I initially interviewed Jon Del Arroz after his novel Justified: The Saga of the Nano Templar book came out. (It is now part of a series.) He is a prolific author. He’s published steampunk novels like For Steam and Country and science fiction works like The Stars Entwined. That’s why I thought it was necessary to catch up with him on his latest projects.

 

Tamara Wilhite: You’ve really jumped into comics lately. The “Deus Vult” crusader fantasy comic campaign is underway as I write this. You’ve launched the “AI Wars” science fiction comic, as well. What led you to do this?

Jon Del Arroz:  I’ve been getting into comics since 2018 when I wanted to see if I could truly compete against the mainstream industry with monthly books, seeing no one else in the market doing such. I’ve been able to do so since then which is really awesome. I’ve always loved comics, have had a huge collection since a kid so as soon as it became financially viable for me to do so (art is expensive!) it was off to the races.

 

Tamara Wilhite: And what on Earth is “Robotoad: Rekt Manlet”? It reminds me of the “Florida Man” comics by Mike Baron.

Jon Del Arroz:  It’s a parody of Ethan Van Sciver’s Cyberfrog: Rekt Planet. It was a lot of fun and definitely silly. Fans of Florida Man would probably enjoy it.

 

Tamara Wilhite: I think your first comic series was “Flying Sparks”. I saw that issue ten has come out. May I ask how well it has been selling?

Jon Del Arroz:  Yes. Doing great. We’ve sold thousands of copies overall, I stopped counting because of so many different versions on different platforms. Issue 10 is the first 1/3 of the “volume 4” Kickstarter campaign so there are 12 issues of the main series done at this point. We are working on 13-15 as I write this.

 

Tamara Wilhite: How are your digital comics selling relative to mainstream comics, if I may ask?

Jon Del Arroz:  I’d say my splits at this point are 1/3 digital 2/3 print, which is very different than books where sales are 95% ebook. People like printed art I think.

 

Tamara Wilhite: You’ve been a target of cancel culture, both personally and professional. I know that’s especially affected your comic book projects. Can you summarize those events for our readers?

Jon Del Arroz:  There’s so many it’s hard to keep track of at this point. It all started with a local convention BayCon canceling me as a guest speaker, which snowballed into File 770 doing a hit piece on me, and then the leadership of SFWA making nasty comments on their posts and using their club to harass me and get me banned from Worldcon, who libeled me calling me “racist bully” — I’m currently suing WorldCon over this and will be taking on SFWA legally soon.

(Note: Jon Del Arroz is Hispanic.)

I’ve dealt with it in libertarian circles lately too because a lot of the bigger name libertarian authors don’t like my style or the fact that I call for banning of porn and drugs, or some of my edgier right-wing memes (most of which I just post cuz I think they’re funny and so does most of my audience).

Sadly this led to several Baen authors led by Larry Correia colluding to cancel me as well. I don’t have ill will against them though. Just wish they’d get with the program that the culture war is really important and these divisions and outrages are just stoked by the mainstream left media to keep our movements down. Eventually I think they’ll come back around and I look forward to welcoming them back and working together to build our platforms.

 

Tamara Wilhite: You made your name in science fiction. I’ve read part of the Aryshan War series. How does “Colony Launch” and the Ixora Colony series tie into that?

Jon Del Arroz:  I’m building a whole sci-fi universe out of this Aryshan War series. Colony Launch overlaps books 1 – 2 timeline wise with completely different characters and a different perspective on the universe, meant to be an anti-war piece. It’s been very popular so I might do a sequel. I plan to launch an “exploratory starship” type of series in this universe also to show how something like Star Trek can be done from a non-communist or social justice perspective.

 

Tamara Wilhite: What else are you working on?

Jon Del Arroz:  Right now a lot of editing. I wrote 3 novels during COVID but didn’t really have the will to edit so they’re just sitting right now. I finished one which is a Fantasy book co-written with Morgon Newquist called The Dryad Queen which will be releasing in the next couple months. I have another fantasy book (standalone) and the Aryshan Wars Book 3: The Stars Rejoined in the edit pile too before I get to writing the next Von Monocle novel and perhaps another Aryshan Wars related book.

 

Tamara Wilhite: Is there anything you’d like to add?

Jon Del Arroz:  We’re having so much fun. Everything is growing. 2021 is gonna shape up to be better than ever before for all independent artists. Everyone keep the faith, enjoy yourself, and remember that the internet is all about fun and to enjoy yourselves and not take it too seriously! Much love to all the readers!

 

Tamara Wilhite: Thank you for speaking with me.

JDA: Thank you!

 

The Leading Hispanic Voice In Science Fiction

Blog: http://www.delarroz.com  

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Jon-Del-Arroz/e/B01NBOZVCP/

Patreon: http://www.patreon.com/jondelarroz