We just released our second graphic novel together. Meadowlark is a “coming of age” crime story inspired in part by our own experiences as fathers and sons. Ask us anything about Meadlowlark, our process, or our partnership. We could talk comics for days.

Proof: https://i.redd.it/439wgkuwn6o71.png

Comments: 315 • Responses: 75  • Date: 

The-Go-Kid447 karma

Hey Ethan, I had no idea you were a comic writer - how did that come about?

Hawke-Ruth712 karma

Through my friendship with Greg Ruth. My son was reading Conan- a graphic novel Greg drew.... I reached out to him about the project Indeh... and I tricked him into being friends.

Hawke-Ruth731 karma

Translation- he got me drunk, threw away the ket to the basement, and I've been in here ever since. Please send help.

Hawke-Ruth144 karma

Hey Y'all- Time to bug out, but thank you for your brilliant weird and terrific questions. We hope you all enjoy MEADOWLARK and thanks for supporting graphic novels and a couple of ding dongs who can't stop making stuff together.

Be good and be safe out there!

hawkeyespod120 karma

Hey Ethan and Greg! Harper here from Hawkeyes podcast! We'd definitely love to do a deep dive on your books on the show some time.

Ethan, we've noticed the theme of father-son relationships runs throughout a lot of your work (The Hottest State, The Good Lord Bird, and now Meadowlark), as well as your choice in roles (Boyhood, Dad, and to an extent Adopt A Highway). Can you talk a bit about why that's such a fruitful/interesting topic for you to explore creatively?

Thanks so much!

Hawke-Ruth199 karma

great question....

Sometimes it seems actors seem to avoid fatherhood as a subject- maybe cause their worried it makes you look old- or its not sexy or something- but I love that dynamic. John Brown cherished his role as Dad... it humanized him for me. Boyhood followed my journey as a dad the entire 12 years we shot it. Being a father is the most REAL thing in my life... why wouldn't I want to explore that?

MoniqueR22119 karma

My son who is a writer/filmmaker is having a hard time finding anyone serious minded with goals and direction in life and it's frustrating to him. He feels alone and just continues writing and working on his dreams by himself. Any advice from two people my family greatly admire?

Hawke-Ruth397 karma

its so difficult. Getting others to care about your dreams is always a struggle... you are not alone- you are surrounded by most of humanity. The business of selling "art" doesn't love originality or daring or self expression... the people who succeed are more often than not - not doing the BEST work they are doing the work simplest to sell. Its just reality it always has been. Many wonderful thinkers and artists throughout time have been met with absolute indifference. You are among giants. The attempt is all. Do your best. Keep learning. Listen to criticism. Be humble. you are among the lucky if you even get a chance to try.

Hawke-Ruth110 karma

Greg here- My oldest boy feels exactly the same. Like he's waiting for his generation to catch up to him. ever since he was a toddler. Born ancient. I will offer the same advice by promising that your people are out there, you will find them and they you. They may be few and far between but their value will be maximal when you get together. Keep working building and pushing the dream forward. If you go your whole life and never meet the right partner then you will have least given your work its voice. But I think you'll find them. Ethan and I didnt get together until about ten years ago and now we're in our 50s. I don;t know if that's a consolation or a warning.

Hawke-Ruth50 karma

Hey- this has been fun- If I were a more agile typist- I would've done better and answered more questions. Signing off - Thanks to everyone for their interest and great questions.

fecalmatter50 karma

How much of the art was drawn from reference vs pure imagination? What was the hardest obstacle in creating a graphic novel? What do you think about manga? What are your thoughts on the famous TinTin series? What are three best tips for an aspiring graphic novelist who has no school or professional training?

Hawke-Ruth71 karma

Greg here- It's always a mix. I make comics from a more naturalistic place so that requires I get a bit tangible with the art, and so I like to make things seem real and referential even when it's made up. SO as you might see from the book, there's a lot of images and shots, angles and subjects that I obviously could not film unless I had all the props and a full film crew. gandry, cranes etc... The hope is to mis them enough so theyre impossible to tell apart.

As for tips- just make comics. Start small, two three page things, then grow out. I learned by doing. never went to school for it.

newttargaeryon46 karma

Hi Ethan and Greg! I hope you are doing good. My question is how have you guys kept yourself motivated during the pandemic and tried to stay artistic?

