Seattle, WA: We here are Fantagraphics are already pretty privy to how much of a genius our boss, Gary Groth, is. Finally the World is standing up to take notice! And by the World, I mean The Stranger Genius Awards for Literature. Books editor, Paul Constant will be presenting a showcase at the Frye Art Museum for all the literature geniuses, including Gary, visual poet, Shin Yu Pai, and writer of the current Ms. Marvel series, G. Willow Wilson. Tickets $10, with mingling and drinks beginning at 5:30. 21+ (More details)
Saturday, August 30th
Chicago, IL: Purveyors of the finest comics, Quimby's Bookstore of Chicago will be hosting the prince of spaces escapades, Lane Milburn, as he parties with the public to celebrate the release of his sci-fi epic, Twelve Gems! A Heavy Metal saga meets your math class compositon notebook in this beautiful space opera that traverses the cosmos. The boogying starts at 7 pm. (More details)
Los Angeles: As a part of the Everything Is Festival at the Cine Family, Prison Pit cartoonist, Johnny Ryan will be freaking audiences out by screening the animated version of Prison Pit Book One. Joining him on a panel to follow with be noted comedians and bad boys, Rick Shapiro and Blake Anderson. Begins at 2:30 pm. Get tix quick! (More details)
Houston, TX: Amazing Houston Comic Con will be hosting a slew of the comic industry's most notable artists, and joing them is of course Mr. Ed Piskor of Hip Hop Family Tree! He will be around Friday and Saturday, and will hopefully ask Rob Liefeld what he thought of the special HHFT #300, found in your forthcoming deluxe box set. (More details)
Decatur, GA: If you find yourself in the dirty south this weekend, get a little dirtier by hanging out with a bunch of authors of cartoonists at the AJC Decatur Book Festival this weekend where Eleanor Davis and Ed Piskor will be giving you the down low on their works. Eleanor and Liz Prince will be giving a presentation this day at 1:45 pm titled, "How to be Graphic" - told you the south was dirty - (More details)
Sunday, August 31st
Decatur, GA: Ed Piskor is doubling up on events this weekend and making his way across the great American landscape to bring a launch of Hip Hop Family Tree Vol. 2, and a moderated panel to follow, where he'll discuss the only two things that still make sense in the world, hip-hop and comic books. Scoot on down to the Marriott at 5 pm! (More details)
Gary's acerbic rage-writings of the 80s and 90s are referenced in the article by Paul Constant. Constant asked Gary if he was less angry now but since Fantagraphics started making the comics he wanted to read and are at most bookstores...Constant wrote it best. "that there was always more work to do, but it was clear to everyone that, yes, the century-long fight for the soul of American comics is over, and Gary Groth won."
On October 18, The Stranger will throw a huge, drunken party for all 15 finalists at the Moore Theatre (tickets here), with the Seattle Rock Orchestra and other live performances, and five of the finalists (one from each category) will go home with $5,000 each, no strings attached.
PublisherGary Groth was the happy recipient of a chocolate cake this week as alt-weekly paper, The Stranger, let him know he is on a very short list of nominees for the Genius Award in Seattle. Gary's up against some fierce local competition in the literature category but he's held a guiding light for Fantagraphics and comics long enough for us to know he's a genius (read: crazy, mad genius). Fantagraphics' cartoonists Jim Woodring and Ellen Forney have had the privilege of being on the short list as well (Woodring won!) so Gary will have some good company no matter what.
To find out who the genius is you'll have to grab the summer issue of A&P-out June 11-to find out. The Stranger plans on hosting a series of interviews with Genius Award finalists at the Frye Art Museum in August and September, and the Genius Awards are October 18 at the Moore Theatre. They've promised other amazing performers and the Seattle Rock Orchestra! For free!
Call it a Love Hate relationship: Visitors to the Fantagraphics booth #207 at this weekend's sold-out Emerald City Comicon in Seattle will be the first in the country to get copies of Buddy Buys a Dump. The third volume of Peter Bagge's Buddy Bradley stories includes the Hate Annual adventures with a new 20-page conclusion. Come see.
