What a week! I don’t know about you, but I’m ready to sit back and read some comics. The weekend is finally here, and the world can relax and rest once more --- but the comics industry has been busy too, and the last seven days have seen a flurry of comics-based news and announcements fly past at high speed. ComicsAlliance has got your back; when it comes to comics, we never slow down, so here’s a look back and just what’s been going on.
New comics, new stories, new hirings, new podcasts, new art being made --- it’s all part of the ComicsAlliance Weekender!
The Library of Congress, the Children's Book Council, and Every Child a Reader announced this week that Gene Luen Yang has been appointed the fifth National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature. An Eisner Award winner for The Eternal Smile and American Born Chinese, a Printz Award winner for American Born Chinese, a two-time National Book Award Finalist for American Born Chinese and Boxers and Saints, and current writer of DC Comics’ Superman, Yang is the first graphic novelist to hold the post.
The holiday season is upon us, and with that comes gifts! It’s always lovely to receive something special from someone you love, but there’s also a particular pleasure that comes in giving a really well chosen gift and knowing that it’s truly appreciated. Sometimes it really is better to give than to receive! In that spirit, ComicsAlliance is here to inspire you with some great ideas for gifts to buy for your friends and family. Each gift guide is tailored to a particular personality type or special interests, and today we’re picking out comics gifts for the biggest, most important group of all; kids!
With their new book, Secret Coders, writer Gene Luen Yang and illustrator Mike Holmes set out to do something many of us might consider near-impossible; turn the head-scratching world of computer coding into an adventure tale fit for a middle-grade audience. Yet by combining a mystery story with a series of compelling logic puzzles, the authors have actually succeeded in creating the sort of book that could inspire the next generation of computer geniuses.
And it turns out using comics to inspire young scientists and mathematicians is not at all impossible. Gene Luen Yang provided us with five more examples of excellent educational comics that turn potentially daunting topics into engaging comic book tales. Check them out below.
When the DC Universe came out of Convergence, one of the biggest changes came from Superman. Not only was the Man of Steel back in the t-shirt and jeans look that he was rocking back at the start of the New 52, but his secret identity as Clark Kent had been exposed, leaving new writer Gene Luen Yang and returning artist John Romita Jr. to explain just how that went down.
It's a big change in the status quo, so to find out more, ComicsAlliance spoke to Yang about taking on the world's first superhero, collaborating with one of his favorite artists, and changing the dynamics between Clark, Jimmy Olsen and Lois Lane.
The 27th Annual Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards took place at the Indigo Ballroom at the Hilton Bayfront San Diego on Friday night, and it was a great night for diversity, for women in comics, for comics aimed at a younger audience, and for the future of the industry.
Today the 2015 Eisner nominations were announced for the awards ceremony that will take place on July 10th during San Diego Comic-Con International. There aren't a ton of surprises in this year's list --- books like Ms. Marvel, Saga, Multiversity, and Bandette led in terms of total nominations --- but as always it's good to see quality books get their due, and it was a year of positive movement in terms of gender diversity, with multiple women nominated in most major categories. We still have a ways to go, but seeing progress is a good sign.
As much as the kids who grew up with Harry Potter may want to become real wizards, there's really not much it'll ever happen. But a new work for middle schoolers focuses on a secret school that teaches some real-world skills (or maybe a slightly amplified version). The new graphic novel Secret Coders, by Gene Luen Yang (The Shadow Hero) and Mike Holmes (Bravest Warriors), makes computer programming an adventure.
“There’s something magic about coding, especially old-school coding,” Yang told Wired. “When you type these words into this machine, something kind of magic, something kind of crazy happens.”
In a speech at the National Book Festival at the Library of Congress last weekend, The Shadow Hero writer Gene Luen Yang threw down the gauntlet.
Yang challenged comics creators to overcome their fears of bring criticized for inaccurately portraying characters who are different from them -- in terms of race, gender, or other identifying factors. In brief, he told writers to do some research and get it right, but first and foremost to step outside themselves.
With more than 200 panels to choose from at San Diego Comic-Con on Thursday alone, the programming at the show can be completely overwhelming -- and it's far too easy to miss a panel you know you might have loved, or to find yourself on the wrong side of the con floor five minutes before a great panel is about to start!
Take heart, brave reader. ComicsAlliance has sifted through the schedule to offer up our pick of the best panels, screenings, and events, starting with programming for Thursday 24th July -- with an emphasis, of course, on comics programming.
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