Deya Muniz Interview on All Ages of Geek

We Interviewed Deya Muniz!

by: Sonny Woody

I recently was blessed with the incredible opportunity to have a digital and informal interview with Deya Muniz– writer, artist, and 1 ⁄ 2 of the creators of the WEBTOON original series Blades of Furry. I’ve been a fan of Deya and her wife’s for a long time, but it took me a while to finally get my hands on a copy of Deya’s debut graphic novel, The Princess and the Grilled Cheese Sandwich. I was so struck by the story of the novel that I knew that I had to reach out to Deya to talk about it. I was so excited when they agreed! So without further ado, here is my interview with Deya Muniz. We discuss the plot to both Blades of Furry and The Princess and the Grilled Cheese Sandwich in detail so– spoiler warning!

I know that The Princess and the Grilled Cheese Sandwich was heavily inspired by your own relationship with Emily, but what inspired the two of you to make Blades of Furry?

DM: Blades of Furry started as my MFA thesis project and was also heavily inspired by Emily, hehe!! One of the main characters is named Emile after all.

The thesis was on suspension of disbelief and my goal was to come up with a VERY weird concept but still make it feel natural to the audience. I think it worked out!

It definitely worked out! I love that your relationship with Emily reflects in so much of your work. It’s so sweet. How did the two of you end up pairing with WEBTOON?

DM: I had been with Webtoon before! My comic strip series Brutally Honest was a Webtoon Original for a short time before I moved to the US, and then one of our classmates during our grad program became an editor there! We stayed in touch & once we graduated we pitched to them!

Who are some of your biggest artistic inspirations and influences?

DM: Too many to list! I read a lot of shoujo manga growing up, which influenced all my work… I’m also a big fan of Pride & Prejudice (2005) which was a big influence for The Princess and the Grilled Cheese Sandwich.

In the years leading up to Blades of Furry, I was on a sports anime & BL kick (Yuri on Ice & Free! included). I think I had just finished reading Dark Heaven by Juns & Wolf in the House by Park Ji-Yeon when I finished the outline for BoF! There’s new episodes now, I gotta get on that…

The manga and P&P influences are definitely clear. Cam is such a period piece romantic lead. I also knew Yuri On Ice is an influence, and when I finally got around to watching it early last year— I thought about Radu and Emile so much lol

Do you have a favorite moment in Blades of Furry? And has there been a moment you found yourself nervous to publish?

DM: After the initial nervousness about the overall reception to the series I haven’t really been nervous at all… I mostly get excited about whatever suffering I will unleash with the latest cliffhanger.

There’s some moments coming up right now on Fast Pass that I’m really excited about and they miiight be favorites of mine. 

I do also REALLY like what we call the “Breakup Fakeup” moment, hehe. 

If you at all happen to mean the press conference in the Fast Pass episodes, I must agree! Also any moment between Sal and Hana are favs of mine. I love an adorable established side pairing.

What’s your favorite thing about posting a new update?

DM: I really like seeing people’s reactions to the story as it unfolds! It feels crazy having people theorize about our story. Em enjoys it a lot as well, she loves talking to our readers! 

Do you have a favorite character to write?

DM: Not really. My favorites to draw in BoF are Emile and Hana, though. And in Grilled Cheese it was Brie and Zola!  

I took so many pictures of Zola while reading Grilled Cheese! I could tell she was fun to draw. Have you noticed a change in your favorite things to draw? Is there something you used to find super challenging but now comes easily? 

DM: HANDS!! As a baby artist they were so challenging to learn, and now they’re one of my favorite thing ever. It feels like a puzzle sometimes. I really like anatomy in general tbh! 

What’s your creative process like?

DM: Oh, you know. A constant cycle between “why did I think I could do this? I’m a failure and a fraud” and “I am a storytelling GOD”.

Would you like me to go into specifics for Grilled Cheese and/or BoF? I can!

Please give me specifics on both, I would absolutely love that!

DM: So for Grilled Cheese, I only ever had a script because it started as a scriptwriting class assignment. Once I was ready to start work on the graphic novel I went from an outline to thumbnails + text. 

