comiXology expands their ‘Originals’ line with creator-owned titles, print-on-demand

comiXology moves into print comics with an ‘experiment’ using Amazon’s print-on-demand capabilities.

comiXology Originals debuted in 2016 and have since published comics in conjunction with Marvel, BOOM! Studios, Valiant Entertainment and the estate of Harvey Kurtzman — and even earned an Eisner nomination. Now the Amazon-owned company is branching out to include creator-owned comics as part of the program.

The company announced four new titles that can be found on comiXology’s storefront, with the promise of more to come. Interestingly, comiXology is expanding beyond digital and will offer three of the four books through Amazon’s print-on-demand service — giving consumers the opportunity to buy comiXology material directly, rather than through a traditional comic book publisher.

The new comiXology Originals releases include: Savage Game created by NFL player Ryan Kalil, written by Shawn Kittelsen, and art by Chris B. Murray; Superfreaks from writers Elsa Charretier and Pierrick Colinet, with artist Margaux Saltel; Elephantmen 2261: The Death of Shorty from writer Richard Starkings, and artists Axel Medellin and Boo Cook; Ask For Mercy from writer Starkings and artist Abigail Jill Harding.

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Celebrating local comic creators is the best thing to do today

From Eisner winning heavyweight Fiona Staples to industry newbie H.C. Gislason, Panel One’s Comic Creator Festival spotlights local talent.

In the age of Hollywood-driven mega-cons, the Panel One Comic Creator Festival promises to bring the spotlight of comic conventions back to (gasp!) comics! Now in its third year, the Festival, which is held in Calgary, seems small and humble, but truly packs a punch for local creators, that feel lost and forgotten at the big shows. In its short life, the Panel One Comic Creator Festival has been renowned as “THE” place for creators to sell comics, some noting they have larger sales at this tiny festival as opposed to the 100,000 people attended monolith cons. This isn’t Artist Alley, so you won’t find fanart here, but this is the perfect market for the curious and the diehard comic fan to discover and buy new comic books.

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Koyama Press announces new project for this fall

Coming out of the Toronto Comic Arts Festival this past weekend, Koyama Press has announced seven new projects that will see publication in the fall. The line-up includes graphic novels from Michael DeForge, Keiler Roberts, Mickey Zacchilli, Patrick Kyle and Nathan Gelgud, as well as two all-ages titles by Britt Wilson and John Martz.

“Familiar and fresh faces fill out our Fall season, which is chockfull of the diverse selection of artists and stories you’ve come to expect from Koyama Press,” the publisher writes on their blog.

Here’s a rundown of what to expect …

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Image reveals many, many new titles at Image Expo

New projects announced from Matthew Rosenberg and Tyler Boss, Rob Guillory, J.H. Williams and Haden Blackman, Sam Humphries and Jen Bartel, Annie Wu and more.

As they’ve done in previous years, Image Comics dropped a metric ton of announcements at their Image Expo event, held today in Portland, Oregon.

The line-up of announcements this year includes five new titles from Todd McFarlane’s camp, new titles from Chew creators John Layman and Rob Guillory, two comics from Christoper Sebela, the fact that they’ll publish the Netflix/Millarworld titles starting with The Magic Order and much more. No doubt there are interviews aplenty dropping around the internet on all these new projects, so I’ll start with the text of the press release, then add art and commentary as I find it.

So let’s get to it …

Blackbird by Sam Humphries & Jen Bartel
Sam Humphries and Jen Bartel team up to co-create Blackbird, a modern fantasy story best described as Harry Potter meets Riverdale. It follows a young woman named Nina who discovers a neon-lit world of magic masters in Los Angeles. Now they’ve kidnapped her sister, and Nina is the only one who can save her.

“Blackbird is a labor of love, a coming of age story and beautiful people doing insane things with magic,” said Humphries.

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C.B. Cebulski replaces Axel Alonso as editor-in-chief at Marvel

Marvel’s Vice President of International Development Brand Management moves into the top position over Marvel’s comic line as Alonso leaves the company.

