THE BIG INTERVIEW: Stephen Coffey Breaks Down The New Pogoroboto Series
I’m joined this evening by fellow ICN contributor Stephen Coffey whose new monthly book Pogoroboto is due to go on sale in April. To give us all the info on the new format of the book Stephen kindly spoke to us and broke it down.
David O’Leary: Hi Stephen, thanks for taking the time to talk with us.
Stephen Coffey: No worries, it stops me listening to the voices in my head… I don’t listen to them often but sometimes they have good ideas :)
DO’L: April sees the next book in the Pogo series come out. It is a shorter book than previous ones, can you tell us about your reasons in moving from a volume to issue format?
SC: Cheaper, quicker, and trying to get my country to see how fun the Pogoverse is, I ship so many books, t-shirts, prints, and characters as pogos outside of Ireland that I wanted to change it. Shipping to China, Japan, the UK and the USA is great but it costs a lot in shipping, books have to be shipped to me, signed, and then shipped off around the world. The new Pogoroboto Monthly comic will be shorter, but the same humour in the larger volumes is there.
DO’L: What benefits have you found in not having a second creator on the book to watch over while working on the Pogo series?
SC: I love working with other people on books, however it does slow down the assembly line and that is upsetting some times, you have to tell people what you are working on rather than going ‘Here… I did this.’ Also working on the Pogo books is great because while I have other books out with proper artists, such as Celtic Knights, Endurance, and Tim and Lynne, I have my own demented books coming out as soon as I can get them out there.
DO’L: What have you made of the reaction to the Pogo series so far, were you expecting it to have legs like it has?
SC: No. In shock mostly. If you think about all the fantastic artists I’ve worked with in the past, Barry McGowan, Cormac Hughes, Mike Kennedy, Ger Hankey, and that short fella Rob Carey, it’s amazing that I get asked every week for a new Pogo character, a specific Pogoshot, or a T-shirt design. I thought that after the first Pogoroboto book that I’d be told to go home and be chained to the typewriter… When a new request comes in I’m open jawed for an hour and then I get back to work. It’s going to be interesting getting the monthly Pogoroboto out there and seeing the reaction. I’m committed to keeping the price as low as I can, it’s full colour.
DO’L: What will the reduced size of the page count in the issues mean in terms of scheduling?
SC: Pogoroboto volume 2 and 3 were held up because of a laptop crash and also funding. Pogoroboto monthly is means I have to do at least 5 pages a week and that is from blank page, pencils, scanning, lettering, colouring, cover design, and then to the printer, and up until I send it to the printer I’m doing it all by myself. I’m just loving the challenge. Also talking to one Dublin based comics retailer we discovered that people come in every month looking for the next issue of Irish Comics only to be disappointed by the inconsistent nature of small press and indie releases. I’m thrown down a gauntlet to myself and will work the mouse running around on the wheel inside my head to death to get it done, (do not condone such treatment of imaginary animals).
DO’L: Have you a number in mind for the amount of issues in this run?
SC: No, the first story will be about 5 issues, and I’ve another story in my head that will go on from there. But also working on a Pogoshots short animation movie as well… the future is busy… getting in the way of Xbox time.
DO’L: The first issue features a zombie outbreak, will this form a first arc story or how have you beats in mind that you want to get around to in the books run?
SC: The Zombies are just the start, they soon change… people will have to read to see how things go. Issue 2 does feature Ninja’s as well… kinda!
DO’L: The first issue noticeably has Bobby missing from its cast of characters; will he be making it an appearance in upcoming issues?
SC: Yes. He’s coming… Bobby will be missing for first 3 issues… but by number four he’s back and being the complete dick and homicidal robot that I love.
DO’L: Once the book is available for sale, where can it be found?
SC: I know for a fact that Dublin City Comics (46 Bolton St.) will have it, will also have a download. Mail order and some very cool shops in Californiawill stock it, Hypno Comics and Illusive Comics and Games. Any other stores can contact me and I’ll arrange it…. [email protected] The one thing that I have to get better at is self promotion…. I really need a publicist :)
DO’L: Thanks for taking the time to speak with us, take care.
SC: You’re welcome… now back to the Xbox!
The mature audiance aimed Pogoroboto #1 goes on sale next month and will be reviewed here on ICN very soon!