Secret Acres announces SPACE by Robert Sergal for April


Let’s get going with spring book announcements: SPACE, a collection of Robert Sergal’s series ESCHEW. Sergal is an Ignatz Award nominee for Outstanding Comic and a Best American Comics selection, and his comics are short, stark but funny snapshots of awkward interactions, body humor and moment we’d often rather forget. Rod Lott, of Bookgasm writes: […]

Sparkplug Books shutting down this summer


Sparkplug Books, the seminal indie publisher founded by the late Dylan Williams, will shut down over the summer, publisher Virginia Paine announced on the company blog. Books remain available on the company website but after the closure backstock will be available via Alternative Comics. Under Williams Sparkplug published seminal works by Jason Shiga, John Hankiewicz (above), […]

Review: The Red Drip Of Courage distills Stephen Crane to a cartoon essence


You can go for years reading comics and come upon plenty of bizarre works, but at least understand where these are coming from. It’s more rare to hit on one that are more confounding, the ones that make you ask questions like “Where did this come from?” and “Who would do this?” So it is […]

Review: Kelly Froh & Dan Mazur’s two non-fiction delights


The Weekend Casserole Collection by Kelly Froh Froh brings together a number of short pieces from various sources — anthologies she’s contributed to, some of her own minis, as well as some previously unseen work. Covering incidents from all parts of her life — childhood sleepovers, high school crushes, strangers on buses, work acquaintances — […]

Review: Meags Fitzgerald continues to her autobiographical innovations with Long Red Hair


In Meags Fitzgerald’s previous book, Photobooth: A Biography, which documented just about anything you ever wondered about photo booths, she went far beyond her central subject, wrapping in segments of autobiography, making it a work about a wider swathe that her more intimate moments exist within. For Long Red Hair she does the exact opposite, focusing […]

Review: Whit Taylor’s Up Down Clown tackles mental health issues

Front cover jpg

The sad clown is a trope that has been well-used in every storytelling media there is, but Whit Taylor’s Up Down Clown from Ninth Art Press takes that trope further than usual. Rather than settling for the simple dichotomy of make-up and merriment hiding gloom, Taylor examines how a mental state might fluctuate with the […]

Review: Baltic anthology š! #23 offers big art in a small package


The Balkan comics anthology š! from kuš! is one of the more challenging delights of the comics world, grafting the sensibility of a contemporary art gallery onto the comics page. It regularly presents challenging and edgy work, often abstract, but with enough show of personality that you can see these are the works of real humans, and it comes in a striking mini-digest format that evokes Little Big Books, adding to its appeal as an object to display.

Take the 2015 Micro-Press Survey


Robyn Chapman is once again collecting information for her annual Micropress Survey, which is not only a fact filled compendium of the state of very small indie publishing, but a nice zine as well. 2015 is drawing to a close, and you know what that means! It’s time for the 2015 Micro-Press Survey. I use […]

The Beat Podcasts! More To Come: Comic Arts Brooklyn Interview Special


Recorded live in New York, it’s More To Come, the weekly podcast of comics news, interviews and discussion with Calvin Reid, Kate Fitzsimons and The Beat’s own Heidi MacDonald! This episode, More to Come brings you interviews live from the Comic Arts Brooklyn comic arts festival. Heidi interviews comics creator and publisher Brian Chippendale, Leslie […]

Koyama Press Announces Spring list with Kyle, Koch, Sears, Johnson and the vagina kayak artist


And yet more awesome comics are on the way from Koyama Press, with a particularly fresh line-up of indie comics up and comers. Patrick Kyle is known for his oddball fantasies while Aidan Koch has already gotten attention for her evocative experimental comics. Cathy G. Johnson is a fast rising star with a book coming out from First Second next year and an Ignatz under her belt; while Ben Sears name came up constantly when I asked about emerging male cartoonists. In addition, Koyama Press will put out its first translated comics: What is Obscenity? The Story of a Good For Nothing Artist and her Pussy, the story of Japanese artist Rokudenashiko (“good-for-nothing girl” or “bad girl”) whose work achives being truly transgressive; the Massive duo of Anne Ishii and Graham Kolbeins bring this one to English. PLease note, this comic is not about cats.

And here’s the complete lineup: