Jokes on you

Evil Emperor Nick on Nov. 12, 2007

Havenshire Harbinger November 13th 2007

Cwen's Quest By Vinessa Tress

I'm very excited this week as I write this column. Why you may ask? Because Cwen's Quest is coming in comic form at last. Cwen's Quest is going to be a weekly series on the popular hosting site Drunk Duck and can be found here.

Cwen's Quest was originally a little known book series by the author Derik Frost. It followed the childhood adventures of Cwen Quest, daughter of the powerful demon Lord Attez after he exiles her from his island kingdom. Derik Frost wrote seven Cwen's Quest novels in his life time largely aimed at children following Cwen's childhood adventures in a magical kingdom of fantasy.

The new series is done by being written by Nicholas J.G. Stroffolino and drawn by Sarah Nelson. Stroffolino was a long time fan of the books and has often spoke about his desire make a comic series based off of the classic books. The new series updates Cwen quite a bit. Taking place after the original seven books Cwen is now a teenager and finally returns from exile. The series is supposedly based on notes for the often rumored 8th never finished book in the series.

Faithful fans never fear though, Cwen and Wendy will be returning, however the new series introduces a new character into the mix named Riddly Lancer. Not much is known about Riddly right now except he is a major character in the first issue of the new series.

I had the chance to interview Nick about the new series and ask him a few questions.

VT: Hi, Nick. Nice to meet you.

NS: Thank Vinessa. It is nice to speak to you as well. I always enjoy your columns.

VT: Alright, I'm a big fan of the original Cwen books, but why do a sequel?

NS: The question is really why not? The Wizard of Oz has a whole society based around writing new books for Oz. Oh sure they are never going to replace the famous forty and most people don't even know anything but the movie but for Oz fans each new book is a treasure. It is the same with new series like Star Wars or Dune. After Lord of the Rings came out there was a popular phrase in England “Frodo Lives”. Authors die, books end, but characters live. Cwen is still alive and well, with more stories to be told and I want to help tell those stories.

VT: How come you didn't just make a comic version of the original books?

NS: Well it is really about the target audience. The original books were written for younger kids. They had more of a fairy tale like quality. Today comics are read by teenagers and adults as much as they are children. So when I started on the series I decided pretty early on that this should take place after the books. Plus the books stand on there own. If people are really interested, and I hope they will be, they can go back and read the original books. I don't think there would have been much point in just copying the books, they don't need to be improved upon.

VT: What about Riddly? Why bring a new character into the series?

NS: Well there are a lot of very rich characters in the books and some of them will be showing back up in the new series but the problem is we already know all those characters and they already knew Cwen. The story really needed someone who was new to ask the dumb questions the audience. If you've ever seen Dr. Who they you know he almost always travels with a companion even though sometimes those companions are dumb as a box of rocks. Why? Because the writers need someone to ask the doctor what he doing since the doctor would be a total lunatic if he explained things to himself all the time. Hence the companions and hence Riddly Lancer.

VT: So is Riddly dumb as a box of rocks?

NS: Heh. No, no he isn't. He is just meeting Cwen for the first time so he has to be brought up to speed on things sometimes.

VT: Was it tough finding a visual style of Cwen's Quest?

NS: Not for me I just write the stuff. Seriously Cwen's Quest presented some interesting challenges but Sarah is great. She hadn't read the novels when we started but she really got into the series once she started. She really developed a strong visual style for Cwen's Quest. I think it will be like Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings. Before the movies everyone had their own idea of what a Nazgul looked like, but now everyone pretty much thinks they look like they did in the movies and that is reflected in all sort of Lord of the Rings art and media being developed now. I think Sarah is doing the same for Cwen's Quest.