Whoa, so…every year, The Beat, which has long been my favorite comics news source, asks folks across the industry to cast their vote for the Person of the Year, defined as “the most important person, someone who had the biggest impact, an innovator, someone who set the pace, or had a banner year creatively” in comics.

This year, I won.

I can certainly concede that my 2014 was incredible, and felt like it built in intensity with each passing month. But to round it out with this honor is astounding…my career feels like it’s pretty swell to me personally, but being recognized by my peers is on a whole other level of awesome.

I’ve loved comics for a long time. From the day I discovered them as a kid, there’s been little else I’ve been so passionate about, and nothing else I wanted to do more. I’ve been fortunate to be able to make work I care about, and to have such great readers along the way, as well as a community of people that supports me and cheers me on.

So, thank you!

Congratulations to all the other people nominated for the PotY, too — smart, talented, hard-working people who deserve just as much (if not more) credit as I do.

50 Books Every Kid Should Read | Entertainment Weekly

Smile (2010)
Author: Raina Telgemeier
Best for ages 9 to 11
Call it orthodonture as affirmation: Telgemeier’s graphic memoir/dental drama uses cartoons to capture the common teenage struggle with appearance and identity. When shy sixth grader Raina trips, falls, and injures her front teeth, she requires extensive surgery. So, in addition to grappling with middle school’s ordinary indignities—boy trouble, frenemies, puberty’s onset—she must deal with headgear, metal mouth, and never-ending “dontist” appointments. It’s a singular story about the universal experience of trying to fit in while keeping one’s sense of self intact. —Chris Lee
Faith Erin Hicks, Raina Telgemeier & Calista Brill Discuss the World of Graphic Novels - Comic Book Resources

Faith Erin Hicks, Raina Telgemeier & Calista Brill Discuss the World of Graphic Novels - Three of the biggest names in graphic novel publishing gather to talk about the industry, building an audience, and making books for a living

“The only reason I think it’s inaccurate to say that this is the golden age of graphic novels is that implies it isn’t going to keep getting better and better – and it is.” - Calista Brill

This is the New York Time Best Selling Graphic Novels list for 11/16/14.

1 SISTERS, by Raina Telgemeier. (Scholastic.) Raina is stuck in the back seat between her younger brother and sister for a weeklong road trip in this family memoir. Will such close quarters force the siblings to finally get along?

2 MS. MARVEL, VOL. 1, by G. Willow Wilson and Adrian Alphona. (Marvel Entertainment.) Kamala Khan has always dreamed of gaining superpowers, but when her wish actually comes true, can she use them to save the citizens of Jersey City without being grounded by her parents?

3  SMILE, by Raina Telgemeier. (Scholastic.) Raina experiences braces, an earthquake, boy troubles, frenemies and other plagues of the sixth grade.

4  THE WALKING DEAD COMPENDIUM, VOL. 1, by Robert Kirkman and others. (Image Comics.) This massive collected edition — over 1,000 pages — reprints the first 48 issues of “The Walking Dead.”

5  THE WALKING DEAD, VOL. 21, by Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard. (Image Comics.) The causalities continue to mount as the war between the Survivors and the Saviors reaches its conclusion.

6  HAWKEYE, VOL. 3, by Matt Fraction, Annie Wu and Javier Pulido. (Marvel Entertainment.) Kate Bishop arrives in Los Angeles, intent on creating her own path as Hawkeye, and almost immediately finds herself in the crosshairs of Madame Masque.

7  THE WALKING DEAD COMPENDIUM, VOL. 2, by Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard. (Image Comics.) This collected edition, of issues 49-96, follows Rick and his group of survivors as they try to stay alive — with zombies and some humans against them.

8  AMULET, VOL. 6, by Kazu Kibuishi. (Scholastic.) Max makes a promise to the Elf King that he may not be able to keep while Emily and Navin are ordered to go into the war-torn city of Lucien.

9  DRAMA, by Raina Telgemeier. (Scholastic.) Middle-school drama becomes much more intense when Callie becomes the stage manager for a production of “Moon Over Mississippi.”

10.  AMULET, VOL. 1, by Kazu Kibuishi. (Scholastic.) Emily and Navin are two ordinary children who discover a dangerous world filled with demons, robots, and talking animals under the basement of their great–grandfather’s house.

In addition to Ms. Marvel (a comic about identity and alienation with a diverse cast and a distinctly feminist slant) debuting at the number two slot, you know what I see?

Three of the ten are the stories of teenage girls, AIMED at pre-teen to teenage girls.  Two more (Amulet) are aimed at both boys and girls, but feature a central female character (Emily) and her single mother (Karen.)  And one is a superhero comic about a rarity in the female world: a female character who is not a “Ms.” who is not a “Lady” or a “She” or a “Madam” or a “Girl.”  She is just HAWKEYE, just like the man who carries the title, and that is encouraged and accepted within the narrative.

Seven of the ten are the stories of girls.  

