Robot 6, one of the blogs over at Comic Book Resources, has a regular feature by Tim O'Shea called Talking Comics with Tim. In the latest installment, Tim talks to Glenn Eichler and myself about MUSH! Sled Dogs with Issues. More interview than review, it's an interesting piece and I encourage you all to go read me wax rhapsodic or rap idiotic depending on your point of view. Here's a little taste…
O’Shea: Question for the both of you, there appear to be metaphorical fences in this book (between people and between the dogs), in addition to the physical fences. Would you agree?
Infurnari: When I read the script, I was reminded of how in art and literature natural landscapes have often represented the depths of the human psyche. There’s something about the dark bottomless fathoms of the oceans, the mysteries of the forest or the wide open expanses of sand or snow that spark our imaginations. In Mush!, the barren isolation of the Alaskan landscape sets the scene for a story about the dogs’ psychological state and ultimately our own interior lives as readers. The fences in this story are boundaries preventing the dogs from being out in the open on a run where they are most happy. The trail is their bliss and the fences that keep them from it mark the breeding area of their issues.
Eichler: Well, definitely. No one can ever know or meld with another person (or dog) entirely, and the isolation in which they all live just throws those differences into brighter relief. But that same isolation also creates fences that enclose the people and the dogs, forcing them together because they really can’t get away from each other. I’m saying the book has a lot of fences. It’s best to read it with a pair of wire cutters.
O’Shea: Glenn, not to get bogged down in details, but naming one’s dog is often a challenge. You really did a good job of naming the team of dogs in this story, did that come to you quite easily as you developed the characters or was it challenging with certain characters?
Eichler: I hate naming characters as a general rule, but I tried for a mix of the silliness and anthropomorphism often found in the names that real people give their real dogs. I also wanted to touch on the way people will give their puppies names that turn out to be either perfectly descriptive of their adult personalities, or utterly wrong.
O’Shea: Glenn (from the book’s acknowledgements you thank the dogs “who talk to him when he sleeps”) how long have you heard the dogs talking to you?
Eichler: I didn’t write that. The dog dictated it.
To read interview in its entirety, click here.