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Get You Some Snake Meat, Baby
Small Press News of January 28, 2012

Good Deal #1 and Rough House

Seattle cartoonist Max Clotfelter has just served up two new Snake Meat mini comix. He calls 'em Newaves, I call 'em classic mini comix. You know the type, 8 pages of outsider fun spread across on a single sheet, cut up and folded into something almost a square. A staple of the Newave. Cheap, fast and choice. Rough House and Good Deal. Is it co-winky that the last letter of the first word is the first letter of the last word on these titles? How Weird. Clotfelter will send both Newaves straight to your delight for a mere buck. Send your dough to 414 12th Avenue E. Seattle, WA 98102, or you'll be Left Truant.

The February 2012 issue of Funny Times is out. Don't miss this one, it's even got two Bob Vojtko gags inside. Twelve-issue subscriptions are $25 for a total of 288 ad-free pages of comic strips and gag cartoons reflecting the funny times we live in.

Nate Cosby and Chris Eliopoulos launched Cow Boy this week.

The first edition of a new split zine by Adam Gnade is out. This time he's partnering with Bart Schaneman and the introductory issue is FREE. He'll gladly send you a copy for the price of postage ($1.00). They Will Stand on You and Spit features excerpts from Grnade's novella California and four poems from Schaneman. It's available from Adam Gnade Releases along with a nice collection of his other works.

Jeremy Eaton announced a large collection of comic pages and illustrations from many of his Fantagraphics titles are now on sale (I believe ending Jan 30th) with everything going for a whopping 50% off the listed price at Comic Art Collective. Check out his gallery and find something to spice up that empty wall you're tired of staring at. He now accepts credit cards through PayPal.

Gerry Giovinco editorializes over the DC logo in Seduction of the Ignorant on the CO2 Comics blog this week.

Joanna Penn offers a free PDF copy of her 52-page Author 2.0, your blueprint for writing, publishing and marketing your book. Read more about it at The Creative Penn.

Julie Sabatier returns with the new year's first full edition of Destination DIY featuring DIY Disasters.

James the Stanton of Gnartoons is interviewed over at LA Zine Fest.

Benn Ray edits Mutant Funnies for Atomic Books, with a great list of contributors — subscribe!

Ed Choy's new blog is amazingly enough called Ed Choy—The Blog. (It's a tumblr thing.)

Nurse Nurse(Press release) Nurse Nurse, a graphic novel by Katie Skelly, is slated to come out April 2012 in time for a debut at Stumptown Comics Fest and MoCCA.

If you are not familiar with Katie Skelly’s Nurse Nurse minicomics series, you are in for a double treat. Not only will this epic space adventure thrill you, Sparkplug is collecting all eight issues into one compact and easy-to-carry graphic novel! (180 pgs, black and white with color cover, paperback, $15 USD, ISBN 978097974654351500)

The story starts out with the main character Gemma traveling to her new assignment on Venus. She soon discovers a mysterious substance that is having an amorous effect on the Venusians, but is it a conspiracy, or just … science? And what’s with the butterflies? Sarah Morean of The Daily Crosshatch says: “The plot is smart and innocent and the panels are well-designed and full of gorgeous detail. Skelly’s a wonderful comic artist.”

Author Katie Skelly has been creating minicomics since 2003 and her work has appeared recently in Thickness#1. She holds a B.A. in Art History from Syracuse University and currently resides in Astoria, New York.

Please stop by Sparkplug's table at Stumptown Comics Fest or MoCCA to pick up your copy or visit our online store at Sparkplug Comic Books.

Top       December 2011    November 2011     

Tom Brinkmann's Squint #2
Small Press News of January 21, 2012

Squint #2

A new mini art comix is out from Tom Brinkmann. The limited edition Squint #2 (Jan. 2012) features 16 pages of mind-drawn marbled ink from the master of eye kandy kix. To get your copy, contact Mr. Brinkmann via his website: Bad Mags (adults only).

