Steve Breen -- two-time Pulitzer-winning editorial cartoonist and co-creator of the strip GRAND AVENUE -- has published this unusual book, the cover of which speaks for itself. As Michael Cavna explains: "Three of his sons would toss out ideas for illustrations that combined Lincoln and 'Wolverine' Logan, or Trump and a Tyrannosaurus – when not imagining alien abductions or Jedi mutations or, in a particularly notable example, death by cute fantasy animal." (Read the complete Cavna WaPo column here.)
Published by our sister company, Andrews McMeel Publishing, this collection offers every Cul de Sac cartoon ever published, and even includes pre-syndication artwork by the very talented Richard Thompson!
We’re giving away an autographed copy of"The Complete Cul de Sac" to one very lucky fan!
To enter, comment on this blog post and include your FIRST and LAST names. Limit one entry per person. This contest will end on Tues., May 6 at 10 a.m. CT. The winner will be announced that day on this blog. Sorry worldwide fans – this giveaway is open to US/CA residents only.
Can’t wait to get your hands on your very own copy? Pre-order here! Or, for an even sweeter deal, Thompson is also offering “some unnecessary yet attractive extra material” to those who order this amazing work of art here.
Over the years the University Press of Mississippi has published a terrific series of interviews in their Conversations With Comic Artists series, with volumes devoted to Charles M. Schulz, Milt Caniff, Mort Walker, Chester Brown, Stan Lee, R. Crumb, Howard Charykin and probably others. I just now came upon a friend's Facebook post about a new book from them, due out in a few days: The Origins of Comics: From William Hogarth to Winsor McCay, by Thierry Smolderen. The promo copy is enough to make me say, "I'm in!" Here's an excerpt:
"Thierry Smolderen presents a cultural landscape whose narrative differs in many ways from those presented by other historians of the comic strip. Rather than beginning his inquiry with the popularly accepted 'sequential art' definition of the comic strip, Smolderen instead wishes to engage with the historical dimensions that inform that definition. His goal is to understand the processes that led to the twentieth-century comic strip, the highly recognizable species of picture stories that he sees crystallizing around 1900 in the United States...Across eight chapters, he acutely points out how the effect of the printing press and the mass advent of audiovisual technologies (photography, audio recording, and cinema) at the end of the nineteenth century led to a new twentieth-century visual culture...Remaps the history of this influential art form..."
The great NYer cartoonist Roz Chast has a new book coming out in May -- a cartoon memoir about her parents -- and I'm pleased to report that you can read a big wonderful section of it in the new issue of The New Yorker.
And, thanks to a visit to the Roz Chast website, I now know that she also does eggs. I like eggs.
Forbes has an interview with Dilbert creator Scott Adams discussing his new book, How to Fail at Almost Anything and Still Win Big: Kind of the Story of My Life. Read the whole thing here.
"I put my email in the strip. Business 101 says that you should give your customers a channel to reach you and then try to give them what they’re asking for. At the same time people were telling me what they wanted, they were also making suggestions. People email me things that happen at the office. That’s been my primary source of inspiration. Most cartoonists sit at a blank screen..."
"You should have a system instead of a goal. I choose all my ventures with the notion that if they don’t work, I will still gain a new set of skills and insights and meet people who will be interesting to me in the future..."
"I don’t think you should wait for passion. I think it’s a personality trait. Either you’re born with it or not. Passion and goals are just not actionable. Passion isn’t something you can do something about. How does it help you? My own experience is that when stuff works, I get really excited about it. Passion follows success..."
Today is National Young Readers Day here in the U.S. I have fond memories of this time in elementary school, where our class would hold a contest for who could read the most books by this day. The four winners would get a pizza party date with our teacher. Between my fervent love of reading and my crush on my second-grade teacher, I was all about winning this prize. And I did! It was a great memory, having stacks of books set aside, knowing that I was familiar with each of them.
Kids now have many options that I didn't have growing up, thanks to technology. Instead of dog-eared pages, many new and classic books are available in digital/e-book formats. Teachers and parents around the globe have shared with us that reading comics is critical to helping children learn to read. Tying these two things together, we have great news for you, comics fans.
Today is the official release for three Calvin and Hobbes e-book collections, courtesy of our sister company Andrews McMeel Publishing! It's the first time ever that Bill Watterson, creator of the iconic strip, has allowed his work to live in e-book format. He had a hand in reviewing the layout of the entire series, so knowthat this was fully blessed by the man himself. If you grew up reading Calvin or discovered the strip in the newspapers as an adult, you'll enjoy laughing and pondering the meaning of things that may have been overlooked. They are also a perfect way to introduce comics to youngsters and to encourage their love for reading.
Plus, if you take them out for pizza afterward, I know that they'd love it. Trust me on this one.
"Leo was a normal boy with a normal life until two large costumed vegetable superheroes showed up -- Onion and Pea. Now nothing is simple."
Sherpa creators Jose Villena and David Tomaselli have have put together a pretty lively trailer that previews the gazillion features that are included in their first Onion & Pea e-book:
And here's the 3-D animated short that goes with it:
The creators live in Spain, and the strip appears in both English and Spanish versions. In 2006 Onion was the official mascot of the Onion Rock Festival in the town of Belorado, in Burgos, northern Spain. And he was the official mascot of CERA 2010, a Spanish and Portuguese BELORAID adventure race which appears to involve biking, climbing, hiking, running, kayaking and spelunking. That's one plucky vegetable...
From a book review by Ann Fisher in Fortune magazine:
"I'm not an expert at anything, including my own job," Scott Adams writes in the introduction to How to Fail at Almost Everything and Still Win Big: Kind of the Story of My Life.
"I draw like an inebriated howler monkey and my writing style falls
somewhere between baffling and sophomoric. It's an ongoing mystery to me
why I keep getting paid." He also notes upfront that "this is not an
advice book. If you've ever taken advice from a cartoonist, chances are
it didn't end well."
Breezily ignoring his own disclaimer, Adams goes on to pack the next 229
pages with contrarian career advice, based on the author's mixed bag of
experience in work and life. Although he told his mother when he was
eight years old that he wanted to be the next Charles Schulz, Adams
started his career in 1979 as a teller at a bank in San Francisco...
Over the past two years, our GoComics readers
have offered an incredible level of support to our creators' projects. You've
helped nearly a dozen creators in their Kickstarter and Indiegogo campaigns.
You have also let us know that you want to hear about more opportunities to
support your favorite comics and cartoonists. Here is another opportunity to
help a cartoonist bring an art project to life.
Daniel Shelton, creator of the sweet and endearing
comic strip Ben, is on path to create his first English-published
comic strip collection. But, he could use your help.
Take a look at his Kickstarter campaign by
clicking here. With three weeks to go, he is well past the halfway mark toward
his $5,600 (Canadian dollars) goal. International readers, we'd love to hear
from you. Canadian readers, support your own! If you can't donate to support
the project, please share this message via social media and use the hashtag
The giving tiers are among the most generous
we've seen, including getting a signed comic original print at the $50
Thanks for your support of our creators and of
GoComics. As Jay-Z once famously said, "You could've been anywhere in the
world. But you're here with me. I appreciate that."