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Jess Cate

Sheydin and Siz chat with Jess Cate about Heart of Millyera and other works by Jess. Once again South Australia gets all the love…. I’m sensing a pattern Sheydin


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Shane ‘Sizzle’ Syddall (00:00):
welcome to the old comic show I’m here with Shaden tonight’s host and um tonight we’ll be talking to Jess Kate oh you’re freezing up a bit there that’s a pursuit of a shame um and her book see if I can remember it the heart of miliara was I close okay

Sheydin Dew (00:21):
you’re perfect

Shane ‘Sizzle’ Syddall (00:22):
Okay awesome so um let’s not muck around let’s get straight on to talking to Jess

Sheydin Dew (00:47):
hello everyone and welcome to the Oz come eggs show tonight we have got the wonderful Jess Kate joining us the creator of Heart of miliera um to start us off Jess can you tell us a little bit about yourself a little bit about your uh creative writing Journey um how long you’ve been writing for give us a little bit of the the nitty-gritty stuff to start us off

Jess Cate (01:15):
okay yeah yep, um so I’ve been writing and creating things including Comics uh since I was a teenager um I found some of my old comics when I was from when I was uh 16. um through two now so it’s been a long time of making these things um creative writing since I was really little so I always loved just storytelling and building little fantasy worlds and daydreaming um so yeah and I did um I did literary studies and creative writing at University um and editing and Publishing at postgrad so I’ve basically been thinking about this stuff for a very long time

Sheydin Dew (02:07):
fantastic it’s always so nice to have someone uh from a little bit of a different background obviously um as a lot of our viewers know we have uh quite a few artists on the show so it’s really really nice to have um someone with a different background of writing um to get a little bit of a different perspective on some of how the uh some of the comics I made um now you’re uh you’re an Adelaide girl just like myself
um you also mentioned that you’re you you graduated from uni were you doing a writing related degree

Jess Cate (02:35):
yes yeah so back when I did my such a long time ago when I did my undergrad it was creative writing was the main thing um and literary studies the lots of reading
um and then I did just in 2019 um then I did a graduate certificate of editing and Publishing so I went to um editing with a view to working comments specifically rather than books though I do like reading oh cool

Sheydin Dew (03:15):
fantastic what uni was with that with

Jess Cate (03:17):
um the editing course was with uh University of Southern Queensland it’s a really good really good course

Sheydin Dew (03:23):
up near Shane’s neck of the woods yeah

Jess Cate (03:25):
the wombat

Sheydin Dew (03:28):
oh my God amazing so you you specifically uh were kind of like sorting after uh doing Comics uh for the main purpose of you being on this show can you give us a little bit of a taste of what the heart of miliera has to offer a little synopsis if you will

Jess Cate (03:46):
yeah yeah sure um so article here is a young adult steampunk Adventure set in a ustralia-esque setting rather than your typical steampunky London yes setting um it’s about some oh that’s just something different we figured um it’s about a group of science University students so we’ve got a geologist a um called Ida and a um inventor I guess you’d say an engineering major called Gill and um a young botanist called Celeste um and they’re all friends and they’ve been at Uni together for a while and they go on a field trip to um deep to dive into a um a flooded like town so a town that’s been mysteriously flooded um 100 years ago and they want to go and see what they can find on there so they test out a new invention underwater Contraption and what they uncover is Ida finds a um interesting fossil um and also encounters a ghost-like uh human kind of s person a humanoid thing

Jess Cate (05:16):
um what they don’t know is when they take the fossil back with them to the university to do some tests um that it has great immense power as these things do that you find randomly at the bottom of the lake um and also is pretty much Essential to the Sea Spirit um who follows them there to to recover their, their heart hence the name

Sheydin Dew (05:46):
the heart of milia, fantastic actually so when I was uh reading your prologue um I both Adelaide girls I was reminded of um a flooded town here in sa which is now a reservoir um near the chain of ponds road if there’s any viewers tonight from Adelaide you probably know what I’m talking about but it made it reminded me of um this flood of town and when uh it’s really low sometimes you can even see the steeple of the church and it’s just I was reading it I was just like oh this is so cool this is exactly what I would have imagined if I was able to scuba dive in that Reservoir um which I think is really cool and especially when you you uh when you could see the steampunk kind of um influence that I thought that was

Sheydin Dew (06:36):
such a cool uh style to it I don’t I don’t see too many um comics with steampunk so it’s really really cool to see um for those who don’t know I actually have met Jess before uh at uh paper cuts Festival back in 2019 she was a huge inspiration as well so um yeah again it’s really amazing to have you on the show and be able to talk to you about this amazing comic um thank you very much for giving us a little bit of synopsis I would really like to kind of delve in more to

Sheydin Dew (07:08):
um what are some of your future projects do you have anything in the pipeline at the moment obviously you’re still ongoing with Millie area in familiarra correct yes yes are there any other projects you get on the sidelines or is it just head down bummer for this particular one

