MATEO GARCIA ELIZONDO is an author, journalist and screenwriter of Mexican origin. His short fiction and journalism are available online and in print, and he was co-writer of the 2015 feature film Desierto. He is currently at work on various projects for film, comics and narrative fiction. He can be reached via email, and his collaborator JEFERSON SADZINSKI can be found on Deviantart and Instagram.
ON GENRE AND MEDIUM
I have been reading comics all my life, but I didn’t consider making them until fairly recently. I started out wanting to write stories, but eventually the medium stopped being important. Nowadays, I don’t mind writing a travel article, a screenplay, a short story, a comic book script, or a novel. Some particular stories may be suited to one medium or another, and there are different rules and limitations in each one. I try to adapt the stories to the medium they are best suited for and have fun with everything.
I have always been passionate for genre fiction, particularly horror and sci-fi. I love things which are heavy on the psychological and psychedelic side, and I think comics are a great medium for telling these sorts of stories, something which is not always easy on film. I started out reading The Invisibles and was instantly hooked, then went on to Alan Moore, Neil Gaiman, Garth Ennis, and I knew I belonged here. I always thought—and still do—that comics were primarily an artists’ arena, but these guys have proved once and again that you can use this medium to tell great stories, which is what I want to do, essentially.
ON FILM AND SELF-SUFFIENCY
A lot of my friends and family members my age are into film, and being an outright film junkie I sort of drifted naturally toward screenwriting, and began to work in collaboration with people around me. A few years ago I started a project with my cousin Jonas, which he eventually made into a feature film called Desierto. I’ve been working on freelance journalism and script development since then, while making time to write my own stories.
Speaking as a screenwriter, I think what actually got me into writing comic scripts in the first place was that it was a lot easier to produce than film. It is something that two guys, a writer and an illustrator, can get done with their time and skills to a decently high standard and without having to spend hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars. The budget considerations are the same whether you have two people talking in a room or a mothership blasting dinosaurs in a world of chimp-built pyramids. I like this sort of guerrilla self-sufficiency, and as I got into it I discovered many things that I liked about writing comics in particular. Reality is more plastic, I think.
ON FOLKLORE AND IDENTITY
I was breast-fed on Magical Realism, and I do feel a particular affinity with Latin American folklore, which is in itself an eclectic mix of cultures. Most of the illustrators I’ve worked with, like Jeferson Sadzinski, are from Brazil. I’ve lived in both Mexico and Europe, traveled a bit and read literature from all over the world, so while a lot of my work does deal with Mexican themes and identity I think eventually as a storyteller you end up talking about universal themes, especially when you start telling stories set in space or other worlds, as I often do, or when you start asking yourself what makes people afraid. I could say I am drawing on elements of both worlds, and many others, as well.
Want to be considered for future installments of The New Comics? Send your work to Comics Curator Keith McCleary via the Entropy submissions page.