Well, file this under “we knew you when!” The Beat’s former New Media Editor/Managing Editor Alexander Lu has just announced his first graphic novel! Goodbye to All of You will be drawn by Tara Kurtzhals with colors by Maarta Laiho and it’s coming from Abrams in 2022.
According to the PW blurb,
This middle grade graphic novel follows two Chinese American siblings who feel untethered by the death of their mother. The night of her funeral, they wake up in a place that looks like Chinatown but is actually a space between Earth and the afterlife, populated by animal spirits. Terrance and Delilah must adapt to a new world while learning to make peace with their mother’s passing—and with each other.
The deal was repped by Inkwell Management’s Charlie Olsen and Jessica Mileo.
This sounds totally awesome and we couldn’t be happier for Alex!
The artist on Goodbye to All of You, Tara Kurtzhals, is another up and comer – you can check out their webcomics Girls Have a Blog and Knight and Beard on Webtoons. Colorist Maarta Laiho has worked on Lumberjanes, Hilo and much more.
Kurtzhals posted some preview art on Twitter, which you can see above.
Since leaving the Beat last year, Alex has been very busy working on this and also editing graphic novels for First Second — including the multiple award winning Dragon Hoops by Gene Luen Yang. In fact it’s definitely Alex Lu Week since you can also listen to him talk editing on the podcast Portrait of an Editor!
New Portrait of an Editor! ALEX LU: THEORY OF PROPINQUITY
Apple Podcasts https://t.co/rVQoEpxJOD
Podomatic https://t.co/0kkqGozHNW@Waxenwings #MoonKnight @comicsbeat @Comixace @WhitLeopard @01FirstSecond @Podcast_Genie #PortraitofanEditor pic.twitter.com/CcdGfv1DbE
— Francis Lombard (@AntixPress) February 3, 2021
As Kurtzhals noted in a tweet, Alex has a way of helping people:
Alex and I met through an interview on comicsbeat and his LOVING encouragement to go to NYCC changed my life forever.
I can't say thank you enough for all that he's done in my journey to become a better artist and person.
— Tara Kurtzhals (@Tarakurtzhals) February 3, 2021
Feeling a little teary here — Alex was such a huge support for me and the rest of the team as an editor, contributor and friend during his time at the Beat — we’ve shared so many ideas, convention adventures, and spicy Chinese soups. I knew immediately on meeting him that he was a comics lifer, and seeing his career take off is no surprise — his talent and dedication guaranteed that.
I’ve said this many times in interviews and podcasts and panels, but seeing talented people forge their creative journey, and being a part of it, no matter how large or small, is the best thing about being in comics for me, and the main reason I keep doing this.
Congrats, Alex, Tara, and Maarta! I’m sure there will be much more to come from them all.