And what kind of music do you listen to while working? Any favourite albums of the year so far?

Thanks for doing the AMA!

Hawke-Ruth70 karma

Greg here- So for me, the pandemic meant a public declaration of a way of life I was already living... like a troglodyte out here in a small town in western MA. It got me to open up a commissions list and that was and remains a pure joy- but honestly, my workload doubled during the pandemic and it has been sort of wonderful, especially the projects I have going on. Can;t wait until the beans can be spilled.

As for music I am a big LP man so I have a record going here in the studio, and have always had music play a big part of the drawing experience to such a degree that also we have posted a soundtrack of the music that inspired the book on Spotify. be sure to chase that down

Hawke-Ruth29 karma

Greg here-

Actually the pandemic was one of the most explosive creative times to date for me. a ton of work I couldn't have dreamed of came in out of the blue and ran an open commissions project that continues to be terrifically fun. Covid really just gave me permission to be a troglodyte, so that was helpful

I use music a LOT in creating my work, and there's a full soundtrack on spotify right now of our MEADOWLARK if you want to check it out

QueenCoffeeBean8337 karma

Hello, you lovely living legends…

As a fellow author, I have a questionable search history due to researching for my novels and short stories. What is the funniest/weirdest/most embarrassing piece of research that went into this project?

Hawke-Ruth47 karma

I had a trainer (for an action movie I was doing) who had been a prison guard.... and he slayed us with stories from inside the clink.

TrixicAcePolyamEnby34 karma

Ethan Handsome: When did you change your name back from Handsome Hawke?

Hawke-Ruth58 karma

I didn't. I only answer to that name.

zbf31 karma

Ethan, you once said that writing your first book was the scariest thing you ever did at the time.

Did the writing of Meadowlark bring back that fear, seeing as it was a different kind of novel than what you are familiar with?

Hawke-Ruth73 karma

Its so much better having a partner you admire- somebody to watch your back and challenge yourself to be better. But age helps too- criticism is less scary in general.

newttargaeryon29 karma

Hi Ethan, what did you have for breakfast?

Hawke-Ruth73 karma

A smoothie I made for my kids.... hey never drink the whole thing- so I slug down the dregs.

The_Middleman24 karma

Congrats on the launch!

Greg -- can you talk a bit about/hint at any upcoming commissions or posters you're particularly excited about?

Ethan -- I feel like I got used to seeing movies starring you and directed by Richard Linklater, but now that the Before series appears to be done (feel free to cast doubt on that!) it's been a while! How's the transcendentalism project coming along? Is that still happening?

Thanks so much for doing this!

Hawke-Ruth40 karma

I'm currently working on a commission for PORTRAIT OF A LADY ON FIRE, which is so fun to tackle. My BOYHOOD poster is finally releasing from Mondo at the end of the month so that's exciting too.

AND just got approvals for some things that are SO terrific and cannot wait to share. I've been doing a ton of work the last four months and all of it NDA so you'll have to wait and see... but over the next week or two, you'll know. So proud and excited about it all.

LeMeACatLover24 karma

Hi Ethan and Hi Greg. My question for you guys both is what is the best thing about being a father?

Hawke-Ruth61 karma

Greg here- Hm that's a big one. I guess it has to be seeing your kids grow to be these incomprehensible unexpected good and true beings. It's like sculpting in the dark, and then turning the light on and there ISN'T a pile of mess there, but something beautiful you have no idea how you did.

Elbobosan18 karma

Given the time and attention you’ve given the topic, what advice do you have for guiding a son through the early years of becoming a man? My son is 13 and I’m struck by the very different demands on me as a father and my own struggles to adapt.

Thanks for doing the AMA.

Hawke-Ruth32 karma

the one thing I've learned is we all have blindspots... the things you are worried you will do wrong- you won't. Its what you don't see that bites you. That's been my experience.

eskimo192316 karma

Y’all are from Texas, what do you miss most about it when you’re away for too long? Also, how do you feel about non-Texans such as myself saying “y’all”?

