Diary of a Comic Book Goddess – A Chat with Agnes Garbowska

We’re back with the final batch of interviews from this year’s Fan Expo. Today, we have a guest interviewer; our very own Shelley Smarz doing the honors with Agnes Garbowska, the writer and artist of You, Me and Zombie. You may have also seen her work online on her artblog; mymisiu.com, where she pumps out some of the cutest versions of your favourite superheroes around! As usual, right click and download the interview below or follow along with the transcription!

Agnes Garbowska

The ever so cheery Agnes on the left and the just as cheery Shelley on the right
The ever so cheery Agnes on the left and the just as cheery Shelley on the right

Shelley: Hey, Shelley Smarz here. I’m here with- how do you pronounce your last name?

Agnes: Gar-Bow-Ska

Shelley: Garbowska? Agnes Garbowska. Who has just released the prequel to You, Me Zombie which is all kinds of awesome. I’m sorry; I’m going to have to say I’m kind of a screaming fangirl. But it’s okay. So I’m just gonna ask a few rudimentary questions. Congratulations on the new book, when is the next installment coming out?

Agnes: Right now, I actually don’t know when issue one will be released. I’m done laying out the whole issue so I can get it done pretty quick, but I haven’t decided yet if I’m going to self-publish it or if I want to try and find a publisher for it, but I can guarantee you there will be an issue one and it will be where the story started and she wakes up in this crazy world.

Shelley: Awesome, how did you-where did you get the idea? (You will note that all Comic Book Daily interviewers have a habit of using the word “awesome” a lot. Probably because comics are so…so awesome?)

Agnes: Well, as a kid, I used to love horror movies. Zombies, vampires, ghouls, goblins, you name it, I loved it. But they always creeped me out, I had nightmares. So I thought; “wouldn’t it be fun to create a zombie book that’s for all ages that might scare the kids a little bit, but not enough to give them sleepless nights”.

Shelley: Awesome. So what’s your favourite scary movie?

Agnes: Oh my goodness, that is a very good question. Well, it’s not really scary, but it’s more funny, I love Shaun of the Dead. It’s one of my favourite movies of all time and I can just keep watching it over and over. It’s a little scary, but it’s sooo hilarious.

Shelley: Oh, that’s one of my all-time favourites. Why do you like comics?

Agnes: I grew up on comics. One of my mom’s ex-boyfriends actually gave me a comic one day and he went “here”. I was like “what is this?” and he went “oh, it’s a comic book”. And it was actually an X-Men book and I read it and I was hooked from an early age. He just kept buying and buying them for and I became a collector and to this day I just love comic books.

Shelley: Favourite comic titles?

Agnes: Ummm…right now, I have to say Green Lantern and the Blackest Night. I am hooked on that book and every month I’m just waiting for the next issue to come out.

Shelley: Oh it’s so good. I’ve never read Green Lantern before; he’s a huge fan (Pointing to Pete). And kind of got me into it, so I’m kind of enjoying it myself. How did you-did-was art and writing your dream when you were little as a chosen career, or did you fall into it later on or how did you get into comics?

Agnes: Well, I’m actually an only child and I’m actually from Poland so when I came to Canada, I didn’t know any English and I couldn’t communicate with anyone, so all I did really was sit around and watch cartoons. My mom said all I did was always draw while I was watching T.V and try to draw what I was seeing and she said that I’m just- loved it from an early age and kept drawing through grade school. I took some art classes in high school and I continued through college and I just kept doing it. It’s what I love. I just love letting my imagination go.

Shelley: Oh wow. Who are your influences?

Agnes: Umm, oh my goush. Oh my goush. I mean oh my gosh! [Laughs] Chris Bachalo is a huge huge influence of mine. I love Francis Manapul’s work. Even before we started dating I thought he was a pretty cool artist even though I didn’t know much of his work, I thought it was totally totally awesome and I’m in love with what’s he doing now (CBD Fact: Yes, sorry to disappoint the fans out there, this lady has been snatched up by up and coming superstar arist; Francis Manapul). There’s some writers that just inspire me to keep doing it. I’m a huge Gail Simone fan, whatever she writes, I WILL read it. I have read so many of her titles; I’m going to continue reading more into the future.

Shelley: Awesome (CBD Fact: We get bonus points if we can work the word “awesome” into interviews 20 times). And do you have any advice for people who want to break into the industry? Of things you would know now that you wish you knew then type of stuff?

Agnes: Um I guess so. If you really love what you’re doing, do it. But you really gotta work hard and don’t expect things to fall into your lap. You gotta work hard and if you want it, go out there, do it. Just talk to people. My best advice is: always be polite. You never know who you are going to meet and just talk to everyone around you because you just never know and some of my greatest industry contacts; I met by total fluke because I thought they were awesome people. I love talking to them and I found out they were a little more than just a person down the street that I just happened to talk to. And go to conventions! You never know who you can meet at a convention and talk to other artists. Talk to everyone.

Shelley: Great, thank you so much for your time and…awesome!

David Diep is the News Editor for ComicBookDaily.com and an Assistant Manager at Big B Comics in Hamilton, Ontario.

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