Louise Simonson is the writer of the upcoming new mini-series, Galactus: The Devourer.  I have asked her a few questions about her new mini-series, coming out this July.  This is the first part of my "interview" with her through e-mail, with more to come!  If you would like to have a question asked to her, send her a letter using our "Send Louise Simonson A Letter" form.  This first part only contains my first question for Louise, but as you can see, she responded with a pretty long and informative answer.

Questions #1: How did you get involved and what made you want to do a new mini-series starring Galactus?

Mark DeMattais was leaving the Silver Surfer series and it needed a new writer. Jon Muth asked me if I'd be interested. We talked about what we might like to do, and I came up with the concept for the series then and there--one which intimately involved Galactus.

It sounded really cool to me but it was pretty radical. I wasn't sure Marvel would go for it.  To my surprise, they were interested.

I submitted my story outline which contained twelve issues, consisting of two major story arcs -- each of which culminated in a mind-blowing climax that changed the Silver Surfer... and Galactus... forever.

We got the go-ahead! I wrote the first plot; Jon started drawing it.  Then Marvel's number-crunchers decided that projected sales on the regular series didn't warrant its continuation. So the Surfer project was put on hiatus.

Then someone in editorial (Chris Claremont, I think) suggested re-launching the regular series with #1. Our editor, Jay Gardner, told us to start again.  Then, a few weeks later, they told us to STOP.  The number-crunchers had decided present sales figures meant fans weren't interested in a Surfer Series. Period. But Marvel editorial had a lot of faith in our Galactus the Devourer concept and wanted the proposed story to happen. So they fought for it.   Someone suggested as a compromise a twelve-issue maxi-series. The numbers folks weren't convinced. (Again, we were told start...then stop!)

Then Jay Gardner said Bob Harras suggested shortening the series to eight issues. I didn’t want to do that since the story was tightly constructed and I didn’t want to overcrowd events.  So I made a counter suggestion to then editor Jay Gardner. And we finally settled on a six issue mini-series...with another six issues to follow ... IF sales warranted it. (This is taking a gamble, by the way. While the first arc is dramatic and meaningful...really changes things... the real meat of the story is in the second arc.... the portion that reveals why the very existence of the Universe depends on the health and well-being of Galactus.)

All this change and compromise took time (nine months more or less) and Jon Muth (who had started and stopped working on the series several times) decided he needed to earn a living in a more timely fashion.  He quit the Surfer (now called Galactus the Destroyer) and, at least temporarily, comics in general. (He's currently illustrating a batch of children's books for Scholastic. His first book Come On Rain is in book stores now.) But he did agree to finish Galactus the Devourer #1.

At that point, Jay Gardner was let go in Marvel's most recent downsizing, and Bobbie Chase took over as editor. (So far she's been great!)   I was still excited by the story concept and wanted to stick with it. (I just know you guys will read the first series... and (mad or glad) come back for more.) But we needed an artist.

Then we got lucky. John Buscema was available. I mean Big John himself! It just doesn’t get any better than that! He agreed to take over the mini-series with issue #2. (He's now working on #3!)  Bill Sienkiewicz has agreed to ink the whole series. It’s gonna look FABULOUS!

Check out part 2 of my interview with Louise Simonson for more information about Galactus: The Devourer mini-series.


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