SHOP! Comic Scene

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ComicScene does a good job of representing the current UK Small Press comics scene as well as more mainstream comics entertainment news – it’s like an online comic fanzine that also publishes a great set of books all about the history of UK and US comics and some fine comics of their own.

you can also find them here:

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SHOP! The Phooks

The Phooks is a project I’ve followed for almost two years. It’s a site focussed on the sales of small -press and self-published photobooks and zines aiming to build a community of buyers and sellers.

It’s expanded to included interviews with creators and some campaigns aiming to fund the publication of books.

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SHOP! Zine Gang Distro

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An Australian distro with some great looking zines in stock

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Gothtober 2020  Emily N3ver image 0

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SHOP! Stay Kind! distro

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(twitter – @staykinddistro)

Stay Kind! publish their own zines including perzines and various themed anothologies

As a distro -here are their own words

Stay Kind! is especially interested in publications related to racial justice, gender and sexuality, youth voice, animal rights, violence intervention and prevention, mental health, and personal narratives, as well as educational and informational publications.

Here are three titles that took my fancy

Ima Eat You! May 2016

I love a perzine and this includes something about Bravenet which, in reality is just a boring web service provider, but with that and the cover made me think of how you could use it as a great name for people confronting their own self-limiting learnt behaviours and I was off on a thought.

IEY1605

no salvation no forgiveness

the blurb totally caught my interest

It’s an elaborate fantasy about trapping Brett Kavanaugh in an elevator and forcing him to listen to me. It’s about being sad and weird and victimized in high school and growing up to be even sadder and even weirder and more victimized and being really, really fucking angry about that. By julia eff.

OPZ079

Living Southerners December 2017

again – the blurb sold me, and the bit of interview you can see on the page below (from the zine)

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and the intro that you can also see because it’s so specific and I love that in a zine

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you can also check out their instagram and facebook

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SHOP! Colossive Press

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NOTE – I have been published and distributed by Colossive Press – I won’t be highlighting those publications

I have loved Colossive Press’ zines since I first saw Croydon Spaceport (a hugely enjoyable and funny zine about the UK’s first failed spaceport) and High Precision Ghosts – one of the most interesting formats for a zine I’ve ever seen.

With the Cartographies series they’ve really found a fascinating format to show case creators.

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SHOP! Shelflife (Cardiff)

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Shelflife Books and Zines

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SHOP! Good Comics / Good Zines

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LDN by RAMZEE

personally recommended by me

Petrichor by Gareth A Hopkins

Novelty by Mohar Kolra

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SHOP! Cafe Royal Books

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SHOP! Domino Books

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I like Austin English’s approach to curating his store, it’s eclectic and personal and carries a great breadth of interesting comics. It’s unfortunate that postage from the US is so expensive as it makes it very prohibitive to get anything over to the UK, but what can you do?

If you’re in the US – go for broke!

Check out this interview on The Comics Journal, a lovely long one, where he lays out his thoughts very clearly

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SHOP! Pluto Press

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SHOP! Almost Normal Comics

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SHOP! pen fight

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https://penfightdistro.com/

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Small (press) oaks – Ken Eppstein

Ken Eppstein is a good man to know in comics. He works hard to be fair to all of the creators he’s published. I like his tastes as well, so I think you’ll find very good work, including his own, in the comics he’s published.

I like that he’s interested in quantifying rather than guessing what people need, researching and getting data in to inform his work. It’s an approach I admire. His recent surveys have been supported by Fieldmouse Press’s SOLRAD site.

 

Ken Eppstein

Find Ken here

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Can you tell us a bit about the first creator whose work you recognised?

You know, I think it was Curt Swan. One of the first books I ever owned was the hardback “Superman from the 30s to the 70s” collection. Still have it… Two copies actually! A nice one and my original copy with no dustjacket and a shredded spine. Lots of artists in there, but Curt Swan was the guy whose work was still in comic racks.

 

Which creators do you remember first copying?

I started answering this question by saying that it was probably one of the X-Men or Legion of Superheroes guys, but the more I thought about it, I’m pretty sure it was actually Jim Davis. I remember copying Garfield for a handmade birthday or Mother’s Day card or something. I can’t remember any specific copying before that.

Garfield
Garfield

 

Who was the creator that you first thought ‘I’m going to be as good as you!’?

