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Yet more previews and prognostication from a wide swatch of comics industry personnel.  As usual, quite a bit of news is sneakily placed in announcements of 2015 projects. Thanks to everyone for taking the time during the busy holiday season to participate, as always. Part one of this survey is here.

 


Photo by Charlie Chu
Photo by Charlie Chu

Kieron Gillen, writer
2015 Projects: Hmm. THE WICKED + THE DIVINE, DARTH VADER, MERCURY HEAT, ANGELA: ASGARD’S ASSASSIN, CROSSED BADLANDS: HOMO TORTOR, UBER and TWO OTHER THINGS that I CAN’T TALK ABOUT YET. And some more things for 2016.

Yes, I’m busy. It’s a useful tactic to hide from those terrible human emotions I’m trying not to think about.

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What was the biggest story in comics in 2014? Fraction/Zdarsky’s THE LICK-ED + THE DIVINE porn parody.

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2015? Whatever Jamie and I do as revenge for Fraction/Zdarsky’s THE LICK-ED + THE DIVINE porn parody.
(Joking aside, seeing what counts as my generation of comic creators using their apex of creative power before the inevitable decline into obsolescence to actually have fun and play is something that I think is worth a think-piece or forty.)

What guilty pleasure (of any kind) are you looking forward to in 2015? No guilt, only pleasure.


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Nat Gertler

2015 Projects: Writer on Jenny’s City: A Proposal (art by Tess Fowler on 2 finished stories, plus scripts, now available from Amazon), publisher on the reprint of the NYTimes best-selling JFK Coloring Book.

What was the biggest story in comics in 2014? The ongoing lack-of-demise of the comic book store. Despite having heard for many years now that they would go away because of online comic shops, because of comics in bookstores, because of trade paperbacks, because of paid downloads, because of piracy, because of the explosions of conventions providing a purchasing source for the occasional buyer, the shops still keep on going. In fact, locally they’ve done more than keep on going, as my distance-to-the-nearest-shop figure has dropped twice in the past few months when new, nearer shops opened up.

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2015? The best story there can be: tons of good comics. Stuff bubbling up from the folks doing online strips, new series from people who have cut their teeth at the mainstream houses and are now dropping true vision through Image, animators who feel like expressing visions that may not make $100 million on screen, major works from long-time indy voices (hey, there’s a Scott McCloud GN coming in February!), reprints of things that should be easily discoverable on shelves rather than squirreled away in back issue bins. Really, the biggest story of comics will be comics.

What guilty pleasure (of any kind) are you looking forward to in 2015? Getting the first couple collections of Buffy Year 10 and reading them all at once like a glutton.


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Lillian Diaz-Przybyl, editor, Sparkler Monthly

2015 Projects: I’m head editor for a manga-style digital magazine, with a fem-focus, featuring almost exclusively female talent.

What was the biggest story in comics in 2014? A new Ms. Marvel, plus a future Captain Marvel movie? Excellent.

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2015? Old dudes apologize for being dicks about cosplayers.

What guilty pleasure (of any kind) are you looking forward to in 2015? New Star Wars!!!! EEEEE! Fingers crossed it’s not Phantom Menace all over again… (I definitely have reservations about JJ and co.)


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Jim Ottaviani, writer

2015 Projects: An expanded version of THE IMITATION GAME for print. Yes, it’s about Alan Turing, and yes, the title’s the same as the movie starring that guy who’s going to be Dr. Strange. It’s a good title…and I thought so when I chose it, years before that guy who plays Sherlock started filming.

(Please don’t get me wrong; having watched the trailer a few times and hearing from folks who’ve seen the movie, it looks like Cumberbatch did a splendid job in the role. I hope it’s a good movie, and I look forward to seeing it once I’ve put the finishing touches on our version.)

Also, HAWKING, a book about another amazing British scientist with a movie out this year…and yeah, we started that book years ago too! Comics = labor intensive.

