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Thread: Ask Kurt Busiek

  1. #16
    Oblio Kurt Busiek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Timothy Hunter View Post
    What was your greatest struggle breaking into the industry?
    I didn't really have a big struggle breaking in -- I broke in at DC a few days before my college graduation, and at Marvel a month or so later.

    But staying in was a problem, at least for the first ten years of my career. Until MARVELS came along, finding the next job, the next gig, was always a concern. After MARVELS, much less of one.

    kdb
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  2. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adekis View Post
    If you could do a run on any character for any publisher, what book would you choose to write for?

    Probably something I made up myself.

    It would be fun to do one of the DC books I mentioned above, or to do, say, FANTASTIC FOUR or something at Marvel, but my top choice would probably be to make something up, like Astro City or ARROWSMITH or AUTUMNLANDS or other books that might not even start with A.

    kdb
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  3. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by superduperman View Post
    Does the Earth Prime Superboy character exist in the Secret Identity universe?

    As a comic book character, sure -- that issue of DC PRESENTS exists in that world, though the Clark of SECRET IDENTITY probably hasn't read it.

    As an actual character in that world, I wouldn't think so. It's a world where Superman comics exist, but other than the stuff the story covers, it's a mostly-normal world.

    kdb
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  4. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robanker View Post
    Do you prefer a married or single Superman, and what's your opinion on Lois and Clark having a child such as Jon?

    Personally, I prefer a single Superman. But I think married Superman stories can be good, too, as can stories where Superman has a son.

    I think, ultimately, it'd be fun to do a Superman series where you could tell stories in any part of the "legend," from Krypton to babyhood to Superman-wen-he-was-a-boy to young Superman and onward all the way through a married Superman with a family and an elderly Superman. I like the whole mess of it, so why stick with only one status quo?

    kdb
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  5. #20
    Astonishing Member Vordan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kurt Busiek View Post
    I don't think I understand the question.

    If you're asking how they got me to leave Marvel and sign up with DC, they didn't. The one time I was exclusive to DC, I'd been doing CONAN for Dark Horse before that.

    Mostly, I've done stuff at DC when interesting opportunities came up and I was available to do them, which is also true for working at Marvel or Dark Horse or elsewhere. I don't think of myself as "belonging" to one company or another.

    kdb
    Yep I was asking how they got you to leave Marvel and sign up at DC. Sorry there are lots of gaps in my
    Knowledge regarding your career and I sometimes get confused on when you wrote what. I didn’t even know you wrote Conan! Never been a big Conan fan but I’ll have to track your stuff down since I usually enjoy your work, maybe you’ll make a Conan fan out of me.

    When you’re coming onto a ongoing, do the Big 2 update you on the status quo the person before you set up, giving you a summary of previous issues, or do they just expect you to read those issues yourself in prep, or do they not even care if you contradict what the person before you wrote?

    Also who’s your favorite Superman villain and who is your favorite Batman villain?

  6. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vordan View Post
    I didn’t even know you wrote Conan! Never been a big Conan fan but I’ll have to track your stuff down since I usually enjoy your work, maybe you’ll make a Conan fan out of me.
    Hope you like it if you try it!

    When you’re coming onto a ongoing, do the Big 2 update you on the status quo the person before you set up, giving you a summary of previous issues, or do they just expect you to read those issues yourself in prep, or do they not even care if you contradict what the person before you wrote?
    The editors I've worked with care, and they'll help out to the extent needed -- I'll also seek out the earlier issues myself, too, because I want to know.

    Also who’s your favorite Superman villain and who is your favorite Batman villain?
    I don't really do "favorites," usually -- if I like a character, I'm content to like them for who they are, rather than rank them against others.

    But I've had a lot of fun writing the Prankster, and it'd be a hoot to get to write the Penguin...

    kdb
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  7. #22
    Obsessed & Compelled Bored at 3:00AM's Avatar
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    Thanks for taking the time to answer questions. Do you remember what the original plan for your and Johns Post-infinite Crisis Superman books was? It seemed like you two had a plan to build to New Krypton, but it got derailed by delays and other factors.

    Thanks again!

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    Astonishing Member Vordan's Avatar
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    Sorry to keep bugging you Mr. Busiek but I was reading this Wonder Woman retrospective about her history, and I was shocked to learn that in the gap between the “Mod” Era of WW and Perez’s reboot, you wrote some WW with Trina Robbins?

    Can you tell us anything about that time period, how you got the job, what the creative process was like, did you enjoy it, did it have an impact on how you would approach WW later on?

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    Hi Kurt, there seems to be a kind of struggle sometimes with fans between a lack of progression with characters and wanting some parts of fans to stay the same. The website Fantastic Four: Great American Novel addresses this quite a bit: http://zak-site.com/Great-American-Novel/ and it seems to be something that Generation Five in DC is set to address. How do you as a writer personally handle long term changes to characters who don't really age? After all, even in the post-crisis continuity, Batman really only got to 44 years of age at max before the New 52.

  10. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bored at 3:00AM View Post
    Thanks for taking the time to answer questions. Do you remember what the original plan for your and Johns Post-infinite Crisis Superman books was? It seemed like you two had a plan to build to New Krypton, but it got derailed by delays and other factors.
    I had lots of plans for that Superman run that I didn't get to, and Geoff and I had come up with a bunch of plans for New Krypton, but they were loose plans and I don't know that if we'd done the story it would all have come out the way those plans had it.

