Smash Pages Q&A: Lilah Sturges on ‘Lumberjanes: The Infernal Compass’

The writer of ‘Jack of Fables,’ ‘Everafter’ and more discusses her work on an original graphic novel based on BOOM! Studios’ popular title.

Lilah Sturges has been writing comics for more than a decade. People may remember her long runs co-writing Jack of Fables and writing House of Mystery. At DC she worked on Blue Beetle, Justice Society of America and many other titles. More recently she’s written Fables: The Wolf Among Us, Muirwood, Everafter and other comics. She’s also the author of the novels Midwinter and The Office of Shadow and has written the graphic novel The Magicians: Alice’s Story, which has been announced and will be released next year.

Her new project is Lumberjanes: The Infernal Compass, an original graphic novel that she wrote and is illustrated by the Austrian artist Polterink. The standalone story is centered around an orienteering activity, a cursed compass, and Mal and Molly’s relationship. The story has a member of Her Majesty’s Club for Lady Explorers, Adventurers, and Other Die-Hard Womanly Sorts, fully articulated gear-driven, flywheel-powered service automatons (not robots) and more craziness, but it’s the relationship between Molly and Mal and in particular Molly’s fears over being alone and that her relationship might destroy her friendships is what gives the book its emotional weight. Sturges was kind enough to chat about the book and her work.

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André Lima Araújo remixes the Dark Knight in Tokyo

Meet Takeshi, Junko, Commissioner Saito and Shishio — the Superman.

Generation Gone and Black Panther: Long Live the King artist André Lima Araújo shared an impressive but unused pitch for an “Old Man Peter Parker” story earlier this year, and now he’s back with another fun concept — “Batman Tokyo.”

“And now for something different: a quick concept called #BatmanTokyo,” he writes on Tumblr. “Here’s the design collection: Takeshi, The Batman. Junko, Takeshi’s housekeeper. Commissioner Saito. And Shishio, the Superman.”

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Smash Pages Q&A: Jordan Crane on ‘We Are All Me’

The creator of ‘Uptight’ and ‘The Last Lonely Saturday’ discusses his latest from TOON Books, cartooning and design, the forthcoming ‘Keeping Two’ and more.

Jordan Crane is the Ignatz Award-winning cartoonist and designer behind comics like The Last Lonely Saturday and The Clouds Above. He was the editor and publisher of the anthology NON. In recent years he’s been making the series Uptight.

His new book is something of a departure for him. We Are All Me was just released by Toon Books, and it’s a picture book, but it’s also a design project. It’s an abstract visual poem that tries to express this idea of the interdependence and interconnectedness of all things. It is beautifully designed, thoughtful, and moving. I was thrilled to talk with Crane about the book and his other comics projects.

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‘Pooot!’: Kathryn and Stuart Immonen have a new Instagram comic

‘Grass of Parnassus’ is described as “‘Never As Bad As You Think’ — in space!”

Grass of Parnassus is the new comic by the team of Kathryn and Stuart Immonen — and you can follow along on Instagram.

The husband and wife duo have worked together in the past on Never As Bad As You Think, Moving Pictures and Marvel’s Hellcat. The first teaser post on the account described the new story as “Never As Bad As You Think — in space,” so if you’re familiar with their previous work, you have an idea of what they’re planning. They’ve been posting three to five panels each week for the past five weeks, so there’s a good chunk of story to read right now.

Here are a few of my favorite panels thus far, and you can see more on Instagram:

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Vault Comics’ Myriad line will include comics by Tobin, Coover and more

‘Wrassle Castle,’ ‘Bonded’ and ‘Unfinished Corner’ will be released over the next two years.

Fledgling publisher Vault Comics has announced a new line of young adult/middle grade comics, Myriad, along with three titles by Colleen Coover, Paul Tobin, Dani Coleman and more.

“The idea is simple: Tell stories just as daring, just as beloved, and just as relevant as those coming out of Vault, but for an even wider audience,” said Adrian Wassel, Editor-in-Chief at Vault. “Current Vault fans will enjoy the selfsame care and craft in Myriad—and now their kids can, too. These are hilarious, heartbreaking, jaw-dropping stories for everyone.”

The line will include:

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Smash Pages Q&A: Carolyn Nowak’s ‘Girl Town’

The Ignatz Award-winning creator discusses her latest project from Top Shelf.

Carolyn Nowak might be known to many comics readers for her work drawing Lumberjanes, but she’s also the Ignatz Award-winning creator behind comics like Radishes and Diana’s Electric Tongue. Those two stories, plus two more, along with a brand new story, have been collected in the new book Girl Town, which was just released from Top Shelf.