Hawke-Ruth45 karma

Greg here- The food for sure is top of mind when it comes to missing Texas. The current Nation of Gilead thing the leaders there are flirting with, much less so.

Y'all is for everyone and no one to say aloud. Just watch out for someone saying Bless Your Heart and thinking it's a kindness.

Fieri916 karma

When you two have conflicting ideas how do you get past it?

Hawke-Ruth47 karma

the best idea always wins. You have to just keep articulating your idea... until you understand why yr collaborator doesn't like it- and usually a new idea emerges that is better. Everyone has veto power.

mufflersquirrel13 karma

Ethan, so cool you’re also a comic book artist. Ruth nice to meet you!

My q: How did your work involving rotoscoping and Richard Linklater influence your desire to pursue the visual arts? Thanks!

Hawke-Ruth33 karma

Rick inspired me in so many ways...

For people that haven't seen WAKING LIFE- get a joint and watch immediately.

emergencymangoe13 karma

Ethan - how long will your hair get before you cut it?

Hawke-Ruth37 karma

I'm playing a role for Marvel- and the character has long hair- so. I can't cut it till I wrap. I can't wait.

eskimo192312 karma

Hey Ethan and Greg! How do you think the book would've turned out if you two had switched roles?

Hawke-Ruth24 karma

God awful! Greg is the best there is. Check out THE LOST BOY. Brilliant.

Emotional_Effort_25611 karma

Ethan, what’s your favorite jazz album?

Hawke-Ruth18 karma

something obvious like KINDA BLUE

schmuckley10 karma

Can’t wait to read this! Ethan I know you’ve written before, but how do you feel the graphic novel type writing is different? And is this a collaborative relationship we can expect more from?

Hawke-Ruth15 karma

I am an actor- all my experience learning about writing comes from my life as an actor- it has introduced me to some fantastic minds. And it has taught me so much about collaboration. Working with Rick & Julie... the theater collaborations- have taught me so much about how to listen and laugh through criticism

Thorus089 karma

Hi Ethan,

Long time fan and excited to give this a look.

How long did it take you as collaborators to finish this work? Did you run into disagreements about the direction of the story? How were those resolved?

Hawke-Ruth9 karma

Greg is impossible to disagree with... when he wants to he just keeps talking till I give up!

film_books_art_eater9 karma

How do you elevate each other’s thinking? Greg, how does Ethan’s words change your perspective on life? And Ethan, how does Greg’s illustrations open up your words and change your perspective of the themes you explored here?

Hawke-Ruth17 karma

Greg here- We absolutely do. I think it comes from a deep sense of trust and admiration we have for each other. There's not the usual self hating questioning or rapid fire self doubt you get into when you're trying to impress someone, you know? it's just easy fun and flowing. Ethan's so brilliant, and clever and ridiculous in ways I totally identify with so we swing from arguments over the merits of Gogol or some new Terrence Malick thing, and quickly pivot to a fart joke in equal measure. It let's us be smarter when we are stupid with each other and the back and forth makes it always better. The work always explodes from this dynamic.

eskimo19239 karma

Do you have any routines in your day-to-day life that keep you focused? Especially when you have an impending deadline like a book publication?

Hawke-Ruth20 karma


dosangst8 karma

Ethan, so not only an amazing actor, but a writer as well, phenomenal!

You have starred in two of my favorite Science Fiction movies, Gattaca and Predestination are you a fan of the genre in general or just particular stories? If so, who are some of your favorite authors/influences from SciFi?

Thank you for the many hours of entertainment you've brought me. There is hardly a movie you've made I have not seen. Kudos!

Hawke-Ruth16 karma

Gattaca & Predestination are two of my favorite films I've worked on. Sci-fi- lets you talk about politics and humanity- free from everyones knee jerk opinions... you can really THINK about the ideas of ethics time and culture.

eskimo19238 karma

Hey Ethan, have you had the chance to see Paul Schrader's new movie? There are so many exciting films coming out this year (many having been postponed for a while now).

P.S. First Reformed is one of my favorites. It's one of those movies that develop continuously even after it's over.

Hawke-Ruth12 karma

Card Counter looks great- but I have not seen it. Word on the street is the master is back at work.

