Questions for Joseph Michael Linsner @ Dawn/Vampirella #1

Congratulations are in order on the occasion of Dawn’s 25th anniversary, and those are congrats to you as creator. How does it feel to have created a character with such a legacy?

Thanks. It feels fantastic -- like a rebirth! I'm at the beginning of another 25 years and can't wait to get started. My epitaph is going to be "Joe Linsner -- The Dawn Guy", which I can deal with if that's my legacy. I'm very proud of the work I've done with Dawn on her 3 graphic novels. I'll be honest though, in 1989 when she first appeared in Cry For Dawn #1, I had no idea I'd still be drawing her 25 years later.

To my mind, I believe this is Dawn’s first crossover with ANY character. But crossing over with a Dynamite signature character like Vampirella … was there any added pressure there?

I have nothing but the greatest love and admiration for Vampi. She was designed by my favorite artist, Frank Frazetta! So that was an extra kick in the rear to make sure that I give this project my all. I'd be lying if I tried to say that Vampirella wasn't an influence on Dawn. I grew up loving Vampirella. Having the two of them meet for Dawn's 25th is bringing things full circle.

Instead of just handling the writing and covers, I now hear you will be doing interiors on this six-issue miniseries as well. How did that come about?

Originally I was only going to write it, but in talking with other artists about their possibly drawing it, I got caught up in how much fun it would be to draw. I've painted a number of Vampi covers over the years, but I've always wanted to draw a Vampi comic. For the little kid inside of me this is a dream come true. I have Nick Barrucci at Dynamite to thank for that.

Tell us a little about what we will be seeing in this team-up/cat fight.
There should be some incredible stories coming out of these two “bad girls.” Can you hint at what they might be telling us?


Our 2 protagonists are captured by a demon who wants to see his own personal show, a duel between 'femme fatales'. Dawn suggests a storytelling contest as a more civilized challenge. Then, like Scheherazade, our 2 ladies then have to tell stories in order to stay alive.

Is there any dark motivation behind this bringing together of Dawn and Vampirella by Masodik?

Masodik wants a mate, and no mortal woman will do. Like all demons, he aims high and has grand ideas about himself. Only a Goddess or the Queen of the Vampires will do.

So who had it most easy on this assignment: WRITER Joseph Michael Linsner or ARTIST Joseph Michael Linsner?

Neither! Sometimes artists who write stories for themselves to draw only put in the fun stuff and leave out the tough parts. I try and challenge myself whenever possible. I think that's the only way to keep growing as a creative person. But I will say that the artist in me is having a blast drawing these 2 beautiful ladies. I think I'm drawing a new side of Dawn because I am forced to really think about her body language in a way that contrasts her and Vampi's different characteristics. Vampi is more aggressive, Dawn is more observant and self contained. That has to show in the way they stand and move. Getting that right has been the most fun.

Would you like to see this pairing in a book of their own on a more ongoing basis, and would you like to do it?

I'll give this spoiler away -- neither Dawn nor Vampirella dies at the end. So that means anything is possible for a future team-up. It shouldn't happen too often though. It has to be special and start with the right story. I'm having such so much fun on this series I'd insist on being involved next time.