    But you never know -- I might get to use those plans someday, so I'll keep them to myself at present.
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  11. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vordan View Post
    Sorry to keep bugging you Mr. Busiek but I was reading this Wonder Woman retrospective about her history, and I was shocked to learn that in the gap between the “Mod” Era of WW and Perez’s reboot, you wrote some WW with Trina Robbins?
    The "mod" era of WW ended in 1972, and there were 14 more years of stuff before the Perez reboot. But yeah, in between the end of the Silver Age series in 1986 and the Perez/Potter reboot, Trina and I did that 4-issues series.

    Can you tell us anything about that time period, how you got the job, what the creative process was like, did you enjoy it, did it have an impact on how you would approach WW later on?
    The problem, at the time, was that the Perez/Potter revamp was taking longer to develop than originally expected, and back then the terms of the contract between DC and the Marston Estate said that if DC didn't publish four issues a year of WW comics, the rights would revert to the Estate.

    DC didn't want that to happen, so the editor of the recently-ended WW series, Alan Gold, was tasked to do a WW mini-series that would get some WW material on the stands but wouldn't detract from the upcoming big splashy relaunch. In essence, they needed something wort publishing, but that wouldn't be a hit.

    So Alan came up with the idea of having Trina do a series, maybe thinking that Trina was a big WW fan and had a fan following, but not so big that it'd overshadow the relaunch. I had been writing some small jobs for him, and he offered it to me as writer. Why he didn't have Trina write it, I don't know, but I wasn't going to turn it down.

    It was fun -- I talked to Trina about what kind of story she'd have the most fun drawing, and she sent me Xeroxes of stories featuring Queen Atomia and Leila and Solala of the Land of Mirrors, saying they were favorite from her childhood and maybe we could use one of them? I said, "Why not both?" and worked up a story involving all of them -- and since, to my mind, those classic WW stories were all about WW being inspiring to other women, especially young women, I added in Suzie, a bratty little girl who could really use a heroic role model. She was partly inspired by old WW stories, partly by a character I'd seen in "Mr. $ Mrs. Superman," and partly by Edmund from THE LION, THE WITCH AND THE WARDROBE.

    Anyway, Trina liked the plot outline, so that was that. I wrote the scripts, she drew them, Lois Buhalis lettered and...Nansi Hoolihan? colored them. They came out, didn't sell all that well, but got great reviews (sorry, Alan, we tried to stay unnoticed!). It was a lot of fun to do, and they've been recently reprinted (along with another WW story of mine and one by Trina) in the WW: FORGOTTEN LEGENDS trade paperback.

    The series was deliberately trying to echo the WW stories of Trina's childhood, so when I wrote WW later, in JLA or other such places, I didn't try to do that. But I was probably informed by reading a bunch of Golden Age WW stories to prep for it, and that's stuck with me over the years.

    kdb
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  12. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drexelhand View Post
    Hi Kurt, there seems to be a kind of struggle sometimes with fans between a lack of progression with characters and wanting some parts of fans to stay the same. The website Fantastic Four: Great American Novel addresses this quite a bit: http://zak-site.com/Great-American-Novel/ and it seems to be something that Generation Five in DC is set to address. How do you as a writer personally handle long term changes to characters who don't really age? After all, even in the post-crisis continuity, Batman really only got to 44 years of age at max before the New 52.

    I think when you're dealing with long-running series about characters who don't age much, you don't really need to make it about life progression, about the characters getting older. Instead, you explore the characters lives for depth, not length. Get to understand them more, show them coming to understand themselves more, put them in situations where different conflicts or relationships bring out different sides of their personalities, and so own. Make them richer portraits, not older.

    Archie isn't going to graduate high school (except in what-if type stories). Charlie Brown isn't going to reach puberty. Spider-Man isn't going to reach retirement age, or even close to it. But you can explore the characters and their relationships anyway.

    kdb
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  13. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kubert View Post
    Post your comicbook question for the multi award winning writer Kurt Busiek.
    I don't have a question at the moment but I want to take the opportunity to thank Kurt for his amazing work in comics! He always gets to the core of the characters and he honours their deals. I love his Trinity weekly series and his Superman run as well as his Crime Syndicate story in JLA. Thanks, Kurt! You're the MOST!!

  14. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kurt Busiek View Post
    Thanks!



    Let's amend that to say that if I had the time to do it and all that other stuff. But if I was to do an ongoing title for DC, I guess my top fantasy choices would be:

    WONDER WOMAN
    LEGION OF SUPERHEROES
    SWAMP THING
    THE DEMON
    OMAC
    METAL MEN

    I'm sure there are others that I'm not thinking of right now, but those would be in the list for sure...

    kdb
    OMG!!!!!! I have been dying to see your WW ever since TRINITY!!!! I hope that happens and when it does that it is not the 52 Zeus version.

  15. #30
    Incredible Member Lvenger's Avatar
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    During your weekly series Trinity in the Trinity's battle against Konvikt, Superman mentions he's hitting Konvikt hard enough to shatter small planets. Is that statement meant to be taken at literal face value or is it just a hyperbolic estimation? There's some dispute on the battle boards as to whether this proves Superman can punch hard enough to shatter planets.

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