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Jacob Murray Interview
[00:00:00] Jeff: Hello listeners. A spoiler country today on the show we have Jacob Marie, how’s it going? Jacob going great. I’m doing very well. So how’s life treating you right now.
Jacob Murray: I got a endemic dog in my lap, so pretty good.
Jeff: You know, it does, it does make life better. Doesn’t it? When a dog in your lap can always make any situation, feel better.
Jacob Murray: Depending on her mood. Yes.
Jeff: Hopefully it’s in a good mood right now.
Jacob Murray: She’s
Jeff: pretty chill. And that means we actually have a very first listener.
Jacob Murray: Right. Ready-made
Jeff: hopefully the dog doesn’t get up and walk away and they’ll get a bad sense of what the podcast is audiences feeling right now. Right. So, so, Jacob, where does your love of comics come from?
Jacob Murray: A lot of account books is kinda came at me. Two-pronged like I started reading comp. I love the comic book store. When I was a kid, I had a local shop with an owner who was a Dick. But I wasn’t old enough to really notice what a [00:01:00] Dick he was yet. But he sold spawn comics and spawn was the first comic I really got into, you know what I mean?
I think a lot of, you know, I’m 30, what the hell am I? I’m 36. So I think a lot of people, my age kind of. No spawn came out when we were just able to read and start demanding our parents take us places. So I, I love spawn. It was the first comic I ever collected, but it was like way over my head and so wordy.
So I re I don’t think I actually really read it. And same with X-Men. I bought a lot of X-Men comics when I was a kid, but again, I just loved the art. I didn’t actually, I didn’t actually like reading much at all until I was a teenager, but by that time I hadn’t really read comics. Like, I, I just, you know, once I got into high school, not that I stopped being a nerd, I was still a total nerd, but I wasn’t really going to a comic book store and doing that kind of thing.
So I really was away from comics from, you know, my teen years up until my mid twenties. And I forgot. I [00:02:00] can’t, I can’t remember exactly what it was, but at some point I went, you know what, I call myself like a geek. And I, if someone asked me if I liked comic books, I say, yes, and yet I would say yes, and yet I don’t really actually read them.
So maybe I should. I went back and I bought a bunch of old omnibuses starting with like, you know, John Sima’s a silver surfer was one of the first ones I bought. And decided I love that character. You know, I have to read it. I bought a bunch of the old X-Men nomina buses and, and I was enjoying them, but, you know, and then I read And then I read Sandman for the first time when I was like 20 or something like that.
Yeah. And I, like, I always feel like a little lame, like, so, you know, the kids today would say so basic that Sandman made me really fall in love with comic, but it’s true. It is just the way it is. Cause it’s a, it’s a fucking masterpiece and how could you love it? So I, it blew my mind in terms of what the media could actually do.
And it stopped being just fun, goofy, nerdy [00:03:00] stuff at that point and became like a really true artistic medium to me. And that’s what made me actually want to start writing them. When then full circle made me start appreciating the artistry that goes into the, you know, more quote unquote pulpy, Opie comics.
Jeff: Well, you said a lot of very cool things. First off, I find it funny that when you’re first coming up here, but was spawn. Cause one of those comic books that a parent buys for their kid because they don’t because they just assume every comic book is made for a kid and they have no idea what they’re really, I think.
Jacob Murray: Yeah, not quite like the Marilyn Manson albums. I made my mother buy what she swiftly took away from me when I played,
Jeff: I w well, I was I’m actually, I’m a little older than you are, but Marilyn Manson. Gosh, I started listening to him got right when I started college and that was yeah, it was Marilyn Manson spawn and Sam, and for me right around the time when I was about 20 or so which would have been around 2000 and, you know, you had antichrist superstar.
It was right around the time of mechanical animals came out, which I [00:04:00] know a lot of people give them crap for it, cause it was away from his normal style, but it’s such a good fucking album. It’s such a good album.
Jacob Murray: Yeah, it was that I, and to be honest, I think anti-Christ superstar drew me, not even because of the music so much or his look or anything, but I was just such a rebellious little shit.
And, and so I I saw the cover of that and I went, I want that.
Jeff: Yeah. Did, did, did you ever get around to seeing Manson in concert?
Jacob Murray: I did not. No. I’ve seen a lot of concerts, but I never saw a Manson. I wouldn’t call myself like a huge Marilyn Manson fan. Like I, you know, I, I appreciated him. I listened to him when I was in my young teens and that was about it, but no, I never, I’ve heard.
Jeff: I’ve only been in my entire life to God. I think three concert in my entire life. And one of them was Marilyn Manson and Massachusetts Lowell, Massachusetts. It was a good show. I mean, I kind of get to the point to, apparently he repeats something in every show that it comes off fake when you know it is fake, but he still he’s a great cop.
That was when [00:05:00] he was doing totally weird tours. It was so good. And, but I was accused Manson fan at the time I had I was buying his albums. I had his, like, his biography is, I think it’s an antichrist superstar. It was like a biography book of his, and of course there was a girl I knew in college who was a big fan of his.
So honestly that made me a big man. Yeah, but like I said, and going back to spawn, I was, I did buy a spawn for a little while back in the nineties. Do you still have those comic books?
Jacob Murray: We’ll have the original run I collected. Yeah. I’ve got a couple, a couple of copies of issue. One that I bought. I didn’t start with issue one.
I think I started with like issue like five or six is when I first went to the store and those are the ones that are out in my room. I remember like, even then, like, cause you know, that was that big comic bubble. Even then they were like trying to sell issue one for 20 bucks. And so I remember saving them money so I could finally buy issue one by the time, like issue like nine or 10 came out or something like that.
But I ended up collecting them through 100. Oh, wow. Other than missing. I think I always forget which I’m missing [00:06:00] and all the weird shit I bought on eBay. I’ve never gone back and bought these three issues that I’m missing to complete my one through 100 run. I do still have those 97,100 issues sitting in a
Yeah, I, I think I started buying spawn guy was probably around issue 28 to 30, somewhere in that. And somewhere in that timeframe, I did stop, I think as well around one Oh one, but I went back and bought a few of the older issues. You know, issue nine. I was lucky enough to get 10, seven. I think I got two as well.
My father owns got the first one for me or for himself. But funny thing is like spawn talking about spawns bond has had it. It’s not like a serious resurgence now. It’s actually kind of crazy.
