They’re out! Labelled “the most diverse yet” we’re just looking at the list andthey are definiely very indie friendly while not entirely ignoring the superheroes here and there with nominations for everything from Urasawa to Comic Foundry.
Here’s awards administrator Jackie Estrada’s press release:

The nomination list for the 2008 Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards represents the most diverse slate of titles and creators in the 20-year history of the awards (considered the “Oscars” of the comic book industry). The nominees range from literary Japanese graphic novels to comics based on popular TV series, from massive hardcover collections of classic comic strips and comic books to cutting-edge anthologies, from goofy humor titles to works about the Soviet space program, a Chinese vaudeville magician, and the Negro Leagues. In fact, the nominations are so varied that it is difficult to summarize any trends.

No one publisher or creator dominates this year’s nominations, which were chosen by a blue-ribbon panel of judges. DC Comics, which has traditionally been at the top of the list, has 11 nods (+ 6 shared) for such titles as Brian K. Vaughan’s Y the Last Man (Continuing Series, Penciller/Inker, Writer) and Darwyn Cooke’s The Spirit (Continuing Series, Coloring, Lettering). Dark Horse has 12 nominations (+ 4), spearheaded by Joss Whedon’s Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 8 (Continuing Series, New Series, Writer, Coloring) and Umbrella Academy (Limited Series, Cover Artist, Coloring). Also right up there is Marvel Comics, with 11 nominations (+ 2), with Stephen King’s Dark Tower: The Gunslinger Born garnering 4 of those (Limited Series, Penciller/Inker, Cover Artist, Coloring). Close behind is alt-comics publisher Fantagraphics, with 11 nominations, including 4 for the quarterly anthology Mome (two in Short Story, Anthology, Lettering) and 2 for the retro Fletcher Hanks collection I Shall Destroy All the Civilized Planets!

Image Comics has 8 nominations (+ 1) for a wide variety of titles, while AdHouse Books has 6 (+ 1), including 4 for newcomer Fred Chao’s Johnny Hiro (Single Issue, New Series, Humor Publication, Writer/Artist-Humor). Oni Press clocks in with 5 (+ 1) nominations, while Drawn & Quarterly has 5 (including 2 for Rutu Modan’s critically acclaimed Exit Wounds). Companies with 4 nominations each are Renaissance Press (all for Jimmy Gownley’s Amelia Rules!) , Sunday Press, Viz, and Scholastic (3 for Shaun Tan’s wordless graphic novel The Arrival). Companies with 3 nominations each are Archaia, First Second, Hyperion, and Top Shelf.

Five creators have 4 nominations each: writer/artists Fred Chao and Jimmy Gownley, and writers James Sturm (3 of them for Satchel Paige: Striking Out Jim Crow), Brian K. Vaughan (for both Buffy and Y the Last Man), and Joss Whedon (for Buffy, Astonishing X-Men, and the online Sugarshock!). Only three other creators have more than 2 nominations: artist Jae Lee (Dark Tower: The Gunslinger Born), writer/artist Shaun Tan (The Arrival), and writer/artist/editor Chris Ware (Acme Novelty Library #18; Best American Comics 2007).

The judges added one new category this year, splitting the previous Best Title for a Younger Audience category into two: Best Publication for Kids and Best Publication for Teens, to reflect all the great material that is being produced for these audiences. All in all, this year’s nominations are the most ever: 148 nominations in 29 categories (not including Hall of Fame).

Japanese comics and creators are particularly well represented on the ballot. In addition to 6 titles (instead of 5) being nominated in the Best U.S. Edition of Foreign Material–Japan category, they can be found in the Short Story (2 nominees), Continuing Series (Naoki Urasawa’s Monster), Publication for Kids, Archival Collection–Comic Books, Writer/Artist, and Penciller/Inker categories.

The 2008 Eisner Awards judging panel consists of John Davis (director of pop culture markets, Bookazine), Paul DiFilippo (SF and comics author), Atom! Freeman (owner of Brave New World Comics in Santa Clarita, CA), Jeff Jensen (senior writer, Entertainment Weekly), and Eva Volin (supervising children’s librarian for the Alameda Free Library in Alameda, CA).

