Donny Cates


*** Strong Language Advisory ***


It’s hard to believe that over the short span of only five or six years, Donny Cates has become such a writing juggernaut in comics, but it’s true. From God Country to Venom, Thanos to Dr. Strange and more up his sleeve coming soon, he has quickly become a household name.

I had the lucky chance to sit down with Donny, this past weekend, to talk about the past, the present and, most enticing of all, the future of his career. Cates was incredibly generous with his time and refreshingly candid in his responses. It was a genuine pleasure to chat with him. We shared some very lighthearted moments and other rather personal and serious ones. I’m excited to share it with all of you. Enjoy!

MIKE MORELLO (Hereafter, MIKE): Thanks, Donny. I know you’re very busy, so thanks so much for sitting down with me, today. Let’s get right at it, if that’s cool.

DONNY CATES (Hereafter, DONNY): Cool, yeah!

MIKE: So, you started with learning sequential art. Did you actually want to be an artist when you started, or did you know you wanted to be a writer?

DONNY: No, I never knew I was gonna’ write… at all. I actually didn’t ever know I was gonna’ be in comics. My only entry into comics was as a retailer. I ran a bunch of stores in Austin and then, when those all shut down, I just kinda’ still wanted to be in the industry.

I could draw and I could sculpt and so, I applied to SCAD, Savannah College of Art. So, I got there and, ya know, I quickly found myself in classes with Tradd Moore and Geoff Shaw… uh… and so I quit THAT dream because I just was never gonna’ be anywhere near as good.  I could work for thirty years and not be as good as those guys were on their first day of freshman year (laughs) ‘cause they were both THAT good, then.

So, in the course of being there, you have to take mandatory writing classes and my professor there, Mark Kneece, kinda’ took me aside and said, “You could be good at this if you try at this,” and so I tired at it and I kinda’ fell in love with writing. Then, I started using my scholarship money that I got to just hire Geoff Shaw and Tradd Moore to do things for me.

Actually, Tradd was supposed to do a book with me, but then he had a pitch at Image and ended up having to go and do this “little” book at Image, with that guy over there, Justin Jordan, um… (Donny looks across the room at Justin Jordan).

DONNY to JUSTIN: We’re talking about how Tradd left me for you (laughter).

JUSTIN to DONNY: (Reply from across the room) He’s a monster!

DONNY to JUSTIN: He is a monster!

JUSTIN to DONNY: (Reply from across the room) I wasn’t able to get him back. You got him, again.

DONNY to JUSTIN: I got him, again… shhh.

MIKE to JUSTIN: What was the book you got him for?

DONNY: Luther Strode, baby! Yeah, he told me that he had to go do this little Image book that he talked about doing and he would come right back (laughter). Yeah, it only took, what, six years for him to come back?  I got him, though! … oh, man!

(Lots of laughter from all of us)

DONNY: So, yeah, I kinda’ transferred my interest over to writing and then went to school for like two years straight, Summers and everything, and then got an internship at Marvel.

MIKE: Like 2010-ish?

DONNY: Yeah, 2010. So, I was at Marvel for the better part of a year. Then, it got to a place where I was interested in getting hired on at Marvel in something like an editorial job, or the mail room, or wherever the hell they would have me. Then, Mark Peniccia, who was an editor there, still – I was actually his and Jordan White’s and Sana’s [Amanat] intern – Peniccia gave me the best piece of advice that I got when I was there. I told him that I was up for this job. It was a super-entry job in the mail room kind of thing, and he (Peniccia) said, “Well, what do you want to do?” And I was like, “I want to work at Marvel,” and he was like, “Yeah, but what do you want to DO? Do you want to be a writer, or do you want to be an editor? What do you want to DO?” And, well, I said “Ideally, I’d really like to be a writer.” He said, “Well, then don’t take this job. Because, if you take this job, one of two things are gonna’ happen. Either your heart’s not gonna’ be in it because you want to be a writer and they are gonna’ fire you, or you’re gonna’ do a great job at it and they are never gonna’ let you leave. Either which way you’ll never write for us.”

MIKE: That’s amazing advice!

