Every year, in the countdown to the Lakes International Comic Art Festival in October, this year running as the virtual LICAF LIVE, we bring you a series of interviews with both guests and participants in the Comics Clock Tower (This year, also virtual).
Today. it’s a chat with young Drew Marr, a self-publishing comic writer and artist based in Dundee, Scotland, who you’ll find online operating as Gold Lion Comics. Since he launched his comic series, The Rehabilitation of Doctor Eye in 2017, his work has appeared in ComicScene’s Big Annual and in the first issue of the new retro-style comic, The77.
What are you working on, comics-wise, right now, and when will it be published?
Drew Marr: I am currently working on Book 5 of The Rehabilitation of Dr Eye, which will be published in the next month.
Which comic project you’ve worked on are you most proud of and where can people see it or buy it?
How do you plan your day as a creator? (Do you plan your day?)
Drew: A lot of the time, when I am first story boarding the comic I look at what pictures are important to get done and you keep a list and everyday I try and cross off one or two. It would be good to have more time for drawing, but sometimes school gets in the way.
What’s the best thing about being a comics creator?
Drew: I think of different ideas for stories and characters and having a series gives me the freedom to put those ideas on paper.
And the worst?
Drew: Occasionally I go through periods where I find it hard to draw and this becomes especially inconvenient when it comes to deadlines.
What most distracts you from getting your work done?
Drew: Watching my favourite TV shows, like Family Guy, The Arrowverse shows, and Brooklyn Nine-Nine.
Do you think it’s easier or harder for young comic creators to get published today?
Drew: Personally I wouldn’t know, because I self-publish. But I would understand if larger publishers were a bit sceptical working with young creators unless they can consistently produce content on time.
How has the Pandemic affected you, work wise – good or bad?
Drew: I’ve been able to draw a lot more, which is great, as I always trying to improve. But I have really missed going to events, especially local ones like DeeCon and Dundee Comic Con (which was going the first one this year).
What do you think might be its most significant impact on the comics industry in general, long term?
Drew: I think the absence of comic events have really hurt growing comic businesses, seeing as there aren’t as many comic book shops as there used to be.
Which one comic creator would you most like to meet, and why?
Drew: Neil Gaiman would be great to meet because I am a big fan of Sandman.
What one piece of advice do you offer people looking to work in the comics industry?
Drew: Try and follow through on strong ideas that you believe in. You are never too young, but you need to be organised.
What’s your favourite comic right now and where can people get it?
Drew: I am a big Beano fan, and I recently got a subscription, which is a lot easier.
Drew, thanks very much for your time and the very best of luck with all your projects!
• The Rehabilitation of Doctor Eye is now available in eight stores across the UK, and Ireland: Grouchos in Dundee, Forbidden Planet in Glasgow, Cardiff, Belfast, Hanley, and Dublin; and Deadhead Comics in Edinburgh. It’s also on sale in the United States in Big Planet Comics, located in Washington DC and The Comic Book Shop in Liverpool, Sydney Australia
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• The Virtual Comics Clock Tower is online at licafclocktower.com