Jacob Murray: Yeah. I know. I, I just, the other day received my Kickstarter respond action
Jeff: figure. Oh, you went for you full full for the Kickstarter on those things, man.
They, they were wanting to do a long time, remember the release, but I remember that kicks are killed it. I made it so much.
Jacob Murray: It did. I was just looking at it yesterday because I couldn’t remember like what all it came with it. Cause I think it was like 2019 or something. Which sadly was a couple of years ago.
[00:07:00] But Yeah, and I, I was, so I was just looking, I think he made like four point million dollars on that. It’s crazy. It’s a cool action figure. You know, it’s fun. I you know, I’m, I’m more of a, I’m a comic collector, but I’m more of a toy collector. So I
Jeff: jumped all over this. Yeah. I think it’s pretty interesting that spawned around issue was issue 300.
All the old comic books are now where so much money there. I mean to go on, even on eBay, they’re like 15 bucks now for just random issues. It’s amazing how it com it came full circle, man. I don’t know if it’s nostalgia and it’s now considered retro to, you know, to get back into spawn, but he, by spawn is such a huge car.
I started buying him as well around issue two 99. Again, it’s good pound books, but I was amazed,
Jacob Murray: no idea what I mean, like I haven’t read any of the issues since, you know, I stopped buying them around issue 100, one 10 or something like that. And I have no idea. I mean, I guess people are still buying it.
Obviously. I just. I have no idea what’s actually going on with it.
Jeff: It well in, I think three months he’s now the company [00:08:00] is now blowing up. It’s not going to be spawn universe. I saw that. I saw that announcement. Yeah. So, if the AMI Farley’s listening, we’re writers, we like spawn. So if you know, if you need anything
Jacob Murray: one day man, one
Jeff: day. Yeah. And like I said, I think it’s cool that you talked about your love of salmon. Salmon became its closest comic. I think I’ve ever read that felt a hundred percent like pure literature. I mean, it’s not even debatable. It’s pure literature.
Jacob Murray: Yeah. Like I said, it’s a masterpiece and it it’s, it’s just utilizing a different medium to tell a classic story.
Jeff: Yeah. And I actually, there’s several stories of salmon. My day job, I’m an, I’m an English teacher for, for high school and. I so badly wanted to teach some of, you know, teach Sandman to my student because it’s so layered. But unfortunately the the combination of nudity and language and Gord made it impossible.
Jacob Murray: Oh my God. I’m sorry. I need to stop the dog. No worries. Okay.
[00:09:00] Sorry. Yeah, that’s a shame, you know, and especially you teach high school. Yeah. You think high school students would friggin deal with it. I’m sure they could.
Jeff: Right. Any administration that the kids would be fine. The it’d be the parents and the administration who I’d hear from immediately. The ones I tried, you know, tried to
Jacob Murray: do it.
That’s a shame too, because. One of the main things I think that keeps people away from comics is that they even think that they’re childish or anything. I know a lot of people who like, perfectly accept that comics is a, is a legitimate medium, but they don’t have, they don’t have the skillset to read it.
And I’ve, you know, in Sandman is a hard one to start with, even though that’s like the best one for people who aren’t necessarily into like, you know, nerdy stuff, pulpy stuff, superheroes, like the, the subject matter. [00:10:00] And the story of Sandman is something really relatable. And I think has broad appeal, but it’s a hard book to read.
If you’ve never read it, read a comic book and I’ve given it to a few people who don’t read comic books and I get the same thing. They go, I don’t know how to read it. And it’s just, you know, and I it’s just a thing because they didn’t read them growing up and. You know, I think you kind of almost need those pulpy books just to kind of usher you into the medium a little bit.
You know, it’s it’s interesting. And so I’ve actually, especially with my book, like a couple of friends who I’ve given them, even the book too, they’re like, I want to read your book. I just, I just don’t know how it sounds. It sounds lame, but it’s true. I mean, we take it, you know, people read comic books, take it for granted that if you’re not used to reading a combination of, you know, there’s a lot of, there’s a lot of little nuance rules in how you read a comic book, you know, from the way captions differ from bubbles, you know, literally just, you know, the left to right flow.
That’s not [00:11:00] quite always a left to right flow because sometimes it’s a left down and then up and across flow age spreads, what does that mean? And all these little things, just make people go. I, I, you know, if you’re not comfortable with it or read something else,
Jeff: you know, I agree with you a hundred percent.
I’ve actually tried a few times to teach a Batman nightfall. I was doing a a series on Epic, Epic, and tragic heroes. I thought, you know, Batman nightfall is a very interesting take on that idea because I think I had Batman as a tragic care because as he loses at the end of nightfall and I tried it.
Yeah. My kids didn’t understand how to read the comic. And I was shocked because it was, again, I’ve read for solo comma for so long. It just seems like something you just know. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Then go ahead and take it for granted. Yeah. A hundred percent. And I actually tweeted at Neil Gaiman some, some years ago and I treated at him.
I was like, and I can’t remember exactly, but something along the lines of, I would love to teach. I think it was Orpheus the was it the one-shot Orpheus comic book? I was like, I’d love to teach [00:12:00] Orpheus if you could only make it a PG 13 version of it. And he comes back to me and goes, I have no idea if that would even look like I was like, all right, sorry,
Jacob Murray: has this.
And I can, I can understand he has one of my favorite quotes, even though I can’t remember it verbatim. And I can’t find it either. I think it’s in the, it’s an American gods. I believe, and, or in a reference, in something he wrote about American gods. Like I know that I know the essence of the quote, but I’ve never been able to go back and actually find the things so I can write it down and say it word for word.
But the gist of it is the only way to tell a story is to tell the story. There’s no summarizing, there’s no facsimile. There’s no cliff notes that can make up for just actually digesting a story the way it was meant to be told, because you can’t take in all of them. Everything that was put into it is there for a reason.
And it’s part of what you get out of it. So even I can see even something like that, like yeah, sure. [00:13:00] Could you hypothetically sanitize something by taking away, you know, tits and ass and, you know, changing out curse words for other words, and maybe nuancing some subject matter or whatever to make an art book, a PG 13 book, like, yeah, I guess you could, but it would be a different book
Jeff: when you’re writing the eights and mortal, which is definitely not sanitize for, you know, children or whatnot.
Is that something you take to heart? Do you look when you, when you are running for that comic, you look at it and think, is there anything here that can be removed or do you look at it? As it is exactly what it needs to be on every base, let me do it from the, from either a page, a panel or an issue.