Jess Cate (07:27):
in a way um but also no I do have some other things going so um at the moment I’m looking to so we’ve we’ve um published a fair chunk of heartfili era um we are looking to hopefully release a volume one um which will be which will be 36 Pages um so that’s my I’m planning that out at the moment hopefully get that out soon um on this on the non-millie era related um I’ve been working on a young adults science fiction concept um which is a teen like a queer teen sort of non-romance friend Roman um with sort of a body snatches um Thetford wives sort of vibe so that’s working on and hopefully I’ll get some

Jess Cate (08:34):
pages like oh yeah I’m not quite there yet to start getting art done but that’s what my current project is I’ve got another comic that um I have Sitting it’s just sitting there waiting for to be to have something done to it it’s a X-Files inspired story it’s sort of autobiographical but really tongue-in-cheek um that was drawn by one of my really good friends and the first person I ever did comics with um when we were in high school together uh Jonathan McBurney and so he did the art for it for me and um I kind of see it as being part of a bigger project so that’s why it hasn’t happened yet it hasn’t landed on its own it’s a mini comic first yeah yeah fantastic

Sheydin Dew (09:20):
how long have you been kind of having them in the how long have you had them in the pipeline so to speak

Jess Cate (09:28):
oh the mini comic um about a year and a bit so yeah I don’t sort of what what is time it’s sort of meaningless Now isn’t it it could have been free as it could have been one year who knows um the circles which is my young adult um story that I’m working on um for a while yeah so that’s been I’ve been writing that alongside hard Amelia but um it’s a little yeah it’s a bit of a project yeah

Sheydin Dew (10:01):
Fair um to give a little bit of comparison how long have you been working on miliera for

Jess Cate (10:08):
oh so we started in 2014. so that was when we started brainstorming and workshopping me and Jana uh Hoffman who’s the co-creator and artist

Jess Cate (10:23):
um so we came up with all our ideas and characters and then um slowly started publishing so we publishing yeah pretty consistently on and off for a fair few years I think Camilla Duran who is my current artist um she took over that posting in 2020 no yes 2020.

Sheydin Dew (10:54):
wow what a year a very big year for you I I can only imagine yeah

Jess Cate (10:57):
yeah so we’ve been we’ve been working through

Jess Cate (11:03):
um getting her Pages up slowly as well um so we’re getting there yeah we’re almost up to halfway through uh volume two so if I get volume one up I might follow that pretty quickly

Sheydin Dew (11:20):
yeah yeah for sure um no that’s wonderful that’s really cool to see that you’re you know you’re really busy especially on the comic scene um I kind of want to rewind a little bit back you did mention that you um had been making Comics since you were 16 is that correct before yeah I kind of want to know what are some of your Inspirations um when you write

Jess Cate (11:39):
so I really I quite like spooky science fiction and um. my favorite things to read I guess uh you’re sort of fun science fiction Adventure so I quite like a bit of a fanfic Vibe um it’s it’s yeah it’s it’s a sort of a take you out of out of the mundane but it’s fun and easy to read and moves along at a good pace so that’s the sort of stuff that I like to write as well so lots of fun dialogue and and characters that um interact well with each other and um just fell in just felt like a world that I wanted to um live in I think we’ve steampunk as well I don’t think there is that much out there that yes sir I mean there’s a bit more now but back when we started there wasn’t really that much
Sheydin Dew (12:44):
yeah yeah which is super cool to see um Coming uh becoming more popular nowadays that’s for sure um are there any specific um writers or Comics that you really enjoyed when you were when you were a kid or younger

Jess Cate (13:03):
um oh yes of course um I was a really big Sandman fan so yeah it was pretty much I was that was the be-all and end-all of everything for a moment um uh yeah so I think that ilk I I there was a time I mean yeah I’m old so a lot of the um Comics that were coming out in around the um mid to late 90s I think were what got me into Comics um now I guess I’m very diverse in what I would actually read oh really um yeah I don’t really have anything that I would ever veto too much as long as it’s good and I I think it’s as long as it has moved along and has a good plot and it’s entertaining and yeah

Sheydin Dew (13:59):
um that’s really really cool to hear um so what what what was what was it that um really fascinated you about salmon what what was so good about it to you

Jess Cate (14:10):
ah I think it’s because I didn’t at the time I didn’t know that Comics could be so I guess different like it’s it’s just the having read I really like Spider-Man and I really really liked X-Men um when I was younger so this is yeah this is the first time I’d read something that was a bit more complex um storytelling and um I was really interested in you know literature and things that I was like so um I think I just I I kind of liked the the way that it worked in different stories episode episodic um all tied together and built this bigger greater World um yeah yeah it’s just a different sort of universe

