And the superhero-dom continues! This time around, we have Joshua Corey Mays who adds his take on the superhero genre to the Storybundle Super Bundle with Alpha Male.
What made you decided to write in the superhero genre?
I’ve been reading comics since I was a kid. I can still remember the first comic I ever bought. It was a box set with X-men #1 and Wolverine # 50. I had been a fan of the Saturday morning X-men cartoon for years, but this was something else. I was blown away by the real world issues that the comics tackled. It felted like a very mature concept then. It still is, but it’s lost some of its flare over the years with all the space travel and otherworldly craziness.
It was a genre that I felt comfortable in, so ideas were never hard. My idea for Alpha Male originally started as a comic itself, but I could never find anyone to do the illustrations. Finally, one day, I decided it was time. After thinking about it for a few days, I decided against starting Alpha Male. I did a simple fantasy story instead, hoping to cut my teeth before jumping on an idea I had been working on for years.
How does your superhero differ from the average fare?
I tried to make my superhero more realistic. I asked myself, “What would a normal guy be like with superpowers?” He’d do what was considered right since there would be little danger. He’d become enthralled with the lifestyle and the public adoration. He’d become a spoiled celebrity, living outside the normal frame of reality we all know. From there, I asked, “What would the people be like?” That was easy. They’d be grateful at first, but then they would become complacent, and entitled. They’d see what he did as a service and then they would stop caring as much. As the streets got safer, he would fade away from their minds, because that’s what happens when there is no drama. Instead of looking up as he flew by, they’d check their twitter accounts, or Facebook status for news about who he was sleeping with, or what product he was pushing that week. I feel like this is the world we live in sometimes, and I wanted to reflect that in Alpha Male.
Would you like to see your superhero in the hands of Hollywood? If so, what do you think they’d do with it to help sell it to consumers?
I would like to see Alpha Male as a movie, and then I’d like to see a remake years later where they take my actual work and use it to shape the remake, since the fans would have complained so much the first time around. I kid, of course. Sure, I’d like a movie made, but only if it stuck with the original ideas. They couldn’t mess with the themes and such. That’s just too important to how the story works. Of course, money is great. I’d let them do just about anything if the price was right. All income would go towards opening up my schedule for more writing, so its win/win for me and any fans.
Tell us something about your book that can’t be found in the blurb, the reviews, or any other description.
It’s about how good and evil are really just subjective terms. It was originally based on the dichotomy of Batman, and The Joker, but it quickly grew from there to encompass the idea of what we really see as “good” and “evil.” Just because a guy saves you from a rapist, it doesn’t mean he’s a good guy at heart. Maybe his behavior has just been reinforced by so many people that he feels he must do “good.” In order for him to get that high he feels while speaking on the evening news, he has to stop a robber, or a murderer. Behavior is so much more complicated than a simple good guy, bad guy ideal.
Was there a superhero (or supervillain) that inspired you to write your book?
No, but I did use the heroes I knew the best. Superman is obviously my inspiration for Alpha Male, but instead of this other worldly alien who has a godlike moral compass, I envisioned him as a corruptible human, tempted by human wants and desires. Spider-man has always been a favorite of mine, but his attitude just didn’t fit anywhere in my book. During the first draft, I decided to change that and added a whole new character. He isn’t as much like Peter Parker as I originally wanted, but these things have a way of evolving on their own. True fans of comics will be able to read my book and see my love for the medium. There are numerous “Easter eggs” throughout.
About Alpha Male
Alpha Male has grown accustomed to the reverence and love from the people he protects. Over the years though, these people have grown complacent, forgetting about all this lone hero has done for them. Some still love him, but most see him as little more than a celebrity to gawk at and hold to an unreasonably high standard. That is, until a super villain shows up. With their city locked down in terror, the people turn to their hero once again. But, Alpha Male is used to stopping thugs, and carjackers, not super villains. Can he stop Omega Man before his city falls apart?
Joshua Corey Mays has been dabbling with the word for a few years now. Pulling from many influences, Joshua has carved out his own style using writers like Bukowski, Mcmurtry, Mccarthy, and the pulp authors of the 20’s and 30’s to guide his hand. A prolific author, he has written five books to date, and isn’t constrained by genre. He writes with a passion about things that are passionate to him. He is a rising author to watch over the coming years.