DONNY: Yeah, it was. And so, I bailed. It was the hardest thing I’d ever done because I was so close, right? So, I bailed on Marvel and went home to Austin and just started from scratch making my own comics. I just started making ashcans with my friends and then just started to hit the con circuit and tried to put my ashcans in front of every single human being I could find. Then, a chance encounter at C2E2, I think it was, landed my ashcan in front of the Head of Sales and Marketing at Dark Horse who liked it and liked me. Then, he put that in front of the President of Dark Horse and he liked it and put it in Dark Horse Presents. It did well in there and we did two more of those Dark Horse Presents. Then, I pitched Buzzkill. Buzzkill was four issues, and then Ghost Fleet was eight, and then Paybacks was eight. Then, it kinda’ just snowballed from there, ya know? I did a bunch of indie books and stuff. Then, here’s the thing… people think that because I did my Marvel internship that that’s somehow related to my current career, but it’s super-NOT. Marvel knew who I was and certainly that helped that they knew my face, but they weren’t giving out jobs to former interns. There’s been thousands of former interns.



MIKE: Yeah, well Marvel didn’t know your work. I mean, you hadn’t done work for them like that, so it’s not like they were saying, “Please, come back!”

DONNY: No, right. Not at all.  It wasn’t until I did God Country that I got on their map, again, and Jordan White, who I was an intern for, read it and gave it to Axel Alonso. So, Axel and Jordan called me and offered me Thanos. And so I, ya know, did that. Then, I think I had turned in two issues of Thanos and one issue of Dr. Strange and none of them had come out, yet. It was still something like six months away from coming out and they offered me my exclusive contract. I signed up and I’ve been there ever since.

MIKE: …and changing pretty much the entire Marvel Universe, monthly!

DONNY: (Laughs) Yeah! I’m just trying to have fun.

MIKE: Yeah, absolutely, it seems you are. We are having fun, too, reading all this stuff. Do you have sort of a grand plan?  I mean, you’re working on a lot of stuff for Marvel and you’re still doing stuff for Babyteeth and Redneck, still?

DONNY: Yeah, Babyteeth and Redneck. God Country is done. It was only six issues. Fingers crossed, I’m launching two new Image series, next year… if I can find the time, along with writing the God Country film, which is its own new thing.

MIKE: Yes! Any morsels we can get about how that’s going?

DONNY: For the film? Sure. I mean, yeah, it’s weird. It’s a new art form for me, ya know? When you’re a writer, I guess the closest thing I can equate it to is to an athlete. Like, if you’re a basketball player it doesn’t necessarily mean you’re gonna’ be a dope baseball player (laughs), ya know? So, I’m in prime shape as an athlete-writer, but I am still having to learn all this shit completely from scratch.  I’ve never written a T.V. show. I’ve never written a film or anything and it was such a huge surprise that they let me write this movie because it’s not really, typically, how that shit works, ya know? They will option it and take it and then someone else will come in and do it. I was in the meeting with them, and this is the god’s honest truth – everyone thinks it’s more complicated than this – I was in the meeting and they said they wanted to buy it, and then they said, “Do you want to write it?” and I said, “Yeah, that’d be cool,” and they said, “Okay” (laughs). That was the long and the short of it. They asked, “Have you ever written a T.V. show or film, before?” and I said, “No,” and they said, “Well, we’ll figure it out,” and that was it.

MIKE: That’s awesome and that is probably really rare.

DONNY: Yep, it’s pretty rare. So, ya know, that whole thing is a challenge, but it’s fun. It’s fun to kind of learn a new art form. Then, as far as my ‘grand plan,’ the immediate grand plan is to keep from drowning, every month, um… but yes, I do have a larger, overarching, master plan at Marvel and you’ll start to see that I’ve been planting seeds since Thanos and since Dr. Strange and certainly in Venom, right?, that will start to come to fruition as the next year unfolds. I have two new books – two new Marvel titles – that I’ll be taking over, next year. Obviously Guardians is coming out in January. You’ll start to see bigger seeds of where I’m going, there.



MIKE: Yeah, they just did a huge reveal for that. They did a little poster with a couple extra new characters revealed, every day. That was you doin’ that, probably, no?

DONNY: I mean, it was and it wasn’t. They wanted to reveal the line-up and I said that I didn’t want to reveal the line-up because the line-up that happens in my first issue of Guardians, you won’t know who’s actually on the team until the end of the first issue. So, they’re like “Well, we have to show someone to tell people who’s on the team,” and I was like, “well instead of showing someone, let’s just show everyone,” and let people have a field day and decide which five or six it is. We did have the David Marquez cover and did the thing of revealing one a day. Then, we buttoned that with, “Well, it might not even be those guys, either.” So, the Guardians thing is gonna’ be really brutal. I tend to like my Guardians a little bit more serious. The Abnett and Lanning stuff gets TALKED about as if it’s like this fun, goofy thing like the films are – I loved the films – but if you read that Abnett and Lanning stuff, it’s brutal… yeah, it’s hardcore. Space stuff, in my opinion, should be hardcore and I want the new book to be way more in line with my Thanos stuff. Certainly, my Thanos story is kind of NOT over. The ramifications of Thanos’ death were overarching and continue into Guardians.