Marvel Entertainment has announced that Axel Alonso has left the company. Marvel veteran C.B. Cebulski will replace him as editor-in-chief.

“C.B. is one of the most well-known, liked and respected editors and personalities in the comics industry. He has a keen understanding of the Marvel brand, and knows the importance of publishing within the larger Marvel ecosystem,” said Dan Buckley, President, Marvel Entertainment, in a press release. “As our characters continue to reach unprecedented levels of global popularity, we need to ensure our core comic business sets the standard with fresh and compelling graphic storytelling that excites both our longtime fan base and new fans. Marvel has set a high bar for super hero stories for over 75 years, and we believe C.B. is perfectly positioned to take Marvel Comics to new heights.”

Prior to this, Cebulski was Vice President of International Development Brand Management and Vice President of Marvel Brand Management and Development in Asia. He also worked for Marvel as a talent recruiter, so he brings both a global perspective as well as a lot of earned goodwill with creators.

Alonso has been with Marvel since 2000, and was named editor-in-chief in January 2011. No word yet on what’s next for him.

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DC fires Group Editor Eddie Berganza

Noting a commitment to ‘eradicating harassment,’ DC fires Berganza five years after the last publicly reported harassment incident.

Multiple outlets, including Buzzfeed, are reporting that DC Entertainment has fired Eddie Berganza, the longtime editor whose history of alleged sexual harassment was brought back into the limelight by the outlet on Friday.

The official statement from DC Entertainment reads:

Warner Bros and DC Entertainment have terminated the employment of DC Comics Group Editor Eddie Berganza. We are committed to eradicating harassment and ensuring that all employees, as well as our freelance community, are aware of our policies, are comfortable reporting any concerns and feel supported by our Company.

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Missing the point: The Eddie Berganza story

DC brass protected Berganza at the expense of the women who worked there.

Right now, DC group editor Eddie Berganza is the comics industry’s poster child for sexual harassment, our own private Harvey Weinstein, thanks to a Buzzfeed article that brought the story of his misdeeds, and DC’s handling of them, to a wider audience.

People are calling for Berganza’s head on a platter, but they probably won’t get it. DC did in fact sanction him at the time: After he “forcibly kissed” a creator at a party during WonderCon in 2012, DC demoted him and banned him from conventions. When the incident hit the comics news, he sent an e-mail to his superiors apologizing and vowing it wouldn’t happen again. It’s conceivable that he actually did have some sort of epiphany and change his ways. He doesn’t seem to have repeated this behavior since, and it would certainly be difficult for DC to fire him now for something that was acknowledged and dealt with, however inadequately, seven years ago.

That doesn’t mean no one should be fired, though. What I find most alarming about this story is not Berganza’s antics per se but the way that the DC brass protected him at the expense of the women who worked there.

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First Second announces new ‘Maker Comics’ series

Robyn Chapman will edit the line that taps into “DIY energy.”

Graphic novel publisher First Second announced today a new series of “DIY”-type books called Maker Comics.

“Comics is THE medium for visual instruction—there is no better way to offer step-by-step directions for complex tasks,” their Tumbler post reads. “For perfect examples, look no farther than the safety brochure on your next flight or the instructions that come with your IKEA furniture. With Maker Comics, we pair visual instruction with narrative. Each volume has its own characters and story. And seamlessly woven into that story are instructions for five to ten fun projects that readers can complete themselves.”

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Koyama Press announces new titles from DeForge, Degen and more

Koyama’s spring 2018 line-up includes new graphic novels from Jessica Campbell, Michael Comeau, A. Degen, Michael DeForge, Ben Sears and Fiona Smyth.

Koyama Press announced their Spring 2018 releases over the weekend in conjunction with the Small Press Expo, including new books from Jessica Campbell, Michael DeForge and Ben Sears, among others.

According to the publisher, it’s “our biggest season, in terms of page count, ever! We are immensely excited to bring such a spectacular selection of comics to you this Spring!”

Here’s a rundown of what to expect …

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