The A.I. & Colin Maxwell

Name: Colin Maxwell
Approx Location: Dunfermline
Creative Occupation: Comic book writer and illustrator

What are you working on at the moment?
ElectroMagnetic, a Steampunk adventure comic. Britain is at war with India and resources are being stretched in the ongoing conflict with the steam-powered army of the Nizam of Hyderabad. Meanwhile Professor James Maxwell is attempting to defend London against terrorist attacks.

How did you get started on your creative journey?
I fancied doing an animated film about Robert the Bruce back in 2014, but due to lack of funds it ended up being turned into a comic book. From there I’ve been making more historical books, but turned recently to fiction after winning the Dundee Comics Prize in 2017 for a short scifi story called Dimensions.

What are the next steps on that journey?
ElectroMagnetic will be a 5 or 6 part story, which I’ll produce over then next couple of years. If it’s popular I’ve got more stories planned for the characters. I’m also working on a supernatural crime story too, but have yet to find an artist for that project.

Where do you hope the journey will take you?
Any comic writer would love to be picked up by a major publisher, but that’s probably just a dream at the moment. I’d hope to do more comics in different genres and extend the appeal of my work.

How did you first get into Steampunk and how has that influenced your work?
I first came across it after reading the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen graphic novel a few years ago. I’ve since met up with the Steampunk groups in Glasgow and Edinburgh and often wear Steampunk attire when at comic conventions. The whole genre influenced the story ElectroMagnetic. I love the gadgets and began thinking about the science behind them and constructing a believable alternative history for the characters to inhabit.

What do you think the future of Steampunk is?
I think there will likely be a surge in popularity with a couple of films and with more comics and novels coming out in the near future. That can only broaden the appeal and open it up to more people.

What question should you be asked and what is your answer?
Q) Do you get embarrassed dressing up?

A) No, not any more. I also dress as Star Wars character Nien Nunb and do charity fundraising for CHAS, and it’s great seeing people’s reactions and the joy that the charity characters bring. My kids are probably more embarrassed than me, but my son occasionally joins in. My daughter, on the other hand, definitely wouldn’t!

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