Call For Entries! Jim Main has granted Dan W. Taylor of Weird Muse Publications the 'go ahead' to produce the next issue of Get The Message. Taylor has issued a call for material for the classic mini comic-sized issue. The theme is Peace, Tolerance, and Understanding. He's looking for art, meditations, poetry, and short text pieces. Art should be 300dpi grayscale and sent as a jpeg.
Email Dan W. Taylor for more info and/or to reserve your spot.

Will Dockery and Steve Keeter wrote a history of Minicomic Co-ops for Wikipedia.

Bob Corby posted the first batch of books premiering at SPACE 2012 this week.

Hogan's Alley #18 is out. Another massive 144-page, perfect bound book loaded with features. It's available for $6.95 for a single issue, or $24.00 as part of a 4-issue subscription.

Leslie Stein of Majestic Creature shares five days in her life over at The Comics Journal (link is day one).

Matthew David Surridge writes A Few Words on Clark Ashton Smith for
Black Gate

Mark Krajnak of JerseyStyle Photography put together a tribute of Philly's most famous unknown writer, David Goodis, at Secret Dead Blog.

Sparkplug Comic Book's partners post their 2011 lists of favorites.

Tim Corrigan's Comics and Stories #60

Tim Corrigan's Comics and Stories #60 is out. This edition features part two of both the current Mightyguy adventure (5 pages) and Tranquilizer (6 pages). TCC&S #60 is $1.50 or $15 as part of a 12-issue subscription from Mightyguy Comics.

Top       December 2011    November 2011     

New Weird Muse minis
Small Press News of January 14, 2012

Newave cartoonist Dan W. Taylor starts off the new year with two new mini comix. Both are tributes to the memory of Clay Geerdes. Time Warp Comix #10 features new work by newave cartoonists Dan W. Tayor (front and back cover), Clark Dissmeyer (aka CAD, 1 page), Ed Devore (4 pages), and Brad W. Foster (1 page).

Time Warp Comix #10, Pork Belly #9

Pork Belly #9 follows the spirit of Geerdes' Babyfat and features work by Dan W. Taylor (front cover), Brian Leonard (1 page), Ed Devore (1 page), Carl Alessi (1 page), Jim Siergey (1 page), Brad W. Foster (1 page), and Simon Mackie
(1 page and back cover).

Both minis are priced at $1.00 each, plus 50¢ for postage. Do yourself a favor and get a copy of everything Weird Muse produces.

The Phoenix is out! Of course if you don't live in the UK it will be difficult to pick up a copy. However, there's a free issuu version online at The Phoenix to see what all the fuss is about. International subscriptions are available, but the postage for a weekly won't be cheap.

Portland's own Murder by the Book was featured this week at Mystery Scene.

Rick Bradford put out a call for a Managing Editor to run the Poopsheet Foundation website this week.

Carte Blanche, a not-for-profit project published by the Quebec Writers' Federation, is accepting submissions. Check out the online submissions form at Carte Blanche.

Sequential Magazine #3Canadian comix news and culture watcher, Sequential, issued the third annual edition of Sequential Magazine. It's a free PDF available in three convenient-to-download file sizes.

The Jan/Feb issue of Fantasy & Science Fiction is out. Check the SFsite for the contents.

Ryan Murphy's killer fashion shoot for Elle.

Aron Nels Steinke's Neptune was published in French this week. The French edition will debut at Angouleme.

Gerry Giovinco explores the rapid industry changes in Viva La Comics Revolution! on the CO2 Comics blog this week.

(Press release) Motherlover has its roots deeply embedded in Minnesota, with the four creators involved in the book hailing from different corners of the state: Nicholas Breutzman from Rochester, brothers John & Luke Holden from Bemidji, and Raighne Hogan from Minneapolis. The stories themselves have pronounced autobiographical undercurrents, each exploring the tensions, confusion, and mis-perceptions of youth. For some, these feelings circle around sex and how it can be a source of mystery or frustration, depending on where one is in life and the world. Others encounter the loneliness and ennui that is found just as easily in both rural and urban environs. These themes help illuminate much of the push and pull in Minnesota for a lot of creative types—something that compels us to venture beyond our borders, yet that same something that draws most of us back again. While these sentiments can certainly be found throughout the work, there is plenty to be discovered that’s not restricted to any particular locality.

Rob Clough, comics critic for The Comics Journal & High-Low says, “The darkness of this book’s themes should not daunt an adventurous reader, because Motherlover explores work that is both emotionally powerful and uncomfortably familiar.”

Motherlover (5.5" x 7.5") is $10 from 2D Cloud.

Top       December 2011    November 2011     

Kelly Froh interviewed
Small Press News of January 7, 2012

The new year brings thoughts of making improvements. Whatever your specific goals for 2012, think about moving forward throughout the year. Stasis is illusion. Don't waste time waiting. Take a chance and make something happen now. Make the most of 2012. Make something to be proud of.

Kelly Froh takes center frame in John Kinhart's 7-minute short about her mini comics on YouTube.

Aron Nels Steinke weighs in with his favorite comics of 2011. It's a list of only eight, so you can bet every one is a winner.

Anomaly #4

Ken Meyer Jr. ushers in the new year with Ink Stains #37. This episode features Jan Strnad's Anomaly #4 with Richard Corben and Robert Kline, on Comic Attack.net.

Tangent Online posted their recommended reading list of science fiction and fantasy works of 2011 in the categories: Short Stories, Novelettes and Novellas—along with a few great covers!

Gerry Giovinco looks back on 2011 and forward to: 2012 Welcome to the End of the World on CO2 Comics.

(Press Release) Karl Kesel and Tom Grummett Re-launch Section Zero as Web Comic. Lost civilizations, alien beings, strange creatures from beyond time and space! Grummett and Kesel’s creator-owned comic Section Zero returned on January 2, 2012 at Mad Genius Comics, once again Protecting Mankind From Everything That Doesn’t Exist!

Section Zero was originally part of Image’s Gorilla Comics imprint back in 2000, alongside Kurt Busiek and Stuart Immonen’s Shockrockets, Mark Waid and Barry Kitson’s Empire, George Perez’s Crimson Plague, and Todd Dezago and Mike Wieringo’s Tellos. But personal problems— “My fault,” says Kesel, “I got divorced.”— forced Section Zero to go on indefinite hiatus after only three issues.

“I never had more fun than when Tom and I were working on Section Zero,” Kesel states. Grummett agrees. “Section Zero had this energy and excitement, and a weird little garage-band kinda feel that just crackles off the page. I’d argue it’s the strongest stuff we ever did together.” Whenever either appeared at a con or store signing, they’d be asked “Are you ever going to finish Section Zero?” Both felt it was a matter of when, not if. “I always wanted to find some way to get back to Zero,” Kesel emphasizes, “but life kept getting in the way.”

And life often zigs when you think it will zag. “I remarried, and my wife and I decided to adopt a baby. Suddenly I became very aware of my legacy—of having something to leave behind for my kid—and for me that meant finding some way to do creator-owned comics again. The easiest way to do that nowadays is on the web.” Kesel launched Mad Genius Comics on Halloween 2011 with Johnny Zombie Christmas—a Heartwarming Tale of Yuletide Terror. But he knew that story would end by Christmas. He wondered what to follow it up with, and instantly thought of Section Zero.

“There Is No Section Zero” was the comic’s original tag-line, and as far as Kesel is concerned “There is no Section Zero… without Karl and Tom.” Kesel contacted Grummett, who didn’t need to be asked twice. Kesel smiles, “We’ll be squeezing it in around our day jobs”— Kesel is currently inking Spider-Man Season One, and Grummett is penciling Avengers Academy—“but we will finally finish what we started.”

