I’m Neil Allen, the creator of Zatswan: Multiversal Guardian, and an ethnically diverse fan of many science fiction and fantasy stories. Throughout my life I have yearned and hoped for good representation in the genre entertainment I enjoy, and supported it where I found it. More often than not, however, I just wound up frustrated.

 

Growing up, most of my favorite video games, cartoons, and comics didn’t even feature anyone who looked anything like me, and on the off chance they did, the character usually wound up as a desexualized husk of a person, while many of the “normal” characters actually got to be something closer to fully realized humans with desirable qualities. I think this was primarily because the stories didn’t often focus on the diverse characters, so it wasn’t their role to be fully fleshed out.

 

On the even rarer occasion that a character I could easily identify with on a visual level was actually presented as a well-rounded person and given solid focus, it was almost always short lived and the character frequently ended up being sent to the back of the figurative bus. Whether it was TJ from Power Rangers, Harlan Band from Space Cases, or John Stewart from Green Lantern, something would happen to where these leading men of color would get rather short lived runs in the limelight, and things would not end the way they were supposed to, or in a generally satisfying manner.

 

I created Zatswan largely because I was tired of that. Instead of just being frustrated and complaining, I decided to take control. After many years of being left out and let down, I realize the only sure path to fulfillment for people who want to see what I do, is for them to be involved in the production process with key decision making roles. That doesn’t just mean writers, but also the people who approve what is written and decide the direction of a project.

 

Zatswan is a fantastic science fantasy adventure starring a person of African descent in a glamorous leading man role. Readers won’t have to hope or wonder if he will be a character worth supporting, nor will they need to make compromises with him. I understand many black comic fans’ patience is exhausted and I’d like to clarify right now they will not have to deal with things such as the black character being mutilated, desexualized, having a ridiculous hero design, being a support player to white characters, or being a stereotype.

 

I also understand that publishing stories is a marathon and not a sprint, meaning it takes time for a new story to build an audience. Zatswan is a precious project of my own, and I will be making stories about it for as long as I can. Readers will not have to worry about Zatswan being abruptly cancelled the way they would for many other black led comic books. Because Zatswan is so important to me, I always strive for very high quality writing and artwork. Substandard content, story directions suddenly changing because of behind the scenes editors, or rushed, poor fill-in artwork will not be issues here.

 

There are under served audiences hungry for content in comics. The large publishers do not seem able to reach these people and effectively satisfy them on a consistent basis. I believe the problem is with the entire comic industry, from the executives, to the editors, to some of the creators, to the distributor, to the comic shop owners, and to some of the fans. For people who aren’t the demographics mainstream comics cater to, perhaps the best way of addressing the issue is to bypass all of those obstacles altogether by having fans directly support creators who produce content they enjoy without any bureaucracy between them.

 

If you would like to support Zatswan, there are some things you can do.

 

Patreon
Patreon is a site where you can pledge to support a creator with a monthly donation. It can be as little or as much as you want. For example, if you pledge two dollars, then two dollars will be extracted from your account each month to go toward supporting Zatswan. This is a great way to help the project, and there are rewards for supporters at certain pledge levels. You can visit my Patreon page by clicking the image below.

 

Patreon Button

 

 

Buy Zatswan Products

You may purchase products directly from this website, such as a .pdf download of the complete first chapter of Zatswan: Multiversal Guardian. See the Store for more great stuff!

 

Zatswan: Multiversal Guardian, Chapter 1: “Attract Mode”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One Time Donation

If you want to give a one time donation, you may do so by pressing the button below.



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I really love working on Zatswan. It is very fulfilling for me and I’m elated to be doing it, but I would be lying if I said it wasn’t very hard work, especially since I am the only one doing everything. All you see here was done entirely by me; all the pencils, inks, colors, lettering, and writing, as well as the construction of this website, the videos, and the music. Suffice to say, Zatswan tends to take many hours out of my day. Furthermore, I pay for all of this completely out of my pocket. The bills for the domain name, webhosting, and art supplies (which can be very pricey) are all fronted by me. Additionally, I still have responsibilities, expenses, and bills to pay like many other grown-ups, and I have to work a job to make sure all of those are taken care of.

 

I’m still willing to do Zatswan because I have a story I absolutely need to tell, and it’s important for me to contribute to better representation in comics and science fiction and fantasy. All pledges and support will be directly responsible for allowing me to continue working on this project and making stories with diverse heroes.

 

Thank you for considering supporting Zatswan.