Hire This Woman: Writer Giulie Speziani
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.”
Writer Giulie Speziani has worked on a few different projects, including By The Slice and Golden Age with artist Cecilia Latella. You can see her in person this weekend at Long Beach Comic-Con on the Hire This Woman panel at 3:30pm on Sunday, September 28th, along with other past and future featured creators!
ComicsAlliance: What’s your background/training?
Giulie Speziani: At one point, briefly, I was an Art major in college. I quickly dismissed that path because, well, I was honest with myself – the talent really wasn't there. I ended up graduating with a TV production degree and minor in Film Studies from FIU in Miami, FL. After I moved to California to pursue screenwriting, I took a few other writing courses, including a Creating Comics class at Meltdown Comics in Hollywood. That was a great way to learn storytelling through sequential art and I made some friends there.
CA: How would you describe your creative style?
GS: Not too flashy. I get straight to the point and try to capture the tone of the story in my script right away. It doesn't matter what genre I’m writing in because I focus on the characters. I see them for what they are and who they’re trying to be. That’s what pulls me in, and hopefully the audience as well. Dialogue and action follow suit.
CA: What projects have you worked on in the past? What are you currently working on?
GS: My first official comic was By The Slice, illustrated by Cecilia Latella. It’s a slice of life story about a girl working in a pizza place. We really enjoyed collaborating on, it so when another opportunity presented itself with an all ages comic called Golden Age, I contacted her again. My husband, Rob Harrington, and I wrote that one together. Lastly, I wrote a micro-anthology called One Night On Earth where five short stories take place in five different cities. All the illustrations were done by female artists.
Currently I’m working on projects that will make their debut next year. Can’t promote them yet as they’re still in the development stage.
CA: Approximately how long does it take you to write a 20-page issue?
GS: From idea to final draft takes about three weeks give or take. As someone who works a day job, I spend every night and weekend writing. When one script is done, it’s onto the next. That’s why I have no idea what’s on TV nowadays, I’m always working on something. That and I don’t have cable.
CA: What is your dream project?
GS: Ideally I would love to freelance full time. And to be more specific, I’d like to do the “one for me, one for them” formula. If I had the opportunity to balance a creator owned series and a work for hire project, I’d feel really lucky.
CA: Who are some comic creators that inspire you?
GS: Claire Connelly. She’s a machine. She’s constantly turning out fantastic work, I love that commitment. Can’t wait to see what else is in store for her.
Michel Fiffe. He literally created the Copra series from the ground up. He does every part of the process in indie publishing right down to selling it on his Etsy site.
And everyone who does webcomics week in and week out. A truly successful webcomic is one that is consistent with their content. I can’t imagine those deadlines; you take a break and half your audience goes bye-bye. Major props to those guys and gals.
CA: What are some comics that have inspired you either growing up or as an adult?
GS: Hands down, Y: The Last Man. I actually started to read it after the series ended which was great. Every trade I finished made me want more; I took no breaks in between. Brian K. Vaughan does an impressive job in world building but keeps it grounded with these characters that you know exist in real life somewhere.
Another comic is Goodbye, Chunky Rice from Craig Thompson. He goes for the heart every single time. He’s so skilled in writing with such emotion, it just stays with you.
CA: What’s your ideal professional environment?
GS: Typing at my desk in front of a large window with lots of morning light, taking in the panoramic views of the mountains with my scruffy dog at my feet.
In reality I work at night in front of a frosted window with a noisy A/C unit next to my ear. As for my dog, well, he has his own chair.
CA: What do you most want our readers and industry professionals to know about your work?
GS: What starts off as an idea, terribly handwritten on a bunch of post-its, has become a fully realized story that will (hopefully) entertain you. What I like to read is what I like to write which varies. I like noir, coming-of-age, high concept and slice of life stories. So far I've made great progress in the last few years and I’m not slowing down.
CA: How can editors and readers keep up with your work and find your contact information?
GS: You can find me on Twitter @GSpeziani, the website: gingerrabbitstudio.com, or our Facebook page where we post events such as in-store signings and conventions. My comics can be also found online on Comixology.
If there is a woman you’d like to recommend or if you’d like to be included in a future installment of this feature, drop us a line at comicsalliance-at-gmail-dot-com with "Hire This Woman" in the subject line.