Sunday, 8 February 2009

anders nilsen on a roll

so anders nilsen has been at it again. 'monologues for calculating the density of black holes' the follow up to his stream of consciousness comic 'monologues for the coming plague' is out. now. go get it.

if you are willing to flog your bike and ipod you might also be able to afford sammy harkham's latest editorial effort 'kramers ergot 7'. it is big and i haven't dared look inside it yet, but it is supposed to be good.

Wednesday, 4 February 2009


last night i made it through the slush of trodden snow to a front row seat at an adrian tomine talk at the ica. toby litt led the talk, which covered adrian's own work as well as his work as the editor of drawn and quarterly's yoshihiro tatsumi series. after the talk tomine signed books in the shop and i had the chance to not only talk to him briefly, but also to have a chat with paul gravett.
paul organized the talk and although i had seen him at just about every comics related event i've been to in london i'd never had the pleasure to speak with him. it was lovely talking with him, and i left the ica full of encouragement and positivity.

since my bike is broken and i didn't know what bus to get the small spring in my step helped me on my way home. pondering the evenings events i walked from the mall to shoreditch, there i jumped onto the 149 with some vietnamese takeaway tucked underneath my arm.

it's difficult to put into words what i take away from these evenings but they always result in new considerations and observations.

the same goes for a meeting i had today with sarah mcintyre, who i met at one of last year's comica events. we had been meaning to meet for lunch for months and today we finally got round to it. over sarah's blt and my spanish omelette we chatted about comics, people in our lives and self-censorship. and she gave me an excellent idea for promoting my comic. altogether a luxury lunch.

Monday, 2 February 2009

alternative press fair and snow or viceversa

view from my window, snowcovered rubber cat on washing line, view of the garden

when i woke up at 0645 this morning my eyes were still heavy. the golden pink light i had noticed coming from the window during the night had all but faded and when i opened the curtains i did not expect much more than a thin layer of snow to greet me. i was wrong.
for a moment i paused to consider how much earlier i would have to leave the house to get to the bus stop in time and then i got myself some breakfast.

as usual i perused the guardian online while eating my cereal and i was struck by a small sentence in an article on the weather, it mentioned public transport not working. so on i went to the transport for london site: all buses have been withdrawn from service due to adverse weather and dangerous road conditions.

the rest of the day consisted of snow-fights, hot chocolate, more snow-fights, chips, hot chocolate and some more snow-fights. i honed my skills, turned my competitive disadvantages into advantages, plotted and employed the most ruthless of tactics. a large part of my strategy was based on the flooding of parts of the netherlands by the dutch during the siege of leiden in their fight against the spanish occupation in the 16th century.

we'll see what weather and bus services tomorrow brings. but first: the past.
yesterday i finally got to know what it is like to push your wares at a comics and zines fair. after checking out what else was on offer i helped out at the 'communal' table for a couple of hours.

watching people shuffle past, picking up every- and anybody's comic or zine but yours is quite a sobering experience. at one point my faith in humanity was severely compromised, when even people who looked like they might like my comic on account of their coat or hairstyle didn't go near it. in the end i did sell and swap some copies and my faith was redeemed.
next time i'll have to put some more effort into promotion, maybe a wee stand will help.

some of the work i picked up by virtue of it being well-drawn, funny, disturbing or something else includes: a malcy duff story in 'tegne' issue 2, 'the smoking eyebrow' by chiu, 'curtis and terrorist' by mr. l, 'up a blind alley, part one' by scott smith, 'giant clam 3' by ralph kidson and 'where i come from that makes you a bully and a coward' by andy luke (i was behind the table with andy and ralph).
the lovely sarah mcintyre was there as well and she gave me issue 14 of the dfc, which has characters from her comic 'vern and lettuce' gracing its cover.

the day ended with an open mic nite hosted by the man who (together with peter lally) organized the whole event: jimi gherkin. opening act was twent or trent miller, who played some feeling cash-esque diddies and who on closer inspection turned out to be an italian named gabriel. it is him in the photo above. i didn't stay much longer, but i boarded the bus home with a feeling of camaraderie and joy.