Our creator spotlight this week is Sydney comic powerhouse Stephen Kok, whose comics include all the really important things in life… cats, dogs and dragons! We caught up with Stephen for a chat about what he is into right now, and to learn a little more about his newest project, Word Smith.
What are you watching right now? I’m really happy that it’s the golden age of television right now with so many awesome series out. I love how a TV season can tell the long story. I’m a little late to the party but recently finished Stranger Things.
What is Word Smith? Word Smith is my latest steampunk fantasy adventure! It recently got funded on Kickstarter and I’m very excited that I have the funds to finish and get it printed. Word Smith follows the life of Victoria who can craft words and bring them to life. This one was fun as I had the chance to opportunity to delve into some world building while doing the writing for it.
Is Word Smith your first graphic novel? It’s my latest one but I always have a special place in my heart for my first graphic novel, Tabby (ISBN 9780994289902) which is a retelling of Romeo and Juliet with cats. The cats don’t talk so they don’t have any dialogue and it’s all done through visuals. Tabby was very well received and was purchased by over 150+ public libraries across Australian and New Zealand!
Apart from your comics what should everyone be looking out for in local Australian Pop Culture? A small shout out to Sydney based creators, Queenie Chan for all her impressive work! Queenie and Karen Dwarte (Librarian at Inner West Council) have also been instrumental in raising the profile of Australian graphic novels in public libraries.
Major prediction for Pop Culture 12 months from now? Game of Thrones is fantasy done right, but it’s also in its penultimate season. I have a feeling a new fantasy series will be out in the next 12 months to fill the void when the story closes off after Season 8.
Best last thing you ate? I’m a simple person so a nice hot cup of coffee with some cookies on the side will do it for me.
And that’s 5! You can grab a copy of Stephen’s graphic novels from Australian bookstores, or you can order online from Booktopia and Book Depository. If you would like to see more from Stephen, you can check out his website and follow his exploits on Facebook.