Posted - 08/15/2011 : 11:08:49 AM
| Interview with: Mark Lone
Comic book: Rise of the Mutant Underground
Job on story: Creator = "Cr" in Heading Title
Interviewed by: Allen Klingelhoets
Allen: I read about you Mark Lone in local Eau Claire, Wisconsin Leader - Telegram newspaper. Tell me a little bit about yourself.
Mark Lone: Well, I guess you could say I am a self trained freelance artist. I live in a small town in the northwoods of Wisconsin. My studio is cluttered with many vintage Star Wars spaceships and figures.
Allen: What kinds of comicbooks did you read in your youth?
Mark Lone:I was a HUGE fan of the early TMNT books, y'know - the original turtles when they were in black and white and on the covers they all had red bandanas. Eastman and Laird are a giant inspiration to me, and always have been. Other than that, I would say the standard 90's comics, the ones people complain about now but couldnt get enough of at the time. X-Men, X-Force, Spiderman. the list goes on... anything by Art Adams or Jim Lee.
Mark's version of Raph.
Allen: You mentioned Art Adams and Jim Lee. Are there other comic book creative people that inspired you?
Mark Lone: When I was younger and in high school, I thought Todd Mcfarlane's art was the bomb, as well as mentioned Jim Lee, also Erik Larsen. Now days I really get into this graphic storytelling type stuff, like the Goon, really love that book! Eric Powell blows my mind. Nate Simpson's book "nonplayer" is amazing. Jessic Abel's instructional book "how to draw words and write pictures" is always inspiring to me. When ever I get into a slump I jump back will do a review of that book. Very inspiring and instructional.
Allen: When did you start to think that you might like to create comic book stories?
Mark Lone: When I was layed off from my 2nd to last dayjob. I was soooooo sick of working in a factory, and when I landed a job answering phones for Toys R Us. I could draw for 8 hours and still do my work. Then I was layed off from that job and I was like "it's on now, all I have to do is letter all these pages". haha. yup, that's right, I just would bring all my pens and pencils with a huge backpack of 11 by 17 inch comic sheets with me every day to work. But still I am convinced that is NOT why they layed me off. haha.
Allen: Did you have any professional training to create comic books?
Mark Lone: No proffesional training, anything I have learned was on my own, and through talking to more established artists at conventions.
Allen: When did you first start to create art? What sort of art is your favorite to create?
Mark Lone: Well, I still have these long peices of paper that friends and I would draw golden axe and ninja turtles video game "mazes" from when I was like 11. Before that I used to draw all the He Man and Star Wars characters when I was 5 or 6 or something... my grandma still has all of them, so you guys should buy millions of my comics so my grandma can sell my scribblings for MONEY! haha.
Allen: What prompted you to create comic book "Rise of the Mutant Underground"?
Mark Lone: Originally Dahlia, the main character and a few others (Bronto, Crush) were created in the mid 90's while just doodling around in my sketchbook. and in 2001 I started the concept, and found all these cool half-developed characters from years earlier. So I first laid pen to paper for the project (what you see in the begining pages of rise of the mutant underground #1) in early 2002. But the project was shelved many times due to hectic work schedules, other comics I was working on for local magazines and loss of interest on my part. I came back to it and did all the lettering and touch ups to issue #1 about 2 years ago (my style had greatly improved and shifted to a more realistic gritty comic style and some of it had to be matched up to fit) so I already had all the dialog written in script form, and all the art for issue #1 and most of issue #2, but just had to put it all together and add a few things.
Allen: Tell me about "Rise of the Mutant Underground".
Mark Lone: Rise of the Mutant Underground takes place about 1 and a half years after "the rapture". The rapture was an event caused by warrior aliens coming to earth ripping the hell out of the countryside and cities looking for "the enforcer". The story revolves mainly around two characters, Dahlia black, who's twin brother Steven was abducted by a government agency led by Tallister. Her main objective is to gather enough super powered help to bring down Tallister's fascist government and find out what ever happened to her brother. Then we got the Enforcer... A broken man. He once was the world's champion super hero, he has limited mutant abilities with skin harder than a rhino in the first place, until one day he stumbled upon an alien artifact that merged with him to form an indestructible, shape shifting living weapon suit. When the aliens got wind he was earth's champion and it was because of their technology, they destroyed parts of the earth causing "the rapture" until the enforcer finally defeated them. Tallister took advantage of the enforcer's weakened state, took the suit from him and imprisoned him leading the world to believe he was dead. 1 year later is where RISE OF THE MUTANT UNDERGROUND begins with Drake, and Crush breaking him free.
Allen: Now you got me really curious. Tell me more about Daliah Black. How does story revolve around Daliah?
Mark Lone: After the kidnapping of her twin brother Steven (who is a mutant, and transforms into a giant horned beast randomly) she was raised by Grandma Besty (a very powerful telepath and psycic). She has trained and made all the connections to try and get her brother back. She has alot of mutant friends.
Allen: Tell me about story setting.
Mark Lone: It's the near future, all the nuclear and pharmicudical testing the goverment has been doing for decades started to catch up with the human race, causing mutations and freaky looking people to be born. The crooked government tries to keep tabs and pull these people out of the general populace, but there are some who have banded together and are either in hiding or working for the goverment hunting their own. there's robots, alien technology, super powered grandma's and hot ninja chicks with guns.
Allen: What has been most challenging thing about self publishing "Rise of the Mutant Underground"?
Mark Lone: Well, to be honest. lack of funds to produce the book and print the amount of copies to fill the demand, every cent that comes from every book sold goes right back into printing. So I suppose lack of monetary support and having to do everything myself (besides editing, my sweet dear ladyfriend Kate Adler does that)
Allen: How have you been getting word out about "Rise of the Mutant Underground"?
