Q&A with Brad Huffman-Parent of Steel Rising
Brad Huffman-Parent, who is the writer of “Steel Rising,” a contestant in the Small Press Idol competition at dimestoreproductions.com, answered some questions for The Oklahoman about his project.
Matt Price: Tell me about the competition.
Brad Huffman-Parent: Small Press Idol is a huge opportunity for independent creators to get noticed. This is its 6th year and the biggest one ever. 42 projects entered into Round 1 and 27 of those have moved on to Round 2.
The requirements for Round 1 were a basic premise/pitch write-up and a rough cover image.
Round 2 is all about the characters– bios, front, 3/4, and side view of each character, plus 3 action poses for each. And also the official logo that will appear on the cover. From here 20 projects will advance to Round 3.
Round 3 is where the real challenge starts. All projects that advance will have to submit 3 completed pages of sequential art, penciled, inked, and lettered (and grayscale if you want). These can be any 3 pages from your planned #0 issue or origin story, but they have to be in order.
And from there a number to be determined will advance to Round 4 which is the full 12 page 0 issue story, with completed cover and logo. The #0′s will be available for sale, and the grand prize winner will be the book that sells the most copies.
This year, the Grand Prize will be a 4-issue commitment from the Dimestore Imprint to sponsor the launching of a series based on the winning concept, with an option to continue with it if successful. The Winner will also get half of the entry fee monies taken in as a bonus payout, as well as money paid into the prize pool by sponsors, which is $700.
MP: What inspired your entry?
BH-P: I have a love/hate relationship with fantasy. I love to read it, but hate that so much of it is unoriginal and makes me feel like I’m just reading the same story with slightly different characters. I’m always looking for the new twist to my old favorites and one day I just started thinking about how the standard fantasy characters would act and interact in the modern world. But I didn’t want to just stick them in the modern world for them to have an old style adventure. This is a world very, very close to ours, but with elves, dwarves, and orcs a reality things have evolved just a bit differently. I thought hard about how these characters would integrate realistically into the modern world.
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