Ballots will be going out in late April to comics creators, editors, publishers, and retailers. A downloadable pdf of the ballot will also be available online, and a special website has been set up for online voting. Voting is already under way at www.eisnervote.com for one category, Hall of Fame, for which the judges chose the nominees in March. The deadline for voting in this category is April 18. The results in all categories will be announced in a gala awards ceremony on the evening of Friday, July 25 at Comic-Con International.

The Eisner Awards are presented under the auspices of Comic-Con International, San Diego, a nonprofit educational organization dedicated to creating awareness of and appreciation for comics and related popular art forms. primarily through the presentation of conventions and events that celebrate the historic and ongoing contributions of comics to art and culture. Jackie Estrada has been administrator of the Awards since 1990. She can be reached at [email protected]

More information about the Eisner Awards can be found at http://www.comic-con.org/cci/cci_eisners_main.shtml.

2008 Will Eisner Comic Industry Award Nominees

Best Short Story
“Book,” by Yuichi Yokoyama, in New Engineering (PictureBox)
“At Loose Ends,” by Lewis Trondheim, in Mome #8 (Fantagraphics)
“Mr. Wonderful,” by Dan Clowes, in New York Times Sunday Magazine (accessible online at www.nytimes.com/2008/02/16/magazine/funnypagesClowes.html)
“Town of Evening Calm,” by Fumiyo Kouno, in Town of Evening Calm, Country of Cherry Blossoms (Last Gasp)
“Whatever Happened to Fletcher Hanks?” by Paul Karasik, in I Shall Destroy All the Civilized Planets! (Fantagraphics)
“Young Americans,” by Emile Bravo, in Mome #8 (Fantagraphics)

Best Single Issue (or One-Shot)
Amelia Rules! #18: “Things I Cannot Change,” by Jimmy Gownley (Renaissance)
Delilah Dirk and the Treasure of Constantinople, by Tony Cliff (self-published)
Johnny Hiro #1, by Fred Chao (AdHouse)
Justice League of America #11: “Walls,” by Brad Meltzer and Gene Ha (DC)
Sensational Spider-Man Annual: “To Have or to Hold,” by Matt Fraction and Salvador Larroca (Marvel)

Best Continuing Series
The Boys, by Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson (Dynamite)
Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Season 8, by Joss Whedon, Brian K. Vaughan, Georges Jeanty, and Andy Owens (Dark Horse)
Naoki Urasawa’s Monster, by Naoki Urasawa (Viz)
The Spirit, by Darwyn Cooke (DC)
Y: The Last Man, by Brian K. Vaughan, Pia Guerra, and Jose Marzan, Jr. (Vertigo/DC)

Best Limited Series
Atomic Robo, by Brian Clevinger and Scott Wegender (Red 5 Comics)
Dark Tower: The Gunslinger Born, by Peter David, Robin Furth, and Jae Lee (Marvel)
Nightly News, by Jonathan Hickman (Image)
Parade (with Fireworks), by Michael Cavallaro (Shadowline/Image)
The Umbrella Academy, by Gerard Way and Gabriel Bá (Dark Horse)

Best New Series
Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Season 8, by Joss Whedon, Brian K. Vaughan, Georges Jeanty, and Andy Owens (Dark Horse)
Immortal Iron Fist, by Ed Brubaker, Matt Fraction, David Aja, and others (Marvel)
Johnny Hiro, by Fred Chao (AdHouse)
The Infinite Horizon, by Gerry Duggan and Phil Noto (Image)
Scalped, by Jason Aaron and R. M. Guéra (Vertigo/DC)

Best Publication for Kids
Amelia Rules! and Amelia Rules! Funny Stories, by Jimmy Gownley (Renaissance)
Star Wars: Clone Wars Adventures, edited by Jeremy Barlow (Dark Horse)
Mouse Guard: Fall 1152 and Mouse Guard: Winter 1152, by David Petersen (Archaia)
The Wall: Growing Up Behind the Iron Curtain, by Peter Sis (Frank Foster Books/Farrar, Straus & Giroux)
Yotsuba&!, by Kiyohiko Azuma (ADV)

