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BG Falcon Media

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BG Falcon Media

The BG News
BG24 Newscast
November 30, 2023

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BGSU graduate and Marvel Comics writer comes back to campus to read his work

One of Marvel Comics’ newest writers and a BGSU graduate, Matt Sumerak, is coming to the Union Thursday to discuss the process of writing comic books.

Sumerak, who earned his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the University in 2000, has written for comic series like “Marvel Age: Fantastic Four” and “Guardians.”

Lawrence Coates, director of creative writing at BGSU, contacted Sumerak and asked him to come to the University.

“We love to have alumni come back and read for us,” Coates said.

While returning alumni are usually unpublished, Sumerak is unique, Coates said.

“Here’s an alum who’s chosen a career that’s different and he’s using what he’s learned.”

Though the University has never featured an author of comic books, Coates said the bare bones of any story – conflict, plot structure and narrative closure – still exist in comics.

“I’ve never been one to draw a line between pop culture and high art,” Coates said.

Ashley Kaine, assistant to the director of creative writing at the University, said students will find Sumerak interesting. “I think there’s an interest in comic books, especially online comic books,” Kaine said. “It’s a great way to increase student awareness.”

Sumerak began his own Web comic titled, “Abandoned Warehouse Press” in 1997. For two years, he and co-creator Jerry Negrelli authored several virtual titles a month featuring their own superheroes.

Michael Czyzniejewski, editor-in-chief of the University’s international literary journal “Mid-American Review,” had Sumerak in two of his classes.

“He was a very creative and ambitious kid,” Czyzniejewski said. “He’s a really outgoing guy and he can really infect people with his enthusiasm.”

Sumerak’s writings sounded like they would make good comic books, Czyzniejewski said.

One such piece of work, he recalled, centered around a 10-year-old evil genius bent on taking over the world.

“It was something Stan Lee would be proud of,” Czyzniejewski said.

His story about a young protagonist foreshadowed what was to come, as Sumerak is set to release a new comic book series revolving around four superhero children titled, “Power Pack.”

It is a revival of a series that began in August 1984. In an interview with, David Gabriel of Marvel Comics said Power Pack “was the most asked-for series to start in the Marvel Age line.”

Of Sumerak’s successes since college, Czyzniejewski said, “It just goes to show that anyone from anywhere can work in the Manhattan comic book industry. I just hope that he inspires students to go do what they wanna do.”

Marc Sumerak will give his lecture this Thursday in room 207 of the Union.

It begins at 7:30 p.m. with a Q ‘ A session to follow and will be free to the public.

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