We haven’t been able to kibble or bit very much of late because of conflicting deadlines. But here’s a bit of catching up:
§ Chris Arrant interviews Nonplayer’s Nate Simpson and the working life:
Simpson: Well, I think what I learned over the last couple of years was that though I enjoy the medium of comics, I am not all that great at the business of comics. The more I felt the burden of turning Nonplayer into an income generator, the worse the quality seemed to get. The metaphor that pops into my mind right now is of trying to turn the apple tree in your garden into a load-bearing column for your house. It doesn’t really make for a well-built house, and it’s not all that good for the tree, either. So I’ll be separating the two functions once more: the day job will pay the bills, and the comic will get to grow at its own pace, in a worry-free environment. That said, the schedule I have laid out for the coming months involves putting in five hours a day on the comic, outside of normal office hours. Two in the morning before work and three in the evening after I get home. It’ll definitely be the hardest I’ve ever worked on anything. I really do want this comic to continue moving forward at a reasonable pace.
§ Viz has clamped down on scanlation sites:
And there’s more! The site Narutofan, which has been around for over five years and stirred up quite a controversy among scanlators at one time, has been forced to relinquish its URL. Tazmo, the owner, sounded rather aggrieved in his post on the matter, claiming the Viz people were always nice to him and sent him free stuff, and then all of a sudden they sent him a notice saying that they should have the Narutofan.com domain, because otherwise people would be confused. Tazmo isn’t buying it: Apart from having the word *FAN* in the domain name, we mention in one way or another that we are a fan-site on nearly every single page of this website. The NarutoFan.com domain name has also been registered for nearly 5 years before VIZ Media even owned, licensed, and profited off of the Naruto series with any copyright or trademark.
§ Tony Isabella talks about Gary Fredrich
I was the second regular writer on Ghost Rider. I didn’t know at the time why Gary was no longer writing the book. Still dazzled by working at Marvel Comics, it never occurred to me to ask the why of my good fortune. I didn’t write Ghost Rider as Gary had done. I was smart enough to recognize that I could not match his strengths so I went with my own. It became a different comic book. Yet, years later, when Gary and I had connected online and were together at a Mid-Ohio-Com, he was exceedingly generous in his praise of what I had written with his creation. Think about the hundreds of people who have worked on Ghost Rider in comics, movies, and elsewhere. If all of them made even a small donation to the fund started by Steve Niles, it would make a huge difference in Gary’s life.
§ Mark Evanier writes of the positive aspects of celebrity conventions.
§ Becky Cloonan’s new mini MIRE is available for pre-order.
§ Cris Butcher says “Our Digital Comics Strategy is an Evolutionary Dead-end” :
Anyway, the point of all of this (other than to introduce myself) is to say that as comic retailers, we have options and we have responsibilities. More responsibilities than we often want, not as many options as we’d like, but we’ve got some elbow room and it’s our job to use it. We’ve all suffered under a series of poor distribution decisions that have made things difficult for us, but if we’re willing to put the leg work in we can have the kind of store we want, carry the products we want, and have the kind of industry we want, and on something resembling a level playing field as well.
§ Matt Madden uses Evernote to stay organized.
I use Evernote for… As a cartoonist and educator, I have to organize my creative work, teaching and projects that I work on with my wife, Jessica. Keeping track of everything I’m working on is an ongoing project in and of itself. Evernote has become my project hub. In Evernote, each project is contained and viewable. Evernote for gathering story ideas, organizing my comics and more Before Evernote, I had sketchbooks, manilla folders and boxes where I kept all of my notes and sketches. Now, I have a centralized place to collect all of my ideas, drawings, and more. Here’s a glimpse into how I organize my creative life in Evernote:
We’ve never used Evernote for much more than clipping recipes but Matt seems like a very organized individual, so maybe it is time to investigate.
§ Michael Cavna interviews the hottest cartoonist going, Boulet, whose 26-hour comic THE DARKNESS has taken the world by storm.
MICHAEL CAVNA: “The Darkness” is one of the better 24-Hour Comics — or even 26-Hour Comics — I’ve seen in some time. How do *you* feel about the final result? BOULET: Er…hard to say! Every time I’d participated [in] the 24-Hour Comics [before], I ended with a sad-ending story. This time, I wanted to have a happy end. I had a lot of fun drawing it. … Usually I chose a less “ambitious” story, to be sure I will have enough time. This one was hard to finish [in time] — almost in time!
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.