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Janelle Asselin

Archie Comics Publicity Mastermind Alex Segura On Marketing, Management, And His Time At DC Comics

Archie Meets Kiss Alex Segura Interview
Francesco Francavilla

Interviews, panel appearances, fan mail -- artists and writers understandably get much of the focus when we talk about professionals in the American comics industry. But beyond the front lines there's a whole host of people working hard to keep the business running: accountants, lawyers, publicists, librarians, production staff and many others. Most of these people don't have the opportunity to talk about their work with the people who read the comics they help put in their hands, but the work they do is important -- often integral -- to this industry. Whether it's making sure creators get paid, designing logos, or even planning a convention, these people affect how the whole package of our industry comes together.

In the first of what we've planned as a series of spotlights on the behind-the-scenes comics pros, we're speaking with Alex Segura, Archie Comics' Senior Vice President - Publicity and Marketing. Segura started his career in comics as a journalist but has spent nearly a decade doing publicity at DC Comics and Archie, the latter of which has been especially praised by this site and others for revitalizing its brand. One of the architects of the new Archie Comics, Segura sat down with us to talk about how he ended up as a publicist and what exactly that job entails.

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No Reason Not To Do Both: Cartoonist Kel McDonald On Web Vs. Print [Interview]

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Kel McDonald has been making comics for ten years, including a ten year run on her webcomic Sorcery 101. She was an early adopter of crowdfunding as a way of getting her comics out in print, and book one of McDonald's Misfits of Avalon series came out earlier this year through Dark Horse Comics. As increasing numbers of young, particularly female comics creators turn to webcomics as a way of getting their work out there, and as increasing numbers of comics publishers look to webcomics for up-and-coming talent, creators like McDonald are poised to have a unique understanding of the current comics world we live in

As part of her wrap-up of Sorcery 101, she's currently running a Kickstarter campaign for an omnibus of the series. ComicsAlliance sat down with McDonald to talk comics, crowdfunding, and web versus print.

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Books That Feel Real: Spike Trotman On ‘Poorcraft 2′ And Building An Indie Comics Empire [Interview]

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Comic book publishing is a difficult world to survive in, particularly for small and independent publishers. C. Spike Trotman and her Iron Circus Comics, however, has found a way to thrive. When we spoke with Trotman earlier this year for Hire This Woman, we spoke primarily about her role as a creator. Today, this is only a small part of the role Trotman plays in comics, as the slate of books from Iron Circus continues to increase.

As a publisher, Iron Circus places a high value on inclusivity and publishing books that are too often ignored in mainstream comics. To wit, the publisher has a currently-running Kickstarter for Poorcraft: Wish You Were Here written by Ryan Estrada and drawn by Diana Nock. The 130-page black and white book is the the followup to Trotmans original Poorcraft, and is available in a variety of formats at eminently sensible price/reward tiers.

With less than one week left to pledge to the Kickstarter, we reconnected with Trotman to talk about webcomics, publishing, smut, and paying the bills.

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Gail Simone: The Comics Alliance Interview, Part Two: Red Sonja, Diversity and Nightwing Ass

Gail Simone Interview Part 2

In this second and final part of our in-depth interview, Simone talks about her initial concerns about working on Red Sonja at Dynamite, her relaunch of Secret Six, her passionate fan base and her "secret" comics agenda.

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Gail Simone: The Comics Alliance Interview, Part One – Batgirl, Birds Of Prey, And Women In Refrigerators

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Gail Simone, longtime comic book writer for DC Comics (and snarky Twitterer), is in the midst of a career evolution at the moment. Simone's comics work started with the Women in Refrigerators website, which was a commentary on how female characters are all-too-often mistreated in comics (named after the 1990s story in which Green Lantern Kyle Rayner discovers his girlfriend's body stuffed in his refrigerator). WIR became an important part of the discussion of how female characters are treated in superhero comics - a discussion that continues today. Simone's work on WIR led to a column at Comic Book Resources titled "You'll All Be Sorry" and the humor in that column in turn led to Simone working on Simpsons comics.

It was her entry into superhero comics, however, that permanently shifted Simeone's career. Although she worked for Marvel a bit, including a run on Deadpool and then Agent X, Simone has primarily made her home at DC over the last decade. Popular books like Birds of Prey, Secret Six, Wonder Woman, Batgirl, and others solidified Simone as super hero writer with an outspoken fan base.