Best Publication for Teens
Laika, by Nick Abadzis (First Second)
The Mighty Skullboy Army, by Jacob Chabot (Dark Horse)
The Annotated Northwest Passage, by Scott Chantler (Oni)
PX! Book One: A Girl and Her Panda, by Manny Trembley and Eric A. Anderson (Shadowline/Image)
Satchel Paige: Striking Out Jim Crow, by James Sturm and Rich Tommaso (Center for Cartoon Studies/Hyperion)

Best Humor Publication
Dwight T. Albatross’s The Goon Noir, edited by Matt Dryer (Dark Horse)
Johnny Hiro, by Fred Chao (AdHouse)
Lucha Libre, by Jerry Frissen, Bill, Gobi, Fabien M., Nikola Witko, Hervé Tanquelle et al. (Image)
Perry Bible Fellowship: The Trial of Colonel Sweeto and Other Stories, by Nicholas Gurewitch (Dark Horse)
Wonton Soup, by James Stokoe (Oni)

Best Anthology
Best American Comics 2007, edited by Anne Elizabeth Moore and Chris Ware (Houghton Mifflin)
5, by Gabriel Bá, Becky Cloonan, Fabio Moon, Vasilis Lolos, and Rafael Grampa (self-published)
Mome, edited by Gary Groth and Eric Reynolds (Fantagraphics)
Postcards: True Stories That Never Happened, edited by Jason Rodriguez (Villard)
24Seven, vol. 2, edited by Ivan Brandon (Image)

Best Digital Comic
The Abominable Charles Christopher, by Karl Kerschl, www.abominable.transmission-x.com
Billy Dogma, Immortal, by Dean Haspiel, www.deanhaspiel.com/immortal.html
The Process, by Joe Infurnari, www.theprocesscomic.com
PX! By Manny Trembley and Eric A. Anderson, www.pandaxpress.com
Sugarshock!, by Joss Whedon and Fabio Moon, http://www.myspace.com/darkhorsepresents?issuenum=1&storynum=2

Best Reality-Based Work
Laika, by Nick Abadzis (First Second)
The Magical Life of Long Tack Sam, by Ann Marie Fleming (Riverhead Books/Penguin Group)
Satchel Paige: Striking Out Jim Crow, by James Sturm and Rich Tommaso (Center for Cartoon Studies/Hyperion)
Sentences: The Life of MF Grimm, by Percy Carey and Ronald Wimberly (Vertigo/DC)
White Rapids, by Pascal Blanchet (Drawn & Quarterly)

Best Graphic Album—New
The Arrival, by Shaun Tan (Arthur A. Levine/Scholastic)
Bookhunter, by Jason Shiga (Sparkplug Books)
Essex County, vols. 1-2: Tales from the Farm/Ghost Stories, by Jeff Lemire (Top Shelf)
Exit Wounds, by Rutu Modan (Drawn & Quarterly)
Percy Gloom, by Cathy Malkasian (Fantagraphics)

Best Graphic Album—Reprint
Agents of Atlas Hardcover, by Jeff Parker, Leonard Kirk, and Kris Justice (Marvel)
Gødland Celestial Edition, by Joe Casey and Tom Scioli (Image)
James Sturm’s America: God, Gold, and Golems, by James Sturm (Drawn & Quarterly)
Mouse Guard: Fall 1152, by David Petersen (Archaia)
Super Spy, by Matt Kindt (Top Shelf)

Best Archival Collection/Project—Comic Strips
(The Complete) Dream of the Rarebit Fiend, by Winsor McCay (Ulrich Merkl)
Complete Terry and the Pirates, vol. 1, by Milton Caniff (IDW)
Little Sammy Sneeze, by Winsor McCay (Sunday Press)
Popeye, vol. 2: Well Blow Me Down, by E. C. Segar (Fantagraphics)
Sundays with Walt and Skeezix, by Frank King (Sunday Press)