Jacob Murray: With, with eighth immortal, which yeah.
Is, is totally not for kids. I was, I was just writing back to someone else and I love IRA glasses of wine. This book acknowledges the existence of sex. It’s just such a nice, polite [00:14:00] way of putting it. I never wanted that stuff to be necessarily front and center, like at my local comic book shop owner Paul, how’s the secrets joked at me when I gave him the book the first time he said, Hey, nice spank book, buddy.
And I went, God damn it like fucking with me because he knew that would piss me off. But you know, it’s not like if you were just to flip through it, you’ll go, Oh, wow. Look like that. Woman’s naked. Yeah. Oh, those people are having sex, but it’s there because. Because a it’s an, it’s literally functional to the story itself.
So I, if I was to take it out of it, it would mean that something that’s integral to the story, would I just be talking about it instead of showing it and that felt wrong, but also the whole point of the book sorry, that barked Pierce my brain the whole point of the book is, is about connecting with kind of the yumminess of humanity.
And that’s what these immortals have lost, is their ability to connect with [00:15:00] the sweetness, the sourness, the bitterness, the joy, and the pleasure of being human they’re they’re desensitized. And so, you know, sex is a convenient and, you know, kind of easy way to, to highlight that. But I, like I said, I, I didn’t want it to be a quote unquote spank book.
I didn’t want it to be something that is just about selling sex. That’s why I didn’t put anything like that on the covers, even though I certainly could have an announced, like, Hey, that’s what this book is about. Like, it’s, I want it to exist in the book, the way it exists in people’s lives. That’s something that’s important.
And something that, that, that has a lot of weight to it. It influences a lot of our decisions. We write, we wrap a lot of our emotional baggage into sex, but we also don’t, you know, the healthy ones among us, don’t define our entire lives by it. But we also can’t ignore it, even if we’re trying a little, even if a lot of us are skittish about it in public discourse.
So I, I do want to [00:16:00] push the aspect of it that I’m frustrated by the fact that, you know, You know, and an issue, a bunch of, in one of the issues, a bunch of children get murdered. And I said to, I was joking with someone that was kind of talking to me about like, you know, the, the sex part of the book would be uncomfortable for a lot of people.
And I said, yeah. And I bet you, those people won’t bat an eye at me having massacred a bunch of children. And that, that has always inherently bothered me. It’s the term sex and violence always being thrown together has always bothered me. So I wanted to showcase sex in a way that is at once. Just it’s just there, you know, it’s not the whole fucking point of it.
It’s not there to make you horny it, but. You know, it’s, I’m, I’m waffling on here. So your question was, could I just remove it? No, I couldn’t, but, but I was conscious about not overdoing it. I did check in with people. I, I wanna, I want to push up [00:17:00] to that line of making people a little uncomfortable or raising an eyebrow without.
Without losing them because well, this is just smart. So
Jeff: the, the one thing about discussing things like, such as sex that is because that it’s such a personal thing, does it feel like, do you feel exposed by presenting it in as a writer into your work? Did it take you a moment to be confident with doing, adding that to your story?
Jacob Murray: You know, I’m still not fully confident because the answer to your question is a resounding yes, it’s very, it’s, it’s inherently kind of uncomfortable and that’s me pushing up against my own problem with it, because even I’m going, I just spent all this time walking, you know, going on about how, you know, we shouldn’t be in this way.
And yet I acknowledge that I am. So it’s, it’s, it’s a thing that’s kind of a challenge to myself to put it out there. I mean, I’ve given, I’ve handed this book to coworkers and I’m always like. You know, a little [00:18:00] terrified doing it. And I got to say like, I’ve been really, really happy that so far almost no one has mentioned it to me.
And that makes me happy. Like the couple of people, like if joked about it, you know, like I said, but, you know, but no one’s gone. Wow. That book’s really spicy. Or, you know, I mean, maybe they were thinking it like, what the hell, Jesus Christ, you know, Jacob’s a pervert or something, but again, I didn’t even want that, you know?
But yeah, it’s, it’s it’s not revealing, but it is, it is. I mean, just like any writing is, you know, you’re, you’re exposing a piece of yourself. And so, you know, even just dipping your toe into exposing that side of yourself is is, is a bit uncomfortable, but also. Well I’m no, nevermind going well.
Jeff: it was interesting that you, that you make the comparison with the combination of sex and violence. Because I mean, and obviously I think that’s an inherently [00:19:00] maybe American sensibility. I would, I would imagine because we are oddly comfortable with violence and we’re very, very, very shy about sex.
And, you know, it’s, it’s sort of like the news is like, think the news, for instance, very happy to discuss a massacre, but Yeah. Any mention of sex is that can make it the television, you know, it’s, it’s a very, I wonder what it says an interesting thing about the nature of our society as well.
Jacob Murray: Yeah. It speaks to, I mean, it speaks to our values, you know?
Well, I hope that with this, this country was founded by a bunch of people who, for whom, you know, the Catholic church, wasn’t oppressive enough, a bunch of Puritans who went, you know, what, all you, all, you, religious people, you, you’re not doing a good enough job. We’re going to go, we’re going to go be even more religious somewhere else.
Jeff: had no problem with massacring the native Americans, but it was the sex that was kept behind doors.
Jacob Murray: Yeah. It’s all, it’s all gross. [00:20:00] And, you know, yeah,
Jeff: so, so where did the idea of the eighth mortal come from?
Jacob Murray: The very first Genesis of it was, was just a dream I had You know, in the book share upon the main character has this prayer which is how she exerts her power or ability to unmake morals.
And prayer goes with my right hand blessing with my left, the curse. And those words were spoken by this strange woman in this dream to me. And we were like, just like, remember where I was in a bunker and this woman was carrying something and I didn’t quite know what it was. And she wasn’t really speaking to me, but I was there and she was like saying this prayer to this thing.
She was holding. And I just woke up like, You know, it was such a weird, mysterious dream that had like no context to any, I couldn’t, I couldn’t, you know, in any way go, Oh, that was, you know, this kind of thing I’m worrying about, or, yeah, I dreamt about, you know, giant shark [00:21:00] people because I watched park week or any like nothing, I, I couldn’t, I couldn’t map it onto anything.
It just, it was just one of those dreams that felt like it was talking to me. And so I just set out to kind of figure out like, you know, who that woman was. And so I started thinking about it and just those words of my right hand of blessing with my left, her purse just kept replaying in my head and replaying in my head.
