If you’re in the Seattle area this Saturday, October 12, do yourself a favor and stop by the Fantagraphics Bookstore for a big Jim Woodring event. Jim Woodring debuts his latest graphic novel, “Fran.”
Press Release Follows:
Good news like this takes a little time to sink in. Having done the happy dance and fully processed the fact, I am thrilled to share with you the news that my comics collection, A NIGHT AT THE SORRENTO AND OTHER STORIES has been funded at Kickstarter. I’m not sure I was ready to make this announcement yesterday but now I am. I’m just so happy.
I want to thank everyone. You can get so giddy that you feel an urge to thank random people you see on the street. Well, there’s definitely a lot of specific people attached to this project for me to focus on!
First, I want to thank all my backers!! As I said earlier to all of them via Kickstarter, they are the backbone, they ultimately turned my project into a reality.
Also, I want to thank so many other people who made a difference in so many ways. The power of LIKE. Always remember that. Just LIKING the project has power. Social media, in all its forms, you gotta love it. Here’s the thing, social media has the power to connect people in very special ways. There is the initial virtual thrust that can lead to a very warm and human result.
Well, I know this graphic novel of mine is something awesome. I look forward to sharing that with you in a variety of ways. Who knows, you may be owning your own copy in the near future. The stage is set. This book, the Kickstarter funding, your grace and support, all add up to a beautiful game changer.
From my graphic novel, ALICE IN NEW YORK:
I am referring to none other than, New York City!
Sadly, time is running out. This campaign ends May 6. Act fast! Don’t kick yourself later! Support my Kickstarter campaign NOW! Thank you!
There’s a new video introducing the Kickstarter campaign for A NIGHT AT THE SORRENTO AND OTHER STORIES and you will definitely want to see it. The video takes place at Comics Dungeon, the leading comics shop in Seattle and beyond. The campaign ends May 6 and your support is greatly appreciated. Visit the campaign here.
Oh, yes, we are at the final days of the campaign for the graphic novel, A NIGHT AT THE SORRENTO AND OTHER STORIES. This is a book with quirky and offbeat stories that follow various characters on journeys of self-discovery. Think of the original television series, “The Twilight Zone,” and that’s the sort of spirit and quality to this work.
We’re coming up on Free Comic Day this Saturday, May 4, and that kind of energy will be most helpful in the final push of the campaign. A NIGHT AT THE SORRENTO will be promoted at Comics Dungeon, the leading comics shop in Seattle, and that’s very appreciated.
I begin here with a video of Amanda Palmer giving a talk on the art of “asking.” It’s not begging but that’s the misunderstanding. That said, Amanda Palmer is a good point of departure as I enter the last stages of my own Kickstarter campaign. One by one, individuals chose to help her get to where she wanted to be. More power to her and her group, The Dresden Dolls! In that empowering spirit, I humbly submit to you the Top Ten Reasons why you would want to consider my comics project at Kickstarter, A NIGHT AT THE SORRENTO AND OTHER STORIES, going on now thru May 6. You can view it HERE.
EDITOR’S NOTE: After compiling this fun list, I started thinking of more reasons. One of the most compelling, to be sure, is a new reward I just added. At the $15 Reward level, you have an opportunity to be interviewed by me in complete Comics Grinder fashion. That means an in-depth and upbeat interview complete with your portrait rendered by yours truly, if you like. Maybe you have a band, or book, or film you’d like to promote. Whatever it is, Comics Grinder has got you covered. Check out my Kickstarter campaign for more details here.
10. I don’t need to succeed but it sure would be great. To see this collection of comics get a nice print edition will make a really big difference and help secure a wider audience.
9. You get something special for your support. This is a collection of short stories plus it includes a full length graphic novel.
8. Consider this a life’s work, phase one. The graphic novel component to this book, ALICE IN NEW YORK, is a significant work in itself, a daringly offbeat coming-of-age tale.
7. The zero to hero angle. There’s something to be said for the “zero to hero” myth. Of course, we’re all heroes, and no one is a zero. Getting this book into print and into the spotlight does count for quite a lot.
6. I wouldn’t do this if I didn’t think it mattered. Absolutely true. This is all heart-felt and thoughtfully created work. You get a lot of good stuff all in one 200-page book.
5. 24-Hour Comics. For fans of the 24-Hour Comic model, all the short works, including the title story, originated with 24-Hour Comics Day challenges. I did not create these completely during these events. Instead, I chose to refine the works over time. Makes for the best results, I believe.
4. The Offbeat and Quirky. If you’re a fan of the original televison series, “The Twilight Zone,” then this book has got you covered. That’s one way of looking at it. This is not your usual boy meets girl stuff.
3. Gen X Autobio. The autobiographical story in alternative comics made great strides with the Gen Xers. It’s just the way it played out. You can look to great leaders of the movement, from Julie Doucet to Charles Burns. The stage was set and the talent came running. I humbly include myself within that world view: authenticity at any price, baby!
2. Steampunk. Now, this term gets thrown around a lot. Part of the appeal for me is going back in time. I love the sensibilty of the Victorian era, as well as the latter Dieselpunk era, and tweaking it in various ways. This appeals to history buffs, fans of fashion and style, and fans of science fiction. You’ll find a healthy dose of steampunk in this work, partly in the graphic novel and especially in the title story. I am bringing in aspects of Seattle history that have yet to be explored by other cartoonists.
