I first found out that I would be the artist on Primates waaaaaaaaay back in 2008 (sometimes it takes a little while to make a book). I was given the script by First Second, and asked to provide some samples (kind of like an audition). I was immediately thrilled to see the author of the script: Jim!! I had been a big fan of his work since Bone Sharps, Cowboys and Thunder Lizards.
I cranked out some character sketches and sample pages, and sent them to First Second within the week. They let me know that they received them, and they also let me know that it might be a while before I hear from them.
Meanwhile, Joe and I were starting to make the spring comic convention rounds. For the first time, we were going to check out Heroes Con in Charlotte, NC. I decided to glance at the table layout to see who our "neighbors" would be, and, lo and behold, we were seated next to Jim!! I was equal parts excited and terrified; I still hadn't heard any word about my samples. The day before we flew down for Heroes, I got a phone call from First Second letting me know that I was on the book -- talk about some metaphorical pants-pooping! Now I could talk primate-shop with Jim for the weekend and get super-pumped for the book.
Jim also has a quick anecdote about how this played out on his end.
Stay tuned; I'll be posting the original samples that I did for Primates next week.