NeverEnufWTF7 karma

Ethan, hi! I got to see you work a bit behind the scenes on TGLB, and you are one of the most creatively inspired/inspiring people I've ever had the good fortune to watch doing something they love. I have never seen someone so creatively engaged 100% of the time.

How on earth are you managing to make it through an entire AMA without jumping out of your skin to go create even more things?

Hawke-Ruth9 karma

its fun talking to people....

Arboria_Institute7 karma

Do you guys have any advice for someone who wants to break into the publishing industry?

Hawke-Ruth12 karma

Greg here- There's a lot of ways to answer this and sure there's tricks and networking b.s. to advocate for, but really... just get to work. make the work, write and write again. Submit, get rejected repeat until you get published. And when you do? you get to start it all over again. Thats the art life and I wouldn't myself, do anything else.

The internet is a great liberator for getting past the gatekeepers so you can post your work on your website and a million other places. Remember Jeff's Diary of a Wimpy Kid came from posting comics on his website that was spotted by Charlie Kochman over at Abrams, and the rest is history. Get working rinse and repeat is my best advice.

stranger_loves7 karma

Hey Ethan, hey Greg! Great fan of your work all around. For both of you, are there any artists - art being a very general term - that have influenced the way you approach your work?

Also, for Ethan, would you ever consider adapting one of these novels into a feature film?

Thank you in advance!

Hawke-Ruth9 karma

I think Meadowlark - would be a strong film- It's the first time I've ever written anything with a "PLOT"--- so there's hope.

CCSullivan_writer7 karma

Hi Ethan and Greg, You obviously like working together, but is there anything you both found challenging related to the book/story (writing or art) while working on this collaborative piece?

Hawke-Ruth11 karma

the main challenge for me- as a person (actor) who loves character, nuance, emotion... to try to come up with a story worth your time. Story is hard... we wanted to feel like a legend, or a myth... coming of age the way the Greeks would write it... but immersed in the details of our own childhood.

eskimo19237 karma

Growing up, how big of a part did books play in your life? Specifically graphic novels?

Hawke-Ruth10 karma

my first book was about Johnny Appleseed. It changed my life.

Relevant_Ad85327 karma

Hey Ethan! I was wondering if you had any advice for people in high school? I’m in my last year and am wondering how others decided what they want for their career and their future!

Love your work! Always amazing.

Greg your work is so beautiful and intriguing! Can look over it forever!

Hawke-Ruth16 karma

you have to listen to yourself. The more time I spend doing things I love- the more I understand what I love- and doors in my brain open up revealing which way to walk... make sense?

FunneyBonez7 karma

Hi Ethan, Congratulations on the new book! Glad to see your writing career is bringing you as much interest and joy as your acting career is. Being an up and coming actor, I like to ask those who have “made it” or are consistently working the same question(s)— If you could step into a time machine and share the wisdom you’ve gained over the years with your younger self, what would it be? Also, what 3 albums would you bring with you on a deserted island?

Hawke-Ruth11 karma

My Daughter's first album BLUSH Willie Nelson's Red Headed Stranger and the longest Dylan record I could find.

tokyocherries7 karma

Ethan, will you do more movies like Juliet, Naked?

Hawke-Ruth9 karma

I'm glad you liked it. I liked that film too.

skullwingdoors6 karma

Hello Ethan and Greg! Question for both of you: what comics have you been reading lately, and which comics creators and cartoonists have inspired you? Thanks in advance!

Hawke-Ruth14 karma

I have been reading Flannery O'Connor- and interestingly enough she started as a cartoonist. She is flat out BRILLIANT.

UnclearSam6 karma

Hello Ethan and Greg! Thank you for this Q&A.

Greg, your illustrations are mostly realistic. Have you considered doing other styles? What do you enjoy the most about your art?

Ethan, which creative side of yourself can you express writing that's different from acting?

Thanks again, best!

Hawke-Ruth12 karma

acting& directing are both interpretative arts so they feel similar to each other. Writing allows one to be more personal...

I've spent much of the pandemic working on a doc- about Paul Newman & Joanne Woodward... that's been forcing me to think like a journalist... I've enjoyed that.

