AMBER LOVE 23-AUG-2012  Today’s episode of VODKA O’CLOCK is very near and dear to my heart. I am joined by publisher and editor ENRICA JANG from Red Stylo Media to talk about SHAKESPEARE SHAKEN, a graphic novel anthology that twists and parodies the Bard’s universes. Did you say MacBeth in space? YES!

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These are not direct adaptations in a graphic format. Each chapter is a unique approach to characters and stories created by Shakespeare. Genres vary from space epics to steampunk to more grounded in reality approaches. Part of RedStylo’s unique marketing plan is that the stories are being rolled out in digital format first through a variety of sources such as graphic.ly and include bonus content. Each Wednesday, three stories will be released for $1.99 each then the printed trade paperback collection will be available on August 30, 2012. You can place your pre-order now. The paperback is expected to be around 220 pages.

“We’re giving a tragic twist to a lot of Shakespeare’s comedies; and then sort of a comedic twist to a lot of Shakespeare’s tragedies.”  ~EJ

No. 130, For Love was written collaboratively by myself and Kristen McHugh. I have the details and the source of the story in a previous post. Unlike other contributors who automatically turned to the plays of Shakespeare, we used a sonnet as our core. As for what SHAKESPEARE SHAKEN will ultimately be like in the collected bundle, Rica said the anthology will be divided into comedies and tragedies.

“The great thing about digital in general is that it sort of makes the playground bigger.” ~EJ

The bonus content may include writers’ notes, concept art, sample pages, basically look behind the curtain of what it was like to culminate this enormous anthology.

“The expectation I think for a lot of this project has been that we are a primer for new people and some of these stories are not all ages titles. The collection is mature content.” ~EJ

People who already love Shakespeare are the target audience for this anthology. This is not a shortcut to reading the original Shakespeare works.

Rica took time to discuss her career in comics from being a Marvel Comics’ intern to being her own publisher. She explained that now she has a better understanding of making decisions with the bottom line and making money at the core while needing to be perhaps guide people in a different direction of their creative goals. As editor, she had to constantly remind certain contributors that while their submissions were great quality, they were not adhering to the mission of the project. She talked about getting through a near disaster where an artist backed out a month and half before the work was due. Even artists reluctant to give layouts eventually realized that thumbnails and layouts were important to get reviewed before final inking and coloring.

Check out RedStylo at DriveThruComics.