Sheydin Dew (15:05):
yeah like having a having a totally new like the own world that you can you can create kind of thing oh yeah yeah okay I guess that kind of like leads into my next question is like what what made you want to create the heart of Millie era

Jess Cate (15:21):
um I think I wanted to create something that I would want to read if I was the age that I’m aiming the comic up so I think when I was a sort of a pre-teen to the teens I think I would have really enjoyed something that was a fun adventure um that did something a little bit different with bringing in the the Australian Landscapes I know that doesn’t sound like a big thing I mean when you get the steampunk that is just constantly

Metropolitan sort of um London or New York sort of Jack the

Ripper um I feel like it’s there’s so much you can do with that it’s so it’s so fun to mix in magic and science

um such a good cocktail and so to then have it be in a more

um like a oldie worldly sort of um

outbacky sort of way is something that I can yeah that I can picture those sort of

things we don’t have we don’t have that sort of vibe um I think it’s it’s a bit

Sheydin Dew (16:43):
different yes definitely and I think it’s really good to like kind of put your own stamp on it and be like this is an Australian

comic you can see that it’s an Australian comic I think that’s really really cool um yeah yeah I I really really enjoyed

it I think it was a really good um I keep saying it every every episode I always say it’s like my go-to word

it’s like really really refreshing um uh is there any like kind of comic

related goal that you want to achieve in the near future you said that you had a few projects in the pipeline are theypossibly a near future goal that you want to kind of get

Jess Cate (17:23):
um circles which is my um body statues let’s just call it Body Snatchers it’s the easiest way to think I’m actually not sure what’s going on there like when I find out I’m a people look

um so I feel like that’s a little bit in the making still hopefully I’ll have um at least I’m gonna go for 20 pages of good script that has

um an end point before I get anything drawn up just to know that um we’re not going to leave readers hanging this will be a webcomic as well um so all military can read for free it’s online now

um don’t have to pay for it um I I think that my other little comic that I’ve got on hold are actually Envision it as part of a Anthology um I don’t know where I would start so that’s why I’m kind of just put it holding it for a bit until I decide what I want to do with it yes yeah I dreamed that we’d have ananthology about being abducted by aliens

um sort of voluntarily um oh yeah I mean things get a bit it’s a bit cynical but things get a little bit uh sometimes and you sometimes like take me please that’s the point of my comic so I’ll see you I want to leave would be the instead of I want to believe yeah um so and X-Files beam me up please sort of concept so yeah

Sheydin Dew (19:07):
yeah definitely you’ve got so many like really cool genres to play with that I think that’s really cool um so obviously would uh finishing miliera be one of those goals as well

Jess Cate (19:18):
yes um Familia has we have um had Jana’s run we’ll call it um and then now we’re on Camilla’s run her excellent artwork is what we’re currently publishing then I’m not sure yet but we might do a third to bring it up to the the end of the story um yeah so it’s a little while away

still because it’s really quite long yeah it got a bit carried away but at least it keeps you busy you know yeah sometimes

Sheydin Dew (19:56):
um I guess also it’s a bit of a loaded question but I always like to ask this question to all the guests that come onto our show um and that is where do you see yourself in five years Time comic related

Jess Cate (20:10):
okay um again five years can pretty quickly yeah so yeah I mean I think I would like to have one of my projects happening

um if nothing else than a mini comic um I will absolutely have a volume a part of miliera um which will hope well I have no doubt it will probably be uh crowdfunded um given that it’ll be a pretty chunky Book for a self-published comic

um but it’ll be really great that would just be really heartwarming for me to have to see all of Jana’s um artwork all in one volume yeah definitely and then yeah also do that with Camilla’s as well so I’m sure we can we’ll absolutely be doing those things

since within five years time

Sheydin Dew (21:06):
that sounds like a very very busy five years ahead that’s for sure um I kind of want to shift gears now into a really fun section of the show I guess um and these questions are kind of like rapid fire and really really uh fun um also if anybody in watching tonight has any questions please send them through um anything any questions you have about the heart of Millie era or anything about Jess Kate’s work

um please send them through um but to crack onto the really fun questions the first one that I have off the cuff is if you could inherit any trait from any of your characters in heart of the mirror what would it be and why

Jess Cate (21:50):
oh did it have a scientific brain to be able yeah absolutely all of my characters are scientists because I’m not I only wish

Sheydin Dew (22:01):
you have like the really scientific hemisphere of the brain we had the really creative side of your brain I guess um I guess it would be kind of nice to harness both sometimes true yeah yeah I remind you not to not to spoil anything but I think um the character Millie is really interesting some of her uh her capabilities are pretty cool so yeah yeah

Jess Cate (22:24):
she’s from outer space as well so yeah out of Faith see Spirit yeah

Sheydin Dew (22:31):
in the in the prologue that I read it was just like oh my God she can do so many things

Jess Cate (22:39):
you can do it and she can change she can shape-shift into anything

