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30 posts from May 2006

May 05, 2006


Here's a worthy project First Second intends to get involved with next time around: Free Comic Book Day. Follow the link to the official webpage, which has a handy store locator -- somewhere near you.



Diary of an author, staring out the window while simultaneously drawing page 110 of the BLACK DIAMOND DETECTIVE AGENCY. (part 23.)


(see yesterday's posts)

May 04, 2006

About Eddie Campbell's sittin' around


Somehow, I don't believe these blog entries from Eddie Campbell.

I doubt he's sitting idly, either watching butterflies or twiddling thumbs, given that he's past the hundredth page of his next project with First Second -- a mighty project called THE BLACK DIAMOND DETECTIVE AGENCY.

Care to share a few glimpses of it, Eddie?


Diary of an author, waiting. part 22.

"We usually learn to wait only when we no longer have anything to wait for." -- Marie von  Ebner-Eschenbach    


Having finished waiting for his book to come out, the author finds within himself an aptitude for staring out of windows.



Mike Mignola is a poet. His HELLBOY short stories, since The Chained Coffin have long broken out of the limits of the gothic creature genre, and for their sheer graphic power, the eloquence and literary resonance of his writing, the intelligence, the weird humor and melancholy that pervades them, these short tales escape into the lyrical. I think history will be kind to Mignola's strange little gems, in which his renegade devil with broken-off horns wanders through the folktales of Ireland, Russia, Norway, Japan, Africa, and elsewhere.

This new one STRANGE PLACES, the first in three years, is outstanding. The short storyThe Third Wish alone makes this a must-have. And Dark Horse put together another nice package of this one, with a smart introduction and Mignola's own process notes before each tale.

May 03, 2006

Fresh items...

A number of fresh items, starting with a cool piece on THE LOST COLONY, from Mark Fossen at Focused Totality.

It's shocking and compelling, and it's all the more surprising coming from the pages of this book. The goofy characters and colorful art make The Lost Colony one of those subversive reads that disguises its intellectual payload in charm and simplicity. It is addressing a lot of issues central to the history of America: slavery, racism, the "melting pot", money, technology, trade, isolationism, and more. It never feels preachy, and with some interesting storytelling techniques in play, it never feels like it's talking down to the reader.

And continuing in his First Second serial interviews at THE COMICS REPORTER, Tom Spurgeon recently posted part 2, featuring Grady Klein discussing his life, the genesis of THE LOST COLONY, its background mulling of American history, and the editorial process along the way of its creation.

When people in the pre-Civil War South took a train north they were offended often when they crossed what would be the Mason Dixon line into Northern parts, they were often offended because the laws in the North said no African-Americans were allowed in the train cars as the whites. So in effect, segregation at that time was more severe in the North. That kind of gives me pause. We tend to categorize slavery as a Southern thing that's over now. But the more I did research the more I found overlaps in that particular area in so many different facets of peoples' lives and so many different facets of the economy, in a way I think is very parallel to contemporary issues of poeple getting exploited for cheap labor now.

And a smart reflection on THE FATE OF THE ARTIST, in a review from Ismo Santala at Ready Steady Books, also excerpted here:

The lightness of Campbell's style, already extremely effective in black and white, is further enhanced by the use of color. The book is simply a pleasure to look at. Fittingly for such a hermetically sealed book, The Fate of the Artist  welcomes the reader to leaf through the pages, savoring the choices of line and color. In the meanwhile, the organization of thematic and visual motifs — running the gamut from indeterminacy to paper clips — resolves into a breezy take on the persistent questions of autobiographical expression. This exquisite graphic novel boohoos the artist's hard lot and leaves the reader intensely unconvinced. It's a grand show. Take a bow, Mr. Campbell.


Diary of an author, waiting. part 21.

"The opposite of talking isn't listening. The opposite of talking is waiting." -- Fran Lebowitz


Now that he's done waiting, the author can't stop talking.

[editor's note: indeed -- and there's more juicy Campbell talk here in another excellent piece from Jennifer Contino.]

May 02, 2006


The first six FIRST SECOND titles are available AS OF TODAY at every bookstore worth their salt.


Send you friends, neighbors, colleagues, strangers the gift of a first rate graphic novel! If you have a 20 in your pocket, you can always afford a First Second book.

If you like these authors, tell a friend!

If you don't, tell your enemies!

And many thanks for all the messages of support and well wishes, and even some classy wine bottles.

... And Comic Book Galaxy has a drawing right now: enter here to receive a free set of them!


Diary of an author, waiting. part 20.

"Waiting and hoping are the whole of life, and as soon as the dream is realized it is destroyed" -- Gian Carlo Menotti.


Read a book and cheer up an author today.

May 01, 2006

Guest Blogger: NICK ABADZIS

Seem to be drawing a lot of dogs lately. Wonder why?


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