Comic Books/Graphic Novels, Movies/Film

Toil and Trouble: Talking About Witches Trine

Here at Sugar Gamers we have an unapologetic love of all things indie. Maybe it’s the passion that creators put into their own works. Maybe it’s the fact that they tend to be unique voices telling unique tales, far away from the well-trodden lines of big business concerns. And Witches Trine has got all that.

Which is why we sat down with the creator, Kris Lippert, and asked him about what it’s like to approach comic book creation from the mindset of an indie movie creator.

1. You are a guy creating a story about women. What do the women in your life think about it? Did they help?

My teenage daughter, Sonja, is a regular geek and comic book fan. So naturally she is very supportive and I tend to test my story ideas on her. She is also very blunt with her criticism, which is immensely helpful as most people, especially family members, tend to sugarcoat their opinions. So if she gives me her seal of approval, I know there is a very good chance that there will be an audience for my story.

Monika, my wife, was actually the inspiration behind Witches Trine in a way. She is deeply immersed in the world of holistic healing and nutrition, and astrology. She is also always on the lookout for new methods and ideas, some of which she would adopt after much research. And in turn she tries to educate me in the ways of the witch doctors. One of her accounts about discovering an interesting herbalist shop gave me the idea to write about modern day witches.
To be fair though, she’d prefer if I spent my time on something more profitable rather than writing comic books, but she tolerates it because she sees my passion.

2. Movierockets started with movies first THEN comics.. what is your favorite movie? your favorite comic movie?

Actually, there are a lot of similarities between moviemaking and creating a comic book: both rely on visual storytelling and both are extremely collaborative. It is not such a big leap, especially if you consider how important storyboarding is for the filmmaking process. It’s about finding a medium to tell your story and get it to audiences.

It’s hard to pick just one movie as my favorite; there are many films I regard highly. The ones I enjoy most tend to be thrillers like The Silence of the Lambs or No Country for Old Men. But I’m also a big sci-fi and fantasy fan, with Aliens, Blade Runner and The Lord of the Rings somewhere near the top.
Favourite comic movie would probably have to be Watchmen.

3. What are the unexpected confines of writing a story with magic?

My goal writing Witches Trine has always been to keep the story grounded and more of thriller rather than a super hero story. So I felt it that it was important not to overdo the use of magic and not to make it feel mundane.

You want magic to be present in a story about witches, of course, but if your protagonist can use it with a flick of the wrist, it lessens its impact. I wanted magic to be present in Witches Trine without being overwhelming, and it is a fine balancing act.

If you think about the world of Game of Thrones, we all know there is magic there, but we hardly ever see it. But when we do, invariably it has serious consequences.

4. Why do think witchcraft has so many light hearted interpretations in fiction? (Bewitched, Sabrina the teenage witch, bed knobs and broom sticks)

I think it has to do with the target female audience and their perceived preference for a more light-hearted entertainment. Since my daughter’s favorite comic book is The Walking Dead, my perception about the preferences of female audiences might be slightly different.

I wanted to have kick-ass witches who are sexy, smart, courageous, and full of attitude, and a story that balances fast paced, visceral action with character development.

Of course the heart and soul of the book are three strong female protagonists, which will hopefully appeal to female readers.

5. You have to make a spell out of only five items in arms reach (electronics not included). What are the objects and what can you conjure?

It will be five candles for a pentagram to invoke Yog-Sothoth. Though I might be thinking of my next project here…

6. What’s your favorite movie people don’t expect a movie maker to like?

Probably David Lynch’s Dune. Most people think it’s rubbish, probably because it is largely incomprehensible to people not familiar with the book, but I love it.

Then there is Oscar with Sylvester Stallone. Even I don’t understand why I like that movie.

7. You have gotten some INCREDIBLE people to work with you doing voice acting on your pictures..who was the best to work and why?

I’d say Tim Curry; he is a great actor and extremely professional. It was incredibly exciting when he turned up for the recording session.

I also loved working with Lance Henriksen, who is just so laid-back and easy to work with. And of course as a fan of Aliens, I’d always dreamt of working with him.

Withces Trine Cover Witches Trine 2 Witches Trine 2 Witches Trine 2 Witches Trine 2
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John doesn't really know what he does for a living, but chances are you've played a video game he's worked, on own an article of clothing he had some hand in bringing to market, or heard his words come out of some creative director or chief executive's mouth. You've for sure read his writing, unless you got to this bio by accident. As a kid, John used to tell people he wanted to grow up to be a giant spider, and lately he's starting to consider that a viable career change. But he's afraid he doesn't have the right degree for it. John lives on the South Side of Chicago with one very wonderful wife, two horribly manipulative felines, and about a bajillion comic books, screen prints, and gaming accessories.
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