Crawl To Me interview with Alan Robert
Crawl to Me takes place in an isolated country town during the frigid winter months. The story centers on a young family as they cope with a series of disturbing events that force them to question their relationship, their faith and their very existence. When husband and wife, Ryan and Jessica, move into their first home together, strange things occur. Half-eaten animals and other remains are found inside the basement's crawl space. The family dog disappears within the house. Distant voices and singing are heard from beneath the floorboards. The couple begins to think that an evil entity is living inside their walls. Nothing can prepare them for what they'll discover, and Ryan and Jessica soon realize that they must set aside all they believe to be real, in order to face the inevitable truth.
We caught up with creator, Alan Robert, to talk about Crawl to Me.
Horror News Network: How did you come up with the concept for this
Alan Robert: You know, I'm a strong believer in the theory that
everything happens for a reason. There are no coincidences. So, when my
family and I moved out of the city and into an older home in the sticks,
the place had a creepy old basement with one of those long dark crawl
spaces. Being a city kid, my whole life, I wasn't used to this type of
thing at all. I started poking around inside the crawl space and
realized that I couldn't even see the end of it. It gave me the creeps,
It definitely got my wheels turning. That was the inspiration for Crawl
to Me, my own creepy basement. Clearly, the Crawl to Me story takes that
theme and twists it in an entirely different direction, but the initial
inspiration came from my reality. Now, what would've happened if we
bought new construction?!
Horror News Network: Tell us a bit more about this family that moves
into their new home.
Alan Robert: Well, Ryan & Jessica are a newly married couple with a
small baby. They move out to the country during the winter months and
there is about a foot and a half of snow on the ground. Ryan wants to
get the place set up for his family before they move in, so he stays in
the empty house waiting for the furniture deliveries to arrive. But,
before Jessica and the baby make the trip out there, a series of
unexplained, disastrous events occur that make Ryan question everything.
I don't want to give away too much, because of the way the story is
told. The reader pieces the story together, bit by bit, and it's part of
the fun. It's my goal to have the reader experience the events as Ryan
does in real time. That's how we learn more about his character and why
Horror News Network: What other information can you let us know about
the voices beneath the floorboards?
Alan Robert: With a suspense story like this, it's really difficult to
avoid ruining the surprise by leaking spoilers. But, let's just say,
that when Jessica starts to hear the voices, it becomes a major problem
between her and Ryan. First of all, Ryan tries to convince her that the
noises are just in her head and they start to argue about it constantly.
It's unclear if Ryan can actually hear the voices or if he's trying to
cover something up...
Horror News Network: From the looks of it, Crawl to Me seems to be a
horror book of the psychological fare. Do you find it hard to get those
scares across in the comic medium?
Alan Robert: It's definitely a challenge, but, I knew that going in.
With Crawl to Me, the trick to getting those scares across in this
medium, is by setting the pace. Keeping the reader guessing is super
important. They really need to be surprised as the story unfolds. That's
how I plan to accomplish some real memorable scenes and scares. Plus, I
think the ending is unique and different enough to get people talking,
debating and possibly re-reading it, to see how all the pieces fell into
place. I'm really looking forward to seeing some of the reactions.
Horror News Network: As a creator, which brings you more satisfaction
from this series, doing the writing or the art?
Alan Robert: My satisfaction comes from holding the finished book. With
my last horror comic series, Wire Hangers, the feeling of holding the
finished first issue in my hands was indescribable. It's a much
different experience than holding a finished album or music DVD, like
I've done in the past, with my bands. Sure, those are extremely proud
moments, too, but this is much different. More personal, I think. It's
also different with comics because up until the moment of being
published, the artwork exists only in the digital space. Sure, I draw
everything by hand and scan it in, but it's only in it's raw, unfinished
form at that stage. Part of my process is enhancing the drawings,
digitally with textures and pieces of photography. So, to hold a
tangible book in my hands after all the sleepless nights over the
drawing board and computer is very gratifying.
For me, the writing and the artwork go hand in hand. Since, I'm tackling
both ends of the book, I have a lot of freedom to change things on the
fly, if I feel there's a better way to tell the story along the way. I'm
really enjoying the process.
Horror News Network: How has your relationship been with IDW Publishing?
Alan Robert: It's such an easy going relationship, everyone I've met
there has been totally cool. I'm so grateful for everything that Chris
Ryall (Chief Creative Officer) has done for me there. He really gave me
a chance when he decided to publish Wire Hangers and now again with
Crawl to Me. I don't have any other personal experience dealing with
other comics publishers to compare it to, but I've heard some horror
stories from some of my artist friends. They all tell me I have a good
IDW has really given me the freedom to create my comics as I see fit,
and it's been an amazing ride so far. I've also met some great people
and friends over there that have helped work on my books on the
production and promo side, so I really couldn't be happier than to have
them in my corner.
Horror News Network: Where can our readers find out more about your
Alan Robert: I have a personal blog site: http://www.alanrobert.com
We just announced a film adaptation of Wire Hangers, so you can visit
http://www.wirehangersmovie.com for more on that...
And for my music:
http://www.lifeofagony.com and http://www.spoilernyc.com
I'm always on Twitter, too: @arobert
Horror News Network: In closing, what would you like to say about Crawl
Alan Robert: The series hits comic shops starting in July 2011. There
will be 3 different covers per issue by some really fantastic artists.
My buddy, Menton J Matthews III did an amazing painting - you can see it
on the comic site. Plus, UK illustrator, David Lupton is working on a
killer variant. I hope everyone enjoys the series, and definitely send
me a message on my site or through Twitter to let me know what you
Horror News Network: Thank you for your time, Alan. Comment on this interview here.
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Published on: 2011-04-04 (4721 reads)[ Go Back ]