A lot of news has been piling up in the world of indie comics festivals and here’s a round-up:


• Let’s start with the good news. CALA (Comic Arts Los Angeles) is coming back! After a four year pandemic lay-off, the show will return December 14-15 at Homenetmen Ararat North Campus, 3015 Rosslyn St. Los Angeles, CA 90065. Exhibitor applications are open from now until June 24 at the above link.

Exhibitors will be granted HALF of a 6-foot table, and the exhibition fee is $175 per half-table. Please note that filling out an application does not guarantee exhibitor status. We would love to accept everyone but space is very limited.

The final day to submit an application is June 24th, and selected and waitlisted applicants will be notified by Monday, August 5th.

CALA was a vibrant showcase for LA’s very active comics and animation scene, so its return is welcome news indeed.


• Meanwhile, in fairly HUGE news for the North American indie comics scene, TCAF (the Toronto Comic Arts Festival) is moving for its 2025 and 2026 shows due to the Toronto Reference Library being closed for renovations. The news was announced in the TCAF program book by executive director Miles Baker…who is also stepping down.

The last bit of news is that this this will be my final year as the executive director of the organization. It was a decision I made several months ago, before we learned about TPL’s renovations. I’m proud of my contributions to the festival over the last 15 years, especially in building a staff that will boldly steer TCAF into new directions. The festival is in very good hands with incoming Artistic Programming Curator Ho Che Anderson, Festival Producer Pip Bradford, and the rest of the team listed the left. Thank you for all the hard work – I look forward to seeing what you all create next year.

TCAF’s location in the beautiful TPL, designed by Raymond Moriyama, is a huge part of its international appeal and literary vibe of the show.When the event moved there in 2009 it elevated it to one of North America’s most loved  – and successful – comics events. And of course it was free to attend, another huge part of its appeal. Finding another venue that will serve the needs of the show isn’t going to be easy.

The internet, search and social media being the muddy bog that they are, this photo of the program book is the only mention of this I could find anywhere, aside from a comment or two on the TCAF FB page – so where the new venue might be is a mystery to me. If you have any suggestions, that’s what the comment box is for!

• CXC is Columbus is back for its tenth year September 26-29 and just announced their special guests:

“It’s ten years of bringing the best and brightest in comics, graphic novels, political cartoons, animation and comic strips right to our doorstep of Columbus, Ohio,” said Jeff Smith, co-founder of the festival and creator of the graphic novel series Bone, “This year promises to be even more special.  Prepare to be dazzled by legendary creators, laugh alongside cartoonists, and be swept away by the power of visual storytelling in all its forms.”

The 10th festival will feature:

  • Bryan Lee O’Malley (Scott Pilgrim series, Lost at Sea, Seconds, and Snotgirl)

  • Jerry Craft (New Kid, Class Act)

  • Art Spiegelman (MAUS, RAW)

  • Françiose Mouly (TOON Books, The New Yorker, RAW)


Many many more guests here.

They have also announced a fundraising effort:

We are thrilled to bring you the 10th Cartoon Crossroads Columbus! Our festival and organization have grown in size and stature since Jeff Smith, Vijaya Iyer and Lucy Shelton Caswell co-founded and held the first show in 2015.

The 2024 edition will be the best yet, boasting legends of the comics medium and emerging talents from an array of countries, backgrounds, and perspectives.

Similarly, CXC believes our festival should be open, accessible, and FREE to the public.

You can ensure CXC continues to be free. We depend on support from our community, including from foundations, corporate sponsors, and individuals like you.

With the announcement of our 2024 special guest lineup, we are kicking off our fundraising campaign. In honor of our 10th show, board members have pooled resources to match donations up to $10,000!

To make a gift or for more information, click here!

• Back in New York City,  the fourth year of the Brooklyn Pride Comic Book Fair will move to a new venue, the Brooklyn Pride Community Center at 1561 Bedford Ave. in Prospect Heights.  Organizer Dimitrios Fragiskatos of Anyone Comics sent along some information on the event which will be held June 15th from noon-7 pm. The event is free to attend.

Previously a small outdoor fair, we are now a small convention, with many more art
tables and art / comics related panels, (including a requiem for Krakoa for all the X-Men
fans out there)

Sponsored by Anyone Comics and the not for profit organization responsible for Flame Con, Geeks Out!, the Brooklyn Pride Comic Book Fair began with John Jennison, a queer cartoonist who had battled cancer for the majority of his adult life. For him, comic books were an escape and an outlet. As COVID-19 limited access to conventions and comic shops in 2020, he created the Pride Fair to prove there was a way to do conventions safely for immuno-compromised individuals like himself.

The Pride Fair has moved indoors into the Center, but the tenets remain, as we have mandatory masking so that anyone can experience the event. The Pride Center is in the basement of the Major R. Owens Health & Wellness Community Center and has elevator access.

Continuing the tradition of the previous years, there is an after party, the (Un)masked Ball back at Anyone Comics on Nostrand Ave with drinks, Drag performances, geek trivia and Burlesque performances including from Susie Dahl (@brwnpaperdpolli), Harriet Tugsmen (@harriet_tugsmen), Darker Dawn (@darkerdawn) and more. Brooklyn Pride Community Center -Crown is located on 1561 Bedford Ave and Anyone Comics is on 831 Nostrand Ave, both in Crown Heights!

For more information contact Dimitrios at [email protected] or call (347) 350-

That Krakoa panel sounds like a must- do!

• Although not really an indie comics festival, the Brooklyn Comic Con will be held at the same venue the previous week. Headlining guest is the wrestler Rikishi. 

• CAKE (Chicago Alternative Comics Expo) will be back August 24-25 at the Zhou B. Art Center , 1029 W 35th St., Chicago, IL 60609. Exhibitor applications are now closed. Jasjyot Singh Hans has been announced as the poster artist for this year’s festival.

• Seattle’s Short Run is coming back on November 2nd at Fisher Pavilion at Seattle Center. Table applications are now open. The show is rebranding a bit as the Short Run Comix Festival to focus on storytelling and printed books and notes “Please limit the amount of stickers, prints, cards, or apparel at your table and do not bring games, jewelry, or other crafts.”

• There are many many more small, local indie comics/zine fests springing up everywhere – add us to your mailing list or mention them in the comments. For instance,

Comic Indie Con  is a small show in Houston. This year it will be held Saturday, September 21st, at 10 am.

SLICE (St. Louis Independent Comics Expo) will be held Saturday, October 26th, 2024, 10 a.m.–5 p.m. at the The Sheldon, 3648 Washington Ave, St Louis, MO


• The main way I find out about new shows is when I see an artist listing their show schedule on Insta (or now Cara, I guess), so pass those along as well. We live in a strange world but indie comics are still around and more vital than ever.