WHAT'S NEXT: THE DREAM MERCHANT by Nathan Edmondson and Konstantin Novosadov in May

Debuting in May from Image Comics is THE DREAM MERCHANT by Nathan Edmondson (DANCER, THE ACTIVITY, WHERE IS JAKE ELLIS?) and Konstantin Novosadov. Haunting, magical, and atmospheric, the series explores the dream life of a young man named Winslow. We talked to writer Edmondson about his newest project.

Who is THE DREAM MERCHANT’s main character, Winslow?
He is a troubled boy, the creative type many people are familiar with: can’t focus in school, has trouble relating to other people.  His best friend is a schizo in a mental hospital.  Winslow’s problem is a recurring dream, one that is only getting more intense.  

What about the world of dreams inspired you to write this story?
A friend wrote to me once that they “wished I could sell them my dreams, as they were far more interesting than their own.”  That started me thinking about dreams as something one could exchange, and trade, which yielded (eventually) the idea behind Winslow’s dream.  I also studied some of the philosophy of dreams in school, and was fascinated by where science, philosophy and theology all converged in this field…

Tell us about your artist, Konstantin Novosadov. How did you find each other?
I discovered some of (Russian artist) Konstantin’s work online; he’s superbly talented, and–and this is something I did not learn until months into the production of the book–we communicate primarily by Google Translation.  Now I’m able to practice some Russian on him and he works out English on me, but the he works twice as hard as most any other artist just to “Get” the script, and he deserves credit for that as well as his fantastic art.  

Viewpoint: Why don't people talk about their dreams? - BBC News
Once books about dreams were massively popular. Now few people look for answers in their slumbers.

A little depressing reading the above article by interdisciplinary geographer and historian Shane McCorristine. For those of you in a rush, here’s the takeaway (for me, at least), but please do read the full article if you can:

For most of our evolutionary history dreams have been seen as messages sent from beings outside us to offer advice, guidance, or warnings about particular futures and it is hard to overestimate the role that dream-revelations have played in the development of the world’s major myths, religions, literatures, and scientific discoveries.

[… ]

Now that neurologists and psychologists see dreams as internal creations of the brain and mind, rather than external messages directed to the soul, people, especially in Western, affluent societies, no longer grant dreams the authority their ancestors once did. I sense that the sharing of dreams is declining because, on the one hand, sleep science explains them away as bizarre narratives caused by brain activities, while psychoanalysts see them as disguising repressed sexual content. Many people therefore either think nothing of them, or are embarrassed by them.

I want to suggest that in not talking about our dreams anymore we are at risk of throwing the baby out with the bathwater. As dream-interpretation is outsourced to specialist experts, we are losing a vernacular that humans have always spoken together, regardless of rank, race, creed, or gender. This collapse in the democratic dream-archive may well have implications for the historians of the future, who will have little access to the most amazing stories of our innermost fears and desires.

Just to keep this post relevant to comics (which is, you know, what this blog is supposed to be about), here’s a list of comics that revolve around the themes of dreams and dreaming that you guys should check out:

The Sandman by Neil Gaiman, Sam Kieth, Mike Dringenberg, Chris Bachalo, Michael Zulli, and others (DC/Vertigo)

What do you need to know to enjoy the series? Only that there are seven brothers and sisters who have been since the beginning of time, the Endless. They are Destiny, Death, Dream, Desire, Despair, Delirium who was once Delight, and Destruction who turned his back on his duties. Their names describe their function and the realms that they are in charge of. Several years ago, a coven of wizards attempted to end death by taking Death captive, but captured Dream instead. When he finally escapes he must face the changes that have gone on in his realm, and the changes in himself.

Little Nemo in Slumberland by WInsor McCay (public domain, various reprints)

Simply put, Little Nemo revolutionized the comic strip. At 38, McCay was at the very peak of his talent and the New York Herald had the most talented and creative color printing staff in the business. Together they crafted a weekly fantasy that week by week revealed Slumberland to be more magical than even L. Frank Baum’s Oz and more wonderful than Lewis Carroll’s Wonderland. 

Dream Police by J. Michael Straczynski and Sid Kotian (Image Comics)

Joe and Frank have been partners for as long as they can remember, patrolling the alternate universe of dreams, nightmares, and the great void beyond, an alternate but very real dimension of changelings, echoes, wisps, ethers, and nightwalkers, those that died in their sleep and wander the dreamscape forever. The Dream Police have seen it all. But when Frank steps away and disappears… and the woman who returns says she’s Joe’s partner, that she’s always been Joe’s partner… he begins a journey into the unknown that will shake the dreaming down to its very foundation.

Dream Thief and Dream Thief: Escape by Jai Nitz and Greg Smallwood (Dark Horse Comics)

After John Lincoln steals an Aboriginal mask from a museum, vengeful spirits possess his body and mind while he sleeps! As the Dream Thief, he accrues the memories and skills of murder victims and fights to stay awake, before he kills again! Jai Nitz and Greg Smallwood craft a stylish drama of supernatural revenge! 

The Dream Merchant by Nathan Edmondson, Konstantin Novosadov, and others (Image Comics)

Winslow is a troubled boy with a recurring dream. When mysterious alien figures show up to literally dissolve the memories out of Winslow’s mind, Winslow realizes that his dream may be the most important memory in the world, and one that has been wiped from the collective minds of everyone on earth.

FIRST LOOK: “Dreams Have Meaning”

Image released this image today about a new book from Nathan Edmondson and Konstantin Novosadov. You can get more information and you can offer submissions on their Tumblr page: dreamshavemeaning.tumblr.com

According to their page you can also submit your dream to: dreamshavemeaning@gmail.com

Review: The Dream Merchant #4

Review: The Dream Merchant #4 via reviewer @SamanthaRoehrig – @nathanedmondson @ImageComics

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You can never tell what comic you will miss when it goes on break. Not that I didn’t love The Dream Merchant, but I had a lot of other good comics keeping me occupied. Well I missed this comic. I missed the story, I missed Nathan Edmondson, and I especially missed those vivid colors running along the comic that made me feel in a dream state through the issue every time I read it.


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