Mark Lone: Conventions mostly. Facebook really helps me in selling copies. Local newspapers, Magazines. Word of mouth quite a bit. sometimes I take comics to the bar and everytime I do I sell everything I brought with me! Drunks are great impulse buyers! haha.
Allen: How many issues are planned for "Rise of the Mutant Underground"?
Mark Lone: It will eventually come to a conclusion after issue 5 or 6. Then collected with all the issues and some bonus material into a graphic novel.
Allen: What is best way to get a copy of "Rise of the Mutant Underground"?
Mark Lone:email me at:
with your shipping address, I usually throw in an extra poster if you pay via paypal. INDYPLANET also has rise of the mutant underground #1 and #2 available to purchase. but email me for the limited edition of issue #3. that one will not go thru indyplanet.
(* here is the link to the first 2 issues from indyplanet: http://indyplanet.com/store/advanced_search_result.php?keywords=rise+of+the+mutant+underground&osCsid=rcto9og9khh933uutujbuh23i4&search.x=0&search.y=0 )
first two issues available on indyplanet.com
Allen: I noticed that issue # 3 is about to be printed. Do you sign copies for readers? How would person get signed copy?
Mark Lone:I am selling a LIMITED EDITION uncensored version of #3 that comes with a free 11 by 17 poster (signed) AND the book features a tri-fold cover, is individually numbered (only 50 copies of this limited edition will be made) and is signed personaly by me just in case if I ever get famous or die. haha. you can order the whole package for $22 by emailing me at GARYBUSY@HOTMAIL.COM...
Allen: What other kinds of comic book related projects are you working on?
Mark Lone: I have done alot with a great company recently called "DEAF MUTE PRESS". I inked over Dominic Racho's awesome pencils on a story called "TOMMY ZOMBIE" which now has it's own ongoing series. in the same book I did all the art for a story called "BLACK BOX". The title of that book is "TALES OF THE DEAD" and can be purchased at deafmutepress.com. Right now I'm currently working on a few projects with Jay Franklin from deaf mute, one called "Sulfur", another called "Weapons for Free" and also a zombie sketchbook for them. Sometimes I color children's story books, like the one I helped my Friend Dave Recine with called "CREEK BED TALES". I am also working with a giant group of international artists under the name "the International Comics Coalition" and we are all contributing one page of mayhem to a book called "ONE" hopefully being released later this year. I have also done alot of commission work for local businesses here around Eau Claire doing one page comic ads and such with a few more of those to come.
Allen: Do you plan to attend comic book conventions to promote your work? What about doing any comic book signings at stores?
Mark Lone: Yes I do! as a matter of fact I usually go down to Chicago every year for the C2E2 and have been a regular guest for the past 2 years at the Springcon and Fallcon hosted by the Minnesota Comic Book Association (mcba) and do guest creator spots at as many artshows and parties locally as possible in my area of Eau Claire, Wisconsin. There is alot of conventions I would love to attend, but self publishing isn't always paying for my gas to get to the ones that are too far away... There is a new convention called the Eau Claire comics and Hobby expo this year that I am really pumped to attend.
Allen: What kinds of movies do you like to watch?
Mark Lone:Star Wars... Clive Barker's "Nightbreed". I watch alot of horror movies. Dead Alive, Day of the Dead, and I will admit, I kind of liked the new Green Lantern and Thor movies. but don't tell anyone!
Allen: I also liked Green Lantern and Thor. I even enjoyed Captain America movie. What kinds of comic books do you like to read at present time?
Mark Lone: The most reading I have been doing lately is instruction books on programs that will help my comic! haha. I don't have much time to read too many comics, but I really like NonPlayer. Batman:Hush, Hellblazer by Simon Bisley.
Allen: Who are some of your favorite novel writers?
Mark Lone: Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman. maybe Stephen King...
Allen: What kinds of music do you like to listen to while working on your stories?
Mark Lone: 80's and 90's rock. Beatles, Led Zepplin, Black Sabbath, Johnny Cash, Smashing Pumpkins, old weezer, rentals. pretty much anything that rocks. alot of Mike Patton projects.
Allen: What is the best way to contact you?
Mark Lone: Best way to contact me is thru my email:
or dropping me a line on my blog: MARKLONE.BLOGSPOT.COM
Allen: If you could have dinner with 6 different people (3 real and 3 fictional) who would they be and why?
Mark Lone: With the real people first: "Beck" Hansen, Gary Busey (I would be cooking, definately not him) Kevin Eastman I think this can still happen, all these guys are alive, let's make this happen! then the fictional dinner guests: Yoda, Stay Puft Marshmallow Man, Catwoman from Batman Returns. haha.
Allen: What would you like to say to readers that have have dreams of working in comic book industry?
Mark Lone: Don't ask me to work for free, or for exposure. and don't do it yourself. read as many "how to" books as possible, make things you would buy and think are cool. Talk to artists at conventions, don't take critisisms of your work harshley -try to not let it hurt your feelings and learn from what they say.
Allen: Do you sell your art or do commisions?
Mark Lone: ALL THE TIME! haha. visit my blog: MARKLONE.BLOGSPOT.COM or my etsy shop... in my downtime I do alot of airbrushing on motorcycles and potraits for people.
Allen: Thank you Mark Lone for working on me for this interview. I wish you luck with your comic book stories. Would you like to leave Jazma readers with any closing thoughts?
Mark Lone: If you feel the pull of fascism, ecomomicly or politicly and are tired of nobody sticking up for you, this book is for you :)
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