1. If Not Now, Then When? The time is now. I’m not afraid to ask. This is me standing before you naked, unfraid of what you might think, and confident in my pursuit.
I look forward to your support in any way you can. It would be something to get as many pledges as possible. Enough micro-pledges would do it. There are various ways to crunch those numbers. Believe me, I’ve been crunching them.
Support A NIGHT AT THE SORRENTO AND OTHER STORIES right here.
The Kickstarter campaign has begun!
A NIGHT AT THE SORRENTO AND OTHER STORIES is a 200-page graphic novel that seeks funds for a print run. It brings together a variety of offbeat and urbane stories for the sophisticated reader. You’ve got everything from a man running for his life from a bear spirit to a quarrelsome couple with supernatural powers to a dog with an acerbic wit who has been launched into outer space. Plus so much more. View the campaign here. Thank you.
And for a more in depth look at the whole process of putting this book together, you can take a look here.
EDITOR’S NOTE: It is now launched and you can view it HERE.
This is an idea that has been gathering steam and now we’re about to embark on a special campaign.
This is my plan: to create a quality edition of a collection of short stories plus a graphic novel. This project is all completed and entitled, “A Night at the Sorrento and Other Stories.” The stories come from three years of 24 Hour Comics Day challenges. I put them together during the challenge and then refined them over time. These challenges occurred in Seattle: at the Phinney Neighborhood Center in 2010 and 2011; and at the Sorrento Hotel in 2012. Each year has been generously sponsored by Comics Dungeon, one of the best places you can go for comics anywhere. All the staff there are knowledgable, friendly, and eager to help. The book includes the graphic novel, “Alice in New York.”
It all starts April 2.
“A Wrinkle in Time: The Graphic Novel,” is as full of delight and mystery as the original book. Hope Larson, known for wonderfully ethereal comics like “Salamander Dream,” “Gray Horses,” and “Chiggers,” has taken the beloved classic work by Madeleine L’engle and honored it by embracing it with a fresh approach. In the hands of Larson, the characters come to life in a timeless yet contemporary way. There is Meg, the brilliant but insecure teen; Charles Wallace her little brother, who acts as her mentor; and Calvin, the trustworthy beau to Meg. A story like this, meant for children but easily enjoyed by adults, requires a healthy leap of faith. We get that right away with Meg. She is presented to us as a lovely and vulnerable being by Larson. In no time at all, we want to know more.
If you’ve read the original book or if you’re new to it, this version of “A Wrinkle in Time,” will delight you. What makes this graphic novel work is the character development that Larson did ahead of working on the book. Throughout, the characters are vibrant without any false notes. We can jump right in and enjoy a style that is both energetic and comforting. Larson’s mastery of the comics medium allows her to be spare when she needs to be and provide complexity with well chosen marks. In a less seasoned hand, the characters could have fallen into the trap of being generic and lifeless. With Larson, the suspension of disbelief is left intact. The only quibble that I would have regards some of the interactions between the characters. At some points, there is a conflict that seems to be abruptly resolved. Maybe that speaks to the flexibility of children.
This is a story about how things seem and about how things really are. A big part of the plot revolves around a daughter’s hunger for her father. How will she find him when there is so much deception in the way? “Daddy abandoned you.” “Daddy is a failure.” “Daddy never cared about you.” Meg must navigate through all of this if she can ever progress. There are many challenges to confront along with her father hunger that reach all the way to her very existence. We are all particles in a delicately balanced field. What to make of that? If Meg can see the deception regarding her father for what it is, she can then move on to seeing the world as it really is. She must trust her senses. She must trust herself. Ultimately, Meg will need to rely on every last fiber of her humanity to get her where she needs to be.
“A Wrinkle in Time” stands today as a very unusual and outspoken work. Essentially, the outspoken stuff is all about putting things in perspective and finding the power of love to help you get there. It is the gentle and very honest philosophy found in this book that has gained it the status of being a banned book in certain schools and libraries. Is there really something controversial to be found here? Well, that depends on one’s level of enlightenment, I suppose. For many of us, it is simply a cherished book and this new graphic novel version is a most welcome adaptation.
“A Wrinkle in Time: The Graphic Novel” is published by Farrar Straus Giroux and Margaret Ferguson Books. Visit them here. It is a 392-page hardcover, priced at $19.99 US. Learn more about Madeleine L’Engle and her work here. And visit Hope Larson here.
If you’re in Austin, Texas, on Friday or Saturday, October 26 – 27, stop by and meet Hope Larson at the Austin Books & Comics booth at Wizard World Comic Con. Some press release stuff for you:
Hope Larson Signing
A Wrinkle In Time
@ Wizard World Austin Books Booth
Friday & Saturday 3 – 6pm
Friday and Saturday we will be joined by Hope Larson, who will have copies of her beautiful graphic novel adaptation of the classic novel A Wrinkle In Time. We’ll also have copies of her previous works Gray Horses, Chiggers, and Mercuryavailable for signing.
Friday the 26th 3 – 6pm
Saturday the 27th 3 – 6pm