From there I went to “pencils” – it was all done on an ipad, but that’s what we’re calling the tight sketch step – and then inks & colors. They had to bring in an inker and colorist to finish the book since I had other projects I had to focus on as well! They are both excellent – The inker was Dominic Bustamante (@dommnics on insta) and the Colorist Eleonora Bruni (@elehbruni on insta), everyone should check out their INCREDIBLE work! 

For Blades of Furry I quickly found the need to script out episodes, mostly because i need to manage how much story fits in how many panels, and keep the panel count where it needs to be! 

The scripts are very very barebones since they’re just for myself & I can remember what I intended panels to look like with veeery minimal descriptions, if any at all. 

Then I move on to pencils & lettering, and once those are done Emily takes over for inks & coloring!! Usually what happens is she’s working on an episode at the same time I’m working on the next one. 

This one is super self-indulgent for me~ how do you think the casts of Blades of Furry and The Princess and the Grilled Cheese Sandwich would interact?

DM: Radu would have horrible tummy issues with all that cheese…

Congrats on the BoF plushies by the way! They’re super cute. Do you have plans for BoF to get a physical release? And are there any other dream milestones you have for the series? 

DM: THANK YOU!! And YES! A physical release is currently in the works! We just hit half a million subscribers, so that was a cool milestone. I’d love to get to 1 million, that would be nice… And someday getting an animated adaptation would definitely be the dream, but I don’t think that’s likely… It def wouldn’t be an easy adaptation.

Biggest dream is to have a ship make it to a year roundup of top couples on AO3, though. Someday… I can dream…

I’m so excited to one day hold a physical BoF in my hands! And I would love to see it animated. Give my boys a Nimoma treatment! Oh, do you have any dream cast choices for the boys? Are there voices you have in mind?

DM: The VAs for Legoshi and Louis on the English dub of Beastars actually did a little animatic, and it made us LOSE OUR MINDS with how perfect it was. I can’t find it anymore but, it was so nice.

I remember seeing that animatic! It was so good. Perfect choices for their voices for sure. Did you ever expect for the series to have the fan reaction it’s had? And do you like to read fan theories?

DM: I have no idea what I expected, but how intense and detail oriented the fans can be was definitely a surprise. People were asking me for official heights and last names and all sorts of things I had not thought of whatsoever, it’s wild. And I LOVE fan theories! I love them equally when they’re dead wrong and exactly right! 

Have you since sat down and considered answers to some of those questions? Fans do love details, and I think it’s a sign of your pull as an artist and creator that people are that invested. It’s incredible to see that.

DM: If they’re relevant/mentioned in the story, yes. I don’t think I’ll ever settle on heights or anything like that, though. 

What’s something you’d like to tell aspiring creatives that maybe you would have liked to hear, or did hear, when you were starting out? 

Also- let me just gush for a second. I’ve been a fan since early in BoF being published on WEBTOON, and I finally read The Princess and the Grilled Cheese Sandwich recently. I was so charmed by it. I loved seeing the similarities to BoF in the art and dialogue, but also the very intricate and unique details. The art is so beautiful! And the story is so sweet! Cam really resonated with me as a nonbinary person. She didn’t even think about her gender. She just loved clothes and wanted to feel good in her own skin and live life her own way. Her looking so handsome and dashing with her fake sideburns made me feel really good about my sideburns (which I used to really hate.) It just warmed my whole soul to read. It was like eating a grilled cheese for my soul :’) 

I asked about your inspirations, but you and Emily are truly some of mine! 

Thank you so much for taking the time to do this!

DM: In this line of work, if something goes wrong, no one dies. It’s gonna be okay. It’s not that serious. Take care of yourself.

And thank you so much for enjoying our work!! Also, I have to say, it’s fantastic to hear from someone who understands Cam’s vibe like that 💖💖 Obviously I also relate to how she sees things, but I also know she confuses some people…


I just want to thank Deya again for indulging me with this interview. It really meant a lot to me. If you are reading this interview and haven’t yet checked out Deya’s work, Blades of Furry and The Princess and the Grilled Cheese Sandwich, I encourage you to do so! Go show Deya and their wife/collaborator Emily Erdos some love. They are both incredible creators, and they deserve so much recognition and appreciation. 

Thanks for reading! 

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