Hawke-Ruth11 karma

Greg here- Asked and answered and soon, Of the last four big projects I'm doing, none of them look at all like they were done by the same person. AT the end of the day, I don't make work the way I do by accident- not after all these years. I prefer a more realistic approach myself because it means there's more to the work to engage with than if I drew like Charles Schultz- whom I adore. I maybe just lack the brevity and efficiency of line to work that way the more cartoony artists do in a way that works. I've found some of that in the sumi ink samurai work I've done and the story I'm working on, but to me more is more and I love having more naturalistically there to inform. MEADOWLARK is a much simpler drawn book than anything I have yet published to date other than some of my children's books I think.

Larac956 karma

A question for Ethan🙂 If you had to pick one book to read for the rest of your life, what would it be?🌸

Hawke-Ruth14 karma

Someone mentioned Anna Karenina- and so it's on the top of my brain. That book has more humanity in it than any other I've read. It's like a friend. I'd be lying if I didn't tell you I'd probably sneak Lord of the Rings - anyway....

eskimo19236 karma

Have you made any new discoveries that led to new obsessions recently? An album perhaps? Or an author? A filmmaker?

Hawke-Ruth7 karma

I love Reservation Dogs.

newttargaeryon6 karma

Hi Ethan, if you had to pick a role that you're very proud of but feel it didn't recieve the recognition it deserves, what would it be?

Hawke-Ruth10 karma

I love the film Predestination. My "Role" might not be so fantastic... but I love the film. And I love Sarah Snooks performance. She was brilliant.

I also loved a film I did called, THE PHENOM- that was a character I loved playing. Very few people have ever seen it. But its good.

wray_nerely6 karma

Ethan, how does your experience as a director inform (or not) your GN scripts? In what way are the processes the same or different?

Greg, do the scripts call out specific direction or do they leave the framing and staging to you? How do you collaborate to figure out what the layout should be for a given scene?

Hawke-Ruth12 karma

working with Greg is different because we don't have to go raise money to shoot the film- greg can turn our "script" into a finished work of art all by himself. He's the director, costume designer, cinema photographer, sound designer, editor - all in one.

emergencymangoe6 karma

Hi Ethan and Greg! Where did the inspiration come from for Meadowlark? Did you two work in person or virtually?

On another note, any good music recs?

Thanks for doing the AMA!

Hawke-Ruth16 karma

The book was inspired by our sons...

there is a moment when your son- breaks free of adolescence and looks at you for the first time- man to man- and you can see such disappointment in their eyes. Its natural- but it felt like the stuff of Greek Myth to Greg and me- and we just wanted to write about it.

eliisonvacation6 karma

Ethan, I always think of you & Sam Shepard the true renaissance men of our time. I imagine with your exciting life of work, travel, meeting new people & encountering more exciting things in a year than most of us do in a lifetime there is so much you want to do that you have to pick & choose. I’m wondering though out of curiosity & ways to get a fire under my butt, do you ever have times when you have force yourself to go out & find inspiration to keep things new/alive & if so, can you share some tips on that?

Hawke-Ruth11 karma

staying curious, keeping your sense of humor, and doing things that turn you on. read the books you want to read... not the ones you think you should.

thewickerstan6 karma

Hey Ethan!

This is a bit silly, but I’d first like to say that you’re a total inspiration to me as a young person trying to pursue the arts. Beyond your impeccable performances in your films, I’ve enjoyed watching your interviews where you share your passion for what you do while casually dropping nuggets of wisdom not only about art but life in general (advice for people in their 20’s, the pursuit of happiness etc). From your appearance on Sam Jones’s show “Off Camera” to your Ted Talk that you shared about a year ago, I’ve found all of that to be a wonderful source of inspiration, especially at moments when I feel lost or unsure of myself. I just wanted to tell you this so you knew that the advice you share isn’t just going into the void: there’s people like myself who really appreciate this stuff! So I thank you for that.

Now the questions!

Greg, how would you describe the current state of graphic novels? Are we about to reach a renaissance of sorts? What would you also say is the most underrated aspect of your medium?

And Ethan, I saw a while ago that you consider “Anna Karenina” to be your favorite book! I spent the summer reading it and I think it’s usurped “East of Eden” as the best thing I’ve ever read. I was curious to know...