MIKE: Very cool! That’s going to be fun as hell.

DONNY: Yeah!…and I don’t just have Guardians, but I also have two more new Marvel series, next year, one of them which was my goal. It was the book I wanted to do since I got there; from the day I landed at Marvel. Like, a few of the first emails that I sent to Marvel were like, “What’s happening with this?… and “What’s the plan for this?”

MIKE: Do I get to know what that title is?

DONNY: Absolutely not! (both laugh) Part of my exclusive deal was to sign me on to have me there for a number of years so that I would still be there when this book became available. So, it’s been planned for a long time and there’s also probably the biggest Venom thing ever that’s happening next year, as well.  Everything we’ve been doing with Venom since the first issue has been leading to this thing that we’re doing, next year.

MIKE: This Venom run has been really excellent. Full disclosure, I actually never read Venom until your Venom. I mean, everyone told me I needed to start with yours, so I did.

DONNY: Really? Cool!

MIKE: …and I have not stopped. It’s addicting, man. I’ve been picking up all the crazy sideline stuff that you’ve been tweeting about, too. So, I guess I should hold on to all of my Mind Bombs and God of Thunders and all my whatevers you’ve had us all chasing.

DONNY: Yep, and that Carnage Born issue. I keep on teasing out that it’s a big deal, and it IS a big deal and you should definitely read that.

MIKE: Okay. Well, I have no plan to stop now that I’m in this far.


[Web of Venom #1 – Carnage Born – November 21, 2018]


DONNY: And so, yes, there’s a plan in place. As with everything with Marvel and Big-2 comics, it’s mercurial. We’ll see how it goes and what I’ll be able to pull off, but so-far, so-good.

MIKE: Man, that’s gotta’ feel exciting for you, ya know, to be able to mold that much of a major company that you’ve probably loved since you were young.

DONNY: Since I was a little kid, yeah.

MIKE: …and to be so much of an integral part into what’s happening over the next couple of years.

DONNY: It doesn’t feel real. It’s always very surreal when things that I have written end up in other books.  When I wrote Dr. Strange, I introduced this character named Bats. I’m still a fan of Dr. Strange, so I’m reading Mark Waid’s run and whenever Bats shows up in that book, I’m just like, “Wait, what the fuck… that’s real!?!?”  I mean, I just assume I’m writing fan fic and then Bats is still around. I am the biggest Jason Aaron fan on the planet and so, in a recent issue of Thor, he talks about Knull from Venom and I’m just like, “What the fuck?” It’s just so weird, man. It’s easy for me to forget that the things I do count because I kind of just go in and just pitch the biggest, loudest shit that I can think of; trying to make the most noise and trying to put as big of a dent into this Marvel Porsche I’m driving as possible. Then, I just keep on getting told yes and they should probably start saying no, at a certain point, ‘cause I’m just messing with all the toys.

MIKE:  Well, nothing you have done has failed yet, so I am sure they’re not gonna’ say no until you do something people don’t like.

DONNY:  Knock on wood!  We’ll see…I’ll fuck something up, I am pretty sure.

MIKE:  Well, I assume, that keeping distanced from the reality of it a little keeps it fun.

DONNY:  Yeah.

MIKE:  And, probably a lot more creative, right?  I mean, you’re probably able to have this open door to just say, “Shit, yeah, I think I’ll just write that, let’s see how that goes.” You might not do that if you had someone over your shoulder.

DONNY:  Yeah! I’m just playing, man. I’m just playing with all the toys I wanted. A lot of my stuff in Venom, especially, comes from me being a Venom kid since I was like four years old and I had questions about things and was just very curious about where Eddie comes from and where the Symbiote comes from. As a little kid, I would just make shit up and tell my friends at school that it was real. (laughs) Like I was the only kid who read comics.  It was a different era and not everyone read comics. Like, for instance, I would tell my friends that Venom’s green slime was the Symbiote’s waste product when he got shot and stuff; that the bullets would just dissolve in his Symbiote, and that’s what the green slime was.

MIKE:  And now it’s canon!

DONNY:  And now it’s fuckin’ canon! (laughs)  Because I was like, “Is that real, or did I just make that up?”  And I come to find out I made it up and so now I’m like, “Fuck, no I didn’t! It just took a while for it to be true.”

