Interview: Royden Lepp Delves Into RUST: SECRETS OF THE CELL

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The secrets are out there, waiting to be discovered. Royden Lepp’s brilliant Rust: Visitor In The Field introduced us to Jet Jones  and the Taylors while introducing us to an intriguing world of war, technology, and the quiet world of farming on the prairies. Volume 2, Secrets of the Cell, is being released digitally in chapters via comiXology and will take readers deeper into the world of Rust. Lepp recently took time out of his busy schedule to shed some more light on the world of Rust and what readers can expect from Secrets of the Cell.

Aaron Long: Rust Volume 2: Secrets of the Cell hits stores soon, with chapters available on comiXology. What can fans of Rust expect to find in this volume?

Royden Lepp: More robots, more jet packs, more hot days on the Taylor farm. Anyone who was a fan of Vistor in the Field will enjoy the continued story of Jet Jones and the Taylors, in Secrets of the Cell. We’re going to find out more about Jet’s past and discover a new threat on the farm, not as large in stature as the last threat, but dangerous all the same.

AL: Jet Jones is an intriguing riddle of a character. Will we continue to find out more about his past? Is he solely seeking refuge on the farm, or does he feel a sense of family there?

RL: Aha. Good questions …questions that I’m not willing to answer yet! I actually think we have already seen evidence of both of those reasons. I think that Jet himself is still trying to answer those issues at this point in the story. But yes I am going to reveal more and more of his past in every volume, and Secrets of the Cell has one of my favorite sequences yet.

AL: The war in Rust remains a huge mystery, will volume two fill in some details of just who was fighting and why?

RL: Probably not in this volume. Maybe a bit more in further volumes, but this story is really about Jet and the Taylors, and as much as I’d love to dive into the details of the Long War and it’s timeline, those details don’t support what’s happening on the farm yet. But maybe someday in future books.

AL: At present, how many volumes of Rust do you have planned? Do you know when and how Rust will end?

RL: There will be four volumes of Rust. It’s definitely ending in the last volume. What happens from there remains to be seen, but yes, I know how it will end and I’m really excited for readers to invest in these characters with me and hang on for the ride.

AL: And now, a process question: as writer and artist on the title, do you script first and then pencil, or does the story shift and change as you are creating the art?

RL: All of the above. I always start with thumbnails before I start pages. If a particular scene is dialogue heavy, I try to work that out in script form before taking on the thumbnails, and then even then it might change as I draw. And sometimes things will change even after the final art is done. I try not to close the door on improvements at any point in the process.

AL: I was elated to find out Rust has been optioned by 20th Century Fox, how is that front progressing?

RL: It’s been great! We literally have this dream team of people involved. Simon Kinberg, Aline Brosh McKenna, Stephen Christy, and now Joe Cornish taking the Directors chair. Not to mention all the great folks at FOX. Everything is really just ..clicking. My hopes are high. I really think this could be an opportunity to make something really special.

AL: Any final words for Comicosity’s readers regarding Rust: Secrets of the Cell?

RL: Thank you! Thank you for picking up Rust:Visitor in the Field and for supporting this book! I know people have been waiting for this second installment and I really want to thank them for their patience. This series is really important to me, I’m really just writing a story that I’d love to read. Hearing how much people have been enjoying it so far has been staggering. I can’t thank fans enough. And if you haven’t picked up Rust yet, please do, and let me know what you think. I’m @RoydenLepp on twitter, and if you dig around on a Google a bit you can find my email address. I love hearing from people.

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