On Tuesday, Janelle Asselin announced via email that Rosy Press, the romance-focused comics publisher she founded in 2014, is becoming a part of Emet Comics, a small comics press run by Maytal Gilboa.
At the beginning of last year, editor and publisher Janelle Asselin launched Rosy Press with the specific goal of publishing romance comics, a genre that most in the industry had long since given up on. With the help of a successful Kickstarter campaign, the Rosy Press anthology title Fresh Romance had an acclaimed digital run, continuing today with the release of Issue #7.
Now Asselin is running a second Kickstarter to bring a Fresh Romance collection to print, with the help of Oni Press. ComicsAlliance spoke to Asselin --- a former editor for this site --- about her recent successes and future goals for Rosy Press.
On October 1, Graphic Policy published a story by Janelle Asselin that alleged a history of harassment and inappropriate behavior committed by Dark Horse executive senior editor (formerly editor-in-chief) Scott Allie. In it, Joe Harris, who writes The X-Files comics, claimed that at the Hilton Bayfront hotel bar during Comic-Con in San Diego this year, Allie grabbed his crotch and bit him on the ear.
Speaking to ComicsAlliance, Harris explains why he went public about his experience. “I was outraged that it happened, and because people rarely feel comfortable coming forward, and I'm sick of hearing about this cr--, generally,” he said. “I've experienced a range of emotions since the incident, from embarrassment to anger to pity for the perpetrator and anger at the company that had him out there, swimming around like a shark in the aquarium when this was not an isolated incident, as I'd later learn.”
Harris says the incident made what is regarded as a widespread, unspoken problem in the industry very real to him.
The week’s over! You did it again, and in exemplary style. But while you’ve been off working and living and doing all those things that humans do, what have you missed in the world of comics? With Weekender, ComicsAlliance is here to give you a heads-up on some of the stories that you might have overlooked, and to showcase some great writing on comics for you to enjoy over a deep-fried Mars bar this weekend.
Emerald City Comicon 2015 begins tonight, March 26th, launching us into quite possibly the most ComicsAlliance-filled convention of the con season. ECCC is a beloved convention not least because it is still very comics focused and has a great community feel. While ECCC is now owned by ReedPop, it's unlikely there will be a lot of ReedPop, it's likely to retain its unique character, especially given how recent the purchase was.
CA folks are quite active at ECCC every year, meaning you can see any number of past and present (and maybe future?) ComicsAlliance editors and contributors on panels.
If you want to hear us speak on panels, or if you want to talk about comics with us, here's where you can find CA folks at ECCC this weekend (and yes, we're pretty sure they cloned Kate Leth this year).
September 8--14 is National Suicide Prevention Week, an annual campaign sponsored by the American Association of Suicidology that recognizes suicide as a major public health concern and promotes the message that suicide deaths can be preventable. In the U.S. alone, nearly 40,000 people take their own lives each year. That's an average of 105 deaths per day. Yet, unlike the campaigns focused on the 9 other leading causes of death, suicide prevention isn't just about raising funds and improving treatment. Suicide is associated with stigma and misconceptions that often close the dialogue and prevent us from learning how we can overcome this epidemic. We don't talk about it. We are scared to ask about it. We simply don't know what to do.
It is undeniable that all of us are thinking about suicide. We thought about it when Hank Pym (Ant-Man) contemplated ending his life after years of stress on his constantly-morphing body. We thought about it when Roy Harper (Red Arrow) was tormented by his phantom limb pain and overdosed on painkillers. We thought about it when Bruce Banner confessed that he could no longer withstand the internal destruction caused by the Hulk, but when he put a bullet in his mouth, "the other guy spit it out." Everyone who's read Neil Gaiman's The Sandman can stand up. You've thought about it, too. Constantine. Deadshot. Mr. Terrific. Rorschach. Nearly every character in The Walking Dead. The list of narratives goes on, some more explicit than others.
Fiction is one of the most common ways we openly explore suicidality and connect with feelings of hopelessness, despair, and depression. Comics allow us to participate in the subversive in a way that is culturally acceptable. We break that rule and seem to enter a place of insecurity and isolation when we begin admitting our own feelings of anguish and thoughts of self-harm.
If you're reading this site, you probably love comic books -- but many of you may wonder how much it loves you back. For an industry that's already niche, American comics has seemed oddly willing to narrow its audience. For a medium that prides itself on community, American comics has been quick to close its doors. For an artform that can show readers anything, American comics has seemed content to show us the familiar.
To the outside world, the comic fan fits a certain type. We're so used to the idea that comics favours an audience of heterosexual white men that we sometimes forget that we are comics, and that's not who we are. Collectively, we're so much more than that. It's as a reminder of that fact that the new Tumblr blog We Are Comics exists.
“I think this woman is wrong about something on the Internet. Clearly my best course of action is to threaten her with rape.”
That’s crazy talk, right? So why does it happen all the time?
Honest question, dudes.
That women are harassed online is not news. That women in comics and the broader fandom cultures are harassed online is not news. That these women are routinely transmitted anonymous messages describing graphic sexual violence perpetrated upon them for transgressions as grave as not liking a thing… that is actually news to me, and it’s probably news to a lot of you guys reading this.
So what can we do about it?
Ever wanted to be drawn by Jill Thompson or Colleen Doran? Or get Julia Baritz to draw your mom as a superhero? And in the process help fund a documentary about the history of women in comics?
Well, here's your chance. Sequart, the organization that produced Grant Morrison: Talking with Gods, The Image Revolution, and other comics-related documentaries has teamed with Respect! Films for a Kickstarter to produce a new film, She Makes Comics. Check out their video pitch and see some of the rewards after the jump.