I honestly don’t know that I’ve ever had this thought. At least not phrased that way about a specific artist. I will say that as I worked with artists, writing scripts and seeing their interpretations of my work, I gained confidence in my own ability to do it on my own.

I did for many years think about artists I could never be as good as. Technically adept artists, mostly. I guess I still think that framed as a matter of technical skill, there are many artists that have a more sophisticated skill set than I ever will.  Most who have dedicated themselves to that aspect of the craft, in fact. I don’t, though, conflate that craftsmanship with “good” or “bad” anymore. As a teenager, I realized that some of my favorite musicians are technically limited but are still able to create works of emotional and cultural depth. I now think the same thing is true of comic arts, but for some reason it took me longer to get there.

 

Which creator or creators do you currently find most inspiring?

Lynda Barry.  I took her five day “Writing the Unthinkable Workshop” last summer and all of my friends are tired of me talking about it. I went into that workshop a fan and came out an acolyte. She totally changed the way I create and the way I talk to other people about creating.

Lynda Barry

Which creators do you most often think about?

Other creator you mean, right? Because I’m pretty self-centered.

I don’t think I know. I care about a lot of creators.

Can you name the first three creative peers that come into your head and tell a little bit about why?
Bob Corby (of Back Porch Comics and SPACE): Maybe not so much my peer as my hero in terms of small press life. No one works harder for his community.

Bob Corby
Bob Corby

Timmy Wade, my coffee shop buddy who just recently hung together his first self-published comic after years of fretting about it. (Saphead comics.  Its not just good, its great!)

Saphead comics - Timmy Wade
Saphead comics – Timmy Wade

 

Pat Redding Scanlon who is my favorite current collaborator in a lot of ways. So talented and one of the few artists who live at the same intersection of punk rock and comic fandom as I do.

Pat Redding Scanlon

 

Outside of comics I’d say The New Bomb Turks, the first group of rock ‘n roll weirdos to take me in when I moved to Columbus. Also, almost entirely responsible for my garage punk record obsession.

Steve Anderson, my friend who has run a pirate radio station, written an excellent short story collection titled “1976,” guitarist and singer of the band I’m With Stupid, and filmed truly independent movies budgeted solely on beer and wit.

Bob Calhoun author of “Beer, Blood and Cornmeal”, “Shattering Conventions” and an upcoming collection of San Francisco true crime stories.

 

Bob Calhoun
Bob Calhoun

Finally, can you tell us a bit about your recent work and yourself?

My most recent project, including works in progress are:

What Have I Done For You Lately #1: A zine with my current WIP and sketchbook selections.

How to Collect Comics The Nix Way #1: A zine about the creative side of comic collecting, featuring illustrations and short fictions inspired by comics purchased at a comic-con.

Currently working on an illustrated novel titled “On Tour With Roy Lee Hood” and a graphic memoir about opening my first comic shop “What The Hell Is A Rudy Goose?”

WIP - Ray's Short Childhood
WIP – Ray’s Short Childhood

I’m a writer, cartoonists, and publisher from Columbus, Ohio.  In addition to my own rock music and record store themed imprint Nix Comics, I’ve been a contributor to the Columbus Alive, Red Stylo Media Comics, Rocker Magazine, Roctober Magazine, WFMU Rock and Soul Ichiban, and the satirical comic website, The Outhouse.

Thank you very much for taking the time to fill this out and let us into your mind.

Surfers' Love Call

 

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content copyright iestyn pettigrew 2020

 

 

SHOP! International Authors

I know nothing about this publisher, but both Michael Moorcock and Michael Butterworth are listed on the editorial board and they have published a couple of books by Michael Butterworth, so that’s good enough for a mention as far as I’m concerned!

 

For those that don’t know Michael Moorcock is a seminal writer of fantasy and science fiction revolutionising each in his own way. He was also the publisher of New Worlds – a science fiction anthology that championed the New Wave of Science Fiction.

international authors - michael butterworth
michael butterworth

Michael Butterworth, among many other things, has written Hawkwind novelisations and, most importantly to me, been the publisher of many great books and comics as Savoy Books, I have also just found out the he helped found Corridor8.

 

International Authors also publishes Emanations, which seems to be very interesting from the description at least.

 

Lots to check out!

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international authors - website website

 

international authors - emanations emanations