New York, I will see you this weekend (April 11 & 12, 2015) at MoCCA Fest. You will be able to find me at one of four places:
Conundrum Press - Table 342
Irene - Table 341
Birdcage Bottom Books - Table 307
Wandering around tables looking confused and overwhelmed.
There will be a few advance copies of my collection of daily comics Don’t Get Eaten by Anything from Conundrum Press, the newest issue of Last Mountain from Birdcage Bottom Books, and all the anthology love you can handle with Irene sold by my tireless comics brother Andy Warner.
TOWERKIND has been nominated for a 2014 Ignatz Award for outstanding series. I always find incredible new creators through the Ignatz nominations, so please check out that list!
I’m also exceptionally pleased to announce that TOWERKIND will be collected as a complete book, published through Conundrum Press, to debut at TCAF 2015.
My thanks go to the judges: Darryl Ayo, Austin English, Melissa Mendes, Thien Pham and Whit Taylor.
Ignatz Awards are voted for by the attendees of SPX on Saturday, September the 13th. Towerkind is a 160 page story about the kids of St. James Town, a hamlet of high-rises within the city of Toronto, their subtle powers, and the oppressive warning hinted at by birds and bugs, felt in their bones.
You can buy the collected issues of Towerkind on my storenvy - there’s only a few of these single issue collections left, and I won’t be reprinting.
If you’re an SPX exhibitor interested in reading TOWERKIND please send me an email and I will send you a PDF! firstname.lastname@example.org
Looking Forward: April Releases, Yeti Press and Sparkplug Books Announce 2015 Publishing Slates
MoCCA Comics Fest is just around the corner, and some small presses have begun to send out their plans for this year’s publishing slate.
Two books I’m excited about from two different Canadian presses - Koyama Press’ koyamapress Mighty Star and the Castle of the Cancatervater from A Degen adactivity and Towerkind from Kat Verhoeven verwho. AD’s work is consistently good to great, and I really enjoyed Junior Detective Files published by Sonatina Comics last year. Likewise, I have been following Verhoeven’s Meat & Bone webcomic very closely and have been looking forward to TOWERKIND, the collection of her mail-order comic which I believe wrapped up in 2014. I’m hoping to pick up copies of these books when at TCAF.
Yeti Press yetipress and Sparkplug Books sparkplugbooks also had some exciting announcements recently, the biggest (in my mind) is the collection of Kat Leyh’s fantastic superhero comic SuperCakes. Published from January to August of last year, SuperCakes spins superheroes in a very different way, where relationship building and moving in together is just as important as fighting the next bad guy. I loved reading it online, I’m happy to pick up a copy when this comes out.
Yeti Press also has a nice selection of other books coming out over 2015, including a fun all ages webcomic about the first passengers on a hot air balloon ride, Rise Above! by Eric Roesner and RJ Casey, which will go live this summer.
Sparkplug’s most recent announcement is a schedule for their Sparkplug Minis Series (SMS) comics. Some really talented folks on this list including O Horvath and Solomon Fletcher. From the press release:
Ce Ze (SMS #4) by Suzette Smith will debut in April. Smith is a graduate of the IPRC comics certificate program. Her work has appeared in Comics Workbook, Bitch Magazine and the Portland Mercury. Description of Ce Ze: “Honey Czarny and Amelia Smith are 7th graders who share fragmented memories of past lives in which they were powerful beings named Ce and Ze. A rival king’s plot to murder Ze forced her to flee her kingdom. Ce and Ze study and emulate human behavior but wish to return to their realm. “
SMS #5 will be by O Horvath and is slated to come out in June. Horvath is a printmaker, comic artist and Xeric Grant recipient from Providence, RI.
SMS #6 by is by Nalleli Sierra, a.k.a. Naji and is coming out in September. Naji is a graduate of Columbia College Chicago. Her work has appeared in Linework comics anthology.
SMS #7 is by Portlander Ebin Lee. The release of this comic will coincide with Short Run Comics Festival in Seattle, WA this coming October. Lee is a graduate of PNCA and an accomplished illustrator and self-publisher.
SMS #8 is slated for February 2016 and will be by Solomon Fletcher. Fletcher is a comics artist from Minneapolis. They are the author of many minicomics and the sex positive webcomic Goldy and the Bears.
As we get closer to TCAF, I’ll be making a list of comics to buy at the show. I’d invite you to make recommendations to me either through DISQUS commenting below, or send me an ASK.
“Sarah Burwash has been visiting rural communities and remote areas to attend artist residencies, travelling to different cities for art and craft sales, volunteering on farms and working at lodges in the Rocky Mountains. The Far Woods is a collection of watercolours and other works she produced during these residencies and travels…” - Full Bio at TCAF site
TCAF is almost here! This weekend, May 9-10, is the official launch of my collection of Dailies titled Don’t Get Eaten By Anything. It can finally be yours in all its shiny, foil-stamped glory. Look at it basking in the sun up there– not a care in the world. It’s time to get to work, book.
I’ll mostly be at theConundrum Press table(tables 153-154), especially during my signing times (10-12 on Saturday, 1-2 on Sunday).
But let’s say you don’t like reading comics to yourself? Well, I’ll be doing a live reading of some of my Dailies as part of R. Sikoryak’s Carousel (Sunday, 4pm at The Pilot).
So please stop by and say hello. I hope to see you there. I will draw a monster or something in my book if you buy it.
