Fallout an Interview with Paul Hardy

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Posted April 22, 2014 by Oscar Russell in Comic Books
We The Nerdy was lucky enough to interview the very talented and creative Paul hardy about an upcoming Kickstarter project he is running called Fallout, which you can check out here. To be fair, it is really more than a comic book……
So Fallout? Tell me a bit more about?
Fallout is about a group of young adults that learn about the true history of mankind, and the previously unknown powers, abilities and dangers that still exist. In the beginning the focus is on Ben, the main character, but throughout the story other characters that we grow to love or hate become the focal points as major conflicts develop.
I chose the title ‘Fallout’ simply because of the damage that is left behind physically and emotionally, both individually and  environmentally. There are many lives lost, so much so that the word ‘hero’ becomes a matter of opinion. As the characters discover their own destinies, they must choose sides and fight for or against overwhelming forces, which desecrate and destroy.
I decided to tell the story by writing and illustrating the graphic novel, with the addition of an audio book version which includes a soundtrack with score and songs, which feature throughout the audio book. I did this for many reasons, but the most important of those would have to be; the opportunity to fully immerse almost all the senses in the story, and to provide an outlet for my musical creative passions.
Fallout is a story I was originally going to write as a fictional novel, but I opted for a graphic novel in order to utilise my strengths and have a little more fun delivering the story.
Mondor smallYour Kickstarter video is pretty impressive and quite a neat resume, anything that you can’t do?
Well although time and resources is always a factor, I strongly believe that almost any skill can be learned, and capabilities only become skills when practiced. I just do what I enjoy, and luckily I enjoy many different things. It can be difficult sometimes trying to establish priority when working with various disciplines or mediums, but I embrace that and it motivates me.
The first thing that popped into my head when I saw your project old Marvel LP that you read and listened to? What inspired you to do this?
There’s no single work of art that inspired this particular project, although I have to say when I think of what has inspired me to pursue such a creative and artistic career, the one thing that comes to mind is ‘War of the Worlds’. The way that the story is narrated seamlessly, with some of the most incredible music I’ve ever heard, with such an unbelievable story, it really does leave an impression. I’m always inspired by story, and to be honest, Fallout is inspiration enough for me, I would love to see it on stage or on film, it’s an exciting story that I think the world is now ready for.
It is an incredibly brave task you have given yourself, so fair play. Why set yourself something that seems so hard?
I see difficulty only in the things which stop me from achieving my goals, so I wouldn’t look at this project and describe it as hard. Sure it’s time consuming and it’s a lot of work for one individual, but this is a familiar story. I know I could have planned for something smaller and staggered production over time, but I would always look back and wish that I had of aimed higher. I’m quietly confident that I will complete the project to a high standard, I’m only doing what I know I’m capable of.
What more can you tell me about the main character Ben?
Ben could actually be considered as three characters in the story, as there are significant events which result in the growth and development of his personality. When we meet Ben he is a 17 year old student, living with his adopted family, and struggling with anxiety, low self esteem and aggression. He is uncomfortable in his own skin and searching for information about his past. People keep asking me if Ben is based on myself, but he’s not. Ben’s personality is a mixture of character traits I put together that specifically align with the story line. you’ll know what I mean when you read it.
Any musical influences that have inspired the songs that will feature? Panel Sketches MONO
Much like visual arts, the music that speaks to me most, is usually telling a great story, in a communicative way. Generally I’m influenced by artists/bands such as ‘Musical Youth, Bob Marley, Bounty Killer, Queen, Meatloaf, Micheal Jackson, Madonna, Wu-Tang, Bach, Handle, among many more. However the songs that will feature in the Fallout Audio Book Album/soundtrack, are solely inspired by the story. Although the style and sounds that I use may be reminiscent of 80’s and 90’s popular music, expect to hear something new yet slightly traditional. Think film score, with breaks and vocals.
How have you found the whole Kickstarter experience so far?
When I first found out about Kickstarter I was excited, and as I put my project together I remained optimistic. However the reality of the social promotional activity required to publicise your campaign is really the same no matter which platform you use for crowd funding. As an artist I still feel very isolated, not having a large social network following, and not being part of an active social circle within my target demographic, is a big disadvantage. So overall Kickstarter is a great idea, and a fantastic platform, I just hope I can do enough to let people know that my project exists. I think it’s a shame that the most important part is still ultimately left to the artist.
What comics did you grow up reading, if any?
Where I live, we didn’t have access to comic books. Getting your hands on any meant a trip into the city, and as my parents weren’t comic book fans, that never happened. Luckily I had an older brother, and a friend with an older brother, so I managed to inherit or borrow a few titles. Asterix, Tin Tin, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, are ones that I remember, along with some very obscure, very mature Manga comics, I probably shouldn’t have been reading. By the time I was old enough to go and pick up my own comics, I was heavily into cartoons and video games.
Any final thoughts……………………
I’m really excited to finish the project, but I’m having so much fun creating the novel, I’ll most likely move straight on the the next part of the story once I’ve finished book 1. As far as crowd funding, finance, marketing and networking go, I really wish it wasn’t so important, I like interacting with people and discussing my work, but when it comes to selling a story which people can’t read, a book which people can’t see, and music which people can’t hear, I look forward to not doing that again. I’m confident that Fallout will be enjoyed by many, so I really hope people will get behind the project.
Fallout closes on Kickstarter on 31st May, so get checking and backing here, you can follow Paul on Twitter @Paulhardysworld and keep up to date with all his goings on at his website

About the Author

Oscar Russell

Comics Editor for WTN, and co-host of the All New Comics Dash Podcast. I like comics and tabletop gaming!