  1. What were some of your favorite moments in the book?
  2. What did you think of Konstantin Levin?

Hawke-Ruth11 karma

Levin- is just one of my favorite characters- I don't know why- just the depth of feeling and experience- I could be wrong but I always felt that was TOLSTOY himself... I found his love story simple and touching and real.

Hawke-Ruth8 karma

Greg here- I think we're in a splendid place for the medium actually. I know there's a lot of teeth gnashing for the state of DC and Marvel and the usual comics genre, and that wing of the medium that I came up in is clearly in freefall. But over the last 15 years or so with book publishers coming in and taking on the medium we've opened up the whole world in a way the rest of the world has been doing for years and its been really marvelous. I'd never get to make THE LOST BOY if it weren;t for Scholastic, or our INDEH and MEADOWLARK if it weren;t for Hachette and Grand Central.

eskimo19235 karma

What was the primary mode of communication while working on Meadowlark? Who made the most impromptu visits/messages?

Hawke-Ruth7 karma

we have a strange relationship- that lends itself to writing extremely well. We are both big "Fans" of other peoples work and can establish quick and easy dialogue on our mutual like/dislike of shows we are watching, books we are reading etc. we are just old fashioned "talkers' and can talk for hours - so when we get on creating something- the others energy becomes a great motivator. Greg has one of the best- funniest- insightful- minds- and he makes me think in surprising ways... that's what I think a person wants in a partnership.

aboycandream5 karma

What is the biggest dog you ever saw and why?

Hawke-Ruth12 karma

When I was doing WHITE FANG- I worked with some wolves that were prehistoric looking... giant and savage majestic and beautiful.

Hawke-Ruth6 karma

Greg here- Sterlin Harjo is the biggest of ALL THE DOGS, on and off the reservation, in my opinion.

I also did once see a medium sized boy riding a kaiju sized great Dane on a beach once.

kdksoosb5 karma

How often do you get Training Day flashbacks? Any long lasting effects from it?

Hawke-Ruth11 karma

that was a great experience - TRAINING DAY. I made Brooklyn's Finest & Mag & with Antoine Fuque after that- and we continue to love working together.

I really hope to do another good "Cop Picture" before the obituary gets written.

eskimo19235 karma

How often is your work inspired by a single moment in your life?

Hawke-Ruth6 karma

Greg here- Too often. And also more than most, about avoiding a moment in life or a clutch for a response to it be escaping away from it.

davpap5 karma

hi Ethan, through which medium do you feel the most understood? do you feel like writing/illustrating graphic novels relates to your creative instincts and persona more closely than your acting/directing? I’m so glad you’re doing this, truly love everything I’ve watched of yours. I can only implore you as a fellow film and art lover to make weirder and weirder films and art. First reformed was one of my favorite, anyways this has ran a bit long so i’ll cut it off here

Hawke-Ruth12 karma

Weird is good. Weirder is better.

_UnderSkore5 karma

Hey fellas, thanks for doing this. I really enjoyed Indeh and just grabbed the last copy of meadowlark in stock from Amazon.

My question is thus: you clearly have the talent and passion for what you do/have done to this point, and you love comics - has there been any discussion of doing an ongoing series together (think walking dead) or do you prefer to stick with the novel format?

Hawke-Ruth6 karma

Greg here-

Thanks for picking up the books! I don't know about an ongoing series, for myself in particular. That kind of thing always gave me the heebiegeebies to think about say, drawing spiderman for years on end. I'm a bit too bumblebee brained to sit still with a single property for that long, so the opportunity to do something new and different is much more appealing. New territories new ways to experiment with the medium.

SlothSorcerer4 karma

Would you rather eat an alive chicken, or a cow poo sausage?

Hawke-Ruth7 karma

Greg here- Cow poo sausage for me. Ethan says he'd prefer the live chicken, but is a little reticent because the last one broke his heart and has been ghosting his snapchats ever since.

CCSullivan_writer4 karma

Starting another thread here for a totally different question: Have you thought of using a social media place like Clubhouse where you could actually talk about and answer these kinds of questions live,and people can ask them live? 😊

Hawke-Ruth7 karma

I have never come close to being able to understand or utilize all the avenues that are open to people these days.

