Kickin’ it with Hope Nicholson – Brok Windsor
4cr: Hello Hope! Thank you for being here today. Could you give our readers an intro to who you are and what you do?
I am a comic book fan who happens to use my interest to make films and comic books! Particularly based on my historical interest, so I restore old comic books that people have forgotten about and republish them, and I do documentaries focused on specific aspects of the comic book industry. Previously I helped produce a documentary on Canadian comic book superheroes (Lost Heroes) and reprinted the adventures of one of the world’s first superheroines (Nelvana of the Northern Lights). Currently, I am developing a feature documentary on queer comic book history, and reprinting Brok Windsor, another lost comic book from the 1940s.
4cr: You’re back on Kickstarter for a new campaign, and has to wonder… why did you decide to tackle Jon Stables’ Brok Windsor for this particular Kickstarter? What made things “click” for you in order to lock this as your next project?
Well, it all happened when I was watching Lost Heroes, the film I helped produce. I saw Brok Windsor on screen, and even though I had seen his images before during research, I never really was forced to look at them until I saw them on screen. And I thought he looked amazing! It was the best art I had seen in any comic book published from Canada in that time period.
And to tell the absolute truth, I wanted to challenge myself. I knew nothing about Maple Leaf Publishing, there was very little information on Brok Windsor or his creator, and it was published across the other side of the country. In addition, unlike any of the Bell Features content like Nelvana, there was no microfiche to fall back on or full archives. It might have been foolhardy to do! But it was exciting as well.
4cr: I noticed in the campaign that there is no set number of pages for the book.
I am not sure how many pages it will be in the end! With Nelvana I had a rough idea because I had access to the microfiche. I can say it will be roughly around 200 pages or so, about half the length of Nelvana.
4cr: After having a successful Kickstarter with Nelvana, why go for editing Brok Windsor by creating a new publisher?
Nelvana was a project that was published by CGA Comics which was a joint company owned equally by Rachel and I. Since the next project will be done by myself I would need a separate company.
4cr: Are you currently considering any stretch goals in case the campaign goes over its main goal?
Yes! It will likely be along the lines of a print of a Brok Windsor advertisement being available as a separate print and given to all funders (something like this one)
Or perhaps a digital PDF of a Jon Stables illustrated pulp story from the 1940s (I am tracking them down!).
4cr: Last time several artists joined in to reinterpret Nelvana in their own styles. Will something similar take place for Brok Windsor?
Absolutely! I have a variety of comic and illustration artists signed up to contribute artwork. I tried to get a mix of some of the larger names in the comic/webcomic industry I know (Ken Lashley, Leonard Kirk, Yanick Paquette, Randal Milholland) and up and comers in both the webcomic and print comic industry. I hope that the attention brought to the campaign by the bigger names can help drive attention to the artists who are just establishing themselves.
4cr: Once again, thank you for doing this interview. Would you like to add anything else before we go?
Nothing more to add, but I hope that my efforts to bring back parts of history have you looking around and asking questions in your own community! It’s amazing how history is constantly being rewritten, and only because so few people feel that no one must care about the lesser-known aspects of it. I hope that we can bring all of these stories back out into the open.