I would like everyone to get a good look at what Dakota McFadzean is doing. This CCS alumnus has been drawing every day for some years now, and always comes up with strange, thought-provoking, sweet (or sour), unsettling (or confirming) comics strips that are never bland or on the trodden path, and always brilliantly executed. Dakota’s first book, Other Stories And The Horse That You Rode In On came out earlier at Conundrum Press and will no doubt be lauded throughout the new year.
For almost a century chemical photobooths have occupied public spaces, giving people the opportunity to quickly take inexpensive, quality photos. In the last decade these machines have started to rapidly disappear, causing an eclectic group of individuals from around the world to come together and respond. Illustrator, writer and long-time photobooth lover, Meags Fitzgerald has chronicled the photobooth’s fortuitous history and the events which gave rise to the desperate need to save them. Having traveled in North America, Europe and Australia, she’s constructed a biography of the booth through the eyes of technicians, owners, collectors, artists and fanatics. In this ground-breaking book Fitzgerald struggles with her own relationship to these fleeting machines, while looking to the future.
“Photobooth: A Biography is an impressive and ambitious project. A deep exploration of an unexpected topic that is in turn historical, journalistic, and personal.” — Jillian Tamaki
“Fitzgerald has created something that’s more than candid personal memoire, more than carefully researched cultural history — she’s created a work brimming with that rarest of things: love. That I should use such a word to explain a young woman’s feelings for photobooths certainly sounds improbable and maybe even a little crazy. And that’s precisely why this book is so wonderful.” — Jonathan Goldstein
Inspired by the Roberts Street Social Centre in Halifax, we here at Conundrum Towers have expanded our operations to make room for the Annapolis Valley Zine Library. Initially comprised of over 1000 items from our personal collection, compiled after decades of trolling zine fairs looking for talent. The library has discarded the dewey decimal and is divided into five categories: zines, mini-comics (art- and alt-comics), chapbooks (poetry, fiction), art / bookworks, and Billy Mavreas. Located in Greenwich, NS, walking distance from the University town of Wolfville, nestled among apple orchards, old growth maples, and farmer’s markets, we believe this to be the only zine library in the Maritimes outside Halifax. Looking for an intern with library experience to do the extensive cataloguing.
We are always looking for donations.
Opening hours: Thursdays 10am-12. Or by appointment (email@example.com).
Dakota McFadzean has been nominated in the Best English Comic category for the 2014 Expozine Awards, and former winner Sherwin Tjia has been nominated for Best English Book. Congrats to them both! The gala will be held April 24 at Divan Orange. Details here.
Last week Meags Fitzgerald‘s new graphic memoir Photobooth: A Biography debuted and completely blew me away. Fitzgerald is an artist who works in a variety of mediums, including improv, comics, and photobooth photography.
Photobooth, published by Condundrum Press, is not just Fizgerald’s love letter to the seemingly dying phenomenon of the chemical photobooth. The author intertwines historical information about the creation and evolution of the photobooth with stories about her interactions with them, and how they changed her life. It’s a book about a woman who has come to passionately love something so much that it takes over too much of her life — an idea that should resonate with many readers.
One fascinating thing about Photobooth is that it’s not truly a comic. It’s more of a heavily-illustrated non-fiction book. There isn’t a lot of narrative from illustration to illustration, especially not in the way that comics readers would expect. The images could not stand alone to tell a story, though the text could technically stand without the illustrations.
That being said, it’s a beautiful book where the art provides important visual reference. Many of Fitzgerald’s own photobooth photos are recreated in the book, as are many active photobooths she’s visited. There’s a realism to Fitzgerald’s art that at times is closer to photography than illustrations, and these stunningly recreated images help to really immerse the reader in the world of photobooths.
Ultimately, it’s that immersion that is the point of the book. It represents both Fitzgerald’s personal immersion and her hope that you too will become immersed and care about a form of photography that is not going to be around forever.
As a lover of photography, photobooths, and antiques as well as someone who has consistently struggled with balancing interest and obsession, I decided to speak to Fitzgerald about Photobooth and the intentions behind it.
The Library By Chihoi Debuting at TCAF 2013. Author in attendance!
Published by Conundrum Press 7x9.5 inches, 160 pages, black and white, hardcover $20.00
To debut the new Conundrum International Imprint, The Library is the first English edition of Chihoi, a young Hong Kong artist, who has had books published in Chinese, Italian and French.
Reading the short stories included in this volume is like reading someone else’s dreams. “The Library” or “Father” reminds one of Kafka; “I’m with my Saint” feels Gauginesque. All the stories feel like smudged emotions, they speak to regular hurt and deprivation, strength in silence and loneliness in numbers. Questions are asked without question marks and are left unanswered even as the stories end. The Library is book of beautiful pencil lines, written to illustrate the tales we know in our heart but have never witnessed.
Chihoi is a poet of the quotidian, of life’s minutia, of little gestures, of silences. He is also the poet of the invisible, invoking the spirit of a dead person or a lost love, and rendering him/her real. He offers us his stories with a little melancholy at the corner of his smile and he illuminates them with a warm spark. He imbues them with a rhythm, like a conversation, by the pauses. His stories are more complicated than they appear, they are open and complex and full of little contradictions and they resonate long after we turn the last page. They are like the calm after a storm, when the wind finally dies down and the landscape is revealed anew.