So I, I wrote out the rest of that from there and that kind of just jumping off point or
Jeff: a story it’s kind of funny when people who aren’t writers and the ask the question, where does your ideas come from? And I guess the right answer is just the most random of crap.
Jacob Murray: It generally really is like, I always align, I went to film school and one of my writing teachers was a big fan of Goodwill hunting and he would talk about it a lot in class.
And you know, that one scene where Matt Damon just like takes apart that, you know, Irish dude with a ponytail in a [00:22:00] bar haven’t seen the movie in a long time, but I vaguely remember that scene, but it’s like really intense scene and it’s just really pithy and witty. And and it’s like, it tells you a lot about the character, but it’s also just in terms of the story.
It’s not necessarily neither here nor there. And it’s early on like. And I remember him saying that he thinks that that entire movie was probably written around someone thinking of that one conversation. And then I, well, who the hell are those people that just had that conversation? I, and I find that that’s kind of true with a lot of the lot of the writing that I have either it’s something a dream or just as, you know, just a way you notice something like, you know, stories don’t come to you all at once.
Like you tease them out and that’s, what’s fun about it is you’re, you’re exploring the depth of your own mind and kind of unraveling these things. And that’s why people talk about like, you know, muses and, you know, and people feeling like they’re just, you know, conduits and whatever. And while I don’t necessarily go that far, there’s, there is that sense about it that, you know, [00:23:00] these things just kind of materialize and, and, and, and often in random chaotic ways.
And your job is to, you know, put order to that chaos.
Jeff: No. And I agree with you a hundred percent. There’s a I’m a very indie comic writer. I’m obviously not as far as long as you are. But I had set up to write a new comic book myself I’m not gonna go too much into details cause I, it literally something that is about three days old, as far as the discussion, the agreement, all that stuff to do it.
And the idea that I originally had for it. And I was very excited about it. And what I pitched was very much flipped and the guy said, well, I don’t want that as an idea. I want this instead because he’s paying the bill so sure. Whatever, you know, and I was I, I was up all night without an idea. I had no idea whatsoever.
The next morning, nothing for like eight or nine hours. And my wife is talking to her friends, you know, at, at, at, at, at my front yard. And I’m standing there not really paying attention zoning out, and the idea pops in my head that solves the problem that I [00:24:00] have for, and just pop them for no reason. I think myself, that’s basically in a nutshell how ideas happen.
It’s just, it’s just random things. Just click.
Jacob Murray: Yeah. They’re just little lightning. Bolts of kismet.
Jeff: Yeah. And I agree with you a hundred percent. So with the eighth mortal, once you got your idea, how did you, why did you choose source source point press as being the book? Oh
Jacob Murray: So I sent out, I sent this out to a handful of publishers.
Like I put together the pitch with a pitch with Alice, the Alex Barnes, the artists you know, so first I went out and I said, I needed an artist and I went and, you know, lucked into meeting her. And we put this pitch together and, you know, I was, I had no plan other than just to, you know, send it out to a bunch of Commonwealth publishers.
And I figured if none of that works, I can just make it myself and whatever. And as I was sending it out to people, it was actually a a friend of mine who is in a toy collecting group [00:25:00] with me. Matthew I had no idea. He worked for source point for us to be honest at the time I hadn’t heard of source point press And I, I, it just came up that I was doing this, anyone, wait a minute, you write comics.
And I said, yeah. And he said, you know, I work for a comic book company. Right. And, you know, it was just one of I, so, you know, he gave me the, you know, the quote unquote in, and I sent it to his, to the CEO, Travis Travis liked it. And then away we went, you know what I mean? Then it’s like, that sounds really annoying in a lot of ways, but to be honest, every good thing that’s ever happened to me in my life has, has a similar kind of origin story.
Just kind of tripping over my own deck into a, you know, into meeting the right person who just kind of connects you the right place. And, you know,
Jeff: well, for our listeners who may not be aware of source source point press I will say they kind of like hit, has really hit the map, I guess, within the last two years.
And they’ve been growing quite steadily and I think they’ve been putting out some very great work.
Jacob Murray: Yeah. Yeah, I [00:26:00] agree. I mean, I really think they, I think they’ve been around maybe five or six years, but it took them a while. And I know, I know that made a bigger investment because they also do they’re part of a company called oxide that it goes beyond just comic books.
They make, they have a lot of really successful tabletop board games and, you know, they’re working on some animations and some different things. And so they’re kind of a multi-faceted media company. And, but they’re, it’s, it’s a small group of people in Michigan, mostly in Michigan and they’re all just passionate nerds and they’re doing the stuff that they love.
And I think from everyone I’ve talked to there, they all kind of have the same story of like having been in other industries, you know, and going, I’m not happy. I’m not happy with this. I want to be doing something I enjoy. And they all, and Travis was the, you know, the first one of those and he created this company and.
It was just gathered the small group of really intense, hardworking people who all kind of, you know, came from that same [00:27:00] place of not being satisfied, just, you know, working for some company that didn’t mean anything to them and, you know, wanting to put their passions into into action. And I think that’s starting to really come through with with their comic books because that’s every writer I know that works for them.
It’s the same kind of thing. Like they’re just really passionate, passionate people who just want to tell stories in one, I, you know, get their work out there for no other reason than, you know, they feel like they need to need to see it through, you know, and they’ve hit upon some, some really gem books that, you know, hopefully are really starting to, to get on the map and get on people’s radars.
I know the, I know the conflict stories near me are starting to become more aware of them. You know, when I first paired up with them, you know, a year or so a year plus ago got almost two, I guess. They you know, I started asking around and yeah, not, not a lot of people had heard of them, but now in the last six months as the has been coming out, I’ve been talking to more retailers and [00:28:00] more fans and readers and people, and, and they’re definitely more aware of them now.
And for good reason. Now
Jeff: I remember correctly the books say on that source point press, correct. To
Jacob Murray: know. I’m not sure. I not, that’s not one I’m familiar with seance. Yeah. I think it’s like
Jeff: something they do. I, I, I’m gonna have to check it to be sure, because maybe the, I think that’s the first book that exposed me to what they were, but if I’m totally wrong and I was gonna apologize now that I know I’m talking about, but I’m pretty sure it does.
