Welcome to PRO-LIFIC where I interview professional artists, writers, and creators to delve down deep and find out what makes them tick and find out tips-n-tricks for being successful as a creator! Everyone has a different story to tell, and every artist has their own unique style, but what are the common threads that we can find to help us on our own journey? Join me as we glean new insights into becoming the next PROLIFIC writer, artist, or creator!
Today we’re talking with Chael Roberts, who has been a comic creator for a little over three years and is currently on Volume Three of Guardians of Erloth: The Last Leopard King. He started the first volume with artist Ryan Best in the Spring of 2018, the world, however, has been in the making for almost 20 years and Chael is ready to release a series of novels based in the vast world of Erloth in the coming years. The novels will coincide and tie into the Guardians of Erloth comics.
ERIC: First off, tell us what motivates you to create/ write, and what fuels your passion?
CHAEL : What motivated me to start writing comics and novels was my interest in storytelling. Growing up I read stories by great storytellers such as Louis L’Amour, Jack London, Timothy Zahn, and Brian Jacques. I admired how in-depth their worlds were and how they could take you on such an exciting journey that would cause many late nights and sleepless hours because you couldn’t help but keep turning the pages.
ERIC: What where some of the most influential factors or circumstances that brought you to where you are today as a creator/ writer? Then also please tell us some of the most influential people who helped as well.
CHAEL: The most influential factors for me as a creator was being dissatisfied when reading stories and how the characters and plot ended in places I wasn’t happy with. It made me want to explore similar themes and make those endings more substantial or more emotional. I also was influenced by a creative imagination I’ve had since I was very young. In high school, I took a science fiction writing class. It was the first time I saw Blade Runner. The final project was a short story consisting of 7,000 words. It was writing that short story that I found my passion for putting my love of storytelling on paper.
ERIC: Of all the different mediums out there, what was it about comics that lead you to create your work in that medium?
CHAEL: I was an avid reader of the Star Wars Expanded Universe in the ’90s starting with Timothy Zahn’s, Heir to The Empire Trilogy. Also being a comic fan I was able to visually see these worlds and creatures on the pages of Dark Horse Star Wars pages. Having written short stories, but having difficulty figuring out how to publish, I found that comics as a visual medium would help bridge that gap and introduce my world to readers.
ERIC: Why did you choose to write this story? If you’re like me, you have many that you could have told, but why this one? What is it about this one that excites you?
CHAEL: This particular story was born out of a much larger story. I created characters that were from a far off exotic land. I wanted to create a background through a short story for these characters and I found that a visual medium such as comics was a perfect way to do that.
ERIIC: What’s the future hold for this series? Is it on-going? A one-shot? In other words, what are your long term plans for it?
CHAEL: The future for Guardians of Erloth will be expansive. On Erloth there are many Guardians and they each have their own tale. The Last Leopard King just happens to be the first in a long line.
ERIC: Let’s talk about your team. How hard was It to find, and/or how did you find the team you are working with? Also, what was It that drew you to them specifically for your project?
CHAEL: I found my artist online. I was able to see his portfolio and published work before I approached him. I found his style fit the type of storytelling I wanted to achieve.
ERIC: What have been some of the biggest challenges in getting your book(s) done?
CHAEL: Time management and patience. I am not an artist so understanding that my artist has other projects takes a lot of understanding and patience. Also, setting deadlines and meeting those deadlines can be tricky. Giving yourself more time than you anticipate can always help alleviate pressure and stress.
ERIC: What are some words of advice you would give to someone who is looking to get into writing/ creating/ or illustrating?
CHAEL: Find the method you write or illustrate the best and find time to do it often. There is no one right way to write, but if you can do it consistently you will achieve goals more often than not.
ERIC: If you could do it all over again what would you do differently? Or if you could speak with 15 year old you, what would you say to yourself when it comes to pursuing your dreams of writing/ creating/ illustrating?
CHAEL: Don’t wait so long to jump in with both feet. I have been writing the same series for a long time. If I had been more serious and had more confidence I may be in a better situation today, as far as my published work is concerned.
For more from Chael and Eric check out the live interview with him on YOUTUBE here…
If you want to take a look at his book Guardians of Erloth Volume 3 you can check out the INDIEGOGO campaign which will be live only for a short while longer! Don’t miss it!
To follow Chael on social media and keep up to date on the latest, here are some links!
Facebook: Chael Roberts
For more on the other books… you can find images, info, and reviews…
VOLUME ONE: HERE
VOLUME TWO: HERE