Interview by @Capn_Mak
Recently I had the opportunity to ask writer Shawn Aldridge some questions about the new comic series from Dynamite, Hack/Slash Vampirella.
ChicoComicsPage: Hi Shawn, You’re the writer for the New book from Dynamite, Hack/Slash Vampirella #1. But before we talk about that, readers are curious about your history in the comics industry you have experience as a writer, colorist, and letterer. Tell us a little about how you got into comics and honed these skills to become so dynamic?
Shawn Aldridge: Most of the skills I learned were because of need. Starting out, I was self-publishing stuff or working for friends on things. When you’re working with a budget of $0, you have to take on as much of the work as you can to keep cost low. So I taught myself to letter and color, though I’m not a very good colorist. My coloring tends to be very stylistic and really I only color Vic Boone related stuff. With lettering, it became a case of practice makes perfect (or a minor equivalent of perfect). When I started out, lettering helped pay the bills. It was a way to make an income until the writing career took off.
ChicoComicsPage: Your specialty seems to be horror comics, with short stories published in Alterna’s FUBAR anthology and the American Vampire anthology, along with your creator-owned series The Dark & Bloody from Vertigo. What is it that draws you to horror?
Shawn Aldridge: Here’s the funny thing, I wouldn’t consider myself a horror writer. I know that sounds odd, given the majority of my work has been in that genre, but that’s more a case of “how the cards fell.” Haha. I do find the horror genre appealing, though. I think it’s a great genre to not only explore fantastical horror elements, but also the very real horror within us as humans. I’m very much about characters, about what makes them tick, and by default what makes us all tick. Horror offers up a way to delve into that in ways other genres don’t.
ChicoComicsPage: Hack/Slash Vampirella #1 puts two popular characters into your hands. Vampirella is practically a cultural icon, and Cassie Hack is a relatively new but popular character. Tell us how you feel about writing a comic featuring both?
Shawn Aldridge: It’s been a blast. I think the dynamic between Hack/Slash and Vampirella made for a great, fun story. Also, it was nice to have the challenge of writing someone else’s characters, so to speak. It offered up the challenge of figuring out my take on the characters while remaining true to who they are. Hopefully, I succeeded in that.
ChicoComicsPage: The book obviously focuses on Cassie Hack and Vlad as the primary protagonists. Will we see any scenes from Vampirella’s point of view in the future?
Shawn Aldridge: Yeah, all three get their moment to shine. Vampirella gets an issue focusing on her thoughts and POV. Vlad, too. Though issue #1 is pretty Cassie and Vlad heavy, Vampirella gets a lot more involved in issue #2.
Chicocomicspage: For those not familiar with your earlier work. This book has the potential to reach a much larger audience. What are your plans for your future in the comics industry? Stay a self-described part-time writer, or something more?
Shawn Aldridge: The hope, the plan, is to write comics full-time. It’s all I want, have ever wanted, to do. I love the medium and its unique toolset for telling stories. Right now, I’m working on a few different things. One is creator owned title with Christian Dibari that we hope to find a home for. It’s horror…wait, maybe I am a horror guy. Haha.
If you’re interested in learning more about Shawn and what he’s up to in the comics industry check out his twitter @shawnaldridge or visit his facebook page.
Also check out my review of Hack/Slash Vampirella #1 https://thechicocomicspage.wordpress.com/2017/09/24/comic-review-hackslash-vampirella-1/