David Liss is a novelist and the writer for the Dynamite Comics series, the Spider, based on the 1930’s pulp action hero. (http://www.dynamite.net/htmlfiles/viewProduct.html?CAT=DF-The_Spider)
Before you started writing for the Spider, did you look into any of the 1930’s stories based on the character?
Absolutely. I read a number of the original pulps to refamilairize myself with the characters roots and to get a better sense of what elements of the character we wanted to keep and what we should modify. I still return to the original Spiders when looking for inspiration or just to make sure I’m not straying too far from the source material.
What is your interpretation of the Spider character?
We chose to take the Spider and bring him into the modern world — or maybe a version of the modern world that’s a little pulpier than ours. But the original character is very much rooted in his time, so I worked very hard to figure out how I wanted to alter the character so I could retain the essence of the Spider without him coming across as an anachronism. At his core, Richard Wentworth is a man who hates injustice and evil, and because he has the means to do something about these things, he is compelled to do so. He is someone willing to go to any lengths to protect the innocent. I wanted to make sure I kept all of that, and I wanted to make sure that his personal life is important in the stories, just as it was in the pulps, though I’ve given him relationships and problems that feel modern.
Do you have any writing habits or techniques that you follow?
I am a morning writer by nature. I start as early in the morning as I possibly can and go until I’m not doing good work. Then I eat lunch and, on most days, drink caffeine and get back on. I switch between a variety of projects, such as my current novel, my comics and whatever short stories I am currently dealing with. These days I seem to always have a little bit too much going on, but I always have a hard time saying no to cool projects.
Are there any other projects you’re working on?
I’m working on a couple of different comics for independent publishers, but they haven’t been announced yet, so I can’t talk about them. I’m also developing my first creator-owned miniseries, Angelia Tomorrow, for 215 Ink. I describe it as the classic paralyzed teenage alcoholic meets amnesiac cyborg assassin story — but with a twist!
Is there anything else you’d like to add?
Anyone interested in my other projects can check out my web page — www.davidliss.com or follow me on Twitter (http://mobile.twitter.com/David_liss) and Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/pages/David-Liss/28321643809)