I’m just not sure. So, so you have the idea a zebra than prior, as you said to shopping it around you come across Alice Lee Barnes. Who’s the artist. How does that partnership work? How do I mean, are you doing a full script? Are you doing plot? Was there a discussion of what you wanted in the comic and not in the comic book?
Jacob Murray: Yeah. So I’m a full script writer. I’m very, I’m [00:29:00] pretty particular read annoying in many ways. You know, my, so I, I, I come from a TV film background, so writing a full script is the only thing that made any sense to me. And to be honest, the reason I got into comic books was because when I would write movie scripts, everyone would say don’t direct on the page.
And that always pissed me off because I also besides writing, I also, you know, I work in, I primarily work in second television associate director working my way up to director. Like, I, I love that aspect of storytelling as well. And. Unless you’re going to write and produce your own movies, which is fun.
I mean, I’ve done short films like that. It’s it takes a lot of money and it’s it’s not something you can, I mean, you can’t just make a comic book on your own, but you can make a comic book with like three or four people. Right. You can’t make a movie with three or four people really, unless you’re just, you know, jerking around on your, your iPhone or something like that, which is totally fun.
Cool. So I [00:30:00] jumped account books because to me, I was like, the point is that I get to direct on the page and then, you know, I’ve disabused myself of that notion a little bit, the more I’ve done it and learn to trust artists and, you know, Let go of some control and not feel like I have to like, you know, clot out every last little nuance of it and, you know, demand that an artist do that.
And also I’ve noticed different artists respond different ways, some like that. Some hate it. Alice, I think is really good is a really good fit for me because her temperament is really even keeled and she absorbed stuff without really throwing it back at you. So if you, if I, if I over direct her at any point, if I over script, she doesn’t get overwhelmed and try and stick so intensely to that, that it all follows.
It falls apart because often when I do over script something, I’m missing something that only an artist would understand about how [00:31:00] this should be put together. Even into that clean, as simple as I put too much action in one panel, or I put too many panels on one page or whatever No. And part of that is just, like I said, I haven’t been writing comics for the longest time.
So also I’m working through my own sensibilities of what works and what doesn’t work. So she was great in that she didn’t reflect that energy poorly, but also was totally willing, like to change stuff around and she’d read my scripts and I’d get art back and, Oh, cool. She, she did that, that worked out really well.
Okay. When you talk about that, but then she’d throw her own shit in there because she acknowledged from the very beginning that this is her book too. And that’s the way I pitched it to her at first that I wanted, I, as particular as I am and as verbose as I obviously am, I also thrive off, off shared creativity.
And I always hope that, you know, my ideas spur other ideas. And even if I have a really specific, [00:32:00] clear intention, it’s always open to being batted around. And chewed on and I want other stuff to fill in the gaps. And sometimes other, you know, her ideas will send me off in a different direction. And when I first came to her, I had written the scripts already.
I’d written five scripts. When I first wanted to make this book that I wrote back in 2015 back when I didn’t know what the hell I was doing was the first comic book I ever tried writing. And I had sent them I had sent the scripts to Craig, Kyle, who is a at the time. Well, no, he previously was a writer with Marvel.
Now he’s a, a film writer and executive producer. He has put out that just executive produced that new Pacific room series which is really cool. The black, if you haven’t seen it yet on Netflix. But he also uses the co-creator of X 23 and he got a really cool comic career and you know, wrote a lot of X-Men animated TV and.
Different really cool shit. And he gave me a lot of feedback and said, you know, you need to figure out how to actually write a comic [00:33:00] book scripted. Basically he literally said, I’m not even going to talk to you about your story because we’ve got some problems before we even get there. This is great.
And he sent me a bunch of his, you know, he sent me a bunch of his old scripts so that I can see, you know, see at least how Marvel formatted things. And I I rewrote the script again, and then I sat on them for a couple years. Cause I didn’t know what to do with them. And then I was wandering around a smaller convention in California, long beach Comic-Con and I knew that I wanted to find an artist for this book.
And I have an a, but I had no idea what I want it to look like. Like I know this book has like an anime feel to it, but at the beginning I had no idea that it was going to look like that. I hadn’t literally had no idea. I kept seeing artists, my friends kept sending me artists and I just went, yeah, it’s really nice art, but I don’t know.
And nothing, you know, not that it would be bad or wrong. It just didn’t jump out at me and going yes, that, and I walked by Alice’s booth and she had this one picture of a ballerina in a Tutu [00:34:00] in like a Lily pond. And something about that just struck me as like, up until that moment, I had no idea what they have more to look like, but I went, I want to look like that.
Hmm. And so I struck up a conversation with her and met with her later and, you know, pitched her the story. And luckily she was open to it. I really lucked out. I mean, it’s just kind of was one of those things that timed out. Well, she had time in her schedule. She had been drawing comic books that she had written and she had wanted to work with a writer.
And so we just kind of embarked on this journey together. That was really fresh and new for both of us in so many ways. And it’s been, it’s been a really rewarding, rewarding relationship. I hope every artist I get to work with in the future is as awesome
Jeff: as she is. And I will say the art in data mortal is brilliant.
The publicist Melissa from don’t hide PR was nice enough to send me a review copies of the first three issues of the eighth and mortar. So I got to read them all. And w I mean, not only did I like the story about the artists, the artists [00:35:00] absolutely brilliant. And I think one of the most interesting things as well, what the art.
That coincides with it is the coloring. It feels like very intentional coloring that that makes any sense what is being colored or not colored is, is very intentional.
Jacob Murray: Yeah.
Jeff: Cool. Yeah. I mean, for instance, like Denise has green eyes in the very first issue, Santa very intentional addition. So is that you in your directing saying what you want colored or is that the colorist or Alice?
Determining what to emphasize.
Jacob Murray: It’s both. It’s it’s one of those things that just kind of evolved that it first came out of necessity. You know, She traditionally in comic books only worked in black and white, like when she made, she she’s, she’s made her own a comic book version of pride and prejudice, and that’s all in black and white, you know, and for her it’s just a time thing.
And also I don’t, you know, I think she prefers toning and inking and she’s a manga artist and most mangoes in black and [00:36:00] white, and I love anime and I’m not a huge mango fan. And so when I, when I decided, when we decided to work together, the one thing I thought was like, you know, there’s elements of this story that definitely, I see Dr.
