Mike Hsiung interviews Greg Corso

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I recently took a trip up with buddy Greg Corso to the 2008 APE Expo in San Francisco.  His book And How? received the 2006 Xeric Grant. This interview was conducted driving back from APE while on lots of Monster Energy drinks.  That’s why there are so many run-on sentences.

Alright, in the car with Greg . . .Corso?
Yeah that’s it.

We’re driving back to LA from Sf, it’s going to be a five hour interview, and I’m not transcribing all of this. . . so don’t worry
[laughter]

You’re just gonna take the best parts. 

My first question for you would be, which is the lamest question everybody asks and hates answering, which is how did you start doing And How?, and how did you start doing comics?

I started drawing comics since I was a kid. So I dunno know I just been drawing forever and just took it serious like in college and tried to be . . . I always drew the superhero stuff as a kid, and like wasn’t into it for a long time and then I got back into more interesting serious comic type of stuff like more indie markets and totally abandon any kind of superhero kind of thing and that was what i was into in terms of art more serious artsy stuff and movies and that type thing so i just tried to do THAT …and um apply it and And How was the first book I did, kind of not getting back into that art. 

And how 
did the idea for And how? develop and how did you start on that project?
I thnk it started with a few drawings and it ended up being the first few pages and i just developed the story from there and it took a long time. I worked on it for . . . off and on for a couple years and then finally published it.  And then i did a small print by myself and then re-did it with the Xeric grant after I fixed some stuff. It was a long process.

So for those who don’t know Greg received the Xeric grant in 1980 [laughter] just kidding
1980…

2007 ?[laughter]
2006 actually

Okay 2006.  So what exactly is it and who the FUCK is Xeric?
Yeah it ‘s um Ian Xeric from 90210.

Dork.

It’s the (i’m chewing gumy candy right now) it’s the um… Peter Laird is the creator of the Teenage Mutant Ninja turtles, maybe you’ve heard of it? It’s kinda of a big deal…

ha ha..yes

He started a foundation to help up and coming independent artists and comic creators ..
but you’re not handicap?

No…no I’m not. 

i thought it was a foundation for handicap in-need artists

No, no, no it’s for washed up artists. So you can apply and what they end up doing is givIng out a few grants a year to these independent artist and basically pay for them to self publish, take care of the printing costs, advertising costs and all that kind of stuff.

and um how did you find out about the grant? through school?

Um no…i found out about it actually at APE 5 or 6 years ago…and then I was like okay that’s rad and always had that in the back of mind … and when i finally finished something big and really wanted to publish it. I was like ‘oh well that exists!’which is awesome and so i applied at the 5 minutes before the deadline.  i was at the post office like literally sending it the day it had to be postmarked at 4 … and i was like THIS IS STUPID WHY AM I WASTING MY TIME.

 

So tell us how you would describe Any How? and the themes? and explain the title because when I heard it I thought of the Little Rascals.


Yeah i have no idea what you’re talking about … it’s really hard for me to talk about it because people ask that and i just really start talking for 10 minutes without using a verb or a noun.. it’s hard to describe and the title comes from the saying and essentially is emphasizing nothing which kind of what the book is about in some ways, and some ways it’s not. 

splash


(Interview by Michael Hsiung)

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2 Comments

Filed under art, interviews

2 responses to “Mike Hsiung interviews Greg Corso

  1. Pingback: Powderfinger Books » Blog Archive » news?

  2. Xeric Foundation lists Greg’s name as Gregory, Gregory Corso. I was floored. What the fuck was Gregory Corso doing finishing up a graphic novel in 2006. What the fuck was Corso even doing breathing in 2006. Because, you may know, the famous, youngest Beat poet died January 17, 2001, at age 70. That’s why I use my full name: first, middle and last. If you threw a rock in any direction, changes are good you’d bean a Mike, or Michael, Castro: literary handles I’ve used, then abandoned because if you googled there are other writers and artists I didn’t want to be confused with. Even Michael P. doesn’t cut it. Greg, don’t you get that a lot, too? When are They just going to get on with it and stamp our own, unique,numbers onto our foreheads so that we can become the individuals we keep whining to be? Ironic, ain’t it?

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