Sometimes it takes a son or daughter to prompt a parent's life changes.
Thanks to my son Dan, my first new published comics work of the 21st Century is now available.
Last Thursday, Dan picked up the initial print run of his first photocopy zine Hot Chicks Take Huge Shits Vol. 1. It's his maiden voyage into such waters, and as such crude, rude, and eclectic -- but hey, we all start somewhere. Make no mistake, this is a rough'n'randy little b&w zine: 24 pages, composed of photos, collages, sketches (from Dan and a couple of his amigos, one of whom -- Sam, or L'il Sam around here -- did the cover), clips & quotes from misc. sources, and one of Dan's fave recipes (he's a hell of a cook). The Blind Dead figure mightily herein, too, with one of their skeletal hands popping up here and there, visually tying this loose collective together.
Dan asked me if I'd do a short comic for his zine, and I speedily completed the four-page "Kafka Kaiju Eiga", which Dan has plunked into the center of the zine. It's my first published comic narrative since 1999, and as such might be of interest and/or import to some of you. For what it's worth, it's already led to my working up two more, and those (along with at least two more by myself and comics by a couple of my own friends) will be available later this year in a modest, affordable format (to be determined).
But that's later. "Kafka Kaiju Eiga" is now. The only way you can see it is to send -- via snail-mail (Dan's not set up online) -- $5.00 US payable to Daniel Bissette and mail it to Dan at 118 High St., Apt. #1, Brattleboro, VT 05301. He will send you your signed copy of Hot Chicks Take Huge Shits via First Class Mail, and you'll have a high time with it. (If you're ordering from outside the US, I'd suggest adding at least $1.50 US to your payment.)
Postal money orders are preferable, but he'll take checks -- however, your copy won't ship until your check clears. Do not send cash. And no, you can't order via me -- this is Dan's baby. It's a learning curve, it's his zine.
For the record, thanks to Dan Barlow, Hot Chicks Take Huge Shits debuted at the Boston Zine Convention this past weekend (thanks, Dan!). As of yesterday, my son hadn't heard from Dan as yet, so I reckon my son is now awaiting his first sales report. Boom or bust, he's cool.
Dan gave me my comp copies yesterday, which I had him personalize and I then mailed to a couple friends. He signed mine, "Steve! My first print job, and I published you. Sorry the pay sucks. Yer son, Daniel." I then signed every copy Dan had (so you'll be purchasing a signed copy via mail-order), and my heart swelled with pride and a strange nostalgia -- for a moment, I recalled quite vividly the feel and smell of the first box of Abyss, my first published comics work, when confederates-in-crime Tim Viereck (who financed the printing), Steve Perry, Jack Venooker, Mark 'Sparky' Whitcomb, Dave Booz and I opened that box of hot-off-the-Johnson Press zines in Governor's Hall at Johnson State College back in the early spring of '76.
As previously mentioned, my daughter Maia Rose beat her younger bro' to the comics punch when she and two of her 8th grade friends collaborated on a photocopy comic zine entitled Phat Comics, back in (I think) 1996-97. Maia hand-colored all the covers with colored pencil, and my copy is among my treasures. Unlike Daniel's zine, Maia and her amigos did a genuine mini-comic, with Maia's distinctive drawing style of that period dominating.
Where will they go from here? Time will tell!
But whatever I do hereafter in comics that's published, you'll all have my son Dan and the students at the Center for Cartoon Studies to thank (but not blame).
They're the ones who've got me drawing again, and willing to publish.
Life goes on...
A related bit of news: my son Daniel's first piece of art published by an outside publisher (other than his Dad: I ran a sketch young Daniel did of a troglodyte in Tyrant) is now in print, too, along with my own essay and accompanying cartoon illo. That would be, natch, Lucio Fulci: Poeta del Macabro (Underground Press, 2006), the Lucio Fulci commemorative book just published in far-away Italy, Fulci's native homeland. The book is primarily a collective of original Italian fumetti inspired by Fulci's films, an anthology of all-new horror comics from an eager and skilled creative pool.
An email from Smoky Man (who contributed a story of his own) at Ultrazine arrived on March 9th, announcing "Fulci book printed!" Smoky Man wrote: "Hi Steve the book is out! It's quite good, my friend..."
We're now eagerly awaiting our comp copies, and Smoky Man writes: "You can see the book at
Hey, it's all good. I'll post more here once our copies arrive. In the meantime, any of you interested in ordering a copy of your own, you've now got all the info you need.
[CineFest report, Part Two, to follow tomorrow...]