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Posts Tagged ‘Dash Shaw’

Jeff Smith on Comic Books & Self Publishing

Artist Jeff Smith debuted at No. 7 on the New York Times hardcover graphic books list this week. In 1991, Smith founded Cartoon Books to self-publish his comic book work, releasing his critically acclaimed series Bone.

Cartoon Books published a hardcover graphic novel of his Rasl story last month, a book following an ex-military engineer who uses the journals of Nikola Tesla to pull of mind-bending capers. We caught up with Smith to find out how comic book self publishing has evolved over the last 20 years. Smith explained:

Self-publishing has been a badge of honor in the comics community for two decades now, since the early 1990s. The Self-publishing Movement was a loosely affiliated group of like-minded writer-artists, who believed that the cartoonist was an author who’s work should be controlled by him or her, and should be read by the widest possible audience. We were on a quest for equal shelf space, equal critical reviews, the ability to sell our work beyond the confines of the comic book retail shops, and perhaps most important, the ability to print our own work and to keep it in print.

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2009 Eisner Award Nominees Announced

vs.jpgThe nominees for 2009 Eisner Awards were just announced. Named after comic book pioneer Will Eisner, the awards “highlight the best publications and creators in comics and graphic novels” for the last 21 years.

Categories include Best Short Story, Best Continuing Series, and Best Graphic Album. For the 2009 awards, the number of prizes was reduced 29 to 26. The judges cut the Single Issue and Special Recognition categories, combined both the Writer/Artist and Writer/Artist-Humor categories, and renamed a teen category “Best Publication for Teens/Tweens.”

See the complete list of nominees here, along with a list of the judging panel. Here are the nominees for Best Digital Comic, complete with links for your Wednesday morning reading pleasure:

Bodyworld by Dash Shaw
Finder by Carla Speed McNeil
The Lady’s Murder by Eliza Frye
Speak No Evil by Elan Trinidad
Vs. by Alexis Sottile & Joe Infurnari

Indie Authors Draw Marvel Superheroes

wolvie.jpgComic book fans are waiting for Marvel Comic’s “indie project,” an unnamed anthology that throws independent comic artists into the Marvel universe.

Recently Marvel editor-in-chief Joe Quesada revealed more about the indie project list: “Just to name a few of the talents involved, we’ve got Paul Pope, Stan Sakai, Paul Hornschemeier, Dash Shaw, Junko Mizuno, Jim Rugg, Corey Lewis … and a bunch more small press superstars contributing some truly amazing stories. We just got some outstanding pages in from the cartoonist JASON and I gotta tell you, this is going to be one awesome book.”

Robot 6 posted more news on the project, suggesting that Marvel should add one comic in particular: Jeffrey Brown‘s take on Wolverine. The artist behind the graphic novel, “Clumsy” did a short piece pitting a slacker Wolverine against hordes of zombies. (Image via Comics Bulletin)

Can You Promote A Book Without Speaking?

Usually, when I’ve written about book trailers, I attach great significance to choosing what you’re going to say about your book in your promotional film—but in this animated trailer for his new graphic novel, Bottomless Belly Button, Dash Shaw spends an entire minute making no sound at all.

I’ll stipulate that a graphic novel creates a special circumstance, and a cartoonist is in a unique position to resolve this issue, but maybe we can approach the broader question anyway: If you had to summarize your story in a minute or less, with no words and no sounds, and a consistent visual aesthetic, how would you go about doing that? (As a bonus, if you do come up with an answer to that question, then you can just make that video and add narration if appropriate.)