Tom Taylor Dives Deep

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Australian writer Tom Taylor has been a juggler, a fire eater, a playwright and more. He’s chartered the course of Luke Skywalker and DC’s The Authority and now has an all-ages undersea adventure to be told in the attractive pages of new OGN, The Deep.

Before The Deep is released however, Taylor’s continuing work in the Expanded Universe of the Star Wars characters can be seen, again with artist Colin Wilson, in the Invasion: Refugees mini-series in July. Also with The Deep publisher, Gestalt is Rombies, the highly entertaining zombie series, with art from Skye Ogden, which can now be read for free online.

BROKEN FRONTIER: Why set The Deep within the ocean rather than space?

TOM TAYLOR: We've walked on the moon. We've sent things to Mars. Even dogs and chimpanzees have been into space. And we are always looking further, reaching further from our world. But there are things right here at home that have never been seen by human eyes. 

It all comes back to the Colossal Squid. This is one of the largest creatures on Earth and we've never seen it in its natural habitat. If one of the largest creatures in the world can be hiding down there, what else might be? The giant squid is the elephant in the room... um... of the sea.

The reason why I wanted to write these underwater adventures is the very same reason the Nekton family are Aquanauts, and I'll leave it up to their youngest member, Ant Nekton to explain this.

"“My family are explorers. 

We have been for generations.

Some argue that there is nowhere left to explore, that everything on earth that can be discovered has already been found.

They say that to truly explore we need to leave our planet.

While others look up to the stars, my family knows that there are also stars beneath us, that there are an infinite number of things that shine brightly in the darkness below. 

Most of our world lies unexplored, unexplained. There are things lurking in the seas that have only ever been spoken about in myth.

My family are explorers. 

We have been for generations. 

We explore… The Deep.”


BF: It does seem like a joyful Pixar film on paper.

TAYLOR: Pixar wasn't the inspiration. Being wrapped up in the tentacles of a giant squid, and a fascination for all things in the deep sea, along with wanting to have something truly fun that I could share with my own children, was the inspiration. Having said that, Pixar have really showed the way to tell a story that can appeal to adults and children together. And that ethos is what we've hopefully brought to our adventures in The Deep. Metaphorical tentacles by the way.

BF: Is The Deep an OGN or the first of a series? Do you have larger story to tell with this family?

TAYLOR: The Deep: Here be Dragons is an Original Graphic Novel. 88 pages coming at you on August 4! Diamond Code JUN11 1131 - Tell your comic shop. Tell the world! 

I definitely have a larger story to tell. This will become obvious as soon as people read the first OGN. As far as sales, if James Brouwer's incredible art doesn't have people flocking to this book, there's something very wrong with the world.

BF: Agreed, it looks great. How did James come to work on the project?

TAYLOR: To tell you the truth, I found James through his blog. I can't remember how I found the blog, but I was pretty impressed by what I saw there and I sent him an email. Like me, he has young children and was keen to create something he could share with them, he's also a comic-book fan and, unlike most of the people you contact out-of-the-blue, he said yes. 

Honestly, I don't think Gestalt Publishing or I were fully expecting the sort of quality and beauty James has delivered on The Deep. We're very lucky to have him on this book, and I'm really looking forward to doing more volumes of The Deep and other comics with James in the future. He makes my brain smile.


BF: Shifting from smiling brains, to eating them, let’s talk Rombies. Why is it free?

TAYLOR: They're free because you can't cage Roman Zombies!!!

....and because we wanted to try something a bit different. But mainly because of that 'can't cage' thing. Honestly, we just wanted anyone who wanted to be there for the beginning of Rombies to be there with us. 

The brilliant Skye Ogden and I are planning a long future for this revisionist history. I've written four issues so far but I already know how issue # 7 starts and I know what happens far after that. This book will spread like the Roman Empire itself.

Also, these won't be the last free comics you see on the Gestalt website. Something else I'm working on is coming very soon. Something with some incredible artists already attached. Something beginning with 'M'...

The Deep from Gestalt Publishing will be available in August and can be ordered now, as seen on page 290 of the June Previews catalogue.

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