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Winds of Numa Sera Interview: The One True Kingdom Will Fall!

Interview by Troy-Jeffrey Allen

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Dark Horse Comics presents Winds of Numa Sera by writers Morgan Rosenblum and Jonny Handler, and featuring a dizzying team of artistic talent.

In comic shops now, Winds of Numa Sera centers on the "One True Kingdom." With a twelve-year-old at its throne, Numa Sera has become vulnerable! Which makes it the perfect target for those with their own opportunities . . . to escape, rebel, and rule.

PREVIEWSworld hung out with the symbiotic writing duo of Morgan Rosenblum and Jonny Handler to tell us more about this game of...throne.

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What is the setting for Winds of Numa Sera?

Winds of Numa Sera takes place in a fictional world called Ethera.  When building this world, we created not only an original map (which you will find as a double-page spread inside of the graphic novel), but also a host of unique races, as well as a fresh take on the origin of life and the energy which flows through it (called Essence).

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Who is the young Empress at the center of this medieval fantasy?

Lelia Y’Vesé. Thirteen years young, the recently orphaned heiress now finds herself sitting atop the throne of the “One True Kingdom”.  With her empire in a state of vulnerability for the first time in decades, every choice the young empress makes could be her undoing. Uncertain of how to rule, she at first leans heavily on the five members of her High Counsil for their guidance, but we quickly learn they each have their own agendas.

Lelia’s journey is that of a child who must become an adult far more quickly than she’d like - one who has immense responsibilities, with no family to lean on. When the opportunity arises to break a corrupt system, will she choose what is morally right, even if it ignites a rebellion against her?

The weight of the world is heavy, especially when you’re all alone in it.

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Tell us about the three conspirators plotting against the Empress. What makes each unique?

Without giving too much away, Lelia will learn rather quickly that there are very few people in Ethera that she can trust.  From the pillaging hordes of the southern continent (the Siaan De’e warriors) who look to raid her lands, to the spiteful lords of the north who were forced to bend a knee, to the opportunistic counselors of her inner circle who steer her every move.

While the story centers around the empire of Numa Sera, we primarily focus on three separate storylines that serve as the backbone for our series. Taking a tight lens to a big world helps us to create more plausible characters that audiences can connect with and relate to. And the coolest part is how the (seemingly) separate storylines ultimately all weave together.

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This isn’t your first collaboration. What brought you both together for this?

Jonny and I are actually “womb mates”.  No, we’re not actually brothers, but about as close as you can get.  Our mothers met in Lamaze class before we were born, and we grew up together.  We’ve been playing make-believe since we were children, and it was only fitting that we would collaborate on a story as imaginative as this one.

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You have a pretty impressive artistic lineup. What can you tell us about the artists in the book? 

There were several artists that worked on this book. The goal was to assemble a team that could illustrate a shared aesthetic for consistency, while still bringing some uniqueness to their respective pages.

Eduard Petrovich is the primary artist who opens the book and closes it (chapters 1, 7, and 8).  His sequential storytelling is next level, and we loved his aesthetic - it’s stylistic and very detailed. He’s essentially the one who “set” the standard for this book.  Then we have Eduardo Mello (ch 2-3) and Alessio Moroni (ch 4-5), both are relative newcomers (or were when we found them), and we loved their test pages so much that it made perfect sense to have them collaborate on this book. Their ability to adapt their styles to match the already established aesthetic is uncanny. 

All of their pages were colored by Valentina Taddeo, who did an incredible job bringing these pages together and to life. Her sense of lighting and color palettes were nothing short of awe-inspiring.

Chapter 6 is a unique chapter, illustrated by Filipe Andrade (Many Deaths of Lalia Starr).  His pages look decidedly different from the other chapters, which was an intentional creative choice on our part (you’ll see why when you get there!).

The book was lettered by Ismail “Ni Hii” Nihad, who is one of the most talented graphic artists we’ve ever met.  He not only lettered the book but did all of the graphic design elements for the bonus pages.

We also had a collection of exceptional concept artists design many aspects of the world, like Andrea De Dominicis (Character Designs), Bark Bark Studio (Environment Art and Sigils), and Luigi Aimes (Original Map).  Voodoo Bownz did our text logo and helped to set the aesthetic for the lettering.

The Cover was illustrated by Philipp Kruse and was designed by us - as we had a vision for this cover from the very beginning that we thought really represented what this series was all about.

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Should we expect more stories from the world of the “One True Kingdom?”

Absolutely!  As you’ll see at the end of Vol. 1, it feels like it’s the ending to season one of a TV show.  A self-contained arc, that is part of a much larger one.  We’ve planned for several “seasons” and have outlined the story paths for our main characters, as well as a host of new ones that we introduce at the end of the first book. 

Hopefully, this book does well enough where Dark Horse green lights us to do Volume 2!

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What should readers expect from Winds of Numa Sera?

A perfect balance of world-building and character development.

Winds of Numa Sera is a coming-of-age story. Young heroes adventuring in a fantasy world, thrown into extraordinary circumstances, and find themselves in real danger. Our characters are flawed and relatable, each coming from a completely different level of society, and having their own journeys to explore, both external and inward.

In order to create something on a par with the great fantasy epics, we had to study and reverse engineer them.  But we were careful to not simply replicate what was done before. So we tightened the lens on a big world in order to make it more universally digestible. With parallels to real history and important life lessons that span religion, war, family, and country, our story is well-grounded and more meaningful.

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In terms of audience, who is this book for?

Our goal was to build something transportive. Somewhere familiar and nostalgic, but also extraordinary.  A place that made you remember what it felt like to be a kid again - full of wonder, dreams, and fantasies. But do not misinterpret this as a children's story.  Winds of Numa Sera is aimed at adults, but it calls to that inner child that you thought was gone, and reawakens your imagination.

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Winds of Numa Sera (FEB220357) is available on June 8th at comic shops. Reserve your copy today using PREVIEWSworld Pullbox!

Keep an eye on PREVIEWSworld.com's TwitterFacebookYouTube, or Instagram for more from BOOM! Studios. 

DARK HORSE COMICS
WINDS OF NUMA SERA TP
(W) Morgan Rosenblum, Jonny Handler (A) Eduard Petrovich, Eduardo Mello, Alessio Moroni, Filipe Andrade (CA) Philip Kruse
When the twelve-year-old child Empress inherited the throne of Numa Sera, the "One True Kingdom" became immediately vulnerable. While she grows to carry the weight of the world on her shoulders, across her kingdom a stable boy, a Baron's daughter, and a warrior meet with their own opportunities . . . to escape, rebel, and rule.

o From the creators of the best-selling indie graphic novel series, Treadwater, comes a medieval fantasy, original graphic novel!
In Shops: Jun 08, 2022
SRP: $24.99
PREVIEWS Page #109

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Troy-Jeffrey Allen is the producer and co-host of PREVIEWSworld Weekly. His comics work includes MF DOOM: All Caps, Public Enemy's Apocalpyse '91, Fight of the Century, the Harvey Award-nominated District Comics, and the Ringo Award-nominated Magic Bullet.

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