Jiving with, you know, with that manga sensibility, but I don’t read manga, so I can’t put out a friggin manga having not read it. That wouldn’t be right. And also I’m a, I’m a Western storyteller. I don’t write quite that way, even though I appreciate it. Like, I, I, I knew that this book had to appeal to a Western audience and let’s be honest, Western audiences are not really down with black and white books.
As beautiful as they can be. We’re, we’re a sensory overload culture. For the most part, you know, all the success of walking dead aside, like, can you name one other black and white comic book that’s successful.
Jeff: I would say black and white. Yes. Assessed.
Jacob Murray: No,
Jeff: I guess maybe I dunno, Sarah, this was that black and white. I think that was
Jacob Murray: wasn’t it black and white and that’s old and that’s, and even that [00:37:00] that’s, that’s successful, but still very obscure. Very true. But anyway, so, and again, I wasn’t, so I wasn’t like totally opposed to it.
And she said, look, I’m, I usually don’t work in color. And if I’m going to do this, I don’t have the time to do full color either. I don’t have the time, the time to commit to that. And totally understandable. And we talked about, at first we talked about hiring colorists and then I literally didn’t know any colorists and, you know, we were thinking maybe we would just hire one down the line, but then we started putting together the art.
And the one thing I said to her was I said, look like it’s in the script that, you know, one of the ways we tell a morals from other people is that their eyes are green. And there’s this sequence in the first book where someone’s eyes changed from blue to green. And that’s from the very beginning was how I wanted to get that little story point across.
And I didn’t want to change it. And so I said, can we at least, you know, color the, Oh my God made quiet. Can we at least color the eyes in? [00:38:00] And she said, yeah, sure, no problem. And then, you know, I feel like it was her idea she’s told me it was my idea, but it, it was just organic that from there we went, Hey, well, what if we just like added a little wash to it?
Like, can we just like heighten one panel? Like, you know, if it’s a matter of, you know, function and time and Can we get away with doing something a little different and at the very least that would satisfy my worry that people picking up. It was literally a worry that people picking up a comic book would flip through it, see black and white, and then go, no thanks.
Right. And not give it a chance because I know for a lot of people or like me, that was comics, the art sells you on and the writing keeps you invested in it, right? Like as lovely as so many books are, I will buy the first issue of a book based on art alone. I will often buy the second issue of a book based on art alone.
I will not buy the third and beyond based on art alone, never. Right. It happens that way, even though there’s [00:39:00] beautiful books out there that has to coalesce, but the art has to get me invested in less. I’m already familiar with a writer who I know is going to give me a good story. The art is what’s going to grab me and drag.
Correct and, and suck me in. So it was at the time I was working on my first comic book that I put out with a side show called a quarter of the dead shadows will be underworld. And the art is there, Ivan characterize who did everything on that book. And he’s just a freaking madman this like 120 pages or so I think I’m fully rendered every page as a painting ever the coloring head, you know, he had some additional help with the colors, but most of it’s hin and he ended up giving that book like themes because the book was kind of structured in that, okay.
The first 30 pages or more focused on this woman, this character, then the next 30 or more focused on that character. And then the next 20 are kind of like a flashback sequence. And so he took that and he [00:40:00] reinterpreted that of his own will in color. And he kind of gave it this, like the first 30 pages are all kind of like, you know, more purples, you know, and then the next 20 or light, very blue.
And then the next ones are very Brown and the last ones are very green. I think it was. And it had this effect that when you flip through it, you just kind of got this sense of flow just from the color. And it was really cool. And so I S I said, maybe we can kind of get a sense of that so that when someone’s flipping through it, they just get a sense, a feeling from it that it’s not just looking at wondering whether the art is good or not, but that you get a vibe off it just by flipping through it.
And so that was kind of the impetus for saying, okay. And the rule that we came up with was every page has to have at least one thing colored and whether the end and ideally that’s a story point, but if it’s not a story point, then it’s just something that’s, you know, focused on. An item, a pair of jeans or it’s the, the [00:41:00] emotional core of a page or a scene.
Let’s heighten that with a mood, with a mood color that kind of gets across the mood of that scene or that page. And that’s where all the color washes and stuff come from. And I mean, I’m, I’m, I’m super happy that you are not the first person that asked me about that. And I’ve been asked about it a lot because it’s this really cool thing that I think really makes the book unique.
And it’s kind of fun that it’s, you know, we get to take credit for having come up with this cool thing that we just kind of fell into, just, you know, the neces, you know, well, they say necessity is the mother of all invention.
Jeff: And like I said, it was, it’s a very well done series. The first half of the series opens with the, with the words, everything new requires something old, be lost, even if all that is lost is the absence of something new.
So how does that quote to you represent the series as a whole and kind of like, how did that idea help push the story?
Jacob Murray: So. I’m glad I, I liked that you asked that, and I’m glad that you didn’t ask me to define that line because I’m not sure I can, [00:42:00] but it, you know, it’s, it’s I came up with that way later.
So actually going back, like after I had give after, I’d just Alison, I had decided to do this. Like I went back and rewrote the scripts from scratch for a third time and a lot of that based on her art. And, and at that point, a lot of the story elements that are actually pretty crucial to it came into play at that point.
And it was in that rewrite that, you know, I just, I was, I went back and forth on how to start the book for a long time. And I wanted something that teased a sense of scale a sense of history and. Would just kind of be your entry point gateway into the theme of the book. And so, you know, everything new requires something old be lost is just kind of this, you know, beginning of the word to me, it’s just kind of this truism, that the definition of something, something new coming into your life, [00:43:00] even if it’s just in the sense that in that moment, it replaces space that would have otherwise been occupied by something else.
Something has to go away for something new to be created. The, the reef, the reforming of matter means that, you know, when you, when you cook and you create a dish, you’re losing an egg eggs are in the dish, but you’ve lost an egg. Cause it’s now something new. And you know, that’s, that’s the crux of what these immortals are dealing with is when you never change when you are this constant static thing throughout history, you know what you, what do you lose?
You lose the ability to be new. Again. You lose the ability to grow. We’re constantly becoming new people because like quite literally our cells are replacing themselves every moment of every day. We’re a new person every day we wake up. And so I wanted to play around with this idea that what happens if that goes away for people and you [00:44:00] kind of get locked.
So yeah, so that’s kinda, kinda where that came from. Just the,
Jeff: and you do get those series an interesting sense of time. You feel like a death of time while reading the story and you create it. Am I pronouncing that word correctly is a pylon,
Jacob Murray: Pilon is how I pronounce it Pilon. Okay. Yeah. I’m not sure how, I mean, I didn’t make that word up and I’m not sure exactly how it’s properly pronounced, to be honest.
