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Interview with Ernst Dabel, Roland Bernard Brown and Renato Arlem

By Owen Jones (2006-06-14)

An interview with the creators of Red Prophet and the man behind it all, Ernst Dabel.


Sffworld were lucky enough to talk to one of the Dabel Brothers, Ernst Dabel, and also to the creators of the Red Prophet: Tales of Alvin Maker comic book, in a two page interview.

On page 1 we chat to Ernst Dabel about the sf&f genre and how they go about attracting authors. On page 2 we meet writer Roland Bernard Brown and artist Renato Arlem, the talented individuals behind Red Prophet, here's what they all had to say.

Owen Jones (OJ): Dabel Brothers have a growing reputation for popular sf&f adaptations, what made you choose to pursue the sf&f literary market?

Ernst Dabel (ED): First off, thank you very much Owen my friend for taking the time to do this interview.

The reason we chose to pursue the scifi/fantasy was first and foremost love of the genre.  All of our lives we grew up around it and once we started adapting them we felt very comfortable with it.

OJ: How do you choose what authors works to adapt?

ED: As long as the writer has an excellent, solid story we will add it to our lineup.  There is a lot of thought that goes into choosing an author, but one thing that we look for is in our meetings for a unanimous “yes” for the project and we will run with it.

OJ: Orson Scott Card (OSC) is one of a growing list of 'big' name authors whose works you are adapting, how do you sell the author on having their work put into a comic book?

ED: You start off with a friendly email and say "Hi, can I adapt your novel?" Most of the time, you'll get a reply something like "No, you may not." That is when you go on a two year crusade, harassing the author until he/she finally gives in.  Basically that's what it is.  But you know what, I enjoy every second of it (grins).

OJ: Were OSC's outspoken personal views an issue when considering adapting his work?

ED: I’ve read Mr. Card’s books and I enjoyed them very much, and I think anyone who reads them will be transported into such wondrous worlds that they will come out wanting more.  The reason my brothers and I considered adapting the Alvin Maker Series and Wyrms is so that both book readers and comic book fans can enjoy these wonderful stories in the comic book/graphic novel medium.

OJ: Why not adapt the first Alvin Maker book Seventh Son first?

ED: When we spoke to Mr. Card, he specifically requested that we start with Red Prophet before we adapt Seventh Son.

OJ: Is there any chance the Ender series will be adapted?

ED: I sure hope so, as I’m a big fan of “Ender’s Shadow”.

OJ: What does the future hold for the Dabel Brothers?

ED: For the future, we see ourselves putting out a series of adaptations of New York Times Bestselling authors that will fill a person’s entire library (grins).  New authors are flocking to our Dabel Brothers banner every day and we now have books to adapt for our entire lifetime and I’m only 31.

Owen Jones 2006



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