Best Archival Collection/Project—Comic Books
Amazing Spider-Man Omnibus, vol. 1, by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko (Marvel)
Apollo’s Song, by Osamu Tezuka (Vertical)
The Completely MAD Don Martin, by Don Martin (Running Press)
Daredevil Omnibus, by Frank Miller and Klaus Janson (Marvel)
I Shall Destroy All the Civilized Planets! by Fletcher Hanks (Fantagraphics)

Best U.S. Edition of International Material
The Arrival, by Shaun Tan (Arthur A. Levine/Scholastic)
Aya, by Marguerite Abouet and Clement Obrerie (Drawn & Quarterly)
Garage Band, by Gipi (First Second)
I Killed Adolf Hitler, by Jason (Fantagraphics)
The Killer, by Matz and Luc Jacamon (Archaia)

Best U.S. Edition of International Material—Japan
The Ice Wanderer and Other Stories, by Jiro Taniguchi (Fanfare/Ponent Mon)
MW, by Osamu Tezuka (Vertical)
Naoki Urasawa’s Monster, by Naoki Urasawa (Viz)
New Engineering by Yuichi Yokoyama (PictureBox)
Tekkonkinkreet: Black & White, by Taiyo Matsumoto (Viz)
Town of Evening Calm, Country of Cherry Blossoms, by Fumiyo Kouno (Last Gasp)

Best Writer
Ed Brubaker, Captain America, Criminal, Daredevil, Immortal Iron Fist (Marvel)
James Sturm, Satchel Paige: Striking Out Jim Crow (Center for Cartoon Studies/Hyperion)
Brian K. Vaughan, Buffy the Vampire Slayer (Dark Horse); Ex Machina (WildStorm/DC), Y: The Last Man (Vertigo/DC),
Joss Whedon, Astonishing X-Men (Marvel); Buffy the Vampire Slayer (Dark Horse)
Brian Wood, DMZ, Northlanders (Vertigo/DC); Local (Oni)

Best Writer/Artist
Jeff Lemire, Essex County: Tales from the Farm/Ghost Stories (Top Shelf)
Rutu Modan, Exit Wounds (Drawn & Quarterly)
Shaun Tan, The Arrival (Arthur A. Levine/Scholastic)
Chris Ware, Acme Novelty Library #18 (Acme Novelty)
Fumi Yoshinaga, Flower of Life; The Moon and Sandals (Digital Manga)

Best Writer/Artist—Humor
Kyle Baker, The Bakers: Babies and Kittens (Image)
Fred Chao, Johnny Hiro (AdHouse)
Brandon Graham, King City (Tokyopop); Multiple Warheads (Oni)
Eric Powell, The Goon (Dark Horse)
James Stokoe, Wonton Soup (Oni)

Best Penciller/Inker or Penciller/Inker Team
Steve Epting/Butch Guice/Mike Perkins, Captain America (Marvel)
Pia Guerra/Jose Marzan, Jr., Y: The Last Man (Vertical/DC)
Jae Lee, Dark Tower: The Gunslinger Born (Marvel)
Takeshi Obata, Death Note, Hikaru No Go (Viz)
Ethan Van Sciver, Green Lantern: Sinestro Corps (DC)

Best Painter or Multimedia Artist (interior art)
Ann-Marie Fleming, The Magical Life of Long Tack Sam (Riverhead Books/Penguin Group)
Eric Powell, The Goon: Chinatown (Dark Horse)
Bryan Talbot, Alice in Sunderland (Dark Horse)
Ben Templesmith, Fell (Image); 30 Days of Night: Red Snow; Wormwood: Gentleman Corpse (IDW)