But girls don’t buy comics, right?  8)

This also happened at TCAF!  Lynn Johnston is the legend from For Better or For Worse, and she is funny and honest and very easy to talk to, it was great being on a discussion panel with her.  She has a great sense of humor about her work and life.  Raina Telgemeier, our moderator, is the another genius behind Smile, which just passed 100 weeks on the NYT bestseller list!  That’s huge.  You tell that to someone who believes commercial success in comics is a pipe dream, you tell ‘em.
These Were 2014’s Most Challenged Books

Native Americans, Iran and gay penguins top the American Library Association’s Top Ten List of Frequently Challenged Books

1)The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, by Sherman Alexie Reasons: anti-family, cultural insensitivity, drugs/alcohol/smoking, gambling, offensive language, sex education, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group, violence. Additional reasons: “depictions of bullying”

2) Persepolis, by Marjane Satrapi Reasons: gambling, offensive language, political viewpoint. Additional reasons: “politically, racially, and socially offensive,” “graphic depictions”

3) And Tango Makes Three, Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell Reasons: Anti-family, homosexuality, political viewpoint, religious viewpoint, unsuited for age group. Additional reasons: “promotes the homosexual agenda”

4) The Bluest Eye, by Toni Morrison Reasons: Sexually explicit, unsuited for age group. Additional reasons: “contains controversial issues”

5) It’s Perfectly Normal, by Robie Harris Reasons: Nudity, sex education, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group. Additional reasons: “alleges it child pornography”

6) Saga, by Brian Vaughan and Fiona Staples Reasons: Anti-Family, nudity, offensive language, sexually explicit, and unsuited for age group.

7) The Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini Reasons: Offensive language, unsuited to age group, violence

8) The Perks of Being a Wallflower, by Stephen Chbosky Reasons: drugs/alcohol/smoking, homosexuality, offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group. Additional reasons: “date rape and masturbation”

9) A Stolen Life, by Jaycee Dugard Reasons: drugs/alcohol/smoking, offensive language, sexually explicit, and unsuited for age group

10) Drama, by Raina Telgemeier Reasons: sexually explicit

“Librarians are especially concerned about the number of books by and about people of color that are challenged and banned—80 percent of this year’s list “reflect diverse issues and cultural content.”"


Some photos from this year’s fabulous Small Press Expo.  I sold out of Tomboy on the first day and I’m kicking myself for thinking 72 copies would have carried me through the weekend.  Apologies to everyone who came on Sunday and left without a copy of the book!!  Thanks to Nicole J. Georges for being a wonderful table mate and prom date, to Raina and Dave for giving me some encouraging words about Tomboy, to Greg Means for being the monkey on my back, and to all the friends and fans who stopped by my table to chat.

SPX 2105 will be the TEN YEAR ANNIVERSARY OF WILL YOU STILL LOVE ME IF I WET THE BED?!  I’ve been drawing comics for 20 years, and for 10 of those I’ve had my books published by the wonderful folks at Top Shelf Productions.  #blessed.


Queer booklist before Pride Week here in Thunder Bay! Just to do something a bit different, I split the list up by genre. This is only a selected list of titles - we have many more in the collection at TBPL. Click on the title to place your TBPL hold or click here to search for other titles in our catalogue.

Queer science fiction & fantasy

Grasshopper Jungle by Andrew Smith

Adaptation by Malinda Lo

Every Day by David Levithan

The Summer Prince by Alaya Dawn Johnson

Queer superheroes

Hero by Perry Moore

Batwoman: Hydrology by J. H. Williams III

Queer graphic books

a + e 4ever by Ilike Merey

Kevin Keller by Dan Parent

Drama by Raina Telgemeier

Wandering Son by Takako Shimura

Skim by Mariko Tamaki

Queer poetry & essays

October Mourning: a Song for Matthew Shepard by Leslea Newman

The Letter Q: Queer writer’s letters to their younger selves edited by Sarah Moon

Beyond Magenta: Transgender Teens Speak Out by Susan Kuklin

The Full Spectrum: a new generation of writing about gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, questioning, and other identities. Edited by David Levithan.

Queer contemporary realistic fiction

If You Could Be Mine by Sara Farizan

Naomi and Eli’s No Kiss List by David Levithan and Rachel Cohn

Will Grayson, Will Grayson by David Levithan and John Green

Almost Perfect by Brian Katcher

The Miseducation of Cameron Post by Emily Danforth

Parrotfish by Ellen Wittlinger

Beautiful Music for Ugly Children by Kirstin Cronn-Mills

The God Box by Alex Sanchez

Sister Mischief by Laura Goode

For many more amazing suggestions, check the annual Rainbow Lists produced by the American Library Association. These lists are bibliographies of books with significant gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender content aimed at youth, birth through age 18. Also try author Malinda Lo’s website, which includes an excellent Guide to LGBTQ YA with an analysis of diversity in YA in addition to author interviews and booklists.


From bestselling graphic novelist Raina Telgemeier comes Ghosts

Catrina and her family are moving to the coast of Northern California because her little sister, Maya, is sick. Cat isn’t happy about leaving her friends for Bahía de la Luna, but Maya has cystic fibrosis and will benefit from the cool, salty air that blows in from the sea. As the girls explore their new home, a neighbor lets them in on a secret: There are ghosts in Bahía de la Luna. Maya is determined to meet one, but Cat wants nothing to do with them. As the time of year when ghosts reunite with their loved ones approaches, Cat must figure out how to put aside her fears for her sister’s sake – and her own… @goraina