He’s recently joined up with the Mad Cave crew as the new VP of Business Development and I thought it was a good idea to sit him down for a little Q and A! So venture forth in this new edition of the Mind Meld featuring Mark Irwin!
1. Hello there, and welcome to the Mind Meld here at IndieComiX! And first off, I’d like to congratulate you on your new position with the Mad Cave crew. Now, for those who may yet to be familiar with you, could you tell us a bit about yourself?
Thank you, very happy to be with Mad Cave. Um, I was born and raised in San Diego (been doing SDCC since I was 11), went to the Kubert School (1st job in comics was as a letterer while still in school, then background inker), and worked for Heavy Metal, Wildstorm, Upper Deck, Insight, IDW, Marvel, DC, Dark Horse, Image, and others, in a wide variety of roles (art director, editor, artist, writer, project manager, brand manager, editorial director, etc.). I still live in San Diego, still surf, still listen to heavy metal, and have an amazing wife and daughters and cats.
2. What led to you becoming the Vice President of Business Development for the Cave?
I reached out to Mark London through a mutual friend and we started discussing where Mad Cave was and where it wanted to be. Mark has a vision, and we both felt I could help Mad Cave in reaching it.
3. How busy have you been so far since taking on the role?
Very busy, so far! Lots of meetings, lots of planning, lots of conversation. The team at Mad Cave is great, ambitious, and fun to work with!
4. I know you can’t say much about what’s all in the works regarding plans for the future of the Cave, but is there anything you can share?
Well, we’re all excited about The Last Session – Jasmine Walls, Dozerdraws, and Micah Meyers have hit this one out of the park. Bountiful Garden, Becstar, and Battlecats – the 3 B’s – continue the run of unique and exciting content from Mad Cave. And Needle & Thread, the debut from our Maverick imprint, came out today, as well. Powerful titles from great creatives keep us all on our toes and inspired!
5. You’ve got a long history in the World of Comics, what led to you originally becoming part of it?
Long story short- after years of puttering around in construction jobs and the like, my then-girlfriend-now-wife convinced me re-apply to the Kubert School (I’d been accepted while in high school, but my parents didn’t want me to go to art school), and it changed everything for me. I learned just enough to be dangerous, made lifelong friends and connections, and have never looked back!
6. Since the start of the Pandemic, quite a lot has been shaken up and the Comics World is certainly no stranger to that. Do you think we’ll continue to see things shake up and if whether or not that’s for better or worse?
I believe that, no matter what is happening in the world, stories continue to drive us. Stories interest everyone – no matter what walk of life they’re in. As long as comics continues to be ground zero for creators telling compelling stories, I believe it will continue to grow. There’s always a home for great content.
7. Where do you stand when it comes to Print VS. Digital?
I believe in both! I understand that some folks are more comfortable reading on a screen/tablet, and I know some folks love the feel of paper and a beautiful printed book in their hands. Ideally, the content is strong enough so that you can provide both things.
All I can say is – Watch this space!
9. As for my final question, what advice would you give to those looking to get into the Comics Industry?
My best advice is, be consistent and be nice – If you’re uber-talented, that’s just a bonus.
Editor’s Note: Huge thanks to Mark for agreeing to take part in this interview! I, and others, look forward to seeing the future of Mad Cave develop with you involved!