Sheydin Dew(22:44)
um anything well mostly anything I haven’t tested that yet I think organic things okay yes to see like um how many different forms that she can take on um I think that would have been really cool for um your illustrators to bring to life I
Jess Cate (23:02):
think I hope so yeah when we were thinking of the the concept

I think we did um go or what what do we want in this story what what fun things do we want

um so we’re like can we have dragons yeah of course you have dragons you can shape-shift she could be whatever

Sheydin Dew (23:22):
I think that’s yeah a super super strong character design right there

um I guess the the next question that I really wanted is which one of the characters is most like yourself which

one did you write that kind of embodies a little bit of your personality so to speak

Jess Cate (23:41):
good question um hmm I guess they’re all a little no

Guild definitely isn’t me um he’s the he’s a bit of goofy lovable

maybe I don’t know um I’m pretty goofy but um I think Celeste

is probably me realistically was that ah she’s just I think

um she’s a low-key poisoner uh she’s a bit she has a lot of she knows how to do

a lot of things but she’s a little bit I guess a little bit Dopey and unsure of herself um she’s she yeah she comes into her own when she realizes that she’s not um she’s not just playing catch up to the others I think she thinks that she doesn’t have anything to offer and the others um are way ahead of her with all

of their skills sets but yeah a little bit aloof maybe at times or yeah she’s

just um I think that she’s just down to business which is not a bad characteristic to her

I think just being focused on the on the task at hand and yeah just yeah not

realizing that sometimes things are just going way over your head which is really me I
think the best people are kind of

like that anyway so yeah true yeah circles have a little bit of yeah that’s

Sheydin Dew (25:10):
it that’s it you’ve got to like kind of close the circle with those kind of characters I think that’s definitely um no it’s awesome that’s really really cool I really like asking that question to all of our guests because um I kind of gives like a different level of like how they created their characters and what they kind of Drew upon um personality wise in themselves to make these characters because I know I certainly do that for my own um yeah so I think it’s a really really

important tool um especially if you want to create like a really authentic kind of character

um which character would you most likely become friends with from Millie era yeah

Jess Cate (25:48):
yeah I would just miliera is why wouldn’t you want to have her as a friend um there’s a couple of thugs um Queen and Jerry who are they’re not as thuggish as you think like yeah um without giving anything away I think that they would be good friends henchmen

henchmen are always good to have on your side yeah having your own henchment I don’t know how these people get thesethese tough guys to follow them around but

Sheydin Dew (26:21)
I think that’s a very well-rounded friend group you’ve got there that’s for

sure if you think see Spirit from outer space and some henchman

um so which which character did you enjoy writing the most

Jess Cate (26:40):
oh um I think Celeste yeah yeah I know it kind of shows as well everybody always tells me that they love her best so that they think that she’s the cutest I’m like I must have injected a little bit

of myself into her because she’s um she’s got a lot of Personality for the Third Wheel yeah interesting so which character would you say took the longest to rights oh I think Ida okay why is that she’s quite

serious um so I think when you’re the the person that has to do all the problem solving

and be the driving Factor behind every decision that everybody else has to just

follow you along um it’s hard to make that character fun and and yeah she’s a bit Square I suppose but she’s

the driving force behind everything that happens so you’ve got to try to work on her to make her likeable and lovable and interesting yeah definitely um so besides Celeste having some

Sheydin Dew (27:51):
characteristics from yourself are there any other characters that were inspired by real people or people that you’re

Jess Cate (27:57):
surrounded by um not really no I think that they um they’re they’re yeah they’re not really based on anybody in particular yeah

so you kind of wanted to embody your own character your own original character for for the story essentially and yeah

yeah they’re all I think they work together so I feel like they’ve all got their own um

aspects of their personality which on their own they’d probably be hopeless but as a trio they um they can work they

Sheydin Dew (28:32):
can do things and Achieve things definitely yeah I think you should really give yourself a big power back for for creating such original characters um it’s definitely no easy feat that’s for sure um I know for myself I I sometimes really have to rely on on thinking of people around me I’m not sure if any

other artists or anyone else watching tonight kind of does the same thing um being inspired by other people around you or whatnot but I think I definitely look up to people who can kind of just like pull a character out from their own head I think that’s really really cool so kudos to you no easy feat that’s for sure and to create such um credible and strong characters where they can really like stand alone do you

know what I mean like I think that’s really I think you’ve done a really really wonderful job that’s for sure

um that’s the end of my my really fun rapid questions these next few questions that I’m going to ask you uh um the next few uh questions kind of delve into um your process and how you created

miliera I think these ones um a lot of viewers that watch that may have their own published works or are publishing

their own Works um I think might get a lot of value out of these next few questions I know I certainly do um and let’s pick things off uh can you walk us through how you created milia um you know what kind of process you went through whether or not you um did a Kickstarter or not can you kind of like give us like step-by-step um a guide through how you did it yeah

