Garth Jones of Home Brew Vampire Bullets – Part one

Did you ever suspect that Harold Holt's disappearance at Cheviot Beach had actually fractured space-time? Or that that creepy loner that hangs around the RSL might actually be a demon hunter? If so, then the jam-packed comic/ prose anthology Home Brew Vampire Bullets is one-hundred-per-cent your bag. BUY a copy here if you feel like having a gander. The book's editor, oft-contributor and co-creator Garth Jones was kind enough to chat to the Aurealis Blog ahead of the release of issue two.

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In ten words or less, what is Home Brew Vampire Bullets? A juicy slab of dagger-sharp Aussie pulp, prose and politicking. What inspired the book? Home Brew Vampire Bullets is a project that’s been on the boil for a half-decade or so in practical terms, and probably for the majority of my creative life on the conceptual front. To a large extent, the concept spun out of an exhibition of work based on music (The Wayfarin’ Wayward ’Toonists’ Swingin’ Jukebox Jam!) Doug Holgate, Scott Fraser and I put together in ’08. We were looking to follow up with something narrative driven, in a shared universe pop lunacy sense, but life, as it is wont to do, got in the way in myriad fashions. Flash forward a few years and Christian Read and I had been messing about with the idea that became BABALÖN SHÖKK, our ode to the dopey, outcast power of Heavy Metal.

Having locked away the first instalment, I’d wondered out loud as to the ideal model for distributing the tale, which Christian deftly lobbed back with, essentially, a challenge to make it happen.

And lo, the wheels started turning and the gears ground, begrudgingly, to life.

Drawing on a whole lifetime of subconscious preparation and studious, dedicated avoidance, this rough beast took shape in a remarkably efficient and fairly streamlined fashion, nascent teething ‘problems’ and all.

Essentially, Home Brew Vampire Bullets is the very definition of upending the contents of my head at any given time onto the page- it’s a gratifying thing indeed to have the luxury of curating, wrangling and directing a project like this in an environment in which there are few to no barriers to getting ideas into the ether sans potentially bankrupting oneself.

How did you gather together your stellar cast of contributors?

Fuck. I’m really not sure, man.

Short answer?

I’m lucky enough to have friends who are hideously talented and, thankfully, driven to produce ‘the goods’ on a regular basis.

More involved, labyrinthine answer?

I’m really not sure, man.

When the project was first mooted, I approached the ‘inner circle’ who, thankfully, were into the idea.

We convened in a horrible suit-pub near Southern Cross station, made plans.

Totally unaware of the shape and scale this monster would assume.

From that initial core meeting, we cast the net wider through happenstance and sheer good luck: connections made at conventions, mutual acquaintances; good will on a scale heretofore thought unimaginable.

Plus, of course, my utter lack of shame in making an approach and then putting the heat on potential contributors.

I call it ‘project management’.

As we’ve gathered momentum, it’s been quite gratifying to be able to expand the crew and bring all manner of heroes and inspirations into the fold- Home Brew Vampire Bullets is, inadvertently, turning into some sort of crazed creative bucket list.

Catch up on the chock-filled gory gloriousness of issue one of HBVB here – only $3 AUD for a limited time only. Or head straight into issue two if you’re super-game.

And follow everything the crazed gang of home-brewers get up to on Facebook, twitter and Tumblr.

Stay tuned for Part two of our chat with Garth – coming soon!

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