Jeff: you, you give them a sense of mythology. And it’s definitely a sense of kind of a unique mythology because you’re, you’re, you’re not borrowing directly from Greek Egypt action, whatever mythology, but you do feel like there’s a sense of them they’re like, and like undercurrent of them is would that be correct or not?
Jacob Murray: Yeah. So, you know, You you touch upon that because I did borrow and I borrowed from I borrowed from a Pucci culture. And I did that. I [00:45:00] was, I ha I, I, didn’t the story didn’t start off being about that. I didn’t set out to tell a story of ancient Poochie Indians. I came up with these characters.
I came up with this general sense of this life force and this death force and of these immortals and I, and I went out searching for something that kind of fit that framework. Because I liked, I liked grounding things in something real and something that I liked grounding fantasy in reality. And I also know that I don’t, you know, I’m not, it’s, it’s hard to come up with You know, a framework of mythology, that’s going to be deeper than something that people have been working on and talking about and cultivating for thousands of years which is why we keep going back to Greek mythology and, you know, Egyptian mythology and, you know, Japanese mythology and all this stuff.
So I came across I came across this Mapuches culture and I [00:46:00] started researching and I just really was fascinated by it because I also needed something that, you know, obviously I needed something that would have been around six, 7,000 years ago. You know, and so I, I was looking into, you know, what people, what cultures were around that long ago.
So when I came across the Mapuches, it just, I was fascinated by their, you know, ancient little religious practices and Yeah, I can’t. So the Pilon the Pilon or religion, as I understand it Pilon are like lesser, lesser spirits. They’re kind of Demi gods of a sense, you know, somewhere in there, somewhere between man and God.
While then again, spirits are, you know, the higher life for the higher life forms. The there’s, there’s an order ranking, and I’m saying this all really poorly there’s an order of ranking to their hierarchy of spirits. And so I kind of based the spirits and the magic of the eighth immortal on that hierarchy.
Jeff: Well, I’m very interesting character in the story and [00:47:00] I’m probably gonna butcher her name to a cure pan.
Jacob Murray: Yeah. I say, cure upon cure upon.
Jeff: Yeah. I had a 50, 50 chance and then I knew I was gonna be wrong. Security finds an interesting character. Once again, she’s a kind of like, as you say that Debbie a demigod a Pilon and her job, her responsibility is to prevent the eighth immortal from existing and the eighth immortals from my understanding in history, when they have been allowed to live or kind of like King gets conned, I was in the grade Hitler there all year.
It’s a mortal. Am I correct on that?
Jacob Murray: Yeah, so. More or less like, there’s seven pure mortals that were the ones who essentially drank from the fountain of youth and were created. And they went around, you know, just, you know, for a, for this first several hundred years, first 500 years of their life, they were still basically human and we’re just running around, you know, weeding the closest thing to human lives they were.
And so that meant they were, you know, screwing around and raising families and, you know, having little mini [00:48:00] wives after lives, after lives. And in doing that, they, they mix the blood. They crossed, they crossed their mortal magic with humanity. And that spawned, you know, this, these you know, this endless ancestry of half, half a mortals.
And that’s what the peel on are. So you know, the, the conceit being that among us right now, You know, anyone could have that, that blood somewhere in their ancestry. And just like, you know, a gene that you know, mean means you’re going to have red hair or Brown hair. This gene can fire or can not fire.
And depending on how mixed and how intense it is will kind of dictate the level of magic that you have, but they’re not pure immortal. So they don’t, they’re not immortal. They don’t live forever, but they’re this thing between human and a moral, this thing between human and God. And so that’s who, when she lets one slip, when she [00:49:00] doesn’t catch one of these pylon and they’re allowed to express their, you know, their power while not immortal, they are, you know, giants among, among humanity.
They are, you know, the, the great leaders of the world and the great monsters of the world. And so, you know, the idea being that if, just, if just that when it’s not even a pure or mortal. Can do as much damage and have as much influence as Hitler or Gangas Kahn or Alexander. The great Ken, you know, we don’t want to know what, you know, an unsuspecting human that one day turns into a full-blooded a mortal we’ll we’ll do
Jeff: this world.
And Cura pawn. She likes, it takes it upon herself to they, you know, to stop the eighth and mortals. It just shows the ability to give, make people in mortal. It looks like as well, I guess, an issue
Jacob Murray: chiller it’s it’s called spoiler country. So,
Jeff: yeah. So my question is [00:50:00] I’m to the best way to phrase it by whose authority can it, should she be doing that?
Is there something, then it doesn’t argue that there’s something higher than her that has given her authority. Has she given the authority to herself? And she’s the one who has given her self the authority? Is it what I’m saying? Is that kind of a bit too much responsibility to have determined for herself to go ahead and do.
Jacob Murray: Well, that’s kind of the, that’s kind of the, you’re hitting upon the whole, her whole plight here. And the whole point of it is that she was given this, this decree from the beginning of her immortal life, you know, never can the Roman eight, the mortal. And when, you know, when, when you come in contact with, you know, the, you know, literally mother earth and mother earth has one fucking thing to tell you, and it’s, don’t let another mortal rise.
That’s going to stay with you. And there’s, there’s no more information than that. These, she doesn’t even know why these rules exist. She just, it’s just all of that. She [00:51:00] knows. And she’s, so she’s locked into this cycle. And so you say like, by whose authority it’s. You know, essentially by God’s authority in a sense, because, you know, and again, it is in many respects, you know, a God, a God spirit.
But you know, after a while, like you’re left to question, well, like, you know, if the person who came and gave you all these rules, hasn’t shown up in 6,000 years, do you still need to listen to them? You know? And that’s, that’s her struggle in, in the book. That’s what the story is about is, is her, you know, her own personhood butting up against this, this dictate she’s been given.
Jeff: So another thing about for cure upon she does state or at least suggest that Time causes kind of a rigid re us to become more rigid and who we are in, in our, in how we behave and how we think, but cure upon is also later, the story does some things or doesn’t [00:52:00] do some things that definitely demonstrate that she’s become less rigid.
Is that, does that suggest an internal conflict within her on whether or not to grow or not grow?
Jacob Murray: Yeah, she’s working through that. She’s you know, she’s got her, her scars and they’re deep, but she, but those scars don’t align with, with who she wants, imagined herself to be and who she wants to yet become.