Hawke-Ruth7 karma

Greg here- I tried it out for a bit after a friend wasted one of his invites to it on me. I am weird about social media as a place of conversation maybe> or maybe just aware of my own self pressure to respond in a timely manner would make my life hellish as I tried to be a good person who answers swiftly. I love talking but also am weird about talking. I suspect its a medium better suited for more stable adults than me.

punkrocketcomics4 karma

Hey guys! Big INDEH fan. Got a signed copy as soon as it released. Just ordered a copy to give this holiday season. First I've heard of MEADOWLARK. Pumped! Will definitely be picking up a copy! Keep 'em coming. I know the market's not the best for an ongoing series, but any plans to possibly do one in the future?

Hawke-Ruth7 karma

We are working now on developing INDEH into a limited series. Sterlin Harjo- who is brilliant- check out Reservation Dogs- its one of the best things I've seen in a long time. He is working on it as we type.

tokyocherries4 karma

How was the writing process of the second novel compared to the first?

Hawke-Ruth7 karma

Greg here-

Good question. VERY different. As much as we ended up co-writing a deep and detailed script for INDEH, much of that was about honing down the mountains of research material stories and history. Finding and expanding and shaping characters that existed and making them real even if they aren't exactly accurate. It was much more of a digestion event, a kind of whittling down to get to the book than MEADOWLARK.

This new one was crafted from whole cloth between the two of us from scratch. So we start with tat germ of an idea, start working on the characters, and then grow them out to see how they might respond to the plot we were constructing right off the bat. it's a crime story so for that genre to work, the watch needs to tick, and that means building the plot and the basic structure as a primary initial goal. Then we just spent time inventing these characters, pulling from our own pasts, our family's lives and our own childhoods. We just threw everything we could at these characters and what didn't fall off right away found purchase and a home in the story. There's something scary about inventing a wholly new thing, but its also liberating and free and exciting. With INDEH we had a duty to perform a goal to serve that wasn't ours to be free with in the same way we could twist and turn MEADOWLARK.

eskimo19233 karma

For Ethan—you've made contributions to so many different mediums, are there any left to explore? Maybe releasing an album? Beyond the music you've done for movies. Is that anywhere in the realm of possibilities?

Hawke-Ruth8 karma

My daughter is on it.

MAYA HAWKE- her first album is called BLUSH- and its lights out.

she is finishing a new one now- check her out.

eliisonvacation3 karma

Hey Ethan & Greg, thanks for doing this. Loved Meadowlark (Greg, fun surprise seeing your amazing illustrations of Ethan) as well as the fantastic Indeh. Btw, Ethan, I just listened to the audio for a second time of A Bright of Darkness, your reading deserves an award. Currently reading (finally since I’ve read all of both of your other books) Sudden Gravity & Rules for a Knight (kudos, they are also addicting). Question- do you guys do most of your parts of the work alone or together & which ever way it is, when you do it together is it in person, on FaceTime etc or the phone? Can we expect another collab someday in the future?

Hawke-Ruth5 karma

Thanks for listening to "Bright Ray" because I am an actor first and foremost- I think the audio books of Ash Wednesday & Bright Ray are the best ways to experience those stories... I loved reading them anyway.

KoalasPooMeth3 karma


Question for you both!
What made you guys decide that this had to be a graphic novel instead of a novel.
And what challenges does that bring?

Also Ethan, I have to ask - hows Moon Knight coming along in a few words? What are you most excited about?

Thanks both!

Hawke-Ruth5 karma

Greg here- Well INDEH being a graphic novel let us slide into the medium for MEADOWLARK pretty easily. I come from graphic novels and comics so it's hardly more than a hop to the mailbox for me. For Ethan I think it was the excitement to play with an all new medium. sort of get out of his yard and get lost in an unfamiliar place, you know? I think his film experiences and stage work lent itself to a visual storytelling medium more than most. A lot of writers don't easily leap into a visual language the way Ethan can, because of that experience. In a lot of ways, this was a kind of middle ground between our two worlds where we could find each other and play in the sandbox.

SpiritualDrop31873 karma

Hello- you both are so inspiring! My question is how do you become so prolific? I have all these ideas in my head but have trouble actualizing them. Any tips to get past the fears? And as a single mom the struggle for time is real but maybe that's just another excuse. Any tips would be greatly appreciated.