Ellen Forney and David Lasky will sign at our booth today at 4:30 following their informative panel discussion on health care in the comix community. Don't miss the panel on Fantagraphics' future on Saturday at 1:00 PM in room TCC 301 with panelists Gary Groth, Eric Reynolds, Michael Catron and Kristy Valenti moderated by Paul Constant of The Stranger. (Check out this week's issue for Constant's panel preview.) This fascinating discussion will continue after the panel when the editors drop by our booth. Then meet the editor of Simon and Kirby's Young Romance series, Michel Gagné, at 3:00 PM.
Don't miss the booth appearance by Stan Sakai on Sunday at 11:00 AM. He'll be signing the first seven volumes of Usagi Yojimbo collections — a spectacular series brought to print by the late Kim Thompson. Here's a chance to meet one of America's most extraordinary artists. We'll have some seasonal Usagi treats in store for adoring fans.
Saturday, March 29th 1:00-2:00 PM Gary Groth, Eric Reynolds, Mike Catron, Kristy Valenti
[Our editorial dream team will also be appearing on the panel Fantagraphics Books: Forecasting the Future of Misfit Lit , on Saturday, March 29th. The Stranger's Paul Constant will lead the fantastic four in a discussion at 1:00 PM in Room TCC 301. Don't miss your chance at some first-hand scoop on our future projects!]
Seattle's lovable scamp, and the Manager and Curator of the Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery, Larry Reid will be more than happy to sell you some comics from Booth 207, up on the fourth floor. Please note: this is a condensed version of the map. You can view the full map here.
But wait! There's even more panels you can check out when you're not at our booth!
Friday, March 28th // The Wit and Wisdom of WebcartoonistsVeteran creators Jennie Breeden (The Devil's Panties), Danielle Corsetto (Girls with Slingshots), and Shaenon Garrity (Skin Horse, Monster of the Week), will share insights gleaned from a collective 38 years of webcomics experience. Moderated by Fantagraphics' Kristy Valenti. [ Room: HALL D (602-603) / 1:40 PM - 2:30 PM ]
Saturday, March 29th // What We Mean When We Say "Comics"Comics have become more diverse and divergent in recent years than possibly ever before, as a medium, an industry and a community. But what, exactly, are we talking about when we say "comics," anyway? Join panelists Kurt Busiek, Chris Roberson, Jen Vaughn, Shannon Watters, and Allison Baker as they discuss all things "comic." [ Room: HALL C (610) / 12:20 PM - 1:10 PM ]
Saturday, March 29th // It's More Than Drawing: Exploring Other Careers in the Comics Industry Working in the comic industry is not just limited to being an artist. Taking an initial comic concept through its steps to become a finished product takes a small army. From storyline creators and concept artists to the teams behind comic creation technology and tools, there are options in comic-focused career paths. Join panelists (including Fantagraphics' Mike Catron) as they discuss the growing spaces and emerging positions in the comics industry, share their personal advice and insight and even shed light on how they broke into their current job market. [ Room: 2B / 4:00 PM - 4:50 PM ]
Emerald City Comicon is held at the Washington State Convention & Trade Center at 800 Convention Place in bustlin' downtown Seattle.
This Saturday, March 22nd Fantagraphics publisher and editor Gary Groth will be holding down the comics fort at PIX, Pittsburgh Indy Comix Expo. The tables are open from 10am to 5pm. As part of the evening programming (plenty of time to get some dinner, dudes) Gary will be interviewed by Pittsburgh Post-Gazette columnist Tony Norman from 10-11pm, complete with a Q&A session. Cartoonists Ed Piskor and Trina Robbins will also be attendence so you can get Hip Hop Family Tree Vol. 1 and Pretty in Ink: North American Women Cartoonists 1896-2013 signed. Trina will be signing from noon to 1pm at the Fantagraphics table.
PIX is located at 10 S.19th Street in the city's South Side neighborhood. The building is located directly across S.19th Street from the South Side Giant Eagle shopping plaza. With its own lot and off-street parking, you won't have to pay a dime to get into PIX (more money to spend on comics!)
