about.
I look at each character individually, each series as to what potentials it has, what kind of stories I think I might be able to tell. I try to stay open to the possibilities.
I loved doing LUKE CAGE, because it was the first time I got to do a New York City based series. I knew at the time I would not be given the chance to do SPIDER-MAN, and even if I was, I wouldn't be able to have the freedom to do stories without everything being scrutinized.
Years later, I did get to the SPIDER-MAN: THERE'S SOMETHING ABOUT A GUN, dealing with a young kid bringing a gun to school that, I guess, these days is seen as either presentient or still controversial. I liked doing Spidey, and that reference to the water towers was a tip of the hat to Steve Ditko and Stan Lee.
You've worked with a lot of great artists (P. Craig Russell, Gene Colan, Marshall Rodgers, Billy Graham, Paul Gulacy to name just a few). Without playing favorites too heavily, is there one that you could say you enjoyed working with the most? Why?
Is this a right question, Bob?
You are right, I have worked with some tremendously talented artists, one of the major upsides of this business. One of the major downsides is trying to survive long term, and keep important what made you start telling stories in the first place. It's easy to get lost in this business, lose your balance. But one of the best things is that with some of these exceptional people, I not only had the chance to meet them and work them, but also become friends with them. I love talking with Gene Colan or Dwayne Turner or Craig. I will miss Billy Graham forever.
In 1978, Sabre was the first graphic novel to be sold in comic stores. Graphic novels and trade paperbacks represent a huge and growing share of comic sales these days. Can you describe why you went with that format? How is it different from writing a monthly?
I wasn't a fast writer. I realized if I was going to have any chance to surviving, economically, and creatively, I needed a place where I could have more latitude, and could own what I created. I wasn't sure how to do that. But I was under the impression that if writers and artists had followings, and from the fan mail I knew there were people who loved the Panther and Killraven, among others, well, then, we should be able to go directly to the fans. At the time, and I go into this in great detail in the 20th Anniversary Edition of SABRE, the comics companies thought the Direct Market was a small, very small percentage of their market. I already had the idea of doing a RAGAMUFFINS and DETECTIVES INC., but I knew I should not start with those series first. I needed a strong heroic character. There were so many unknowns, I knew I had to give me, and the company doing this, a chance to prove we could sell a book that way. I had no idea Dean Mullaney wanted to publish comics. He was someone I had met through the letters pages in the books. And we had become good friends. I showed Dean the initial drawing Paul Gulacy had done of SABRE, but I had no idea he wanted to publish comics! So, when he called me days later and asked if he could publish the book, I said, 'What are you talking about, Dean? You don't publish comics.' 'Yeah, but I want to start my own company,' he told me. 'And I want to do SABRE.' So, Dean had heard most of my concerns over the past months. He knew what I wanted. I started to repeat them to him on the phone. 'Well, you know, I want my copyrights.' 'You've got them,' Dean replied, no hesitation. 'And I want final say on what happens with my copy. No one writes a line of SABRE but me. I was tired of having my worked screwed around with, and your name put on it, and you have to live with it, and some dimwit who spent five seconds worth of absence of thought could take your story and make it incomprehensible. Dean said, 'Fine.' I said, 'I guess you'd better come over andwe'd better talk.' And after that, SABRE was on for real.
To begin with, the original SABRE GRAPHIC ALBUM was often called a Graphic Novel. It wasn't. Two years were going to pass before this book would reach an audience, nearly two years before readers would experience any major new work from me. And I was contending with their fondness and memories of two and half years worth of books. And it wasn't just THE BLACK PANTHER and KILLRAVEN comics in, and of, themselves. I was speaking with Dean Mullaney recently and he said, 'You don't know what it was like having to WAIT that two months between issues, Don. To learn what happened next?' Now, Dean originally asked me how I wanted to package SABRE. I told him I wanted to come out in graphic album size, and the format I had in mind was something like Ed April used to do for CARTOONIST SHOWCASE. I wanted a sense of permanence about the book, and that the very look of it said it wasn't just another comic coming out on the stands that much. Still, the important point is, whatever else SABRE was, including being one of the first comics aimed at the Direct Sales market, and helping to prove that it did, indeed, for better or worse, exist, SABRE was only 38 pages of story. Those 38 pages had to compete with those two and a half years worth of books, it had to establish who and what SABRE was and all the major characters around him, set the rules of his time and place, and firmly establish its themes. Structurally though, it could in no way approximate a novel. The next storyline AN EXPLOITATION OF EVERYTHING DEAR, which ran through the SABRE comic series, issues #3 - 9 came closer to being a graphic novel, even if it was serialized. But that, too, was compromised in that nature, because it was started as a 4-issue mini-series. There were only supposed to be 6 issues in that series. But then, when I was writing SABRE #5, I guess it was, it was decided to keep the book going. You can see the moment that happens, because suddenly I had more room for everything. So, the trip across America was abbreviated, the attack on the Florida settlement had already begun. But then I had room to do the end up big. When it was just four issues, I had the basic structure of that story. It came to me suddenly. This was before there was even any talk of doing another SABRE. It was one of those times that you truly do feel you've tapped into another dimension where these characters live, and I just KNEW what happened to them next. I couldn't hand-write down the premise fast enough. And I knew it would end with the birth of Sabre and Melissa's children.