MIKE:  You were already gathering the seeds for your writing, even then.

DONNY:  Yeah.


[Amazing Spider-Man #346 – April, 1991]


MIKE:  Was that your favorite book?

DONNY:  Yeah. Venom, yes.  That was one book… there were two books when I got to Marvel that I called dibs on. It was Venom and a different book…

MIKE:  …the one you can’t tell me.

DONNY:  Right, that one. (laughs) And so, yeah, I’ve wanted Venom for so long. It’s just so bizarre that it all worked out for me to take over Venom for his 30th birthday and to launch a new number one on his birthday – the year that the film came out – feels incredibly surreal.  It’s insane. My tenure at Marvel, so far, has been bulleted by that and taking over Thanos the year that Thanos became a film, ya know? Watching Infinity War where Dr. Strange and Thanos are fighting, as the writer of both of those characters, was the fuckin’ weirdest thing in the world. And at the end of Infinity War – I went and saw it with a big group of fans in Calgary – that last shot plays where Thanos won! As the dude who just wrote a book called ‘Thanos Wins,’ I fuckin’ lost my mind and the credits rolled and I stood up and cheered.  I stood up in the theater and cheered and Jim Zub, who was there, looked at me and I looked around and no one else was cheering and everyone was looking at me like I was a fuckin’ maniac. And Jim goes, he whispers, “Not everyone was rooting for Thanos, Donny.” And I was like, “Oh, right, RIGHT, he’s the bad guy on paper.” (both laugh).

MIKE: I probably would have cried if it were me, to be fair.

DONNY: So, it’s been a trip, man, like being able to go and see a Venom film.

MIKE:  How did you feel about that film?

DONNY: Sorry audio cut out. It must have skipped over that question (laughter). Umm, to be completely honest, there’s parts of that Venom film that I dig.  I think that Venom works the best when it’s an allegory for addiction, and they nailed that. Eddie’s behavior when he’s sweating and he’s freaking out and scaring the shit out of his family and stuff, with me as a former addict – I am five years sober – that shit rang true to the point of being uncomfortable for me in the theater.  My girlfriend had to, like, calm me down ‘cause I have been that dude. And so, that stuff was perfect. Also, the score is phenomenal,

MIKE: Not the… not the Eminem song.

DONNY: Not the Eminem song, no, but the orchestral score is beautiful.  Actually, I play that when I write the book, now. And as a dude who’s kind of expanded Venom into more of a cosmic Cthulhu-dark-horror-dude, there’s elements of it that are horror that I dug. I think that Venom can fulfill a niche that Marvel doesn’t have as a horror book. That’s kinda’ been my M.O. on that book.  So that part was cool, too. Ya know, there are definitely problems with that film, though. I heard that Tom Hardy based his performance on Woody Allen and Conor McGregor, which, if you see the film that’s very much what he’s doing. I have a cool idea… you could have based it off the character Eddie Brock from the comics which maybe is what I would’ve done (laughs).  So, I kinda’ had to just divorce myself from it and just realize this is a mass-market Venom that has kind of nothing to do with my son, Eddie Brock. So, in a weird way, I’m not mad at it. I don’t fault it. In a very bizarre way, as the writer of Venom – as a guy who spends more time with that character than maybe anyone else on earth – I’m oddly not the demo for that movie.

MIKE:  I’m not sure I was either.  I thought it was funny and entertaining, and I liked it as a movie, but maybe not as a Venom movie.

DONNY:  Right, it was a cool action film. Yes, agreed. I hope that with its success, they make a lot more of them and they kind of focus in a little bit more on what makes a Venom film.

MIKE:  Do you hope, with everything, whether it be Dr. Strange, or Thanos, or Guardians, or even Venom… do you hope to be part of THOSE films now that you’re entering into the film thing with God Country?

DONNY:  I wouldn’t mind being consulted; I wouldn’t mind being talked to about it, for sure. Especially if, ya know, look, I mean if the sequel of Venom is ‘Maximum Carnage’ which it’s clearly gonna’ be, right?

MIKE:  Absolutely.  

DONNY:  If the first one was adapting ‘Lethal Protector’ and ‘Planet of the Symbiotes’ and the second one is ‘Maximum Carnage,’ you’ve kind of run out of classic Venom stories to tell. So, Stegman and I are real fingers crossed that the third one will have some Knull and some dark shit in it.

MIKE:  It would be great, cinematically, to put the Grendel up there.

