Spies save the world from the supernatural in ‘Beasts of the Black Hand’

Paul Harding, Ron Marz, Matthew Dow Smith and Neeraj Menon look to kickstart a new graphic novel featuring a British secret service agent’s battle against the mad monk Rasputin.

Ron Marz and Matthew Dow Smith have teamed up with sculptor Paul Harding for Beasts of the Black Hand, a new graphic novel they’re funding through Kickstarter. Featuring colors by Neeraj Menon, the first volume will come out in early 2018, “laying the groundwork for an epic multi-volume story.”

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Houdini and Doyle collide in ‘The Death Defying’

Christopher Sebela, Gavin Guidry, Marissa Louise and Micah Meyers seek to crowdfund a new historical occult adventure miniseries

Christopher Sebela (High Crimes, Evolution, Short Order Crooks) returns to Kickstarter for a very timely miniseries — one set in the 1920s — that pits Harry Houdini against Arthur Conan Doyle in a “battle of wills, words, faith, science, fisticuffs, handguns and magic.” And he’s joined by artist Gavin Guidry, colorist Marissa Louise and letterer Micah Meyers on The Death Defying, which is now up on Kickstarter.

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Comics Lowdown: One cartoonist free on bail; another remains in prison

Plus: Kickstarters, Leo Baxendale, and how Chuck Rozanski escaped poverty—with comics!

Indian Cartoonist Free on Bail: A judge in Tirunelveli, Tamil Nadhu, India, has granted bail to cartoonist G. Bala, who was arrested on Nov. 5 for creating a “demeaning caricature” of several local officials. The cartoon critiqued the local government, including the collector, after a laborer and his family who were in deep debt to loan sharks set themselves on fire in front of the collector’s office. The entire family, including two children ages two and four, died of their injuries.

“The self-immolation and the burning children disturbed me a lot… I could not sleep for two days as if my children had charred. I had done nothing personal against the Collector, the complainant of the case against me. When he initiated steps for the ‘Wall of Kindness’ to help the poor, I felt so proud about him. When he failed to act on the repeated petitions of a usury victim, it forced a youth to take the extreme step that disturbed me a lot and I just reflected my agony through my caricature,” a visibly moved Mr. Bala told the waiting reporters while emerging from the court after being enlarged on bail.

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Smash Pages Q&A: Elizabeth LaPensée on ‘Deer Woman: An Anthology’

The professor, writer and game designer discusses her latest anthology, a collection of stories about resistance, healing, empowerment and hope.

Elizabeth LaPensée seems to lead many lives. She’s an assistant professor at Michigan State University, a visual artist and also designs games like Thunder Strike and Honour Water. She’s also a comics writer and artist and editor. Her work has appeared in both volumes of the MOONSHOT anthology, and she’s also made a number of webcomics including The Nature of Snakes, Fala, and The West was Lost. LaPensée is also writing and drawing short comics and editing or co-editing a number of upcoming anthologies including Sovereign Traces: Not Just Another and Relational Constellation.

Her comic Deer Woman was a success and struck a chord with many readers and creators and this fall Native Realities Press is publishing Deer Woman: An Anthology, which LaPensée co-edited, featuring the work of a number of creators who use the story of the deer woman to tell stories of resistance, healing, empowerment and hope. After a successful Kickstarter, the anthology is out this fall and LaPensée spoke about the project and her work.

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Image to publish Tee Franklin’s ‘Bingo Love’

The successful Kickstarter project will hit stores just in time for Valentine’s Day.

At this week’s New York Comic Con, Image Comics announced plans to publish Bingo Love, an original graphic novel by Tee Franklin, Jenn St-Onge and Joy San that was successfully Kickstarted earlier this year. The story centers on the love between two black women and explores how coming out at an older age can affect their families’ lives.

“As a woman who was married once upon a time, I understand how it is to come out as a Queer woman to my family,” said Franklin. “Bingo Love was important for me to create for the youth, the LGBTQ youth needs to understand that happily-ever-after’s aren’t only for straight people. If Disney’s Carl and Ellie can grow old together, so can Mari and Hazel.”

