As part of our Virtual Valiant HQ Fridays, we wanted to give everyone an opportunity to get to know the folks behind the scenes here at Valiant HQ. This week, we sat down with Senior Editor, Lysa Hawkins, to ask about Editing, her experience in the industry, and some of her favorite things about Valiant.
Valiant: What does a Senior Editor do?
Lysa Hawkins: Senior Editors manage the editorial department. We train the staff. We make publishing plans, schedules, and numerous amounts of “other” things. We oversee talent relations and of course, we edit great books!
Valiant: How did you get your start at Valiant?
LH: Out of the blue, I received a call from a guy I met on my very first day working for Marvel Comics. He said, “Lysa, what are you up to these days?” and I said, “I’m teaching comics to kids,” and then he said Valiant might be looking for an editor and was I interested? I assured him to throw my name into that hat. Two month and two interviews later, I got the job.
Valiant: What was your first job in comics?
LH: I started out as Virginia Romita’s production assistant in the famous Marvel Bullpen. We were still doing everything by hand at that point. We ushered in the digital age in the Bullpen.
Valiant: What advice do you have to people who want to do what you do?
LH: Be present and learn the craft. Go to conventions. Meet people. It’s a small industry and getting to know people often leads to finding work. And most importantly, if you do get so lucky to get your foot in the door, don’t mess up. Work hard and be appreciative because someone else does want your job.
Valiant: What was the first comic you remember loving?
LH: My uncle loved comics and introduced them to me at an early age. At six years old, he handed me Bring on the Bad Guys, from Marvel Comics and it was love at first sight.
Valiant: What comics have you been reading lately?
LH: Lately, I’ve been digging deeply into the Valiant well. I just started the first NINJAK run, from the nineties!
Valiant: Who is your favorite Valiant character and why?
LH: Oh that’s tough! I love all of my babies, of course Punk Mambo is up there for me, but these days it’s Raijin who probably captures my heart the most. There’s just something about the plight of that little robot boy that gets me, perhaps it’s the mother in me.
Valiant: What would you say sets Valiant apart from other publishers?
LH: Valiant is the comic book leader for genre fiction. Our goal is that it will soon have something to offer for everyone.
Valiant: What’s your favorite part of your job at Valiant?
LH: Oh, that’s easy. After all the hard work creating a comic. When the pages start to come in and they are better than you even imagined. That, my friend, is just like Christmas morning. Each day that happens is a present!
Valiant: What upcoming Valiant project (that you can talk about) are you most excited about and why?
LH: Well, since it was already announced, NINJAK! He is one of my favorite Valiant characters and since I am the editor I know the AMAZING team I put together, pity though…I can’t tell you. BUT JUST YOU WAIT! (after Hamilton).
Check back here for another Meet Valiant HQ next week!