My feelings to the stories were similar to when I read Nowak’s comic Girl Town years ago. It was a beautifully drawn and thoughtful tale of three women who “got kicked out of astronaut school for being too good-looking to be sent to space. Now we try to make a living raising beans and cabbages, cleaning houses and curating erotic zines about staying on Earth.” It’s a funny opening, but the story itself is strange in a different way. It’s complicated and fraught, about trying to understand the emotions someone else causes in us. About getting older and trying make sense of whether this feeling is love or lust, hate or loneliness, and complexity of relationships and friendship. Nowak half-jokingly described the book as “my twenties” and for those of us who survived those years, that description will resonate in so many ways.

Besides the Lumberjanes collections that Nowak drew, she also wrote and drew the new book Buffy the Vampire Slayer: New School Nightmare, but Girl Town is the work of a masterful artist who has found her voice. Nowak was kind enough to answer a few questions about her work.

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Comics Lowdown: Mark Waid’s attorney asks for dismissal of Richard C. Meyer’s lawsuit

BOOM! Studios cancels ‘Husband and Husband’ collection after plagiarism charges! Image stops selling DRM-free digital comics directly! Chicago Sun-Times drops two pages of comics! Plus: Chip Zdarsky, NaNoWriMo, best of 2018 lists and more!

Mark Waid’s legal representative has asked the U.S. District Court for the Western district of Texas to dismiss the lawsuit filed against him by Richard C. Meyer. The civil lawsuit was filed in September and claims “tortious interference with contract and defamation.” You can read the motion on Newsarama.

“[Meyer] asserts claims against Mr. Waid for tortious interference with contract and defamation. These claims are completely meritless. But the problem at the outset, and which is proper to address, is that this Court lacks personal jurisdiction over Mr. Waid,” reads the motion. “Plaintiff’s Complaint fails to identify any allegations or facts establishing any connection between Mr. Waid and Texas. Instead, Plaintiff merely alleges a single phone call between Mr. Waid, who was in California at the time, and a San Antonio publishing company. That is far short of the necessary substantial connection with Texas to justify personal jurisdiction.”

Mark Waid and Richard Meyer have GoFundMe campaigns going to pay for their legal fees, both of which have reached their goals.

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Smash Pages Q&A: Joamette Gil on ‘Heartwood’ and more

The publisher of Power & Magic Press discusses her latest anthology, editing and coloring, and more.

Joamette Gil is a comics artist, writer and illustrator, who’s contributed to The Nib, Oni Press’ Draw Out the Vote, Everyday Feminism, and elsewhere. She is a comics letterer who’s worked for Oni Press and Lion Forge. She’s also the person behind Power and Magic Press. She’s edited and published the acclaimed and award-winning anthologies Power & Magic: The Queer Witch Comics Anthology and Immortal Souls. She’s just finished kickstarting Heartwood: Non-binary Tales of Sylvan Fantasy, which is the first-ever all non-binary comics anthology

I’ve admired Gil’s artwork and her sense of design and color, and wanted to reach out to her to talk about Power & Magic Press, anthologies and color.

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Comics Lowdown: Halloween edition

Tricks and treats from Marvel, Todd Klein, Kerry Callen and more!

It’s the scariest day of the year, and to help celebrate we’re doing something a little different with Comics Lowdown today.

Let’s start with something better than candy — better than candy? — comics! Every year Diamond Comics Distributors celebrates Halloween ComicFest, an event for comic shops similar in spirit to Free Comic Book Day. You can check out the official website to see pictures from this year’s celebrations. Also of note: many comic shops are selling packs of comics that you can give out to Trick or Treaters. So check with your local retailer to see what they have on hand.

And if you’re looking for some scary comics to read today, publishers have unleashed a horde of Halloween-themed stories today. Polygon spotlights the return of Wytches, as Scott Snyder and Jock return to hex you with a one-shot today. Speaking of hexing, Hex Wives, the new title by Ben Blacker and Mirka Andolfo from Vertigo, debuts today, along with the last issue of Wayward, a new issue of Stranger Things and some more Ice Cream Man, if you’re looking for something both sweet and creepy. In addition, new publisher Ahoy Comics has Edgar Allen Poe’s Snifter of Terror, featuring the work of Tom Peyer, Mark Russell, Shannon Wheeler and more, while Marvel has an Avengers Halloween Special and DC kicks off The Witching Hour crossover.

If you’re looking for a longer read, Doctor of Horror and Other Stories from Fantagraphics collects old EC horror stories, while Dark Horse has released H. P. Lovecraft’s The Hound and Other Stories by manga creator Gou Tanabe.

Finally, if you’re looking for some deals, check out Dynamite’s Fall horror bundle on Groupees and ComixTribe’s Halloween flash sale.

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