Creators weigh in on 2014 and 2015 (Part 8)

Concluding our annual “Looking Forward, Looking Back," we asked creators and other industry figures what they liked in 2014, what they’re looking forward to in 2015, and what projects they have planned for the coming year.

In this final installment, we hear from Joey Weiser, Jim Gibbons, Caanan Grall, Ethan Young, Sean Izaakse, Buster Moody and Marguerite Bennett!

Be sure to check out Part 1, Part 2Part 3Part 4Part 5, Part 6 and Part 7. Thanks to everyone who participated.

Joey Weiser

Mermin, Daily Dragon BallWebsite | Twitter | Daily Dragon Ball

What was your favorite comic of 2014?

The Athens, Georgia, cartoonist scene is always very strong, but they had an especially excellent year in 2014! Eleanor Davis' book How to Be Happy, Drew Weing's webcomic The Creepy Casefiles of Margo Maloo and Patrick Dean's comic book Cold Crew were my favorite comics of the year.

Comic-wise, what are you most excited about for 2015?

I can't wait to see what happens next in the long-running manga One Piece. The "Dressrosa: arc is coming to an end, and after that we've got all sorts of plot strings dangling to be followed up on -- Big Mom, Kaido, the ancient-Japan-style country Wano. Where ever Eiichiro Oda decides to take us, I'm excited!

What personal project are you working on for 2015 that you're especially pumped about?

I'm doing my darnedest to get Mermin Book 4 out as soon as possible, hopefully a 2015 release. Because of the events of the last volume, we now get to explore the underwater human city of Atlantis. I hope people are looking forward to that! Until then, they can follow Daily Dragon Ball, a blog cataloging my daily drawing challenge where I'm drawing (just about) every Dragon Ball character in order of appearance, from Goku to Captain Chicken!

Jim Gibbons

Editor at Dark Horse, Nanjing: The Burning City, Murder BookApocalyptiGirlWebsite | Twitter | Tumblr

What was your favorite comic of 2014?

Can I just say Fred Van Lente? Fred's one of my all-time favorite writers, and I got to work with him on five different projects this year (Brain Boy, Project Black Sky, The Complete Silencers, Action Philosophers and Resurrectionists), which was a huge thrill for me! Fred's a blast to work with, a real pleasure and comics champ that I learned a ton from! Good stuff! Keep an eye out for his Weird Detective next year!

I really enjoyed Letter 44, Southern Bastards and The Bunker a lot, as well!

Also, really love all the amazing highlighter and sharpie art over at Highlighter & Sharpie Party! Really cool stuff! Random as heck and not REALLY a comic thing, but cool as heck too!

Comic-wise, what are you most excited about for 2015?

Very, very excited for Eric Powell and Tim Wiesch's Big Man Plans! Josh Tierney's Halogen looks RAD! Psyched for more Task Force Rad Squad from Buster Moody and Caleb Goellner! Sam Bosma's Fantasy Sports! Anything and everything by Ben Sears! Eric Colossal's Rutabaga: Adventure Chef! Keep an eye on Kevin Panetta and Paulina Ganucheau! Everything from the artistic dream team of Ulises Farinas and Ryan Hill! Archie Versus Predator looks stupid fun — very excited for that! Cullen Bunn and Brian Churilla on Hellbreak should be killer! New stuff from Ed Brisson and Ryan Ferrier that's been announced semi-recently looks great! More of Shofela and Shobo Coker's Outcasts of Jupiter! Gonna be a great year for comics!

What personal project are you working on for 2015 that you're especially pumped about?

Hard to pick a single project, but Ethan Young's upcoming graphic novel Nanjing: The Burning City is one of the best, most important books I've ever had a hand in — which is to say, I'm lucky enough to be able to chime in occasionally as Ethan produces some of the finest comics you'll see in 2015, if not the entire next decade. Well researched, stunningly well illustrated, with a really compelling narrative, you are not gonna want to miss this book! It will inform you on a devastating historical event you may not be aware of while getting you invested in some really great characters who will definitely pull on your heartstrings. It's the type of book you walk away from and think back on for weeks. Like I said, don't miss it!

But, OK, I can't just pick one! Very psyched about Ed Brisson's Murder Book, Andrew MacLean's ApocalyptiGirl [which ROBOT 6 previewed Friday], and two upcoming projects with Swedish comics artist Kim W. Andersson, as well!

Caanan Grall

Max OveractsWebsite | Twitter | DeviantArtPatreon

What was your favorite comic of 2014?

I first need to mention my wife and I welcomed our first son in to the home at the end of 2013, so 2014 has been devoid of much pop culture of any kind, but that said ... I must commend "floppies" for their reliable ability to be read on the toilet. Pretty much the only "me" time I get these days. So a shout out to my perennial favorites that keep delivering year after year, Ultimate Spider-Man, Astro City and Chew, (we don't reward consistency nearly as much as we should on the internet - it's all about the new, new, new!), but my absolute favorite new find of last year is Princess Ugg. I've enjoyed all of Naifeh's previous outings, so the fact I like this is no surprise, but this might just be his best yet. To break it down to an elevator pitch, it's like a reverse "Brave." You know, Pixars' Brave ... but Braver. I think the soul of it comes from Ulga not just rocking up and being herself and every other princess dealing with her brutish ways, (which the comic has), but that Ulga genuinely wants to play in their sand box and learn to be more civilized.

Comic-wise, what are you most excited about for 2015?

I'm excited for Chew. It won't be ending this year, but it's ramping up to it, and well, I re-read it all from the start again recently and it's just one of those comics that will be read and re-read til the end of time. It's a tightly woven package of nuts.

What personal project are you working on for 2015 that you're especially pumped about?

I'm just happy to keep doing Max. I have so many other things I want to do, but the title I mentioned in last year's round up never happened, (Aura Ray), and continues to sit there unloved, so I don't want to pronounce I'm working on anything other than Max Overacts. I can barely keep that on schedule with this little monster running around the house. I did get my DC property, Celadore back this year, though. I'd love to continue that story at some point, starting with a 60-page origin story, but I doubt it will be this year. Maybe. Who knows? Maybe the kid will magically start changing his own nappy and cooking his own sausages.

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