During the spring of 1992 Nancy A Collins and Stephen Bissette met at a bar in New York City to discuss the sexuality of Swamp Thing. The two friends were attending the Horror Writers Association Conference and made time to collaborate on a new Swamp Thing story. The brainstorming session inspired sketches, notes and ideas; the kind of connective tissue that I spend hours researching. Last month I was able to obtain a sketch from their meeting. Below is Nancy’s account.
“This sketch is a rarity as it was part of a brainstorming session Bissette and I had while attending the Horror Writers Association Conference in NYC in 1992. I had just moved to the city the weekend before, and we were hanging out in the bar (I want to say at the Warwick Hotel, but I might be wrong). I was still writing Swamp Thing, and I was kicking around a story idea that would now be deemed “fan service”. It was tentatively called “The Secret Sex Life of Plant Monsters”, where I posited Swampy definitely had genitalia, but only when he needed/wanted it. It never lead to anything, although many of the points I wanted to make about elemental sexuality ended up in the “Cross-Pollination” issue with Lady Jane.”
Genitalia by Stephen Bissette.
As you can see, Bissette uses tubers in place of testes. It’s all here, you got it.
The book Nancy refers to is Swamp Thing 136 “Cross-Pollination”(1993). The cover of 136 by Charles Vess depicts Swamp Thing and Lady Jane in a romantic embrace. They’re having sex.
I greatly appreciate Nancy’s contributions to the character. She wrote some of my favorite Swampy stories. She’ll be featured in the Swamp Thing zine I’m wrapping up; due out Feb 2017. She is a joy to be in contact with and I look forward to interviewing again to follow up on her amazing taste and history in music. She’s got some great stories. Below is a letter she sent along with the sketch by Bissette
Some of my favorite collectibles are articles and interviews relating to the creative process throughout the title’s chronology. I strive to find as many mentions/references to Swamp Thing as possible to help paint a clear picture of what was going on while these stories were being crafted. This sketch and other items from Stephen and Nancy’s meeting adds to the folklore and history of Swamp Thing.
It sure is one heck of a noodle doodle