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Siya Oum Discusses the Upcoming Lola XOXO

LOLA-01a-Reg-Siya-OUM_1Teased at San Diego Comic Con 2013, Aspen Comics’ all-new series Lola XOXO being written and illustrated by Siya Oum.

We’ve seen the stunning artwork shown off in recent Previews for pre-order, and that added in with interesting teaser text has got us excited to finally get a chance to read the series.

But, that hasn’t stopped us from going to the source, Siya Oum, for an interview about what we might expect from this new series. We also have a lot of the images that has us excited for this new series.

Graphic Policy: So for those that don’t know, can you describe Lola XOXO.

Siya Oum: It’s a story about a young woman growing up in a world many of us are not familiar with. She has to deal with the struggles of growing up and longing for the life she still remembers. Throw in some life and death situations in the wasteland and that’s Lola XOXO.

GP: How’d you come to create the series?

SO: It started a little over three years ago when I was doing some pin-up drawings. I usually have a little backstory for the characters I create, she just happened to stick. I love video games and the two that inspired me the most was Red Dead Redemption and Fallout 3. I started to develop a story around Lola in the wasteland and drew up some sample pages to see how it could all fit.

GP: How’d it come to Aspen?

SO: I’ve worked at Aspen for many years now, it was a no brainer for me to pitch it to them. They’ve helped me develop so much as an artist and as a person I couldn’t imagine going anywhere else.

GP: So the story takes place in a nuclear-decimated United States. Can you describe the world a bit? Is there still a government; is it more a bunch of tribes?

SO: The country is filled with tribes and groups of people trying to kick start U.S. Democracy 2.0. The story begins as if it is the birth of the U.S. before the Constitution was written. The conflicts for land and resources also plays an important role in the story.

GP: Do we learn how this world came about? Does that factor into the story itself, or is it just more background flavor?

SO: How the world came about is a major factor as the story progresses.

GP: The solicitation for the first issue has mentions her looking for her family, though the solicit for the second issue seems to take a bit of a detour. Is the search for the family the overarching story, with a bunch of side quests getting her there?

SO: She runs into many obstacles while in search of her family. I’ll leave it at that for now.

GP: You take on the writing and artistic duties for the series. What drew you into doing double duty and tackling both roles?

SO: There’s nothing more artistically satisfying that seeing your creation come to life. Even more so when you can do as much as you can on your own. I’m not against having someone help me in the long run with the writing. I started doing all the duties myself before I could pitch the book. I am fortunate enough for Aspen to allow me the continuation of what I did before pitching them the book.

GP: The series’ main character is the heroine Lola. Why a female lead?

SO: Since I created Lola first, and her backstory afterwards it just seemed natural. I’ve written stories with male leads before, the same way. It helps that I can give a personal perspective as a woman into my lead. It’s my first creator-owned project, any little bit helps.

GP: The solicitation has this a five issue series, can we expect multiple volumes like a lot of Aspen’s series?

SO: I wrote it to be three volumes. I’d love to continue work on Lola XOXO for as long as I am able to.

GP: What else can we expect from you in 2014?

SO: I have some side projects in connection with Lola XOXO I’d like to jump start. For now, my only focus is meeting the deadlines and pushing to do my best work possible. :)

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