Eternifest Hello people of the internet, are you ready to rock? Come on, speak up, because I can't hear you. Are you ready to rock, or are you ready to flop? Either way, strap yourself in and get ready to read about one of the most rock inspired graphic novels to hit the independent scene. Hey, Erich, it's now over to you, pal. Tell them about... Eternifest.

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1) What are your own origins, Erich?   I originate from just outside of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, which is also the home to America’s longest music festival, Summerfest. It’s not as long as Eternifest though.

I first went to school in Boston where I fundamentally studied screenwriting. After that I lived in New York for about 5 years, before moving here, to where I call home, because I wanted to explore the film industry, and everything else the sweat teat of the city had to offer.

2) What inspired you to create, ‘Eternifest’?   The inspiration 'stemmed' and eventually 'capped' from a steady supply of psilocybin mushrooms from 2005 onwards. Oh, and acid. Plenty of acid.

Eternifest was initially intended to be a screenplay, but I drew closer to my first love, which is comics. I wanted to write something that was a homage to the overall experience of a music festival, and I think people might be able to relate to the idea or feeling that you've been on an epic journey towards self-discovery, while tweaking inside and out of cups of beer, sweaty-tent sex, and outdoor concerts. Basically I just needed a setting that pushed it all to a ridiculous excess.

Over the years I would work on the story, put it away, pull it out again, change it, but I really got pushed into gear when I met an artist who was just keen to draw it. Seeing Josh Mongeau’s work was a major motivator to keep going, and to finish.

3) In your own words how would you describe this story?   What we have in Eternifest, is one of many tales that could be representative of a music festival that never ends. It's an epic, ribald, science fiction, comedy, that focuses on the trials and tribulations of one group of friends, who are just trying to keep the good times rolling, without destroying themselves in a drug binge, or being exterminated by a vicious gang of nitrous dealers. All the while, mysterious entities are at play that manifest themselves for good and for bad, and some for just a good time.

4) What song would you say best represents this comic and why?   This question is a tough one to answer. I think this is why I steered more towards making it a graphic novel because then the reader sort of picks the selected soundtrack themselves. Anything I pick might be disputed because there are a lot of different tastes in music and then I would have to contend with every a$$hole (including close friends) who think that my taste in music sucks and I didn't get it right for Eternifest.

But that being said, I imagine it in terms of a movie trailer's anthem. Over time, the song that played over the preview in my head has changed. Once it was Band of Horses’General Specific”, and then it became Dr. Dog’sWake Up”.  I’m a bit of a Phish phan as well, so I had one or two of their songs that I tried to make work but that just ended up sounding stupid. That's probably my fault though. Then it was Ween's "Transdermal Celebration", to keep it spellbinding.

But for now, the one song that tingles the scalp is Dan Deacon’s When I was done dying”.  Coupled with the music video, this amazing piece of work (or works I should say) encapsulate what I want people to feel about Eternifest.

5) If you could get a celebrity – either living or dead – to promote your wares, who would you choose, and why would you want to choose this particular person?   Well, since I didn’t give them the song, I suppose I should give the promotional rights to Phish. They’re kind of like a particular person, right? I reckon I’ve been to enough of their shows to have been inspired to create a tribute to them. In a large way, this book is for them and their fans. But that shouldn’t omit other music scenes and genres, which I hope to see represented in Eternifest.

6) What have you learnt about yourself through this endeavor?   That I live in a dream world, and that I’ve either done too many drugs, or not enough of them. So with that little piece of information, my friend, is the knowledge that I've had the privilege to do them and not do them within (at least a modicum of) safety and reason. I fear that many others don't get dealt the same hand.

7) During your time in this field, what is the one thing that has kept you in good stead?   I do a lot of work in the library, and I think being constantly exposed to all the other amazing pieces of work out there can influence you. It just makes you want to participate in the grand mosaic.

8) If ‘Eternifest’ had a motto, what would it be?   “Moderation is key… bump”.

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And on that note, I'd like to thank Erich for telling us about Eternifest, before directing you towards his website and twitter pages. 


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