We are currently working with Realize, an exciting new publisher of action and adventure books which have some excellent illustrations…
We had a Skype call with Jeff Matthew, the founder of Realize, who is based over in the US.
Hi Jeff, thanks for talking to us today. Firstly, where did the inspiration for ‘Realize Ltd’ come from?
I saw an interview with Dr. Ben Carson (a US based physician credited with being the first surgeon to successfully separate conjoined twins joined at the head) and he talked about how important reading was to him growing up in the projects in Detroit. He talked about even though he was extremely poor he was able to escape into a novel and literally go anywhere the author’s imagination could take him.
Dr. Carson loved reading great adventure stories like Swiss Family Robinson and 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, just to name a few. Having grown up in the Detroit area myself and being a huge fan of Marvel Comics as a kid his words made a huge impression on me.
I noticed with my children and their friends that kids don’t buy comic books anymore and don’t read much either. So, I decided I would try to create a series of adventure stories along with illustrations that were so visually engaging it would be hard for kids to resist reading them.
You mention your aim is to “get back to basics”, what do you mean by this?
To me getting back to the basics is simple: Stories that grab hold of your imagination and whisk you away to some far off place that you could have never imagined on your own. With characters that as a reader you care about and know in your heart represent some force of goodness. Just like comic book superhero’s from the 40’s, 50’s and 60’s were a force of goodness. But these stories are books, not comics, and they are set in modern times that we living in right now.
What are your goals for Realize? Where do you see it being in 5 years time?
We’d like to achieve enough success so that we can continue to produce this type of entertainment for a long time into the future.
Obviously the two main ‘action’ graphic/illustrative books are Marvel and DC, how does ‘Realize Ltd’ differ from these and how do you feel you can compete?
Kris – good question but we’re really not trying to compete with them since we don’t produce any fully illustrated content – like a comic or graphic novel.
Who do you feel are your target audience and who will enjoy your books?
We would hope that anyone that likes a good story in this genre would enjoy our books. Our target audience is definitely the YA market. Except for Purrfect vs. Mocha that appeals readers even younger than that.
What other books, comics, artists inspire your work?
We’re inspired any story or character that is well written and takes you away to that far off place in your imagination. That includes the classics like Jules Verne as well as contemporary authors like James Dashner.
We notice the illustrations (thus far) are in black and white, what are your reasons for this? Any plans to release colour versions?
We like them both for this initial series black and white just seemed right. We like the simplicity of it.
Do you have any further books being released soon? Can you tell us more about them?
In addition “True North” the sequel to “London Blue” we’re also working on a story set in the Middle East. The story focuses on the absolute nature of pure evil where terrorists claim divinity from God while carrying out their atrocities. The hero is seventeen and female, we think it may turn out to be one of our very best to date.
Where can people buy your books?
With a smartphone or internet connection you are never more than a few clicks away from reading one of our books – they are all available at Amazon.