So, I had an idea back in January. I wanted to explore both print comics and webcomics. I have the printed comic area looked after with S.P.I.R.I.T, coming to Kickstarter in June; so that left webcomics. I had always been aware of a webcomics scene that had grown from nothing but a thing Scott McCloud talked about in Reinventing Comics,  to thriving on sites like TUMBLR and Tapas. I had read XKCD and PhD but did not want to do single page comics. Nothing wrong with them, I just wanted to write more story. Unfortunately, the more narrative webcomics I read were rambling. These comics told a story but there were tons of characters and story arcs sometimes into the hundreds of pages. There must be something in between. Certainly, Atomic Robo does a great job at this. So, I decided I might do a narrative short-form comic. An idea began to form.


Since S.P.I.R.I.T. was so grounded in our world, it takes place in Indiana where I live, I wanted something totally different with the webcomic. I always loved scifi and thought that had some possibilities. I love Star Trek, especially TOS and have a deep emotional and ethical connection with those Enterprise voyages. Star Trek is not about space or aliens, it is about us. So yeah every race is humanoid and a guy in makeup but it is not about that. Match that with the cavalier style and small team of Joss Whedon’s, Firefly.  Put those together and make it a all-female team and I had an idea. I wanted to do adventure not space opera or hard scifi. Take the best part of the Solo car chase, without the rest of the movie. On top of that, I didn’t want these women to be sexualized. This comic would not pass the Bechdel Test, but shoot a giant moon sized laser cannon through it.


On the production side, I also wanted to change things up.  I can’t draw. My mind and my hands are not connected that way. I have tried. Oh I have tried, but it not going to happen. So I had two options, make a webcomic that has art that scares people and not in a good way or pay for art. I want to make this clear, artists should be paid. Not debate! No argument. So, I figured how much I could pay a month and how many pages that could buy me and a cover. That rate ended up being 75 USD for 6 color pages and a cover and I would leter it. So, I would write six page stories and release those pages in the first part of the month and then do something else on the second half. Then do another 6 page episode. All self contained. People said I was nuts. That was too low to pay and 6 page stories are too short. We’ll see after Season One.


Names are hard. Really hard. It is a struggle with any creative thing you do. When you get a name you like, you have to check it out in different sources and see if it is original. This webcomic was hard. First, I started with Space Force. Not great, not original but let me talk and think about it. It was never intended as the name at the end. Then came Shooting Stars, get it they shoot guns so shooting stars. Get it? Also not the best name but it lasted a while. Then I thought about something like Alpha Flight, a favorite team comic that started when I was a kid. So, I went through a bunch of Greek alphabet ideas including Omicron Rangers, but then my amazing wife suggested ZED. Simple, easy to remember and as a Canadian, I am always wanting to get the letter zed into conversations.


Out of all this emerged ZED.