DONNY:  Right!? Venom Dragon! Dude, what are we doing, here!?  And there’s some media properties involved with Venom that I’ve consulted on, already.  So, we’ll start to see our run flesh out. But… the other thing, though, too is we’re all getting ahead of ourselves. I’ve written eight issues of Venom. I’m by NO means anywhere close to, like, the definitive run. Although, our fingers are crossed.  We hope to be by the end of it.

MIKE:  But you’ve seen like I’ve seen, though, that the thing’s been re-launched many times in the last decade and THIS is the one that’s caught.  So, clearly, you’re doing something that hadn’t caught, before. Somehow, before, it didn’t work and now it’s working. So, whatever you’re doing, it’s exciting. It’s new, its different, its fresh, every month.

DONNY:  I think a lot of it has to do with Stegman. I think Stegman has taken such ownership over this book on Twitter, and online. As a die-hard Marvel fan, myself, I love it when I can see that a creative team is having fun and you can certainly see that with Stegman and I. Stegman and I are having THE most fun at Marvel and it shows, right?  

MIKE: It does.

DONNY:  So, I think that audiences can intuitively read when people are checked out and are bored and they can see when people are having a blast. So, I really do think that a lot of this fervor and a lot of the attention we’ve been getting is because of that.

MIKE:  Absolutely. That definitely shows through. There’s no doubt about it.

DONNY:  Yeah, we’re just huge Venom fans. I mean, they suggested Stegman to me as the artist on it when I had turned in my bible for the book. I knew Stegman and I ran in the same circles and shit, but we didn’t know each other real well. Then, I was like, let me get on the phone with Ryan because if he’s gonna’ be the dude, we’re gonna’ be working together so close for a long time. So, I need to get on the phone with him.  So, I got on the phone with him and he’s just like an encyclopedia of Venom and knows everything about it and loved the stuff that I was gonna do. So, we got on the phone for the first time and talked for like five hours and I said, “This is the fuckin’ guy. THIS is THE fucking guy!” So much of what we’ve done on that book is informed by him, as well. I mean, he’s ostensibly the co-writer on the book. I mean, he’s taking over a lot of the sections. Like, for instance, he’s writing the new Venom tie-in book, “Venom: Unleashed.”  He’s gonna’ be stepping in and writing some more Venom issues while I’m doing a bigger Venom thing. So, I’ve never had a partner like Ryan that I can rely on like that. I’ve worked with some great people; I’ve worked with Geoff Shaw who’s one of my best friends on the planet. I’ve worked with Dylan Burnett, same thing, but I’ve never had a guy I can just tag in who’s on board with the story, knows the story like the back of his hand, and is invested. And it shows in his pages.

MIKE:  He must love that, too.  Artists very rarely get that opportunity.  They don’t even get the story ahead of time, now.

DONNY:  I feel like a lot of my books have been, like, ‘Donny Cates’ Thanos,’ or, like, ‘Cates’ Dr. Strange,’ and stuff like that, but I think, when all is said and done, this Venom run will be Cates/Stegman… in that order (laughs)… not Stegman/ Cates (laughs).  He would say Stegman/Cates.


[Preliminary art for “Venom: Unleashed” – March, 2019]


MIKE: So, can we get deep for a sec?

DONNY: Sure.

MIKE: You did mention your addiction and there was the Pancreatitis in 2014-ish. Do you mind talking about that and what it did to affect your writing?

DONNY: Yeah, I mean I was writing a bunch of books before that. I had written Buzzkill, which is about addiction, which I thought was just a fun fantasy thing and then upon reading it after I got sober, I was like, “You fuckin’ idiot, of course that was about you!”  Then – it is gonna’ be five years, this month. So, it was right after Thanksgiving – I went home and was hospitalized, right away. What happened was, I had written a bunch of books that I considered to be like popcorn books like Ghost Fleet and Paybacks… like fun shit… and then, after almost DYING and having to kind of re-examine my entire life, I started to try and write things that had something to say. I had shit I wanted to talk about, all of a sudden and, ya know, it’s no surprise that the first book I wrote after getting out of that was God Country because I wanted to write about death and what you leave behind and how you’ll be thought of after you’re gone because I was almost gone. Then, the same year that I almost died, my brother had a baby and so there was like this weird mixture of almost dying and this brand new life being there and that’s where you get Redneck. The main character of that book is an uncle – that’s what I am – trying to find my place and how I fit into all of that. Then, obviously, Babyteeth is about this new life and nature-versus-nurture and all of that. So, it helped kind of hone my craft. I don’t spend a lot of time NOT writing now. I mean, addicts don’t stop being addicts. Addicts just get addicted to new shit. So, like a lot of dudes find things like kung fu and shit like that or they just like work out incessantly or whatever.  I just started writing more. People ask me how I’m capable of writing nine books at once, but it’s all I do, man. It’s like my high. It’s my drug, ya know? It’s how I kinda’ gain my self-worth and how I find myself in the world, now, because I don’t do anything else. So, yeah, it was the worst thing that has ever happened to me which led to all the best shit ever and certainly Venom is a lot of that. Venom is about a guy who wears his demons on the outside and is desperately trying to be a good dude, but has this thing sitting on him that sometimes makes him do other things and makes him go on different paths.

