Tom Spurgeon's Web site of comics news, reviews, interviews and commentary

January 21, 2008

Random Comics News Story Round-Up

* the Fantagraphics PR guru Eric Reynolds writes in to say that it seems many folks have yet to adopt the new URL for Fantagraphics' blog into their RSS feeds. The above link seems weird to me, more like an item link than a general blog link, but it's what I got when I went to their new web site and clicked over via the available link.

image* speaking of Fantagraphics, I received in the mail a copy of The Comics Journal #288, the first of the reformatted issues intended to better bring the Journal to bookstores (and bring it under the beneficial influence of distributor WW Norton). I don't follow the Journal enough to know if this issue is out yet or has yet to arrive in stores, but it's a nice-looking package. In addition to the shrinkage in overall size that makes the long-running magazine look more like a literary journal, it seems like there's a paper upgrade, and the squat pages seem more amenable to holding comics art at a flattering proportion. Best of all, the box of text you can see in the accompanying image is on a sticker that can be removed. That's pretty cool. Forthcoming cover features are Robert Kirkman and a roundtable on David Michaelis' Schulz biography.

* the writer Scott Witmer e-mailed to note one more Art Spiegelman project in the midst:
McSweeneys 27 comes to you as three separate books in a windowed slipcase, presenting six different possible faces to the world, in order to best match your home decor. Book One plunges into the grayish, faintly understood area of the art world involving oddly drawn objects coupled with uncertainly spelled text. Book Two is a never-before-seen 72-page sketchbook by the legendary Art Spiegelman. Book Three collects new stories by Stephen King, Jim Shepard, and fiveish others.
Sounds good to me.

* there is still plenty of hard-to-verify, take-it-with-a-grain-of-salt buzz about changes at Wizard firing back and forth across the Internet. The latest rumor has ToyFare Senior Editor Justin Aclin and Wizard Associate Editor Eric Moya giving notice recently. According to one source's count, Wizard's total turnover in creative may be as high as 16 of 39 positions from mid-summer 2007, with an unknown percentage of those folks being replaced.

* some days I still find it weird that people are opening up major newspapers and finding reviews like this one without much or any fuss made over its presence.

* it looks like Vancouver's Little Sister's Book and Art Emporium, known in comics circles for its fight with Canadian authorities over the importation of gay-themed comic books featuring explicit imagery, is up for sale. It looks like the keys to the Mid-Ohio Con might be up for purchase as well.

image* James Sime wrote in to point out that he's been running recurring mentions on his blog of The Masked Mutant mini-comics creator Basie S, of whom Sime says:
"I thought you'd get a kick out of reading about this 7 year old mini-comic creator who is doing a really exceptional job at marketing his book and restocking my shop with copies. He's just gone into his 4th printing on his first issue and surprised me with a hilarious publicity stunt this morning to celebrate it.

He's inspired inspiring other kids to bring me comics to sell as well. It's just jaw-dropping watching this 7 year old boy understanding and actually doing a better job of promoting (and restocking) his Xerox comics than 99% of the comics industry. I'd question what this says about the industry... but am too afraid to find out the answer!
I have no comment beyond noting the whole thing is awfully cute.
posted 5:30 pm PST | Permalink

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