Kesel assures new readers “the web comic starts at the beginning. We launched with a 5-page Prologue on Monday, January 2nd, then we’ll post the first 3 issues of Section Zero, 3 pages every Thursday. Once that’s done, it’ll be all new material. And that gives us the time we need to make that new material!” Fans who have read the original comics will still want to check out the postings. “I’m tweaking the dialogue a bit here and there— partly to make it read better, partly because my idea of what the story’s about has changed slightly over the years. Plus, Richard Starkings at Comicraft—who is insane in the best possible way—insisted on ‘freshening” the lettering—so we’ve got a new font and new placements and the book has a slightly different look.”

Kesel points out: “if not for Richard, Tom and I may not be bringing back Section Zero right now. In my various moves I had lost track of the book’s original coloring and lettering files—which killed me, since Ben Dimagmaliw had done such an amazing job coloring it—but Saint Starkings dug through his archives and found copies of everything! Gotta say, Christmas came a little early for me when I heard that.”

What can readers expect in Section Zero? “Oh, prehistoric creatures that won’t stay extinct, albino alligators in the New York City sewers, the usual,” Kesel says. “I just wrote a pretty intense scene with a troll, and we’ve got something coming up set in the most chaotic, out-of-control place on earth—a kid’s daycare center! But the thing I’m most excited about is—well, when we started Section Zero I made a big deal that it took place in real time, that the characters aged. And I’m sticking to that. So after we post those first three issues there’ll be a solid black splash page with just the words ’12 Years Later…’ And I know it sounds strange, but that gap has only made our comic stronger and better. It made very clear to me what the story is really about.”

Section Zero is about to step out into the unknown once again,” Grummett adds, “this time as a web comic. I’m expecting the same kind of steep learning curve I faced our first time out, but I’m looking forward to it. I’m also looking forward to playing with these characters again, and trying to field the curve-balls Karl will be pitching at me. We’ve thrown out the old maps… and we’re making new ones as we go.” (PR end)


(Press Release) Emi Lenox's Emitown is a sketch diary, drawn one page for every single day using a broad range of styles, it's really not the average diary comic. Originally a web comic, a full years worth of strips will be collected in the trade paperback from Image. It's going to be a little over 400 pages with over 50 pages of unpublished material. Also includes an introduction by Joe Keatinge (Brutal, Popgun, Hell Ya, Glory) and a 2-page guest comic by Jeff Lemire (Sweet Tooth, Essex County, Frankenstein, Animal Man).

"...incredibly charming, ebullient and quirky." - NPR

"EmiTown was one  of the brightest additions to my bookshelf last year, and I'm anxious to return for volume 2. Earnest and engaging, whimsical and witty, amusing and amiable, and- most of all- throroughly and completely charming. " John Layman (Chew)

"Emi makes genuinely vibrant comics: intimate, empathetic reading experiences that avoid the confessional traps within her genre. Comics that truly feel alive. She has a deceptively simple visual delivery that masks the power her work consistently carries." Nate Powell ( Any Empire, Swallow Me Whole)

Diamond Order Code: DEC110490 ISBN: 9781607065074 Check out the website the comic stemmed from: Emitown. (PR end)

Alterna Comics sketch card contributors signed up quickly. Check out the list of all 50 artists at Alterna Comics.


Ed Choy (Moorman) reports he's finished a comic based on the James Joyce story Araby from Dubliners. It's part of The Graphic Canon Vol. 3, an anthology of literary adaptations due out in late 2012 from Seven Stories Press, edited by Russ Kick, and includes a Crumb adaptation of Sartre.

Choy's also started a new blog: Ed Choy Blog, and has made the Ghost Comics anthology available in a free PDF format.

Top Shelf announced Pat Grant's Blue, due out in March 2012 and available for pre-order now at Top Shelf Productions.

Top       December 2011    November 2011     


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