Barbra Dillon, Fanbase Press Editor-in-Chief: Congratulations on the upcoming release of Haunted, Beloved! For those who may be unfamiliar, how would you describe the comic’s premise, and what inspired you to tell this story?
Natasha Alterici: Haunted, Beloved is a silent comic that tells the story of a ghost desperately trying to make contact with their widow, by haunting her house and causing all sorts of trouble.
BD: In discussing your creative process, I want to be mindful that this is your first project following a recovery from severe carpal tunnel syndrome. What can you tell us about your creative process in bringing this story to life, and did you find that you had a different approach to the work in light of your healing process?
NA: For every project I do, I have to start from scratch, I have to re-learn the medium. Over the years I've streamlined the process, but designing new characters and a new world, a specific cohesive aesthetic that can be easily replicated over numerous pages, it's a challenge every time. But since this was the first project I got to do post-carpal tunnel, I was just thrilled to be working again. After so much time, I could finally practice my craft again pain-free, and that was such a good feeling that all the usual worries just fell away.
BD: Do you have any plans to expand this story into a series or other short comic releases?
NA: This is definitely just a one shot. I like doing short stories like these, because I have more ideas than are realistically executable as big epic sagas, and many of them would not benefit from expansion. A well-executed, self-contained story is satisfying no matter the page count. So, there are definitely more one-shots and shorts to come, but none with scheduled release dates at the moment.
BD: What makes Literati Press the perfect home for this story?
NA: Literati was my first publisher, a local Oklahoma publisher, and they've remained one of my favorites to work with. Charles Martin has put together an outstanding team, and they are really passionate about finding quality stories that defy genre. It is my honor to be working with them again.
BD: At Fanbase Press, our #StoriesMatter initiative endeavors to highlight the impact that stories can have on audiences of various mediums. How do you feel that Haunted, Beloved’s story will connect with and impact readers?
NA: I think this story has a lot to say about how we can hurt the people we care about, even if our intentions come from a place of love. None of us are immune to being selfish or overbearing or possessive. (Pun intended.)
BD: Are there any upcoming projects on which you are currently working that you would like to share with our readers?
NA: Yes! I have a new graphic novel in the works called Wild Flowers, also to be published with Literati Press in 2024. It's a queer romance set on a defunct farm in rural Oklahoma. I've been calling it the "be gay, do crimes, grow a garden" book, and I hope that is enough to intrigue potential readers.
BD: Lastly, what is the best way for our readers to find more information about Haunted, Beloved?