Marieke Nijkamp Interview: Marieke Takes Aim At The New Kate Bishop Era
- In the upcoming series, Kate’s heading home!Or at least, back to New York. And as much as she wants to go back to where her friends – her chosen family – are, she’s changed since she was last on the East Coast. So she’s picked up a pit stop case first. A confidence-booster, to prove to herself she’s making the right decision and not going to backslide into her past just by changing time zones. Besides, the case is perfect: Swanky resort? Check. Jewel heist? Check. Almost definitely 100% a trap? Check.
Marieke Nijkamp is an NYT Bestselling author that has brought many wonderful stories who has penned This Is Where It Ends, Before I Let Go, The Oracle Code, and brought Goosebumps: Secrets of the Swamp to IDW. She has brought us some deep stories that don’t shy away from heavy topics and circumstances of life and has captivated us with her powerful penmanship and tone. She will be taking on a new adventure with Kate Bishop, who is set to begin a new era with her upcoming mini-series coming to comic bookshelves in just a few days. We had the chance to ask Marieke a few questions about the upcoming venture into Marvel and the opportunity to tell Kate’s upcoming story.
- Thank you for speaking with us at Geek Network. Could you start by telling us a bit about yourself?
I’m Marieke, I’m a writer of novels, graphic novels, and comics, including Hawkeye: Kate Bishop!
- Was Kate Bishop a character choice from you, or was this something that just happened for you?
My wonderful editor knew I loved Kate, from a conversation we had long before this series happened, so maybe that played a part when she asked me if I’d be interested in writing her!
- Were you familiar with the character already, or how do you as a writer prepare to write for a character with so much history?
I was absolutely already familiar with the character. I loved the various Young Avengers runs, and as someone who’s dabbled in archery, Kate was always one of those characters I gravitated toward. I loved the Fraction/Aja run of Hawkeye. I loved Kate’s LA adventures. I loved West Coast Avengers. So while I had to catch up on a few issues here and there, I already felt I knew the character quite well.
- We know that there’s a Disney+ series coming this month, is there going to be any references or connections between your comic run and the TV series or are they their own entities?
If there are any connections, they stem from working from the same, wonderful basis. Which is to say, I don’t know what’s going to happen in the Disney+ series either, but I’m so looking forward to it!
- With Marvel being a vast universe and many creators touching these characters, what’s the hallmark for you as a writer when working with a character who has so much history?
You know, I don’t really go into writing an existing character with the idea that I necessarily need to put my stamp on them. On finding new nuances and new angles that haven’t really been explored before, sure. On the way I tell and approach stories, absolutely. But at their core, I still want the characters to feel familiar to the readers who care so much about them too.
- How does your process differentiate from a graphic novel to a novel?
I love how immediately collaborative graphic novels and comics are, compared to prose novels. I love writing a book and completely immersing myself in a fictional world, but that’s also because I can. With comics, I’m only one keg in the radar, and arguably the least important one at that. What we do is teamwork, from Enid Balám’s amazing pencils to Oren Jr.’s inks to Brittany Peer’s colors to Joe Caramagna’s letters. And obviously Caitlin O’Connell’s fantastic edits. It’s my job to write the clearest script I can to facilitate that, and be the best team player I can be.
- Is there ABSOLUTELY anything you can share with us about the series? Perhaps a favorite moment?
I can’t give away my favorite moment without spoiling something, but I will say, this series brings back a few wonderful characters, including one we haven’t seen in a long time, and I loved writing their interactions with Kate.
Also, Lucky. Every single Lucky panel is my favorite.
- When you’re not writing bestselling novels, what do you like to do for fun? Movies, video games? Anything like that?
Oh, games, absolutely! Both video games (I played through Dragon Age: Inquisition twice this last year) and tabletop roleplaying games (from Dungeons and Dragons to Star Trek: Adventures and others.)
I’ve also recently rediscovered Lego, and I’ve been enjoying that a lot. Sometimes you don’t want to have to think but just build awesome sets.
- Any future projects you have coming up that you can share with us?
My next two projects are both novels. A tie-in novel in the Critical Role universe: Critical Role—Vox Machina: Kith & Kin will be out on November 30. And my next original YA novel, At The End Of Everything, will be out on January 25.
- Finally, thank you for giving us the chance to speak with you, congratulations on the series, it looks fantastic. Anything else you’d like to share with your fans?
The whole team is bringing so much joy and passion to Hawkeye: Kate Bishop. I hope you’re enjoying reading it as much as we’re enjoying making it!
Hawkeye: Kate Bishop #1 will be written by Nijkamp with interior and cover art by Enid Balam, artist Jahnoy Lindsay also contributing to the main cover. Variant covers will be made by Balam, Rachelle Rosenberg, Skottie Young, Phil Noto and Todd Nauck. The issue goes on sale on November 17th, 2021 from Marvel Comics, just one week before Hawkeye begins streaming on Disney+ on Nov. 24.