Weekender: Poetry and Proposals, ‘Nimona’ Gets Nominated, and Koyama Press Soars
The week's over! You did it, and did it in magnificent 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 toasted croque-monsieur this weekend.
A fresh wave of comic announcements came racing into our faces courtesy of Koyama Press, fronted by comics hyperbeing Annie Koyama herself. Artists Cathy G. Johnson, Ben Sears and Aidan Koch head up the new line of books, which will all likely all come into print next year. Koyama Press does a strong line in 'joy', so it'll be well worth keeping an eye on all of these.
Imprisoned cartoonist Atena Farghadani has been awarded the 2015 Courage in Cartooning Award by the Cartoonists Rights Network International. Farghadani was sentenced to over 12 years in prison for a cartoon that depicted members of the Iranian parliament as animals and posting it over her Facebook page --- a sentence that is as ludicrous as it is unjust. Her situation was exacerbated after she shook hands with her lawyer, which was called "indecent conduct." You can sign the Amnesty petition here.
The National Book Awards launched this week, and features Noelle Stevenson's Nimona as a nominee on the longlist for Young People's Literature. She's the only comic nominated in the category, which clearly marks her out as the favorite to win, in my opinion.
Swiss cartoonist Zep made a powerful statement on the front page of Le Monde this week. His character Titeuf --- a sass-mouthed sprite akin to Bart Simpson --- was used to offer a sobering reflection on the current refugee crisis in Europe. It's hard-hitting, powerful stuff; one of the strongest comics of the year so far.
A comics industry with Alex de Campi in it is a superior comics industry. This week in a post on her blog she talked about her time working on Sensation Comics Featuring Wonder Woman, her frustration with its lack of impact, and some of the ways she believes the industry is failing women.
This weekend is SPX, and that's going to dominate the comics landscape; but it's also MECCAcon in Detroit, the Midwest Ethnic Convention for Comics and Arts. If you want to know more, then check out this interview with convention founder Maia Crown Williams, and feel inspiration crackle through your body with each new paragraph. She's an incredible interviewee.
John Paul Leon is one of the artist that artists adore the most. He's a craftsman above all else, which makes this interview with David Harper on Sktchd so worthwhile.
At Anime News Network, Deb Aoki spoke to Kohei Furukawa and Hiroaki Morita of Manga publisher Kodansha, which is having a fascinating, powerful year.
Andy Oliver at Broken Frontier talked to Rachael Smith about her new comic with Avery Hill Publishing, The Rabbit. She uses the phrase "ball-ache." It's brilliant.
At Women Write About Comics, Claire Napier talks to Paul Allor about his current series Tet at IDW, and things get... real. This is one you're going to want to read, especially if you're interested in getting into publishing and making comics yourself.
And finally, A Thousand Days' Zac Gorman was interviewed by Zainab Akhtar at Comics & Cola about the webcomic, which takes place in real time. Honestly, it does --- it's set in a space station, and will end in 2018. New strips will come out basically whenever they come out, but they're each ticking down to that end-point. It's a real experiment, and a fascinating one at that.
NEW AND UPCOMING RELEASES
Cartoonist Tom Humberstone and poet Chrissy Williams are editors on a new book of comics poetry called Over the Line, which launches this week in the UK. You can also get it through publisher Sidekick Comics at their website.
Computer scientist John Regehr has got his hands on an advance copy of Gene Luen Yang's next book, Secret Coders, which offers a surprisingly engaging look at mathematics.
Richard Bruton of Forbidden Planet offers a preview of Improper Books' upcoming slate of books and comics --- including Porcelain, Briar, and my favorite, Night Post. You may not be aware of Improper, but they've spent the last few years carefully curating their own line of comics, and there are some lovely works in there.
Also; hey! The Perry Bible Fellowship has returned!
If you're going to propose, you've got to make the effort. That's been true for years, and certainly at least since Kate Hudson first started appearing in romantic comedies. But now it's time for McConaughey to admit defeat, because Fearless Defenders and Spider-Man 2099 artist Will Sliney achieved the ultimate: he proposed using comics. And his girlfriend-now-fiancée said yes! Congratulations!
Have a great weekend, everybody!