The Small Press Spotlight hit the road and checked out New York Comic Con 2021. The return of the con was exciting after not having live shows in the last couple of years, so what better way to celebrate than to dedicate this Wednesday to some of the independent creators in attendance!

David Pepose at NYCC

First up, we remind you of the good things David Pepose has out right now. Known for Spencer & Locke, Going to the Chapel, Grand Theft Astro, The O.Z., and Scout’s Honor, the writer had his top books available in Artist Alley at the show, but if you missed the con or something was sold out when you stopped by, head here to shop. The O.Z. is my recommendation, especially if you like your childhood stories turned on their ear.

David Crownson at NYCC

Next, we visited David Crownson’s table in Artist Alley where he had Harriet Tubman: Demon Slayer on display. The graphic novel is based on the true life of the freedom fighter alongside genre-bending fantasy and horror similar to Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter. The book features illustrations by Courtland Ellis

“When slave owners can’t stop the formidable ninja warrior Harriet Tubman, they call on the help of Vampires, Werewolves, Witches, & Demons to stop her. Harriet Tubman must lead a family of slaves to freedom while battling an army of darkness.”

To catch up on Crownson’s work, click here.

Finally, we head up to the main exhibit floor and visit the Epic Proportions booth where artist/creator Jerry Ma had not only his graphics and t-shirts on display but also his latest comic project Monkey King.

Jerry Ma with Sean Chen and Scott Bryan Wilson doing a signing at NYCC

With covers by Jim Cheung and Geof Darrow, the graphic novel is based on a popular character from Chinese mythology. Ma took the stories of the “oldest Chinese superhero” and updated them. While many incarnations focused on the martial arts/action side of the tales, Ma wanted to center on a different aspect–the journey and how his characters get there and help each other along the way.

The Kickstarter for the project was so successful that Ma decided to give back to the community, specifically China Town, NY, which faced hardship and racism during the COVID-19 pandemic. He and his team handed cash to 14 different small businesses in need. To purchase a copy and read more about it, follow the link here

Below is a sneak peek at some interior pages of Monkey King. 


Miss any of our other NYCC ’21 coverage? Click here to check it out!