Ben Schwartz is the proprietor of a favorite local comic shop in Sacramento, Empire’s Comics Vault. What’s nice about Ben––and, to be fair, this is the case of all of the Sacramento comic shop owners I’ve met––is that not only does he love comics from the Big Two (Marvel, DC) and is enthusiastic about indie stuff from the likes of Image Comics and Dark Horse but he’s incredibly supportive of the local comicking scene.

It’s his shop whose annual Free Comic Book Day Mini-Con event I eagerly anticipate every year, mostly because he amasses such a large gathering of local comic artists for the show. We show up because he cares.

D. Bethel interviewed by Ben Schwartz back in 2017 for Free Comic Book Day.

What’s less known is that the shop also houses––in a secure compound underneath the shop, surely––his own publishing imprint called Continuum Comics. In 2007, Ben started creating an interconnected continuity of characters and stories that continues to this day.

So, with his interest and history in small press publishing, he’s starting up a podcast interviewing local creators about small press life, giving advice that is focused and fast so that the listener can get some good advice in under 10 minutes.

As a webcomicker, he asked me on to talk about getting an online comic started and what would be some advice to get someone over the hump from being nervous and uninformed to being slightly less nervous and more informed.

D. Bethel being interviewed by Tony Asaro (host of Empire’s Comics official comics culture podcast, Cracking the Vault) for Free Comic Book Day in 2018. Source:

So, check it out below! I’d love to hear your feedback or to start a conversation. If you want to talk about making comics at all––whether as an interview or as a creator getting started––feel free to email me at I’ll gladly take a look!