Jess Cate (30:08):
yeah so originally we

um okay let’s go back so Jana and I were um Jana and I were

um part of a group of uh comic loving uh individuals uh in South Australia so we

used to get together and chat about comics and we were just talking and decided that we really wanted to make a comic of our own and then then I think the more we spoke about it when like it could be this and it could be that um there was a lot of brainstorming but also just we love this stuff yeah let’s

let’s do it I’m working in all of the different things that we’d ever thought that we wanted to have in a comic um this sort of became a little bit like a uh epic because of that um

I think including everything that you like in one story is a little is a lot maybe yeah

um but from there we went through and I just

researched so much um and so did Janice so we just for the for the art she looked at so so many different um sort of um open source um old photographs and just anything that you could find on the in the National Library old old pictures of um locations and clothing and especially Australian Centric stuff um and I did a lot of research into sort of

what I wanted the characters to be like and and how I wanted them to look and put together a little scrapbook a little digital scrapbook so we used some online um

process management software to just sort of flick each other back and forth oh how about this how about that how about this um and then yeah slowly we came together with the characters

um and what they looked like and then from there we yeah I wrote out a script so it was quite a while it took me a I want to say two years I don’t I don’t know if it was that was longer than how long it took now I can’t look thinking back I’m like it feels like longer than that but yeah I’m not sure so right it

was a while ago um wrote down the whole script and then from there um basically Jana would work on it page at a time um a page of script at a time and send it to me and then I’ll double check and go oh yeah so I accidentally have 10 spelling mistakes on this page

um and that’s that’s terrible that the description so please change that to this um yeah so I’ve gotten better now now I

don’t do that as much I wanted to edit myself before I give it to an artist and say hey draw this

Sheydin Dew (33:04):
yeah definitely so what was the the process after that um obviously it was like you know publishing it and getting it out there what Avenues did you explore in that field

Jess Cate (33:15):
well I think from the get-go we were thinking we just wanted to do it well I think we both had different ideas of what we wanted to do so I wanted to always do a web comment that’s how Iwanted that’s how I saw it and that’s how I still see it so I love that it’s up there for people to read and the idea

that anybody could just jump on and be reading it at any point makes me so happy and I love it when I get um replies to the the newsletter or comments um so keeping up I’ve got a few people that email me quite regularly every time we have a page and go yay that’s a new page um so shout out to those people you know who you are um

then we decided to do a print of the comics so that we could go to cons basically we wanted to go and do a few of the various cons and and get ourselves out there and part of the community and just be more involved and um and also get the comic into stores as well um so we decided to do Prelude which is basically the first 18 pages of comic

um so we kick-started that which was really good and it was super successful so I couldn’t even believe how well we funded that it was about I think 400 of what we asked for um so we were able to do so much we could do extra bonuses for people bookmarks and posters and yeah print extra copies and it was great yeah and I think the the one thing that

stopped me doing another Kickstarter for more so that we have little single issues is that I prefer personally to have a big chunky book yes yeah I think kick-starting numerous little 20 Pages

um I’d rather save them up and do one volume yeah definitely awesome that’s

Sheydin Dew (35:14):
really really interesting to hear your process especially as a writer I think it’s really really refreshing to have on

uh the show um I kind of want to move on to um some really meaty questions and that is what was the most challenging thing about creating Millie era

Jess Cate (35:33):
um I think when you are part of a team a creative team it’s a lot of there can be a lot of back and forth and um

sometimes what you have in your mind for I’m sorry for gonna see

I don’t know my vision for what I had doesn’t exactly come across we did pretty good there

weren’t I don’t have any complaints um but sometimes it’s a little bit of tweaking involved and it’s I think a little bit frustrating for the writer to be like no that’s not my brain shows me it’s a movie don’t you see what’s in my head but no it’s not like that no so yeah I think sometimes it’s not possible to do what I want to do what I put down on the pages in The Script is you can’t

do that there’s no way that we can fit that in a page that’s five pages yes so you’ve just extended your comic by you know yeah yeah so yeah yeah yeah so

Sheydin Dew (36:40):
like working within teams and whatnot yeah I can definitely see how that is a big challenge in itself um someone who’s worked on a comic solely by themselves I definitely have a lot of admiration for people who work for the teams

um it’s definitely again no easy feat so yeah kudos to you for doing it and that’s for sure and having two illustrators as well that’s amazing um yeah it’s really fun to see their different art styles I just I actually

Jess Cate (37:05):
love that they’re so different yeah definitely when I saw how different they were going to be I was like this is

amazing I couldn’t have asked for it being any better for them because you get a different take on the character

um exactly yeah they’re still the character but they’ve done suddenly got more um like emphasize different features and I just love that kind of seeing them through two different lenses I guess or two different perspectives I

Sheydin Dew (37:34):
think that’s really interesting and something that I don’t think I’ve actually heard much of I mean besides

you know your your original or your like traditional comic books that have you know the the covers done from guest

artists and stuff like that but no I think that’s really cool that’s for sure um I guess kind of moving on uh I really

want to know what was the most rewarding part of creating your comic book

Jess Cate (37:57):
oh I think going to cons and um getting it out there and meeting people I in the community I think was fantastic um when back in

check the date I’m actually going to check the date

okay anywhere between 2016 and 2018. we did a um a mentorship

with like like a Comics create a mentorship um the banksia project free Supernova that was really good it was really good because we um got to meet a whole bunch of fellow creators and we got to work

through some little projects it was great to have um the motivation to what everybody was

gonna get on Zoom and we’re all going to talk about what we did so we actually developed um a comic called great beasts uh which

is a once off little One-Shot cute comic um that’s so different to how to miliara

and we worked on a little folding mini sort of fold out comedy called space and time which was really fun as well again it was so different and gave me a chance to write something sort of autobiographical and um put myself into it rather than just fantasies

um yeah so I think that was a real high point and doing panels and things around

that um one of the panels that I got to be on was about diversity specifically um so I mean I could talk about that all day diversity and comics and just in in um pop culture in general it’s important to me so yeah I think doing those sort of

things cons panels discussions things like this um yeah really rewarding and fun and yeah

Sheydin Dew (39:58)
kind of like kind of like make a meeting um your readers essentially I think yeah I can definitely relate to that I think when I first went to my my own uh I went

to Supernova I think the first time um and that’s when it all kind of clicked in and I was like oh this is what I really love and then um obviously I Met You in 2019 at a convention Festival here in Adelaide shout out to paper cuts um and no I definitely agree I think it’s a super rewarding part of creating comics and knowing that it’s being really well received and even getting some feedback

I know that’s what happened with my first experience at a uh convention it was really really important to get that kind of uh feedback and then go on and actually use it so no

Jess Cate (40:45):
I absolutely agreeyeah getting to hear from people um to come back as well people that would come back to the to the stall and say oh when’s the next one coming out um yeah I thought you last year with yeah I think it also Glides of fire under you to be

Sheydin Dew (41:06):
out there waiting yeah kind of um create a little bit of a level of accountability like oh no now I’ve got

these these readers I’ve definitely got to like bring something to the table um personal level uh but not really good um and it’s nice to know that people you know you know and you know kind of got you back um I think that’s yeah really fair call to say that’s um one of the biggest rewarding things of making Comics that’s for sure um so obviously miliera is on online and it is currently still in development um I kind of want to uh know yes

um I kind of want to know how long did it take for you to publish the physical copy exactly

Jess Cate (41:56):
it was only it was within a year it wasn’t yeah um once we got down to getting going with it it’s all very exciting as well doing Kickstarter you get very motivated to just obviously you’re accountable again to the people that backed you number one

um you don’t want to leave people waiting but having a plan um ahead of time of how we’re gonna actually manufacture this thing um and it’s yeah I think it all falls into

place a lot quicker if you go into it with before doing something like that that’s time sensitive yeah so I don’t know about you but I need that I need that um deadline to motivate me

Sheydin Dew (42:35)
yeah oh my God me too me too um this this next question I think uh it kind of comes out of like left field it kind of catches a few guests off guard I think um but it’s something that I think is like sometimes a little bit important um however I want to know are there any Easter eggs or little fun facts that not

many people know about or not many people realize when they first pick up or read Millie era oh

Jess Cate (43:07):
um yes I think that

um about Midway through page 19 and 20. there’s a on online you have to see it online it’s it’s a bit different but there’s a big long page

um and there’s a little bit of a Prius pre prehistoric um flashback uh to miliera crashing down so if if she’s not from here she’s from outer

space um so I think that that often people go why don’t we why aren’t we in space now um so yeah it’s it’s just one of those things that I thought was why not hey you know yeah she’s she’s from under the water but she’s also from outer space and she’s very old ER than we can think that we can even

Sheydin Dew (44:02):
imagine yeah definitely was there any other like Inspirations behind the name or the story or um obviously it kind of piqued my interest being kind of related to the

chain of ponds Road the town that was underwater you figured it out I’m glad that we cleared that up that’s for sure I think that’s a really really cool little Easter egg

um especially if you’re like at conventions here in Adelaide I think that’s a really cool little dot Point um but yeah especially for someone who kind of like drives that road I’m definitely gonna think of you now every time I’m pregnant yeah

we’ll keep an eye out for it she’s down there somewhere oh my God no that’s awesome I really really enjoy those kind of questions because I think um you know as as someone who’s creating um a book there’s these little tiny things that you might insert and be like Oh someone picks it up they pick it up kind of thing um but I think it’s really cool to like kind of shine a light on those things and maybe even pick more uh people to

read uh the book itself just because of that fun fact um I guess we’ve also kind of touched on some of your conventions um are there any conventions that you really want to attend in the future or any conventions that you’ve like really really enjoyed in the past

