Image Comics: Interview with Comeback writer Ed Brisson

Ed Brisson is the writer for the upcoming Image/Shadowline comic book mini-series, Comeback, which premieres November 21st.

What is Comeback about?
Comeback is about an illegal time travel operation called Reconnect. For an exorbitant fee, they will go into the past (up to 67 days — the limit of time travel) and rescue a deceased loved one from an their untimely death. There are a few caveats, but essentially, they’re saving the dead and giving them a new life.
The story in this five issue mini focuses on two agents who are on the middle of a rescue when things go completely sideways exposing them to authorities and revealing the true nature of Reconnect.

Do you think some time travel stories underestimate the implications of changing the past? How did you deal with this issue in Comeback?
I think that most time travel stories tend to dwell on this. Not that there’s anything wrong with it, it’s definitely one of the things that makes working with time travel really interesting. I may not always agree with how it’s handled in other stories, but it’s always interesting to see people’s take on it. With Comeback, there’s a pivotal scene that deals with the past/future relationship of…everyone, I guess. I won’t say much about it because it’s one of those things that I want to surprise the reader with, but I will say that what happens in the past definitely does effect what happens in the future in Comeback and I think readers will really dig it when they see what happens.
How did Shadowline/Image pick up Comeback?
The short answer is that I pitched it to them.
I wish that I could impart some special trick to others who are out there pitching, but that’s the reality. I just pitched it and Jim liked it enough to sign it on. It was far from my first pitch to Shadowline. I think Comeback was pitch #7
I did have an advantage in that I had been lettering for Shadowline, so Jim at least knew who I was. I don’t think that’s why he signed the book. I think knowing someone only ensures that they’ll look at the project, but like I said above, Shadowline had already rejected 6 previous pitches. I was determined and just kept putting projects together and took any notes to heart. Thankfully it paid off.
At the Fan Expo Canada you talked about pitching comic book ideas. What do you think are some common pitfalls comic book creators make when pitching their ideas to a publisher and how could these pitfalls be avoided?
One of the more common errors I see are people pitching books to publishers that a publisher would never pick up — for instance, pitching a Batman-style comic to Oni. It’s important to know the publisher and what they do and, more importantly, don’t publish. The converse of this is pitching something that’s TOO CLOSE to a project that the publisher already has out. Image isn’t likely to publish another book about a group of survivors trying to get by during a zombie apocalypse.

The other thing I see a lot is pitches that are just not ready for publications. Either the writing isn’t up to snuff or the art is amateurish or the colouring is gaudy or the lettering sloppy. Any ONE of these things can easily sink a pitch. A pitch is ONLY as good as the weakest link in the creative team. Unfortunately, this isn’t always something that people have the ability to judge.

Are there any projects you are currently working on?
In addition to Comeback, I’m writing a story for Riley Rossmo’s Día De Los Muertos, which will be coming out in January of 2013. It’s a collection of stories, featuring a myriad of writers, that all take place on the Day of the Dead. On top of that, I’m also writing another creator owned 5 issue series called Sheltered that is being illustrated by Johnnie Christmas, who I’ve previously worked with on a couple of Murder Book stories. Sheltered will be out in July of 2013 and is also being published by Shadowline/Image.
Nerdy Question: Favorite time travel story?
Time Bandits. Hands down. As a kid I must have watched Time Bandits at least 200 times. As an adult, I still watch it at least once a year.

Is there anything else you’d like to add?
A little known fact: Comeback #1 hits stores on November 21st, which is artist Michael Walsh’s birthday!

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