Barbra Dillon, Fanbase Press Editor-in-Chief: You recently launched a Kickstarter campaign for the third volume of IDW Publishing's hardcover magazine, Full Bleed. For those who may be unfamiliar, what can you tell us about the ongoing, print-only periodical and why it has been such a hit with readers?
Dirk Wood: Well, one of the great things about having a magazine with this much diverse content - I think just about every reader would have a different answer to that question! I think the variety of content is a big part of it. We’ve got comics, fiction, non-fiction, essays, and interviews…Tackling everything from Stephen King, to whisky bars in Japan, to horrifying monsters on German U-Boats in WWII. We’ve got a little something for everyone. And, there’s just nothing else like it out there. Unless you can think of another 200-page, quarterly, hardcover, print-only comics & culture magazine…I think we’re the only one in town.
BD: In connecting with Full Bleed readers since its first volume, what have you found to be most impactful and resonant with readers by way of its interviews, commentary, and all aspects of its celebration of creative culture?
DW: Again, you’re going to get a lot of different answers from different people on this one! My best answer would probably be to the question…what had the most impact on me? You could say I’m the first reader, since I get to see the stuff coming in before anyone else does. I’ve had a few things that have really resonated, and I hope other readers feel the same way. I found Erin Nation’s comic “Teenage Boy,” about being a trans man, and dealing with going through a second puberty on account of taking hormones to be PROFOUNDLY moving, in volume 1. In volume 2, Jon Raymond turned in an essay about his grandfather’s history, part of which included surviving the holocaust, that is an amazing read. In the upcoming volume 3, Abdulkareem Baba Aminu has an essay comparing his childhood struggling to find comics, and content geared for him, to what things are like now in the era of Black Panther, and I found it amazing. But that’s just a sample. And as heavy as these topics sound, we’ve just got some straight-up fun adventure stories, too. It’s a mix I’m really proud of.
BD: Like the previous Full Bleed releases, volume three will include incredible interviews and contributions from the comic book industry’s top-tier talent. What are some of the elements of this collection that fans will be interested to read?
DW: Other than those we’ve already mentioned, where do I start? Amazing interviews with Grant Morrison and Geof Darrow. A conversation between Metallica’s Kirk Hammett and Anthrax’s Scott Ian about their shared history and love of horror and all things geek. Another great short story from Joe Lansdale. A super-moving essay from Vivek J. Tiwary of Fifth Beatle fame. A groovy essay from Tini Howard with spot illustrations from Sara Richard. New comics from Erin Nations, Roger Langridge, Adam Knave & Andrew Losq, Shannon Wheeler, Julia Alekseyeva, and more…. This puppy is packed with great stuff.
BD: What has made Kickstarter such a valuable tool for the publication of this magazine?
DW: There are a lot of reasons it’s been a success — We knew right away that for a 200-page hardcover magazine to work, particularly ad-free, we would need subscribers. And Kickstarter is sort of a modern subscription service, in a way. We needed to get subscribers, AND get the word out in the industry at large. The fact that the Kickstarters have worked, we’ve added to the subscriber base with each one, AND the numbers have gone UP in comic shops at the same time, seems to be a testament to our plan working. But this third one is crucial. It’s a weird time out in there in the world, and all of we lovers of print need to stick together. This format is pretty damn unique and to keep working the momentum needs to keep rolling. But we’re just going to keep spreading the word!
BD: What are some of the fun backer rewards that are available to those who contribute to the campaign?
DW: How about original art from the amazing Geof Darrow? Autographed prints, enamel pins, slipcases… There are plenty, you’ll just need to go check them out! But as I’ve said before, the star of this Kickstarter really is the book itself.
BD: Are there any other projects on which you and the IDW team are working that you are able to share with our readers?
DW: At the moment, I need to keep these things hidden. But you’ll be hearing a few things right after the holidays. Let me just say that the future here at IDW is looking good!
BD: Lastly, what is the best way for our readers to find out more about Full Bleed and to support your Kickstarter campaign?
DW: Thank you, and I’m glad you asked! You can find the Kickstarter here, and you can always find us here.