The following is an interview with Chris Sides, author of the recently released sci-fi/action adventure graphic novel, Impossible. In this interview, Fanbase Press Editor-in-Chief Barbra Dillon chats with Sides about the inspiration behind the project, the collaborative process of the creative team, what he hopes that readers will take away from the book, and more!
Barbra Dillon, Fanbase Press Editor-in-Chief: Congratulations on the release of your sci-fi action adventure graphic novel, Impossible! For those who may be unfamiliar, how would you describe the book’s premise, and what inspired you to tell this story?
Chris Sides: Thanks! Jake, Dan, and I are really happy with how everything’s turned out. The elevator pitch would sit it somewhere between Die Hard and Gravity: a survival-revenge thriller about an astrophysicist contracted by a private company to work on an orbital clean-up vessel who is betrayed by the mercenary crew he’s assigned to work with. I’ve always wanted to dabble with the Protagonist Facing Totally Impossible Odds trope, so once the idea was formed, it was turned up to 11.
BD: What can you share with us about your creative process in writing the graphic novel, and what have been some of your creative influences?
CS: I learned A LOT during the production of this book. Before starting the script, I made sure that I had a detailed outline breaking down each scene, what was happening, who was involved, and what I wanted to say. Often with a single issue, I’ve put 1-24 in the margin of a page and figured out down what I want to happen on each page, but with Impossible, it was a case of having a rough idea of how many pages the scene was going to be and just letting it evolve a little more organically, as there’s a lot more space to play with. Making sure the script is tight before it goes into production is one of the many things I learned during this whole process – changing big things mid-way through is NOT a good idea! I’ve always wanted to do big, fun sci-fi action, so I guess books like Warren Ellis’ Ocean and movies like Aliens will always figure into things somewhere.
BD: What do you hope that readers will take away from your work?
CS: If folks come away from reading our stuff having had a good time and enjoyed the journey, then we’ve all done our jobs and I’m a happy boy.
BD: Do you have plans to expand the Impossible world into additional graphic novels or an ongoing comic book series?
CS: Yes, indeed. Impossible is the first official book in the FrostByte Legacy, a series of stories set within a fictional future history of the world, where FrostByte Industries, a vast, multi-national and incredibly influential technology company, is the one constant. Impossible is a planned trilogy of graphic novels that deals with Will McGillis and his experiences, but there’s other things planned – the Gunrunner, a graphic novel set 18 year prior to Impossible; there’s a 3 issue mini-series that’s sort of a prequel to Impossible, and I’m toying with the idea of an anthology set within this universe, as well, so quite a lot happening.
BD: If given the opportunity to expand your series into other entertainment mediums, in what format do you hope to see it adapted?
CS: I think Impossible would make a fun movie, but then I like the fact that comics, as a medium, don’t require any budgetary restrictions – you can do what you like, so some of that over-the-top action and adventure in the book might get lost in translation, you know? Saying that, I wouldn’t be adverse to seeing Karl Urban as Will McGillis on the screen, kicking butt – that would be pretty cool.
BD: Are there any upcoming projects on which you are currently working that you would like to share with our readers?
CS: I’m working with artist Chris Travell and letterer/editor Ken Reynolds on Close, a serialized crime thriller for COMICHAUS starting in January 2018. I’ve also got a few pitches in the pipeline, The Gunrunner with Pete Woods, Liam O’Connor, and Ken Reynolds through Markosia in 2018, and I’m planning on dipping my toe into some prose towards the end of this year.
BD: Lastly, what is the best way for our readers to find more information about Impossible?