Tuesday, 11 April 2017

From Cents to Pence! - a story told via 65 original interviews!!

Just  to whet your appetite's while I'm still resting up from a very spiteful viral buggy, here at last is a rough list that I started compiling a few weeks back, listing of all the exclusive interviews that I've conducted for From Cents to Pence!. There will be a few names here that you probably won't be expecting to see ;)

However, as I'm certain will be quickly obvious to many of you, if you don't see a name here it doesn't meant that someone doesn't appear, only that I've had to dig in the archives to find some contemporary commentary - often from some unexpected places. So you should certainly expect to read about the likes of Sol Brodsky, Martin Ackerman and Albert Landau (although in Al's case, alas, only through some detailed personal testimony from close working colleagues) amongst many others from the 1970s to date.

Anyway, here's the list in order of first appearance in the text. I rather suspect that in my still slightly fogged state I may have missed mentioning someone, so apologies immediately in advance.

Ray Wergan, Beryl Clampton, Dez Skinn, Roy Thomas, Gordon Robson, Tony Isabella, Jim Salicrup, Mike McGrath, Tom Orzechowski, Peta Skingley (aka, variously:Peter. L. Skingley, Peta L. Henley and Peter Allen in print), Cassie Tillet (first cousin to Peta), Alan Murray, Robert Greenberger, Rosemary Hull, Maureen Softley (aka Matt Softley in print), Matt Softley (Maureen's son), Nick Wergan (Ray Wergan's son), Doug Moench, Ted Polhemus (author, curator and exhibition-maker), Neil Tennant, Herb Trimpe, Dave Sim, Pablo Marcos, Howard Bender, Ed Hannigan, Scot Edelman, Jay Boyar, David Anthony Kraft, Larry Lieber, Dave Hunt, Jeff Aclin, David Kasakove, Danny Fingeroth, Elitta Fell, Frank Springer, Alan McKenzie, Steve Parkhouse, David Lloyd, Simon Ellinas, Tim Quinn, Mark Oliver, Jenny O'Connor, John Freeman, Dicky Howett, Hassan Yusuf, Lew Stringer, John Tomloinson, Richard Starkings, Jamie Delano*, Hunt Emerson, John Ridgway, Mike Collins, Irene Vartanoff, Chuck Rozanski, Gary Russell, Tim Perkins, Steve White, Liam Sharp, Cam Smith, Mark Harrison, David Leach, Dell Barras*, Alan Cowsill, Tom Spilsbury, Scott Gray.

* = Courtesy of unpublished interviews taped for Comics World magazine by Paul Birch back in the late 1990s.


  1. I feel honoured to even get a mention, Rob, so thanks for that. Have you interviewed Dave Gibbons? He used to do lettering corrections that had been missed by the Stateside team, so he might be worth speaking to if you haven't already. And I'm still hoping that you can track down Pippa M. Melling. Surely someone remembers her and can provide a bit of information? Really looking forward to this book. Any idea roughly what it'll cost?

  2. Hey, no problem - you gave me some fascinating info o re-used USA letters... despite claims to the contrary later on ;)

    I have tried another avenue towards Pippa, but zero response, so she has either not received the two letters, or has, and doesn't wish to s[peak to me. I have no more leads left - which is disappointing, I know!

    Yup, I have got info on Dave through a conversation on Lew Stringer's site.

    No idea on the price, but around £50 is the sort of figure that seems right if there's a lot of colour content.

    Keep watching the blog :)

    1. I think Marvel U.K. claimed that all the letters were genuine, which I suppose they were in their original form. The fact that the names were changed to more British sounding ones and small changes made (Green-skin to Hulk) were merely minor details in Marvel's view. Odhams did the same of course, as a way to passing info about the characters on to the British readers. As to whether they made any up completely from scratch is unknown to me, but I remember the depute editor of Buster (around the mid-'80s) telling me that they sometimes had to invent letters because they didn't get much mail on occasion. Comics, eh?

  3. Indeed, the wonderful of comics. Interesting about Buster, though. As far as I can tell, mail volumes were very healthy across most Marvel UK titles from 1973 onwards, although I seem to recall Dracula Lives once mentioning that it never seemed to raise as a big a mailbag as their other titles, which puzzled them a bit.