MIKE: …and that he’s also addicted to…

DONNY: Yes! I write Eddie as the most codependent human being that has ever lived. When I built that bible I wrote for [Venom], I went into research about what makes a person codependent and built their relationship as that, ya know? People were very struck by the ending of issue six where Venom says, “I love you” as it dies because he – i say he, but it is gender-less – It’s sweet. But if you look at that scene, Eddie is almost burnt to death because of the Symbiote. Eddie’s life is shattered, but is still begging for the Symbiote to not leave. Its horrible; it’s a very abusive relationship, though. It’s kind of no one’s fault. It’s like this thing, it needs Eddie and Eddie needs the Symbiote and they are fuckin’ horrible to each other. That is a lot of me, man. I think Eddie more-so than any other character I’ve written is a cypher for me. So, yeah, that’s all that… shit.

MIKE: Thank you for getting that personal with all of that.

DONNY: For sure, yeah.

MIKE: I didn’t know if you’d want to talk about that.

DONNY: I don’t give a shit. I beat it. I’m fine.

MIKE: You beat the shit out of it, if we are being honest. (both laughs). Okay, so, how about your method for writing? What do you do when you sit down to write? Do you listen to music? Do you watch movies?

DONNY: No, I can’t. I don’t know any writer who has things on. So, my girlfriend, Megan, she can watch T.V. shows – stuff like that – and it’s rad because she’ll be drawing while I’m writing, but she has to put in headphones, now, because I can’t have anyone talking. I just can’t, ya know?  So, I listen to a lot of orchestral stuff like new wave synth shit, but I have different playlists for every book that I write. It’s the only way that I can kind of keep the separate tones of every book in line. I don’t jump between books. I sit down and I write an issue of venom, full and complete, and then turn that track off and turn on a new track and it helps me ‘cause I’m a musician, first-and-foremost. I’ve been a drummer for 20 years and have been in bands and stuff, so everything that I write is tempo-based and I like to do odd time signatures in my Marvel books. My Marvel books don’t rise and fall with the typical arc pattern because people who have been reading Marvel and DC books their entire lives have come to expect when things rise and fall in like a six issue pattern. So, I do odd tempos and do reveals where you’re not supposed to see them.

MIKE: So, you’re like the Dream Theater of writing?

DONNY: (Laughs) Absolutely! Well, more like the Liquid Tension Experiment, yeah, because James LaBrie is distracting. So, yeah, I try and write things to certain tempos and things. Someday, I’ll start putting my playlists online. People ask me for them, all the time. I’ll do a key song. For instance, I’ll do a song for an entire run and I’ll release that, but I like to keep it a little private. It’s for me. It’s not for anybody else. So, I do that and then I write ten pages a day for two days and then I take a day off and I outline. The worst thing that can happen to me right now, with the schedule that I’m on, is getting to a book and not knowing what happens in it. So, I do ten pages a day and then, on my day off, I lay track down for myself so that by the time I pull up something like Cosmic Ghost rider issue five, I know exactly what happens. I can just go in and do the work; just go in and panel things out.

MIKE: That’s great.

DONNY: So, since like November of last year, I have a script due every three days or so.

MIKE: Damn!

DONNY: Yeah! So, it’s brutal and I’m gonna’ add more on top of it, next year.

MIKE: We’re all looking forward to all of that! Thanks so much, man. I’ve taken up a lot of your time and want to leave you to it, but do you have anything you want to leave us with that we should know about, before we close out, today?

DONNY: Yes, read Carnage Born! You’ll know what next year will hold for Eddie and the symbiote.

MIKE: Thank you, Donny. It has been a great pleasure.

DONNY: Thanks!


Find out more info on Donny Cates at:


Instagram: @dcates

Twitter: @doncates



[Cosmic Ghost Rider #1 – July, 2018]




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