I had said to Dean from the very beginning that if I was going to do heroic fantasy, which by that time I was known for because of many of the Marvel books, and earlier I'd been known for horror because of the Warren stories, I wanted to break all the rules that were in that genre. Deuces Wild and Summer Ice were two of the first gay male characters in the supporting cast of a regular comic. We also had, I guess, the first on panels birth sequence. There's a lot of ground breaking in that second series.
As soon as I had more issues, the first thing I did was create new characters, the most predominant being Midnight Storm. I hadn't had a black woman in the series, but when it was a mini series I was already crowded with characters. As soon as I knew I had room, Midnight became a prominent character.
SABRE #7 was the book that broke more barriers than the graphic album. It was great working with Billy, because Billy didn't have any hang-ups about drawing this or that. He wasn't going to go nuts because I had two guys kissing in the strip. He wasn't going to say, 'Nope. I can't do that,' if we showed a baby being born. All of which we did in the 7th issue.
Starting in SABRE #10, I began THE DECADENCE INDOCTRINATION with Jose Ortiz drawing the series. I loved Jose's work. You could throw anything at him and he could do it. You wanted sex, Jose could put it across. You wanted character study? Jose could do it. You want fantasy? Jose could do it. You wanted humor? Jose could do it.
THE DECADENCE INDOCTRINATION was going to be my biggest heroic graphic novel. I knew it would be 500 to 600 pages in length, and I'd told Dean that when it was finished, I wasn't sure there'd be more. I'd have done the real novel now. I loved the fact that we could switch scenes in the book, and be with characters that had absolutely no connection to Sabre and Melissa and what they were going through. The audience got to meet Dearie Decadence and Heironymous Skull and Tango Two-Step and Winslow Butterfingers and the little paint mixer robot, Aloyisius, and the Clown Brothers, and a whole slew of other characters. I liked the idea of the audience knowing the reality of this place and these characters so that by the time Sabre and Melissa get there, they know nothing about the place, but the audience knows all the intrigue and complex relationships that are there. For Sabre and Melissa it's a virtue land-mine area. Anything can blow up in your face, much of it just because you don't know everything that's going on. I loved the idea that we were doing different kinds of covers. Each cover wasn't just the hero in danger. We did one with Sabre and the babies, and it was a humorous one, more in tune with 40s comic book covers, I guess, although you couldn't have babies peeing their pants, I'm sure. I would never have done the cover with Sabre on it, if I'd known there was going to be five months--Let me repeat that--FIVE MONTHS! between issues. But when I decided just to have Melissa Siren on the cover, that issue was supposed to be coming out monthly. I also would not have written an issue that only had 12 pages of SABRE, if I'd known that was the kind of span of time we were talking about. One month, yes. Five, absolutely not! My hope is, if we can see enough of the graphic albums now, the first SABRE, and the DETECTIVES INC., that eventually we can find a way to print ALL the Billy Graham SABREs. And if that works, that then, we can print the 125 pages of THE DECADENCE INDOCTRINATION that exist. And then complete the novel, the way it was originally supposed to be. I have no idea what Jose Ortiz is doing now, but if I can ever put the project together, I'd love to have him finish it.
Hopefully, the Internet can help us make that a reality. Having the website, people can find not just Don McGregor, but where they can get the books if they don't have a store near them that carries them. And hopefully we can also be a support group to the stores that DO have them.
But, you know, I'm a storyteller, and here I am, getting involved in areas the storyteller never even thought about before.
If we're going to have to have a chance to survive, and a chance to tell these stories, then this becomes part of the process of winning freedom to do those books according to the way you envisioned them in your head.
What's next for you?
There's the projects I've already told you about. What lies in the future depends on the answers that are contained in some of the questions above. They do talk about series and characters I would love to either finish, or do more with. Hopefully ALEXANDER RISK: THE HOUNDS OF HELL THEORY will finally see publication. I have a couple of projects I want to do with the HOPALONG CASSIDY people, including a commemorative album honoring GRACE BRADLEY BOYD, with incredible stories from her that correct many of the historically inaccurate incidents concerning Hoppy and William Boyd and the making of the films that have been printed in book after book. I am working on another THE BATMAN series that may or may not come to pass, as mentioned above. The www.donmcgregor.com will keep people posted on what new things are happening. And there's even a Discussion List people can join that covers a wide range of topics.
What advice can you pass on to aspiring comic writers?
Keep your love alive for the stories you tell and what they mean to you. The ones who are going to make it, are the ones who keep going after it, time and again, not matter how many times they've been rejected, had their heads ripped off their shoulders, and placed in their hands. The ones who put the head back on and go back for the next round! And feel passionate about comics! What a great medium this can be!
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