Best Cover Artist
John Cassaday, Astonishing X-Men (Marvel); Lone Ranger (Dynamite)
James Jean, Fables (Vertigo/DC); The Umbrella Academy (Dark Horse); Process Recess 2; Superior Showcase 2 (AdHouse)
J. G. Jones, 52 (DC)
Jae Lee, Dark Tower: The Gunslinger Born (Marvel)
Jim Lee, All Star Batman and Robin the Boy Wonder (DC); World of Warcraft (WildStorm/DC)

Best Coloring
Jimmy Gownley, Amelia Rules! (Renaissance)
Steve Hamaker, Bone, vols. 5 and 6 (Scholastic); Shazam: Monster Society of Evil (DC)
Richard Isanove, Dark Tower: The Gunslinger Born (Marvel)
Ronda Pattison, Atomic Robo (Red 5 Comics)
Dave Stewart, BPRD, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Cut, Hellboy, Lobster Johnson, The Umbrella Academy (Dark Horse); The Spirit (DC)
Alex Wald, Shaolin Cowboy (Burlyman)

Best Lettering
Jared K. Fletcher, Catwoman, The Spirit (DC); Sentences: Life of MF Grimm (Vertigo/DC)
Jimmy Gownley, Amelia Rules! (Renaissance)
Todd Klein, Justice, Simon Dark (DC); Fables, Jack of Fables, Crossing Midnight (Vertigo/DC); League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: The Black Dossier (WildStorm/DC); Nexus (Rude Dude)
Lewis Trondheim, “At Loose Ends,” Mome 7 & 8 (Fantagraphics)
Chris Ware, Acme Novelty Library #18 (Acme Novelty)

Special Recognition
Chuck BB, Black Metal (artist, Oni)
Matt Silady, The Homeless Channel (writer/artist, AiT/PlanetLar)
Jamie Tanner, The Aviary (writer/artist, AdHouse)
James Vining, First in Space (writer/artist, Oni)

Best Comics-Related Periodical/Journalism
Comic Art #9, edited by Todd Hignite (Buenaventura Press)
Comic Foundry, edited by Tim Leong (Comic Foundry)
The Comics Journal, edited by Gary Groth, Michael Dean, and Kristy Valenti (Fantagraphics)
The Comics Reporter, produced by Tom Spurgeon and Jordan Raphael (www.comicsreporter.com)
Newsarama, produced by Matt Brady and Michael Doran (www.newsarama.com)

Best Comics-Related Book
The Art of P. Craig Russell, edited by Joe Pruett (Desperado)
The Artist Within, by Greg Preston (Dark Horse)
Manga: The Complete Guide, by Jason Thompson (Del Rey Manga)
Meanwhile . . . A Biography of Milton Caniff, by R. C. Harvey (Fantagraphics)
Reading Comics: How Graphic Novels Work and What They Mean, by Douglas Wolk (Da Capo Press)
Understanding Manga and Anime, by Robin Brenner (Libraries Unlimited/Greenwood Publishing)

Best Publication Design
(The Complete) Dream of the Rarebit Fiend, designed by Ulrich Merkl (Ulrich Merkl)
Complete Terry and the Pirates, designed by Dean Mullaney (IDW)
Heroes, vol. 1, designed by John Roshell/Comicraft (WildStorm/DC)
Little Sammy Sneeze, designed by Philippe Ghielmetti (Sunday Press)
Process Recess 2, designed by James Jean and Chris Pitzer (AdHouse)
Sundays with Walt and Skeezix, designed by Chris Ware (Sunday Press)

Hall of Fame
Judges’ Choices: R. F. Outcault, Major Malcolm Wheeler-Nicholson

Nominees (4 will be selected by voters):
Matt Baker
John Broome
Reed Crandall
Rudolph Dirks
Arnold Drake
George Evans
Creig Flessel
Graham Ingels
Mort Meskin
Tarpe Mills
Gilbert Shelton
George Tuska
Mort Weisinger
Len Wein
Barry Windsor-Smith

1 COMMENT

  1. Maybe someone here can help, but I don’t recall ever seeing manga creators in regular categories before (other than noms for foreign material). Is this a first?