Gary is also doing some portfolio reviews at the ToonMuseum on the Friday before the show. Please see the PIX website for registration, limited spots are available. See you there!
• Pittsburgh, PA: Herstorian Trina Robbins brings her collection, Wonder Women: On Paper and Off, to the ToonSeum, and will be giving a special presentation to museum goers at 7:30 PM (tickets available here)! (more info)
Holy yes-more-please, SPX rocked us. Jacq Cohen, Gary Groth and I traversed across the country for one of the single best comic books shows that exists. We knew it was going to be quite the fun time when we boarded the plane and saw Joseph Remnant. A small favor to stranger later and he was TRAPPED between us for 4+ hours.
SPX is that magical place where we stay in the same hotel as the convention so you run into people all the time. We found a Ben Catmull by the elevators right away! Maybe he was haunting the place (NOT COOL, BEN)
Early morning rise and shine, all the books were out in their deliciously intimidating stacks including all sexy color Peanuts Every Sunday.
Speaking of Peanuts, kids are attracted to it like a magnet. Yes!
Sketching Guantanamo also debuted at SPX and Janet Hamlin, the military tribunal artist for the last seven years showed upwith some new sketches. This book is very important, not just to Janet or us but to the United States as a form of public record.
Peter Bagge signs some books for fans! (photo by Meredith Rizzo)
Zak Sally took a break behind our booth to do some sweet sketches.
The last thing to do at a con after packing up some unsold books and labeling boxes is EAT COOKIES. SPX social media coordinator and crazy busy man, Michael David Thomas, is the stuff fucking dreams are made of my friends.
I'm so pissed I forgot to show off my '90s HIP HOP socks to Ed while he was signing Hip Hop Family Tree. See those smiley faces and peace signs? The kind of socks you keep for the rest of your life! Eden Miller, Ignatz organizer, also showed off her own foot related fashion---an Ignatz tattoo pulled right from the pages of Herriman's comic!
Back on the plane ride home, Jacq took a photo of me working on comics.
We had SUCH a great time at SPX, thank you so much to Warren Bernard, Michael David Thomas, Dan Stafford, Eden Miller, Sam Marx and the many, many, many other staffers and volunteers who made the show rock. Our bags are already packed for next year.
If you're lucky enough to be in Seattle this weekend, don't miss the Bumbershoot Arts Festival. One of many highlights will be Fantagraphics Follies, an evening of eclectic entertainment featuring some of the country's most creative cartoonists, writers, artists, and musicians.
The show begins with Jim Woodring demonstrating his prowess with a giant pen. Over the course of the program, Jim will produce a drawing on paper that publisher Gary Groth procured from none other than Ralph Steadman! We'll check in on Jim's progress throughout the evening. Ellen Forney will show a clip of a new animation and talk about her sensational book Marbles. Eroyn Franklin and Kelly Froh present multimedia performances and reveal plans for their upcoming Short Run small press festival.
The evening concludes in awesome fashion as Danny Bland reprises Jack Kerouac's famous 1959 appearance on the Steve Allen Show. The notorious beat poet read from On the Road accompanied by Allen's piano improvisation. Bland will read from his new novel, In Case We Die, set in Seattle's grunge era. He'll be joined by Steve Fisk on piano, who is ideally suited to the task, having recorded the 1992 Sub Pop album Prison with legendary Seattle poet Jesse Bernstein.
The one-hour production starts at 6:00 PM this Saturday, August 31 at the Leo K. Theater, followed by a signing in the lobby. The next day in the same venue at 4:00 PM, catch Ellen Forney interviewing cartoonist-blogger Allie Brosh with opening act Bella Rowland-Reid, 14-year-old daughter of Fantagraphics curator and Follies host Larry Reid. Then there's Death Cab For Cutie, Gary Numan, MGMT, Crystal Castles, Icona Pop, The Breeders, Mark Pickeral, Redd Kross, Superchunk, The Joy Formidable, Marc Maron, The Zombies, Reggie Watts, and dozens more! Too much Fun! (Oh yeah, them too.)