Welllll, it's happened again.
The daunting task of wading through days of emails (with only slow-speed dial-up as my venue) has meant my limited computer time over a hyper-busy few days kept me from the blog.
Fair warning: That'll be the case much/most of the rest of the week, too, sorry to say, but I'll get back to daily status next week.
So, just to sort of 'catch up' and provide ample reading for the coming days while I'm away, I'll do a flurry of multiple posts today, including some fave links provided by the Center for Cartoon Studies students. There's a couple of doozies!
Publishers Weekly is interviewing me sometime this week about the coming Lost Girls complete/collected by Alan Moore and sweetheart Melinda Gebbie.
As some of you may recall, Lost Girls was launched in the pages of Taboo, remaining our one-and-only color serialized graphic novel. It was a real leap of faith from Alan & Melinda at the time, and a momentous gamble for Taboo, especially since the higher production costs for color repro only tipped Taboo further into the red. It was also a bit of a kamikaze move, since the fraying relations between Taboo and Tundra were only further ravaged by the ongoing struggle over the From Hell collected editions, which effectively deep-sixed what little momentum Taboo had maintained in the direct-sales market.
But what Alan & Melinda wanted to do was, to my mind, worth the gamble -- a truly adult graphic novel with sexual relations defining its heart, soul and being. Some argued at the time (within Tundra) that Fantagraphics' Eros line was a more suitable venue, but Alan & Melinda very specifically wanted Taboo to showcase their new creation: at the time, Alan and I were still enjoying good relations, and he and Melinda knew I'd fight to the end to maintain their complete autonomy on the series, sans censorship. This was immediately tested by the simple act of prepping Melinda's exquisite (and quite delicate) art for production: the necessary technical tasks would have to be done in the UK, as the potential for US customs seizing the pages was too high, and the delicacy of her chosen media (including pastels) were too vulnerable to damage en route, however carefully packaged.
This added enormously to the expenses connected with the production, but Tundra was willing to indulge and bankroll the necessary steps. En route, I also negotiated with Melinda reprinting one of her earliest underground comix stories -- it was vitally important, to my mind, to assert Melinda's own critical creative dynamic in the new series, and an archival showcasing one of her most potent underground solo stories seemed the ideal vehicle. Melinda was overjoyed, and we quickly saw to the necessary payment and delivery of print-ready stats, and the story was scheduled for what would have been Taboo 8. Sadly, the cumulative toll of another Moore project -- the ambitious and unfortunately now-notorious Big Numbers -- the ongoing Taboo/Tundra friction (over a multitude of matters), and finally the cumulative weight of Tundra's own mismanagement and fiscal losses brought it all to a ragged end. Taboo 7 brought the series to an abortive end, and by the time Denis Kitchen and I pulled together the loose ends of the Taboo legacy for the series closers Taboo 8 & 9, Lost Girls and its promise were no longer my concern as an editor or co-publisher.
I'm overjoyed Lost Girls is finally going to see light of day. I'll be buying my copy as soon as its available (no expected comp 'freebie' for this past-publisher; so it goes), if only to complete, as a reader, an adventure I was part of in its initial stages. We published a number of chapters of Lost Girls and I blew a nut over a truly mortifying Lost Girls TV series promo reel shown at the one-and-only "Tundra Summit" -- an event which was arguably the last straw in the strained relations between Tundra, Kevin Eastman, and yours truly.
Per usual, I highly recommend you pop over to
More on other subjects later in the day...