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Shawn McManus looks to Kickstart zombie baseball cards

The former ‘Sandman’ and “Fables’ artist seeks to crowdfund ‘Horror at Home Plate: League of Zombies,’ a 24-card set of zombified baseball players.

Shawn McManus’ comics work runs the gambit from Heavy Metal to Saga of the Swamp Thing to Dr. Fate to Sandman and many other titles, but now he’s turned his pen to something different — baseball cards. McManus is using Kickstarter to fund a set titled “Horror at Home Plate: League of Zombies” — so there’s a bit of a supernatural twist to them.

“This project started when I decided to paint a zombie baseball player just for fun between projects,” McManus said on the Kickstarter page. “I liked the retro look of it so I did another. Followed by one more, and then one after that. Before I knew it I had 24 of them done. I can’t tell you how much fun these were to do. I showed them to some fellow artists at lunch one day and someone suggested that I should do a Kickstarter campaign card set. So here we are. This seems to be a great way to share these cards with more than just family and a few friends.”

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IDW Publishing launches Kickstarter for quarterly hardcover ‘magazine’

New project out of their Portland, Oregon office will offer interviews, opinion pieces and more about ‘all aspects of the creative culture.’

IDW Publishing has launched a Kickstarter for Full Bleed, a hardcover “magazine” curated and edited by IDW Publishing’s Dirk Wood and CEO and Publisher Ted Adams. This is the first project coming out of their Portland, Oregon office, which was announced late last year.

Not to be confused with Matt Maxwell’s Full Bleed column-turned-book about the comics industry, IDW describes the project as a “brand-new quarterly, hand-crafted, print only, 200-page hardcover.” It will include interviews, short stories, opinion pieces and of course comics, covering “all aspects of the creative culture, and beyond — comics, music, film, TV, fine art, photography, design, politics and more.”

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Smash Pages Q&A: Joe Corallo and Molly Jackson on their Planned Parenthood benefit anthology

The editors of ‘Mine! A Celebration of Freedom and Liberty for All Benefitting Planned Parenthood’ discuss the Kickstarter for the project.

Joe Corallo and Molly Jackson are writers at ComicMix and other places around the internet, but they’re also editors of Mine! A Celebration of Freedom and Liberty for All Benefitting Planned Parenthood.

The anthology, which is currently being kickstarted, is a celebration of a fundraiser for Planned Parenthood Federation of America, a nonprofit organization that is one of the biggest and most important health care providers in the United States. The project features work by Neil Gaiman, Jill Thompson, Trina Robbins, John Ostrander, Rachel Pollack, Howard Cruse and others. The campaign runs through Sept. 15, and we reached out to the duo to discuss the project.

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Smash Pages Q&A: Hope Nicholson on ‘Gothic Tales of Haunted Love’ and more

The Canadian writer, editor and publisher discusses her work on Prairie Comics Festival, Bedside Press, Secret Loves of Geeks and her latest Kickstarter.

Hope Nicholson is one of those people working behind the scenes who make the comics industry function. The Canadian writer, editor and publisher is the founder and publisher of Bedside Press, which is responsible for books both new (Window Horses, A Minyen Yidn) and reprints (Fashion in Action, Polka Dot Pirate). She runs the Prairie Comics Festival in Winnipeg, Canada. She wrote the new book The Spectacular Sisterhood of Superwomen about female comics characters. She’s the woman behind The Secret Loves of Geek Girls, is a Kickstarter Thought Leader, and was one of the people selected to be part of Kickstarter Gold, in the company’s words, “for their creativity and ingenuity.”

Nicholson first received notice for spearheading the republication of Canadian comics like Nelvana of the Northern Lights and Brok Windsor. She’s a consulting editor on Margaret Atwood’s Angel Catbird graphic novel series, which is being published by Dark Horse. Nicholson also edits and publishes a wide range of anthologies including Moonshot, Enough Space for Everyone Else, and her current project, Gothic Tales of Haunted Love.

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