This is an excerpt of an interview Meredith Finch did with Rich Schepis in 2015.
Were you a Wonder Woman fan before taking on the title?
I think that it would be hard to grow up in the ‘70s and not be a fan of Linda Carter’s Wonder Woman. There aren’t many of my friends who don’t remember twirling around, arms crossed in front.
Was it intimidating taken over such a beloved and iconic character?
Absolutely. I’m not sure what was more intimidating; taking over the book from such an acclaimed writer as Brian Azzarello, or knowing that I was going to be working on the most iconic female super hero in history.
What was your goal for the character coming into the book?
Going into the book I really wanted people to feel like they had a more intimate relationship with Wonder Woman. I wanted readers to be able to relate with how she was feeling and to be able to say, yeah, I’ve felt like that too.
Do you feel you were able to accomplish what you had hoped after your first arc?
I’ve had a lot of people say that they really enjoyed our first arc and that they were able to relate to Diana’s feeling of being overwhelmed by everything she had on her plate. That was what I was hoping to achieve and by that measure I’d say we were successful.
What do you hope readers take away from your story each month?
First and foremost, I believe that comics are entertainment. I want people to have enjoyed their time with us, and Wonder Woman and feel like we’ve been able to add a little joy or fun into their lives. There is a lot of serious stuff going on out there. Sometimes it’s nice to be able to just leave it all behind, even if it’s only for a minute.
How did your days at Zenescope prepare you to write Wonder Woman?
Zenescope was very good about starting me with a story in Tales from Oz: The Cowardly Lion, that was already plotted and all I had to do was the story pacing and the dialogue. It was like having the opportunity to ride a bicycle with training wheels on. As they got more comfortable with the work I was turning in, and I got more experienced, I had more of an opportunity to contribute to the stories I was telling. I own Ralph and Joe a lot and I really appreciate them taking a chance on an untested writer.
Why do you think Wonder Woman has endured?
I think that people are drawn to positivity, and the more chaotic our world gets, the more we need that anchor in the storm that tells us we are going to be okay. Wonder Woman is exactly that. She comes from a much different place that either Batman or Superman. She’s much more maternal. She’s not saving the world because it’s the right thing to do… she’s saving the world because she genuinely cares about the people she encounters.
What does Wonder Woman mean to your personally?
Wonder Woman has become so much more important to me as our run as gone along. She represents every strong woman I’ve met in my life, my grandmothers, my mother, my friends. I love her now in a way that wasn’t possible before this experience and I will absolutely miss her when our time is done.
What is the first Wonder Woman story you remember reading?
I didn’t grow up in a place where comics were easily accessible, so my first real exposure to them, as they are now, was through David. My first Wonder Woman story was Brian and Cliff’s run.
Which Wonder Woman comic would you recommend to a new reader?
There are so many amazing Wonder Woman stories that it would be hard to choose. I do however believe that the new 52 made comics more accessible for new readers, because they aren’t having to catch up with 42 years of history. So with that in mind, I would have to recommend Brian and Cliff’s run.