The following is an interview with author/illustrator Allen Carter (Carter Comics) regarding the recent release of the Damn Tourists #6. In this interview, Fanbase Press Editor-in-Chief Barbra Dillon chats with Carter about his creative approach to the project in balancing both the writing and illustrative duties, what he hopes that readers will take away from the story, and more!
Barbra Dillon, Fanbase Press Editor-in-Chief: Congratulations on the recent release of Damn Tourists #6! For those who may be unfamiliar, how would you describe the series’ premise, and where do we pick up with our favorite clueless travelers in this latest issue?
Allen Carter: Thank you so much! I describe Damn Tourists as “four clueless travelers, with vacation habits so annoying, they’re superhuman.” The foursome go to such states as Hawaii, California, Nevada, Florida, unaware how their “enhanced bad habits” are trying the patience of residents. This sixth and newest issue brings our quartet to Washington, D.C., where by this point in the series, all tourist attractions, hotels, and restaurants pretend to close whenever they approach.
BD: You have always been very generous to share updates regarding your creative process through social media for other creators who may be new to the field. What can you tell us about your creative process in bringing Issue #6 to life, especially while balancing both the writing and illustrative duties?
AC: The creative process of Damn Tourists issue six was very similar to my previous issues, where I would always begin with what state or country the story takes place in, then research the visitor attractions for that state to see which ones would provide the most comedy when our tourists reach them, and build other story details from there. Since Damn Tourists is such a character-driven series with an over-the-top premise, the more outlandish their interactions with people, the better. Illustrations are heavily dependent on research, as well, with a lot of Google images for reference to ensure iconic landmarks and businesses look just right once I start sketching.
BD: At Fanbase Press, our #StoriesMatter initiative endeavors to highlight the impact that stories can have on audiences of various mediums. How do you feel that Damn Tourists will connect with and impact readers?
AC: So many of us have traveled throughout our lives and have sometimes felt that we stuck out like a sore thumb when exploring a new state or country. Other times, we live and work in a top visitor destination and see the people who stick out. I have heard many different versions of these stories from convention attendees who stop by my table, from slow driving to disrespectful behavior at attractions. There’s even an extra part of my story pitch that calls Damn Tourists as a “How-Not-To Guide” when you travel. I think that Damn Tourists serves as a friendly and funny reminder of a very serious tip when on vacation we should all follow: Stay safe and alert.
BD: Are there any upcoming projects on which you are currently working that you would like to share with our readers?
AC: I am currently writing a script for a two-part finale for a science-fiction series that I also write and illustrate: Cosmic Force. This is a six-issue story about five strangers who go missing after witnessing a meteor shower, only to return with new abilities, a physically altered appearance, and two years having passed since their disappearance, with the rest of the world declaring them dead. I would like to have the script for issues seven and eight for this series completed by the end of November, with both issues to hopefully be done by the end of 2023.
BD: Likewise, will there be any conventions during the remainder of 2022 where readers may be able to find your work?
AC: In regards to comic convention appearances, I am tentatively scheduled to be an Artist Alley exhibitor at Los Angeles Comic Con, taking place Friday, December 2nd, to Sunday, December 4th, 2022. I have more appearances set to be confirmed soon next year at such shows as Simi Valley Toy and Comic Fest, WonderCon, and Amazing Las Vegas Comic Con.
BD: Lastly, what is the best way for our readers to find more information about Damn Tourists and your other work online and on social media?
AC: Readers can find more information on Damn Tourists through my website: cartercomics.squarespace.com, my Facebook page, and my Instagram page.