[Editor’s Note: This is the first in a series of some of my favorite webcomics creator interviews that previously ran on WizardUniverse.com and were a part of the site’s archives that are no longer hosted there. Many of the creators I spoke with have gone on to do some big things recently, such as Jesse Reklaw, who released a collection of Slow Wave from Dark Horse Comics. This interview was originally posted on August 11, 2006.]
Jesse Reklaw has been churning out webcomics since Netscape Navigator was the Web browser of choice and today’s most popular webcomics were nothing more than twinkles in their founders’ eyes. Slow Wave, Reklaw’s long-running webcomic is an ink-and-text translation of other people’s dreams, related to Reklaw from the dreamers’ own memories of their experiences.
I caught up with Reklaw and asked him about the long road he’s traveled since he started his webcomic, all the crazy dreams he gets in the mail and what he’s had censored in the Midwest.
BRIAN WARMOTH: For people who aren’t familiar with Slow Wave, can you talk a bit about how you got into comics and why you started publishing online?
JESSE REKLAW: Right. Well, I’ve been reading comics forever. I think that I started with drugstore comics, and I don’t know, but I think that quickly after reading comics I decided that I wanted to make my own. It takes a lot longer to develop the skills to do it than it does to develop the desire. So I was doing some mini-comics in college in the early ’90s when the Web first started to appear. It was a pretty exciting possibility then.
Were there any other comics being published on the Web when you started yours, or did you have a model to look at when you began?
REKLAW: I can’t think of any other comics that I saw online. Although, there were a lot of art sites where people posted stories and paintings and stuff like that. But I can’t think of any other comics that I saw when I first started. There might have been, though, and I could be blanking on them. I can’t remember. Pretty soon after I had Slow Wave, a lot of publications that had comics started putting them on their own websites. I think that Salon did that. I might not have my facts right. And maybe The Onion had some.