Over at GamesRadar, Chris Arrant has an interview with Comicraft founder Richard Starkings, offering a thoughtful and positive take on the comics industry, and the need to adapt to survive in difficult times, which makes for a refreshing read…
As Chris notes, Richard has seen and experienced a lot in comic books. Over the past four decades, since his time at Marvel UK, bringing us The Real Ghostbusters weekly and Death’s Head, the writer/ editor/ letterer has worked for virtually every major comic book company.
At Comicraft, alongside John Roshell and others, he’s also helped innovate the art of lettering that touches on virtually every US comic book for the past 20 years.
As the world battles the Coronavirus Pandemic, which has had a major impact on the comics industry worldwide, as it has on other creative arts, Richard, who has also been interviewed about Elephantmen 2261 Season 3: Theo Laroux Meets The Elephantmen, the new volume of his creator-owned series Elephantmen on GamesRadar, remains refreshingly optimistic.
“Way back in the ’90s when Will Eisner was the keynote speaker at PRO/CON he looked out at the professionals in the audience and said, very plainly: ‘Congratulations! You’re the survivors!’”, Richard tells Chris.
“We were in a big slump after the Image [Comics] explosion of the early ’90s and there was a lot of talk about the industry being in severe decline.
“At San Diego the following year, there were tumbleweeds rolling by to the sound of crickets at Comic Con! I remember thinking it would probably be one of the last San Diego shows!
“How wrong could I have been!”
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The founder of downthetubes, which he established in 1998. John works as a comics and magazine editor, writer, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. He is currently editor of Star Trek Explorer, published by Titan – his third tour of duty on the title originally titled Star Trek Magazine.
Working in British comics publishing since the 1980s, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Babylon 5 Magazine, and more. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War” and “Dan Dare”.
He’s the writer of “Pilgrim: Secrets and Lies” for B7 Comics; “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood.