Good morning everyone! Each month I will post a two part feature. The first part will be an interview with the month’s author and include a short bio. The second part of the feature is a sample of the writer’s work. Sounds fun right?
This month will be a little different for we have two writers who specialize in comics!
Everyone give a big welcome to April’s writers. *claps*
Meet Team Baus: Ben Fischer and Jason Schlossman
“We mostly work on the Grumbles, which are these characters created from various shapes and they can be superheroes, wizards, scientists, anything really you can imagine. They live in a gigantic world and we want to tell their stories. We published our first book through Createspace, which is through Amazon.”
Now onto the interview…
Where did your love of books/storytelling/reading/writing/etc. come from?
Ben: “I really loved the Captain Underpants books when I was a kid, they were my first introduction to cartooning and comics. I then started reading classics like Calvin and Hobbes and the Far Side. The only book I can say that wasn’t a comic that inspired me was Harry Potter, just because I loved the wizarding world and how she crafted it.”
Jason: “I always had an obsession with things that I didn’t fully understand like knights and space aliens when I was super young, I would always seek out books and movies that had that subject matter. After I would find some really neat stuff I would always imagine new stories and settings.”
Ben: “Comics are a fun, really visual way to tell a story…I always approached it as being something like, reading an animated movie. I think being able to see a character’s facial expression as they react to something is also a lot of fun, and can make for some good comedy. I wouldn’t say I have a deep love for comics which may seem odd, but I really like the way comics can be used to tell a story.”
Jason: “For me, comics hold no barriers, especially with the art. You can really do anything. And they’ve been around long enough that people are use to them, so when you try something new (like Grumbles) people are willing to absorb it because its a format.”
What is the biggest thing that people THINK they know about comics, that isn’t so?
Ben: “I think people assume comics are dumbed down versions of stories or can only be comedic and can’t tell a really strong story. There are a lot of people who shy their kids away from it because they assume that, because there are pictures that it’s silly or goofy with no real value. There are plenty of comics that tell some really great stories, like Smile or Bone or even something like a Calvin and Hobbes. While we certainly don’t shy away from being silly with Grumbles, we also strive to make an engaging story.”
Jason: “I think a lot of people assume comics are still super hero stories, but it’s way past that now.”
How do you feel about e-books vs. print books and alternative vs. conventional publishing?
Ben: “I think there is value in both really. I used to despise e-books, but I really see how valuable they can be, and it can open up some interesting avenues to get story out there. As far as publishing goes, there’s no right or wrong way. We have only done one book, and we self-published it, and saw a little success. But we want to see what the conventional way has to offer with our next book. There are creators who self-publish and really knock it out of the park and find great success, and there are people who take off through more conventional means. I think either way works, you just have to go with the one you feel will benefit your work the most.”
Jason: “I agree with Ben on this one, but real life books in my opinion are forever they’ll never go away, its like a statement. Someone 1000 years from now could find a Grumbles book on an old dusty shelf, and that’s powerful to me.”
How do you market your books?
Ben and Jason: “We aren’t that great at marketing, because it’s just all so new to us. We’ve been to one local convention, we went to a local school, and we managed to get a signing at a local bookstore. We really just try to spread the word through anyone we contact. We probably should have paid more attention in our marketing class haha.”
What are you currently working on?
Ben and Jason: “We are working on our next Grumbles book, and we hope it is the start of launching a series of Grumbles books. Once we finish the manuscript, we are going to look into seeking an agent and try out a more conventional way of publishing.”
You can follow Ben & Jason on Twitter @teambaus
Or check at their website www.teambaus.com for links to their other social media outlets.
Thank you both for taking the time to talk with the readers!
Check back tomorrow for some samples of Ben & Jason’s comic Grumbles!