  2. Okay, just off the top of my head, the biggest omission I see in this year’s nominations is the graphic novel Blue Pills: A Positive Love Story, written and drawn by Frederik Peeters and published by Houghton Mifflin. Even though Amazon has the date of January 2008 on their site, I got this at almost the very end of last year so I can’t see how it was overlooked. Blue Pills should be in several categories and I recommend anyone who likes honest, rich graphic narratives, like Funeral Home and Exit Wounds, to check out Blue Pills.

    I also think Bryan Talbot’s excellent Alice In Sounderland “only” getting nominated in the category as best painter, is wrong. I demand a do – over (grin)!

  3. Ralph:
    Blue Pills was not submitted for consideration.

    David Bird:
    Several manga titles have been nominated in other categories in the past, most notably Tezuka’s Adolf, Kawaguchi’s Eagle, and last year Urasawa’s Monster. This year there were more than ever, however.

  4. Jackie, you list Chris Ware as getting three nominations. He got four if you include design for Walt and Skeezix.

  5. David: Jackie covered the works that have been nominated in non-specialized categories, but as for individual creators Takehiko Inoue (Vagabond) was up for best writer/artist a couple of years ago.

  6. Under the best limited series, the artist on Atomic Robo’s last name is Wegener, not “Wegender”:). Great list of nominees, now time to track some of them down. THANKS!

  7. Congrats to everyone, but there are really way too many catagories. For instance, does there really have to be a Best New Series, considering how titles like Buffy Season 8 can apparently be eligible for both that and Best Continuing Series? Also, how is Scalped as New as Buffy but not as Continuing?

    Why break out a special humor sections? Could Wonton Soup never win if it had to go up against the books in Best Graphic Album-New catagory? Why not?

    Also, does anyone else find it ironic that a finite serial, The Inifinite Horizon, would get a nomination for Best New Series? Or for that matter, that Y the Last Man would be nominated for Best Continuing Series in the year when everyone knew it was ending at 60? Not to mention that Darwyn Cooke’s tenure on Spirit was long over by the time the nominations were announced?

    Not sure why it’s important to segregate out the translated foreign works, or the manga from the translated foreign language works. Then the issue is further blurred by putting a Viz title up against the English language titles in Best Contiuning Series. Makes no sense.

    Furthermore, why is OK for digital to compete with print in Best Comics-Related Periodical/Journalism but not in any of the other main catagories? If a digital comics creator’s work can hold it’s own against the work of creators in the print catagories, why not recognize that? Why be so limited?

  8. Ralph:
    Blue Pills was originally published in 2001 in Switzerland. I dunno if that made it ineligible or not.

    This is the second time in a week I’ve seen it recommended, though. One more and it automatically gets read. (It’s the law.)

    And yeah, Michael. It sucks.

    I really think it sucks. Sucks — a lot.

    But it could have–

    Could have been worse–

    Much worse.

    Could have been–

    Could have been a Benes issue.

    Benes–

    Really bad. Terrible.

    Need to focus–

    Focus on Ha.

  9. Its great to see such a diverse list of books here. I’m glad last years selections weren’t just a fluke. But Im surprized that neither ‘Alias the Cat’ by Kim Dietch nor Midnight Sun by Ben Towle were on there. But its hard to argue with the list in genera;

  10. Its great to see such a diverse list of books here. I’m glad last years selections weren’t just a fluke. But Im surprized that neither ‘Alias the Cat’ by Kim Dietch nor Midnight Sun by Ben Towle were on there. But its hard to argue with the list in genera;

  11. Social Bookmarking Tips Guide is unique website promotion and products marketing book written to increase AdSense and affiliate income, boost product sales, and make your sites as profitable as never before. Being completely different, Social Bookmarking Tips Guide will help you discovering new website promotion and product marketing tactics that really work today.

  12. Glitz, glam and blue jeans was the expression for The First Annual Denim Soiree held in Atlanta on November 7th. Distinctive designer and CEO of Billion Dollar Britches, Richard Randolph hosted the 1st Annual Denim Soiree at the home of