And you know, the, the story is her breaking through that. And, you know, we, as the audience gets to decide kind of for ourselves, whether we really can break through that, like, is she doing these things? There are these just further manifestations of this deep wound that has followed her and dogged her, her entire life and are now just, you know, taking on a new form or is she actually rising above and becoming more than she ever could have been by breaking out of these, breaking through these chains.
[00:53:00] Jeff: And was he a spelling too, too much? Like the character that you’re introducing as the eighth and mortal is interesting in so far as it’s not seemed quite to determine what this character is destiny would, will be because of what we know of the others, are we saying that is inherently likely to go Ari?
Or are we saying it’s up to like almost a nurturing of the, of how the individuals raised,
Jacob Murray: Did you say Ari, like game of Thrones? Oh,
Jeff: sorry. AWRI I’m sorry. My, my speeches can be
Jacob Murray: eight, sorry. Eight w a.
Jeff: So, it could go back.
Jacob Murray: Go, right. Sorry. Sorry. Sorry. All all right. Sorry. Yeah, no, that’s fine. Zoom is not a perfect medium.
Yeah, I mean, it’s, again, I like, I don’t want to give too much away, but that’s the, again, that’s just what we’re dealing with here. Like how, how much do the gods get to tell us what to do and how much do their [00:54:00] prophecies and their desires, you know, dictate our reality. You know, so, I dunno. I don’t know how to answer that. Like, I think, I think we get there and I hope we grapple with that in the fourth issue and determining who actually is in control here. You know, and, and who gets to, who gets to really decide like, are these, are these prophecies, you know, things for told, like, is this a Greek fate, you know, where there’s nothing, you know, you’ve been inscribed into the book of life and, you know, or fate, fate from Sandman.
And, you know, what’s, what’s going to be, is going to be regardless of what you do about it. Or do we have some agency here? And even if we do have agency again, how much of that is just based on our past, based on our wounds, based on the baggage and the bullshit that we carry with us you know, it’s, it’s impossible for the future to not be informed by the past.
Jeff: And like I said, it’s, it’s a very, it’s a very well-written story. And I mean, there’s also obviously a lot of other villains in, in the peripheral. How, [00:55:00] so it’s kind of entered the way you have the story set up. There’s very, there’s potentially, I guess, three or four potential villains in the, in the, in the series.
Am I correct on that? You have general McLeod, you have Sophie Cura pawn may maybe debatable on, on, based on behavior and you have the eighth and mortal is, is, is that also giving you a sense of how we define villainy in the story potentially?
Jacob Murray: Yeah. I’m a big fan of ambiguity when it comes to good and evil.
I like that, the story kind of delineates that you have a, a literally a life force and a death force, but that doesn’t mean that one’s good and one’s evil. That’s, you know, in, in the second issue, you know, we’re talking about this, this evil spirit, and I described the spirit as cruelty without malice.
And what I mean by that is that it, it is a, it is an agent of chaos. It is an agent of causing pain, but it’s not doing it [00:56:00] because it enjoys causing pain. It’s just the way it is. It’s just necessary for this, for this thing to do this. It’s not doing it because it hates you. It’s not doing it because it laughs at, you know, it’s not shot in Florida.
So, you know, I, I. I hope that by the end, you know, people would debate about who’s who’s the good guy. And who’s the villain. Because again, like just the same way I was talking about with bringing sex into it. Like these things are just realities that as much as we want to pretend like there’s heroes and villains out there, and we do everything we can to paint the people, we want to be villains as villains and insist that, you know, they have no redeeming qualities or that those redeeming qualities aren’t worth listening to, or that you’re problematic.
If you dare talk about the redeeming qualities of someone that you or your in group has decided is wrong or vile, and the same way that not one person you think is a good quote, unquote good guy is [00:57:00] without his flaws and without his bad intentions or his or her Bad intentions. It’s just a fact of life.
So I don’t, I don’t tend to write stories that have, you know, a clear ideation of this is, you know, this is Darcy, dark’s evil and that’s Batman. Batman’s good. Yeah. I don’t, I don’t deal with that. I don’t like it that much, so I don’t, I didn’t want to put that in the story.
Jeff: So, in, in the series we introduce a character named Denise.
Is she going to show up later on or is her story completed? How she appears in the first
Jacob Murray: issue? She was in issue three. Okay. Is she’s in two panels of issue for you
Jeff: be continuing to appear? Should she have a more significant role in the series?
Jacob Murray: No. No, she doesn’t. She was she was, she’s an entry point into it.
She’s not a, she’s not, she’s a. He’s a red herring sword.
Jeff: So how is Nathan mortal design is a miniseries or an ongoing
[00:58:00] Jacob Murray: as designed as a mini series? It’s a four issue. Limited series is the, the, the deal we struck with source point press. Like I said, originally, I had five issues. They, they preferred four, so I amended it before.
Luckily their issues are thicker. Like if you haven’t bought source point press books, one of the cool things about them and most indie publishers is that you get 28 pages not 22. So you’re literally getting more story for your money for your $4. When you buy a source point press book than when you buy a Marvel book or a DC book that are almost all, you know, 22 pages.
So yeah, it it’s forced, it’s four issues and it wraps up, I mean, this, this story arc wraps up. If. There was demand to do more, or if there was interest to do more hopefully on an audience’s part. But also just in Alice’s and my schedule, like I have, I have more stories to tell. I have, I have another eight issues minimum that I could, that I could do with, with with the eighth mortal whether we ever get around to doing them or not, you know, depends on a lot of [00:59:00] things.
But if, if that never happens, I think this, these four issues will stand as a solid and complete story. Well, like I said,
Jeff: it was a very well done series on Lisa. The three first three shows I read were highly entertaining. I think when the third issue comes out, is it this week? Or is it but it soon,
Jacob Murray: right?
Yeah. It’s this Wednesday, March 31st.
Jeff: Very cool. Yeah, so, I recommend to my listeners definitely pick up pick up the story. It’s a mortal, it’s definitely worth reading. Great story. The art is great as well, and it was a very definitely a pleasure to talk to you, Mr. Murray.
Jacob Murray: I appreciate you too, Jeff.
Thank you so much for for having me on for taking your time. No
Jeff: worries. Have a fantastic night and I’ll let you know, as soon as this goes live. It sounds great, man. Alrighty, have a very good night.
Jacob Murray: Take care.