My Twitter account has finally been unsuspended: http://twitter.com/steph_mcmillan. Yay!

I now return to the interview questions for Scott Nickel.

3. Describe the process you went through when you created your comic strip, MINIMUM SECURITY.

When I started the strip in 1999, I didn’t want to just to “be a cartoonist” in the abstract. I’d been an activist/organizer since high school (and the system didn’t crumble, damn it!) After 15 years or so, I finally got tired of handing out leaflets on street corners — I wanted to encourage resistance in a more efficient manner, and one more suited to my personality.

“Minimum Security” started as a political/editorial comic, formatted in the style of my favorite alt-weekly comics: a multi-frame slightly vertical rectangle, once a week, no recurring characters, very wordy.

When the U.S. started the war against Iraq (despite the largest global protests in history), I fell into a period of despair. It seemed that nothing I or anyone could do would make any difference. I started stopped drawing and started gardening. After nine months I got over it, and started again with a single-panel editorial cartoon.

Soon I started toying with the idea of having regular characters and continuous story lines. I figured that they might make the comic more appealing, bring readers back to find out what happened to characters they might grow to care about. I switched to a strip format, and Kranti first appeared in 2004, saying something sarcastic to Uncle Sam about using napalm. She looks a lot different now than she did then!

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Coming next:

4. MINIMUM SECURITY is syndicated on United Media’s website. How did you hook up with them?

5. Where do you stand in the print comics vs. web comics debate?