§ A grim day at Stately Beat Manor: There is ANOTHER Heidi MacDonald…and she can DRAW.
§ Toon Books has its own take on comics in the classroom, which is an emerging trend:
The Canadian Council of Learning has gathered definitive research showing that readers who love comics also tend to read more text-based material and report enjoying reading more than their peers who don’t pick up comic books.
§ Colleen Doran Double feature! First, A Distant Soil is coming back, and Doran talks about the distant days of the emerging indie comics press:
Ironically, the small press experience gave me a greater appreciation for the mainstream comics business. I have almost always been treated far better in the mainstream than I was in the small press. No one likes a work-for-hire deal, but it’s clear cut, you get your pay, and you go. I rarely ran into these bizarre contract problems, completely inappropriate behaviors, and personality clash issues I continually experienced in the small press. Other peoples’ mileage may vary, but this is true for me with only a couple of exceptions. Anyway, after getting battered around by the small press for awhile, I just didn’t see why I should sign a contract with another one of these companies. They had no more qualifications than I did, so why should I bother to work with them? I doubted I could screw things up half as much. I spent some time asking around about how to self publish, and Dave Sim was particularly helpful with that. I took the plunge one day, ironically with funds from a legal settlement from one of the small publishers which ripped me off. Self publishing was a great learning experience. I made very good money for awhile, too. When the distributor system collapsed in the mid-1990s, I took a serious hit, but then I went to Image, thanks to Erik Larsen. I’m really glad I self published: I learned so much about the business end that I use to this day. I understand discount structures, the importance of getting books done far in advance, trade publishing, a great deal. Real nuts and bolts stuff. I actually learned to appreciate some of my publishing clients more, because I came to understand some of the rules they imposed: they didn’t seem so arbitrary.
And in a blog post, she reports a very touching story of paying back a good deed.
§ Comics polymath Van Jensen profiled Boeing president Roger Krone for the Georgia Tech alumni magazine in comics form, with Brett Weidele on the art.
§ One of Stan Lee’s many pacts is heading for the big screen!
§ I thought this piece on Five “Obscure” Things to Do at Conventions was funny but covered things that weren’t very obscure — getting drunk in the bar and looking for free schwag, but whaddya know in the comments someone wrote:
I had no idea these things were going on at conventions. The meet ups and social media games look to be the most fun. I have to remember these whenever I go to a con. Come to think of it, the swag quest is a good one too.
Remember: IT IS ALWAYS SOMEONE’S FIRST TIME.
§ Finally, good news! Comic Books Are No Laughing Matter.
Yes it’s true. No matter how many times I find this story in my news feed, I never getting tired of making a joke about it.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.