Jess Cate (45:21):
um are all of the local um conventions that we have done um the

ah I’m drawing a blank um at the moment for some reason

um the Canberra oh what’s it called the comic Arts Festival I need to Google it um it was really good anyway it was amazing um they hosted the um Ledger Awards there um and it’s just it was just really fun um and really insightful great

um little workshops and panels and yeah that was amazing um I would love to go to some East Coast

um uh Camilla um my artist she was living in Brisbane

but she’s no longer there now but I was always planning to go up and do Brisbane

um Comic-Con or supernova um at the time but yeah I think I’ll still go up there and maybe do the um Wollongong yeah all up the coast would be great and up north yeah definitely yeah no it’s awesome

independent festivals here now so yeah and I think Adelaide’s really good

Sheydin Dew (46:44):
for that I think um personally I really enjoy this the smaller kind of conventions I think they’re um kind of

on a more intimate level with all your um readers and followers I think um uh compared to the big ones um where you kind of maybe sometimes get a bit drowned out or whatever but I think the smaller ones you know they really amplify Indie creators exactly yeah

um so you have sold Millie era at some conventions and we have peaked the website is there anywhere else that people can find the heart of Millie era

Jess Cate (47:20):
um at the moment the website’s the best place um you can if you would like to buy a

download um you can head to owner Indie um where we where you can actually
purchase a PDF um at the moment I won’t be selling physical copies

um for the time being anyway so it’s possible that I might refresh that down the track

Sheydin Dew (47:43):
nice well now that people know that um we have reached the third quarter Mark

um these are a bit of the conclusion questions to kind of wrap up the show um I think for me these are some of the most important questions that I ask because they really kind of delve into the comic industry as such and I think they’re really you know kind of well-rounded um list of questions uh so in your comic career which achievement are you most proud of and why um

Jess Cate (48:15):
I think just getting out of miliera up on online that in itself is an achievement for me having a physical comic is great but I love that it’s up there um for people to read and anywhere in the world to get their hands on

Sheydin Dew (48:34):
yeah definitely to kind of like touch base and like you know really get your your message across essentially um especially as in Indie creators I think that’s yeah definitely that’s fair to say that’s for sure

um for all of our Watchers watching tonight um some people who may have already created their own comic or are about to create their own comic what is your best tip for them

Jess Cate (49:00):
um be kind to yourself with the process um honestly

there’s a million reasons why you might not feel like writing today

um or life gets in the way and and I think at the same with artists I

believe you you do this because you want to do it because it’s fun it makes you happy so if it’s not making you happy if

it’s stressful um just be kind to yourself it’ll come together yeah nice I think that’s a really really
Sheydin Dew (49:32):
nice tip to give uh were there any like major lessons that you learned while you were writing the heart of Millie era

Jess Cate (49:39):
I think um shooting for the Stars really coming up with such a big concept um and also yeah just really expecting

everything to be in this book um from the get-go as as such a big project for me to do as my first big um a big attempts but that’s fine

yes I’ve done it now so I feel like I can smaller projects are great though I think that’s another tip is even if you’re working on something huge if you’d like to do sort of little

um bits and pieces yeah on the side um just take a moment take some time out and do a small project finish something small so you can have that sense of achievement and and feel that that euphoria that comes with getting a small job done definitely definitely I think that’s a

Sheydin Dew (50:36):
really great piece of advice and I think it really kind of goes to show that you really went above and beyond for Heart of miliara and you still continue to do so so I think you know go hard or go home and I think you’ve done that really really well um so kudos to you um are there any other skills or techniques that you kind of learned along the way um or that you may perhaps want to learn in the future are there anything that you kind of want to delve into yeah I think that I find a little bit of the

Jess Cate (51:05):
the um dealing with um all of the intricacies the ins and outs of actually getting the physical prints done and um the logistics yeah it takes a little bit you have to

fortify yourself to do that stuff yeah it’s not the fun things picking out the Paper Stock and you know it’s some people love that I don’t particularly I just want it to be good and I wanted I want now as well yeah

Sheydin Dew (51:44):
you know sometimes the devil is in the detail and it really does come down to those small nitty-gritty things you know

create a comic yeah that’s great and then you you realize oh my God there’s all these really detailed things that you know

you’ve really got to kind of consider first or later down the track to kind of catch up to you um yeah luckily we’ve got a good support

Jess Cate (52:02):
network of comic creators especially an essay but just across Australia um once you’re in with um a few people who know what they’re doing you have people to ask advice for

from and who will gladly give you their advice and you can also help and I just think that that’s really great it’s invaluable because yeah nobody knows everything everybody needs to ask a question from time to time

