From Iran to Indie Comics

Hi, Dara Naraghi here, author of the recently announced Persia Blues graphic novel series, coming your way in 2013 from the fine folks here at NBM.

A brief introduction: I was born in Iran, back before the Islamic Revolution. My family lived there through the revolt, the subsequent new regime, and the beginning of the Iran-Iraq war. Seeking a better life for us, my parents were eventually able to move us to the US, where I went to high school and college. I currently work as a project manager in the IT field, but comics and sequential art have always been my first love. Growing up in Iran, we were exposed to some American comics, especially the well-known superheroes like Batman and Superman. However, it was the translated European graphic albums that reigned supreme, with the most popular, of course, being Herge’s Tin Tin series. So from a very young age, comics were baked into my DNA.

During college, I began dabbling in writing on the side, and even got involved with a fly-by-night indie comics publisher operating out of the west coast. Well, more like the publisher’s spare bedroom, which happened to be in an apartment in a city on the West coast. That experience soured me on the business side of comics for a while, and I lost interest in creating comics, though I still remained a fan of the medium. It wasn’t until about a dozen years ago that I met some similar minded creators in my hometown of Columbus, Ohio, that I started to become serious about writing again. We ended up calling ourselves the PANEL Collective, and have been creating and self-publishing small press comix for over 10 years now.

But that’s a story for another post.

However, I will mention that it was through PANEL that I met and befriended the artist that would eventually team up with me on Persia Blues. That’s a story for another post as well, but it wouldn’t be fair of me to blabber on without at least giving you a taste of Brent Bowman’s fantastic work. So here it is, a double-page splash from our book, that distills a lot of the characters and settings of the Persian Empire’s history and mythology into one image, a sort of roadmap for at least half of the series:

OK, so lots to talk about in future blog posts, but before I go, I do want to mention one last thing: ‘m currently running a Kickstarter campaign to help compensate Brent for all his work on the book. As of this writing, we only have 7 days left. We’re offering a variety of unique and cool incentives, including Persian cusine recipes and a chance to appear in the book. So please click on the image below and take a few minutes to check everything out.

Thanks, and if you like what you see, please consider posting the link on Facebook or sending it to your friends. Word of mouth is the best way to help us get more eyes on the project.

Next: more stories, more art

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About the Author

Dara Naraghi
Dara Naraghi
Dara Naraghi was born in Iran and educated in the United States. An Ohio State University alum, he works in the information technology field, but his passion is for the comics medium. His debut graphic novel, Lifelike, has garnered many positive reviews, from the likes of award-winning novelist Cory Doctorow, and cartoonist Sam Kieth. His other notable graphic novels include the Terminator Salvation official movie prequel, and Witch & Wizard: Battle for Shadowland (both New York Times Bestsellers), as well as works for Image Comics, IDW Publishing, Dark Horse, and DC Comics. Dara is also a founding member of the comic book writers/artists collective known as PANEL, with whom he has produced 20 volumes of their comics anthology. Dara lives in Columbus, Ohio with his wife, daughter, and the world's sweetest hound dog. Visit him online at www.DaraNaraghi.com Brent Bowman is a graduate of the Columbus College of Art And Design with a degree in Illustration. A lifelong comics fan, Brent has been drawing since he was old enough to pick up a pencil. His work has appeared in publications by Image Comics and Caliber Press, as well as the collectible card game Age of Empires. He's a contributing member of PANEL, a local comics collective that publishes two anthologies a year. Brent has been nominated for the small press SPACE prize in 2008, 2010 and 2011 for both his PANEL work and his own original self published comics. He lives in Columbus Ohio with his wife and two boys. https://sites.google.com/site/thebrentbowmanproject

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