Now Simone is in a brand new position: that of a non-exclusive freelancer. For many creators, this can be a difficult hustle, as the shift from guaranteed work minimums to having to look for gigs can be a struggle. Simone seems to be thriving, however. Between working on various Red Sonja projects at Dynamite and writing a Tomb Raider series at Dark Horse, Simone is also still working at DC, with a Vertigo series called Clean Room on the way and preparing to relaunch of fan-favorite Secret Six, which is in stores on December 3.

In part one of this in-depth two-part interview, Simone spoke with ComicsAlliance about Women in Refrigerators, women in comics, and her occasionally tense time at DC.

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Dropping The Cool Veneer: Becky & Frank Welcome You To The World of Capture Creatures [Interview]

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Frank Gibson and Becky Dreistadt have established themselves as a creative team who excel at making a lighthearted, adorable comics with their work on Tiny Kitten Teeth and their Little Golden Book-esque publication of Tigerbuttah. In 2013, they were part of a crowdfunding campaign with Benign Kingdom for an art book titled Capture Creatures, which is launching this week as a new comic book series from Boom! Studios.

After giving the first issue a read, I had a quick chat with Frank about the book to learn more about the inspiration and thought behind Capture Creatures.

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Hire This Woman: Cartoonist Corin Howell

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In the overwhelmingly male comic book industry, it has been a challenge for some editors and readers to see the ever growing number of talented women currently trying to make a name for themselves. With that in mind, ComicsAlliance offers Hire This Woman, a recurring feature designed for comics readers as well as editors and other professionals, where we shine the spotlight on a female comics pro on the ascendance. Some of these women will be at the very beginning of their careers, while others will be more experienced but not yet “household names.”

Cartoonist Corin Howell attended the Savannah College of Art and Design and graduated with a degree in Sequential Art. Also one of the first students of the Murphy Apprenticeship with the great Sean Murphy, she writes, draws, and colors her projects, which so far have included work for Viz and Oni, as well as work she's self-publishing.

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Hire This Woman: Artist Marguerite Sauvage

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In the overwhelmingly male comic book industry, it has been a challenge for some editors and readers to see the ever growing number of talented women currently trying to make a name for themselves. With that in mind, ComicsAlliance offers Hire This Woman, a recurring feature designed for comics readers as well as editors and other professionals, where we shine the spotlight on a female comics pro on the ascendance. Some of these women will be at the very beginning of their careers, while others will be more experienced but not yet “household names.”

Longtime ComicsAlliance fave Marguerite Sauvage had already established herself as a fashion and commercial illustrator with work for companies as varied as Marie Claire, Playstation, and Louis Vuitton, not to mention animation art and writing and drawing comics for the French market. It was only recently that Sauvage made waves in the US with her celebrated work in Sensation Comics, where she reimagined Wonder Woman as a contemporary feminist rock star. Just this week, Sauvage was announced as the artist of a new Thor story to be written by Lumberjanes co-creator Noelle Stevenson.

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Comics Your Cares Away: Kate Leth And Jake Myler Talk ‘Fraggle Rock: Journey To The Everspring’ [Interview]

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For most of a certain generation, the TV show Fraggle Rock is a beloved childhood memory. Beyond its basic and undeniable Henson charm, it was also a show with a lot of smart, complex lessons for kids and adults. For this reason -- as well as because some of those children have now grown up to be parents -- it's no surprise that comics publisher Archaia jumped at the chance to publish Fraggle comics.

Now that Archaia is a part of Boom Studios, the publisher's approach to Fraggle comics has shifted a little, with the first-ever Fraggle Rock comic miniseries, Fraggle Rock: Journey to the Everspring. Written by Kate Leth and drawn by Jake Myler, it's the longest Fraggle comic yet. ComicsAlliance sat down with thes creators to talk about making Fraggle comics, working with Henson, creating new characters, and, of course, their favorite Fraggles.

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Hire This Woman: Artist Heidi Arnhold

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In the overwhelmingly male comic book industry, it has been a challenge for some editors and readers to see the ever growing number of talented women currently trying to make a name for themselves. With that in mind, ComicsAlliance offers Hire This Woman, a recurring feature designed for comics readers as well as editors and other professionals, where we shine the spotlight on a female comics pro on the ascendance. Some of these women will be at the very beginning of their careers, while others will be more experienced but not yet “household names.”

Heidi Arnhold is a comic book artist (pencils, inks and colors) and illustrator whose work has included contributions to Archaia's Fraggle Rock comics and Tokyopop's Legends of the Dark Crystal and Star Trek: The Manga. A student of Savannah College of Art and Design's prestigious comic book training program, Arnhold's next work is an original graphic novel from First Second.

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