Scoot McMahon was able to share his thoughts on fatherhood with me. We talk about his fatherhood journey and the values he looks to instill into his kids. After that we talk about his new book, The Agents of S.L.A.M, and his creative process when he starts up a new project. Lastly we finish the interview with the Fatherhood Quick Five.
Scoot McMahon On Fatherhood
Art Eddy: What popped into your mind when you found out you were going to be a dad?
Scoot McMahon: This is it! Don’t get scared now!
AE: What are some of the core values you look to instill in your children as they grow up?
SM: I want my kids to be passionate, hard-working, empathetic, and good listeners.
AE: What is something you have learned from your children that they taught you about life or yourself that you would like to share?
SM: I thought I understood patience before but kids require a super-human level of patience that can’t be taught, it must be developed.
AE: What is one piece of advice or dad hack you would like to offer to new dads?
Practice doing all of your work, exercise, eating, and yard work on as little sleep as possible. So that once your kid arrives you’ll be well-conditioned.
Scoot McMahon On The Agents of S.L.A.M.
AE: Congrats on The Agents of S.L.A.M. Really like the concept of this book. Talk about the inspiration of this book.
SM: Dave Scheidt and I have always been entertained and intrigued by professional wrestling. We started tossing around the idea of “What if the whole world existed and operated in the ridiculous and silly world of Pro wrestling?” Also, we wanted to do a book together that was equal parts Action, Comedy, and drama.
AE: You are the artist and illustrator for this book. Talk about how you and writer Dave Scheidt worked together to put this together?
SM: I’m also the co-writer along with Dave. We talk a lot over the phone or Skype and spitball silly ideas. Then I type all those ideas out in the form of an outline. Dave takes it from there and creates the script. Then we read through the script together over Skype and make edits. I then create thumbnails/roughs of every page. Dave is super cool and easy to work with. He rarely has visual edits. We have a lot of respect and trust for each other.
AE: What do you hope readers will take away or learn from The Agents of S.L.A.M.?
SM: There are a few things. First of all I hope they have fun and learn that even though you’re a kid, you can have an impact in this world. Also, be careful of hero worship. Sometimes our heroes don’t turn out to be the people we though they were, whether that’s an athlete, musician, or actor. Aspire to be your own person and believe in yourself!
AE: As an artist, talk about your creative process when it comes to working on a book or project.
SM: When working on comics I like to make tiny thumbnail sketches in the margins of a printed out script. This way, I’m able to capture my initial vision for a scene and not lose that creativity. Next, I begin to draw each page in Clip Studio Paint on my Wacom Cintiq. After my rough sketches are approved by my publisher, I hand letter each panel and created the final line art over my rough sketch. After that, I upload the line art to my colorist Heidi Black!
AE: Talk about the importance of books for kids and how it helps them in different ways.
SM: I didn’t like to read very much as a kid (surprising, since I write books now), unless it was comic books. The visuals pulled me in and the words kept me turning the pages. I was inspired by the stories I read, not only as an artist but as a storyteller. Books for kids, like Agents of SLAM might be the first book that a kid finishes from front to back and that is super humbling to think about!
The Fatherhood Quick Five
AE: Do you guys have a favorite family movie that you all love to watch together?
SM: It’s hard for us to all agree on something but I think right now everyone is happy when Encanto is on.
AE: Do you guys have a favorite song that you all like to sing to or dance to as a family?
SM: We like to dance to Good Thing by Reel Big Fish.
AE: Describe the perfect family vacation.
SM: Probably a Disney trip, since the kids are really into those movies and characters right now.
AE: Favorite book you read as a kid was…
SM: I always loved Twas the night before Christmas. The version we read had cool but weird illustrations and I used to look at that book year round.
AE: What are three words that you hope your kids would use to describe you as a dad?
SM: Loving, Happy, and Fun.