Hawke-Ruth11 karma

its so hard to make time to believe in yr own thoughts- theirs something arrogant about it- especially if you have small people who need things... one trick I use is; I try to advise myself the way I would advise them. I would definitely tell them to MAKE time to hear their own voice. I would not think it was arrogant. I'd think their well being was essential... so maybe mine is too?

kicksr4trids13 karma

For either of you, what genre of comics inspired you the most?

Hawke-Ruth6 karma

Jeff Lemire- is one of the best working today.

Essex County captures what I love best about this medium.

ArmanXZS2 karma

you are my #1 favourite actor, I really like your acting. why don't you play more movies lately?

Hawke-Ruth8 karma

I'm doing my best.

Hawke-Ruth7 karma

I'm always working fast as I can.

CCSullivan_writer2 karma

Greg, what medium do you work in to create your art?

And, did you both work through the plot before coming up with visual ideas, or was it a back and forth thing?

Hawke-Ruth3 karma

Hey- Well we both work furiously in tandem together from the git-go on the story plot script dialogue and character. A lot of collaborative projects between a writer and an artist is comics can get broken up into those two disciplines and stove-piped in a lot of ways. The writer writes a script the artist then draws from the script. Ethan and I don't really work that way. We start making notes and basically just hang out and talk and carry on at the beginning until we start formally drafting a script. Sometimes if we're able to be in the same room, we do that each on our respective laptops... but often one will do a first pass on a section send it over so the other can write a new draft and send it back and repeat the process. Even when we get to the drawing stage of this, when it's largely just me doing the lion's share as the artist, I'll send over pages to Ethan and he'll send back notes or we'll hop on the phone and work it out, make changes. We were fiddling and changing dialogue right up until MEADOWLARK went to press, so the collaboration never ends.

foxtalep2 karma

What comic or graphic novel influenced you both?

Hawke-Ruth5 karma

this book had a lot of Jim Thompson inspiration behind it.

JurassicPark14602 karma

Anything coming up in the horror genre for you ?

Hawke-Ruth7 karma

Greg here- I know Scott Derickson's new film BLACK PHONE features Ethan doing bad and untoward that comes out soon. As for me yes I am currently doing work for something that I guess you could call horror....

eskimo19232 karma

Hey Ethan, your performance in BORN TO BE BLUE is *chef's kiss* freaking amazing. Is there any difference for you, whether you're playing a fictional character or a real person (of different levels of fame)? Also, unrelated, but is Paul Thomas Anderson someone you'd like to work with in the future?

Hawke-Ruth6 karma

there is something wonderful about playing real people- Chet Baker, John Brown, etc... cause there is so much to draw from...

There is an old actor's exercise- write your character's biography. Peter Weir made us do it on Dead Poets Society... I try to always try. With Real people you KNOW what car they drove, their favorite flavor of ice cream, their first love.... all of that. With Fictional characters yo have to make the imagination just as vibrant. Hard to do. Usually fail.

eskimo19232 karma

What were some other titles that were considered for this book? Or was Meadowlark an obvious choice?

Hawke-Ruth6 karma

meadowlark was always it. Linklater always says, titles come early or not at all.

eliisonvacation1 karma

Ethan, I think of you as a of mentor of mine (& the world’s), your sage (that’s nothing to do w/age, I loved Johnny Appleseed too, totally forgot about it until today) advice always seems to be what I feel I needed to learn/hear/be motivated by in more ways than I could count, so much so that I find myself constantly copying your wisdom into my notes on my phone to peek at often. This has been a very important one for me “I do not want you children to use my untimely death, or any setback that life may deliver, as an excuse not to take responsibilities for yourselves.” Ethan & Greg, what advice can you give us today… possibly something that you feel you learned or feel differently about than you maybe did prior to the pandemic? Thanks for joining us today, appreciate it immensely.

Hawke-Ruth5 karma

more and more I become suspect of general advice. It's obvious fro your question that you. are extremely thoughtful and kind and I can't imagine you need any-

and Greg certainly can't help!!!

The pandemic certainly has taught us some of the advantages of slowing down and being with each other.