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Interview with Paradox Girl Creator, Cayti Bourquin

Posted by Sian, Jan 2016. Hana Comics owns rights to Paradox Girl imagery.

Cayti Bourquin, creator and writer of Paradox Girl (PG), has worked hard with Yishan Li to introduce us to our new heroine. Read through the pages and you will find that PG is a complex kind of character.

Paradox Girl comes across as entertaining, living life with little care but you can’t help but think that there are complexities. She’s an enigma and curiosity only gets the better of us. I interviewed Cayti to find out more...

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Please read review for Paradox Girl #1: Life in the Day of  Paradox here:

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Do you see PG as a rebel? Would you say she's freely breaking rules of time?

Cayti: No question. For Paradox Girl, there are no rules. She's a walking disaster. She has a sense of entitlement about it (time travel) and just does what she wants when she wants. Sometimes that means people get hurt, and fortunately she's more of a ditz than a sociopath, so she'll want to correct that. She wants to help, but she just doesn't know how to think of things in a chronological order.

How does PG’s presence in time compare to that of Dr Who?

Cayti: Regarding PG having a sense of order, later issues spend time showing PG in some self reflection about her place in time and place in the universe. Where the Doctor is a burdened man trying to flake out and just have fun, PG is almost the opposite, a flake who's trying to understand burden. The burden of time, the burden of loss, the burden of identity.

So where does PG see there is
order in her life if any?

Cayti: I think Axiom Man is North on her compass. He's the Logic and she's the Feeling, like Ying and Yang. I think he's less of a mentor and more of a partner, though certainly as presented in issue 1, he seems to be a mentor figure. But there is definitely a thread about Axiom Man wanting to help PG find purpose beyond fighting with herself. Obviously she's incredibly powerful, but time is a toy to her, not a tool.

Regarding PG having a sense of order, later issues spend time showing PG in some self reflection about her place in time and place in the universe. Where the Doctor is a burdened man trying to flake out and just have fun, PG is almost the opposite, a flake who's trying to understand burden. The burden of time, the burden of loss, the burden of identity.

Is the character design a concept you arrived at with artist – Yishan Li?

Cayti: Yishan did amazing work with it didn't she? No the character design was done by me years and years ago, probably 10 or so? The suit, the bun, the chopsticks, the intense eyes and glasses. I had a few other artists play around with it and my script, and didn't ever really love it till Hanako Games (Peter Bensley) found Yishan and commissioned her.

Yishan and I went back and forth a few times, but PG’s design is as great as I’d envisioned in my mind. Seeing her come to life is really thanks to Yishan's incredible talent. She's given PG a real soul. She really captures and enhances what I’m trying to express with the character. PG’s ditzy, but capable, uncaring, but sensitive. She's a series of paradoxes, not just temporal or time related ones, but personality and emotionally as well. She's in conflict with herself both literally and figuratively.

So when did you first create PG and what were the first ideas you held about her?

Cayti: So, PG in her current incarnation is from about 2004. I had a character before then, who was a very pretentious reformed demoness that was in constant conflict with herself and constantly disappearing in puffs of self enforced logic. PG sort of evolved out of that into the more humourous version you see now.

PG has always been about self conflict though. The idea that she can travel back and visit herself becomes a way to explore that sort of inner dialogue and that self-hate or resentment we can feel. I've dealt with enormous anxiety problems my entire adult life, and PG is a way to examine that, and eventually laugh it off.

In issue 1 we see her yell at herself, physically fight herself and lose; later becoming the one that wins the fight and eventually tricks herself into having the day she just had. She's the cause of and solution to all of her problems, which really aren't we all? Anyway she's funny, funny stuff happens to her, and she's never really aware of the meta nonsense I put her through to explore my own demons.

What could people look forward to in the next PG issue? 

Cayti: I think what people can look forward to in the next issue is PG facing off against herself again in a battle to finally get some sleep. Insomnia in the form of vermin roaming around her house and PG's natural solution is to time travel (instead of calling pest control). It's a great follow up to how the first issue shows how PG uses her time travel to solve the smallest of problems; in showing how sometimes PG creates enormous problems by always going for the time hammer.


Paradox Girl #1 and #2 is on Kickstarter

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