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Waiting For Tommy: Ian Edginton and Joe Quesada
By Richard Johnston

RICHARD: How did you find Mark Alessi's relationship with the 'talent'? Some have alleged that he divided people into loyal and un-loyal, treating them and paying them differently. Was that true for you? What side of the fence did you sit?
IAN: Obviously, not working on site, I didn't really see what happened there day-to-day but from what I've heard Mark did play his favourites. Funnily enough I did hear an interesting story in the early days of the crisis. One afternoon he rallied the worried troops and gave them a pep talk, after which he gave them the rest of the day off. God bless you guv'nor they cried! What wasn't known at the time, was that he did it so he could give some moneymen/investors a tour without them having to meet the disgruntled masses. That kind of manoeuvring was pretty much par for the course.

If you were a good boy and towed the line, then money would be forthcoming but if you blabbed to the press, or found work elsewhere to supplement your dwindling CrossGen income, you would find yourself eased to the bottom of the payment pile.

In our conversations Mark laid a lot of emphasis on being a team player, having faith in the company and sticking with them. I did buy into this at first. Here was a guy who was trying to do something daring, something new, he's hit a bump in the road but it's not the end of the world, other companies have pulled back from worse, so I gave him the benefit of the doubt.

It didn't last long.

By then my financial position was getting shaky and I needed to claw back the money I was owed, so I simply told him and Bill whatever they wanted to hear. CrossGen had put me in an untenable situation, they had jeopardised my livelihood and my home, so I played the game by their rules and lied to their faces, plain and simple.

I think most of this could have been avoided if Mark had just been up-front and honest with people from the start. No one really wants to see a company go to the wall and everyone lose their jobs. If he'd come clean and explained what was going on, he would have found that the creative community was a lot more patient and indulgent than he's given them credit for. As it stands now, he's as good as made himself a pariah. I don't think anyone would piss on him if he was on fire,

RICHARD: With the cancellation of Soujourn, what is your impression of your work for the company and on the title? Did problems with CrossGen affect your writing?
IAN: I really enjoyed writing Sojourn and Scion, Sojourn especially. I'd wanted to write a sword and sorcery saga for ages but no one was really interested, then low and behold two come along at once!

During my time in Florida I ran my ideas for the future of both books past Ron. To his credit, he was encouraging and enthusiastic about virtually every idea I threw at him. He wanted me to shake things up, throw people off the track and get rid of that damn dog! (Kreeg in Sojourn).

 

JLA/AVENGERS: THE COLLECTOR'S EDITION HC - SIGNED VERSION

I'm proud of my work on those first few issues of Sojourn. As for the ones that followed, I will hold my hand up and readily admit that their quality does waver. The simple fact is, I was writing a book that I had no guarantee of being paid for but I was obliged to hang on nevertheless. At the same time, the exchange rate had started to plummet, meaning I was doing the same job, putting in the same hours for less and less money. I calculated that because of CrossGen's delay in paying me, I've lost several thousand dollars simply through the radical shift in the exchange rate.

Towards the end I couldn't wait to leave. I was also surprisingly saddened as well. I had at least the next two years worth of storylines for both books roughed out, exploring aspects of the stories that hadn't even been touched on.

In Sojourn, Arwyn and company were going to discover that the rings encircling their planet Quinn, were once it's moon that broke up and crashed into the far side of the planet, which is why all the worlds races are now concentrated on the only surviving landmass. Arywn was going to spend a year (comic time) exploring Qunn's lost, moon ravaged, continent

In Scion, Ethan would learn that his world's dominant human race was in fact no such thing but actually, vat-grown beings like the sub-servant bestial, Lesser Races. or were they? Alas we'll never know.

RICHARD: CrossGen has been regarded by much of the industry as "something separate" and people who worked there have found their influence in the industry lag. Was this a problem for you?
IAN: Do I have an influence in the industry? Did I ever? I doubt it.

It may sound naive but I just like to tell stories, I like to entertain. I don't have that killer instinct, I'm not looking to build a multi-media career off the back of my comic work. I tried it a while ago, all it does is wear you out, make you paranoid and give you an over inflated opinion of yourself, not to mention being Hell on relationships. I just want to create a decent body of work that's fun to read.

RICHARD: So what now for Ian Edginton?
IAN: A cup of tea and a chocolate Hob-Nob.

Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 Continued Here...

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