Sheydin Dew (52:28)
that’s definitely uh so true especially going back to how we first kind of like cross paths um just for everyone watching I first met Jess at 2019 paper cuts festival and at that Festival I had my parents along with me I was very new to the scene and my parents pointed out you’re still as a grand example of how I should present no man’s land and all my other stuff so I think you know it’s really definitely valuable to kind of like turn and look around in the community that you have

um for inspiration and even some advice really which is why I asked these questions at the end of the show so I think that’s a very good point definitely um to kind of push on and really you know wrap up the tail end of the show I want to know what is your favorite thing about the Australian Indie comic Community slash industry the community the community and the

Jess Cate (53:24):
support um and the just the openness

um and people willing to embrace we’ve got so many great creators out there doing amazing things and so diverse and so many different genres it’s just fantastic

um and I think it’s it’s great to be able to connect with people not just to have this be some big undertaking that other people are doing in other countries um very professionally and it’s so Out Of Reach because as you know it’s not out of reach you can do it and you can be part of it and yeah we’re so lucky in that regard

Sheydin Dew (54:04):
definitely definitely I think it’s really nice that you touched on um diversity like diversity really in um the community um especially when you kind of you briefly touched on some of your future uh projects um I think you talked about having uh one that kind of touched on the LGB community was that correct or yeah yeah

and I think that was really fantastic to hear that you know there are some pipeline projects in the works um

surrounding that kind of community um and again having uh it’s really wonderful that Shane and I brought you

on this show I think it’s really lovely to have um a female and female presenting kind of um people on the show

as well in the community doing really wonderful things um but yeah I I also really want to know

what do you hope to see in the Aussie comic community or see more like this yeah

Jess Cate (54:57):
um I think more of our little local festivals and um elsewhere would be amazing I think that um it’s great for just the local communities that they’re in as well to have similar to what we’ve got and what Perth has um just to have that place where they can go and be like oh I love this young people especially um to see the creators and to hear from local people that are doing these things and clubs that they can become part of um drawing groups that sort of stuff I think that those things are amazing that’s how I started doing how to Milly error and I would say that any of that

sort of um community is yeah it’s it’s daunting for a lot of people um I know that yeah I find it hard to go to lots of events um anxiety and and other things sometimes become a little bit overwhelming to get out there but yeah if you if you have that as an

option at least you know that you can you can get on there and do the things
that you want to do it’s not insurmountable it’s definitely

SHeydin Dew (56:04):
definitely I think that’s really really wonderful and I really like that answer as well like having smaller events and um focusing more on like smaller communities wherever you may be watching the show um I think I think that’s really really nice to hear um but yeah again I just really want to

thank you so much for being on the show tonight um it’s really wonderful having a credit like yourself someone who I have admired for so many years um I really want to know well I guess I really want you to kind of shout out a

little bit more to um the viewers at home uh where we can find Millie era just to round out the show

Jess cate (56:40):
yeah well please um head to Heart of um spelling is here because I know um that it is hard to say and spell

um so you can bookmark it um sign up for the mailing list too and I’ll send you a heads up to when we’ve got a new page um which is getting better I promise there’ll be a

new page there was a new one up today um and I’ll do another new page in two weeks and hopefully fortnightly from

Sheydin Dew (57:11):
there amazing um well that kind of concludes the the show for tonight um again uh we have got four shows during the week we have got the uh chin mag with Lee Chalker on the Tuesdays Tuesday cheese Works uh we’ve got this show who I also co-host with Morgan Quaid um fortnightly uh and then we’ve also got uh the Friday drink and draws which

is super fun and we’ve also got the Sunday spotlights as well um so be sure to check out the the

upcoming shows this week um but with all that I think that’s pretty much all from me unless you’ve

got anything else to add Shane
Shane ‘Sizzle’ Syddall (57:50):
um I was gonna say like And subscribe is always an important one uh like the video subscribe to the channel That helps us out a lot thank you very much so you won’t miss all the future shows like the ones that were just mentioned and

also we’ve got some comments coming in last minute coming slowly thank yous oh

thank you so much for watching guys amazing amazing I just want to say thank

Sheydin Dew (58:16):
you again um for being on the show Jess thanks for having me definitely definitely no thank

you very much was there anything else Jane

Shane ‘Sizzle’ Syddall (58:27):
oh well I was just going to say as a credit to you Jess when I was reading um heart of miliera I got so involved in the story I was about five pages into the second story

before I realized the art had changed [Laughter]

different what’s going on now looking at the bottom oh that’s a new name oh okay oh yay I’m glad yes it was a lot of fun

Sheydin Dew (58:53):
um but um that’s not a testimonial to your work Jess I don’t know what is so there
you go guys you should definitely check it out yeah go

Shane ‘Sizzle’ Syddall (59:02):
check it out it’s a great book um thank you very much Jess thank you very much Jayden and good night to all thank you so much take care bye

Voice Over (59:12):
check out for all things comics and find out what Comics is all about we hope you enjoyed the show


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