The Adventures of Lady Guinevine Strathmore, a new historical adventure comic written by Amsel Von Spreckelsen, with art by Norm Chung, has just launched, published on ComiXology.
In the new title, published under Norm’s Dice Comics imprint, Lady Guinevine Strathmore, explorer, aristocrat and dilettante, embarks on a swashbuckling adventure as she investigates the brutal attack on the high society ball held by the Esteemed Lord, Sir Charles Wrathbone.
“I did a six page short of Guinevine for Amstel around 2002,” Norm tells us, “for Underfire Comics, and I found his writing very easy to draw from. I don’t think he’s currently got another Guinevine penned, but he has lots of notes and I’m hoping to nudge him that way!”
The new adventure is Norm’s second book to be published on Comixology, following the reboot of Akuto last year, a series that centres on the story of infamous assassin, Akuto, who has turned his back on his past and, as Jin, travels with the mysterious child Miko.
Upon stumbling across the aftermath of a heinous crime they become embroiled in a power struggled initiated by the Kinjo Clan and their unnatural warriors.
“My inspiration for Akuto is Japanese Chanbara, and anything samurai related,” Norm reveals, “but it was the manga movie ninjascroll that set me off, and my interest in fairytale and legends. So I’m interwoven the two.
“I’ve just completed Part Two of Akuto and will be submitting it to Comixology in the next few days. I don’t have a clear number of issues but I’m hoping to produce about eight issues and then reassess it from there. Part Three is penciled and Part Four is roughly laid out, as of today.
Norm Chung might not be a name some downthetubes readers will be familiar with, but he’s actually been a comic creator for a lot longer than this recent burst of activity suggests.
“I grew up drawing and painting on the walls and fridges of my parent’s Chinese take-away, bringing them much annoyance,” he notes on his web site. “So they got me a cheap pad of paper, pencil and some comic books to draw from.
“Now as an adult, I’d like to say things haven’t changed much… but actually it has but for the fact I still love to draw and paint, and be inspired by the huge variety of comic and fantasy books out there.
His independent comics career actually began in the early 2000s, when he first published Akuto.
“I briefly hooked up with a group of independent creators called Underfire Comics, based in Brighton,” Norm recalls online. “One of the original writers from the Underfire group, Amsel Von Spreckelsen, wrote The Adventures of Lady Guinevine Strathmore.
“I sort of fell off the comic scene shortly after, for over 10 years and only in recent years started to dip my toe in again with a mix of my own stories and from other writers.”
From 2003 to 2010 Norm worked in the games industry, then started freelancing part time as an illustrator.
His first book, written by Brian O’Connell, The fat boy with the bomb and 299 more of the world’s craziest politicians, was published in 2013.
In 2015, Norm was one of the winners in the “Lost in Space” challenge run by the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. Since then, he’s been working hard to get into the games industry, entering competitions developing samples and projects for the long term.
Does he have any advice for aspiring creators, given his experience across almost two decades of working in and around comics?
“I’m not sure I approached things right, as I was a bit of a recluse,” he reflects. “I would say don’t be a recluse, practice daily and don’t be precious about things.
“Remember there are those who have gone before you,” he adds. “Their criticism, whether you think was just or unfair, is to help you grow. Think over what they say. I think it was around 2013/14 that I started with this mentality and in that time I’ve entered, with mixed results, competitions and submissions. But I’ve noticed a marked improvement in my work year by year.
“Practically, I would say produce a comic book and think about your process as well as scrutinising the work. I had the privilege or being taught by Korky Paul around 2014, and even now I have his voice in my head when I scrutinise my own work. There are other voices too.”
In addition to the Comixology releases of his Dice Comics titles, his Akuto comic is for sale, in store, at Geek Retreat in Oxford, bagged and with a small card of the cover image (only for the first 100 issues) for £3.50. Alternatively, it can be bought by contacting Norm via his web site or social media and he can post it out at a total of £5 (this includes p+p, but this is for the UK only – please ask him about international postage).
• For Norm’s caricature portfolio visit