Tuesday, January 31, 2023

Mail Bag

Over the past few months I have received some great comics in the mail, here clumsily captured via phone on my breakfast table:

This is Roman Muradov's latest book for Dargaud: Tous Les Vivants. This is his third book for them, and it's baffling to me why they haven't all been published in English. This story is a very ethereal and downbeat look at what might comprise the afterlife. Beautiful subtle and muted artwork.

Also included was a limited edition Risograph mini. This was a funny tale capturing the madness of having an unbearable song stuck in your head.

Andrés Magán sent me the French version of his latest all-ages book, Les Aventures de Passer P. Malta. It has also been published in Spanish. It's a fun "comic within a comic within a comic" tale containing precise drawings of anthropomorphic citizens.
He tells me he also has an English book forthcoming from Entropy Editions this year.

Andrés also enclosed a risograph mini by Begoña García-Alén that appears to be about a lengthy conversation between insects. 6 tendrils up!
Begoña and Andrés were interviewed together in Bubbles #14.

Speaking of Bubbles, Evan Salazar, who interviewed me in issue #11, sent me a compelling mini telling a tale of the old west.
How am I ever going to keep up with all these fine folks now that I've already sent them my own book? As the saying goes, you get what you give, so back to the drawing board...

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Saturday, December 31, 2022

Final 2022 Detention No. 2 Links

Original Cover Painting

Detention No. 2 appears on a few of TCJ's Best of 2022 lists:

As great a review as anyone could hope for in The Comics Journal by Joe McCulloch:

2 bad reviews, where you can almost feel the reviewer’s frustration their compulsive review quota is going to be momentarily delayed by a release that doesn’t make any sense:

Video of the Zoom book launch in conversation with Kayla E.:

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Wednesday, November 16, 2022

Sir Alfred No. 3 In Shops (Again) Today

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Monday, October 31, 2022

Collages for Floating World

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Wednesday, October 26, 2022

Detention No. 2 Trailer by Roman Muradov and Dory Bavarsky

Roman Muradov and Dory Bavarsky have created a swell trailer for Detention No. 2, my new comic book that has just been released.

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Detention No. 2 In Shops Today

Well, to be fair, I only saw one copy in one shop.

I will be Zooming with the great Kayla E. on November 2nd at 3:00 p.m. PT, an event hosted by Floating World Comics on Fantagraphics' Facebook Live Page, to talk about it.


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Library Passes (circa 1981)

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Friday, September 23, 2022

Preorder Trading Cards

Preorders from Stuart Ng Books in Torrance of my comic books Detention No. 2 and Sir Alfred No. 3 will include an impromptu ink and wash sketch on a trading card (Bubble gum not included).

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Wednesday, August 17, 2022

Some poor to fair reviews from 2018. 

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Saturday, July 23, 2022

Esprit de Corpse Flower

My new comic book Detention No. 2 is now available for preorder 

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Monday, August 23, 2021

Shaggs Comic, Circa 1990s

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Urban Folklore, Circa 1990s

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Monday, May 11, 2020

(R.I.P. Richard Sala)

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Wednesday, January 22, 2020

(Flann O'Brien)

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Thursday, November 14, 2019

Tom Spurgeon

Way back in the late twentieth-century when I participated in that very not-nice cesspool known as “The Comics Journal Message Board,” Tom Spurgeon was the first comics professional to say nice things about my writing, even though all I’d produced were some dashed-off, ill-conceived posts.

That he bothered to take the time was surprising and encouraging. In the small, lonely world that is “comics criticism,” writers don’t get much love. When, at his essential Comics Reporter, he linked to one of my pieces and offered some praise, it helped me feel like I was part of the community and was doing worthwhile work, both of which I’ve often doubted.

There’s something Tom did in his writing that I rarely saw elsewhere. While it might seem minor, it influenced my writing deeply: he regularly acknowledged the limits of his own perspective. In a critical review he might say something like “though perhaps I’m just not the right reader for this” or “nevertheless, I hope this book find its audience and I’m glad it exists.”

He understood that every opinion was profoundly subjective. In this way, he was a comics-criticism oddity, the antithesis of those who treat their own judgments as objective truth and dismiss others who disagree as aesthetically or morally flawed.

Though I didn’t always agree with him, Tom was honest and told the truth as he saw it. He wasn’t an over-praiser or fake contrarian. He was bullshit’s foe. In the grand Fantagraphics tradition of Kim Thompson, he’d sometimes go after those types, and it was rewarding to see.

At SPX one year I went to dinner with Tom and a group of cartoonists. While driving him to the restaurant, I worried that I was going to say something dumb — and then felt bad about not being as engaging as I should, as engaging as he always was.

I’m glad that on several occasions I thanked Tom for his support. I doubt he knew just how much it meant to me, but I hope he understood how important he was to so very many.

Tom has left a profound legacy as a champion of the comics medium and, far more importantly, of the artists who make comics, the people who publish them, and those who write about them.

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