There are a couple more, but it’s too early to talk about ’em here…

What was the biggest story in comics in 2014? Amazon buys comiXology.

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2015? “Prediction is very difficult, especially about the future.” — Niels Bohr (attr.)

What guilty pleasure (of any kind) are you looking forward to in 2015? Reading more books by Elmore Leonard and more books about Teddy Roosevelt, though I won’t feel guilty about doing either one.


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David Gallaher, The Only Living Boy every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

2015 Projects: The Only Living Boy, Green Lantern Corps for DC’s Convergence, Deadlands by IDW Publishing

What was the biggest story in comics in 2014? Amazon’s purchase of ComiXology

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2015? DC Comics relocation and full integration with the WB.

What guilty pleasure (of any kind) are you looking forward to in 2015? I’m really loving The Flash right now. Most of the comics-based TV shows are pretty spectacular these days. The quality of the writing and the drama is just top-notch. The only reason to feel guilty is that I should be writing instead.

 

 


megan_kelsoMegan Kelso, cartoonist

2015 Projects: a collection of short stories, the most recently finished is Cats In Service, available as a mini from Spit and a Half

What was the biggest story in comics in 2014? Fantagraphics “comeback” with three bestselling books – Ed Piskor’s hiphop family tree, Eleanor Davis’ How to Be Happy and Simon Hanselman’s book

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2015? Seattle’s Short Run comics fest becoming the best alt comics fest in the country!

What guilty pleasure (of any kind) are you looking forward to in 2015? Star Wars


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Shannon OLeary, writer

2015 Projects: The Art of Regular Show (Titan Books)

What was the biggest story in comics in 2014? The Shia LaBeouf plagiarism of Daniel Clowes story. It showed how influential comics storytelling has become and had a lot of traction outside of comics circles as well.

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2015? Don’t want to venture a guess.

 

 


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Debora Aoki, writer

2015 Projects: working on write-ups from International Manga Festa 2014 in Tokyo

What was the biggest story in comics in 2014? Raina Telgemeier’s reign over the NY Times Bestseller list. Comics are for kids, by women and dammit, they can sell MORE than the capes and spandex stuff. why people focus so much energy and angst about what superhero comics aren’t why aren’t we celebrating what is really reaching out to new readers instead of catering to the already converted?

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2015? if anyone publishes the Steve Jobs manga in the US, i’ll be super-duper stunned — it could be a big cross-over hit.

What guilty pleasure (of any kind) are you looking forward to in 2015? More Food Wars manga — probably the most saucy comic about food aimed at teen boys ever.


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Photo by Joel Meadows

Bryan Talbot, cartoonist

2015 Projects: A third graphic novel in collaboration with my wife, Mary Talbot, which we’re keeping quiet about, for the time being, and the 5th and probably final Grandville volume. The 230-metre illustrated history of Sunderland I’ve drawn, currently being sandblasted into granite flags, will be laid in the new city square. I’m also involved in organising Britain’s first Graphic Novel Convention.

What was the biggest story in comics in 2014? Comics Unmasked: Art and Anarchy in the UK, the biggest ever exhibition of comics ever held in Britain, held at the British Library, London, May – August

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2015? San Diego Convention Centre sinks under the weight of movie & TV fans

What guilty pleasure (of any kind) are you looking forward to in 2015? Watching Agatha Christie’s “The Mousetrap”

 

 


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Steve ‘Hurricane’ Morris, The Spire, pundit, bunny lover

What was the biggest story in comics in 2014? Lordy, I can’t even remember anything that happened. The thing freshest in my mind was seeing comic artists trying to turn on Janelle Asselin after she critiqued an overly sexualised DC cover, only to fail publicly, spectacularly, under the overwhelming conviction of her argument. Janelle exposed a whole load of privilege within the industry (both from fans and from creators), and kickstarted real, industry-changing criticism regarding how the world of comics treats female fans and characters. It may not be the biggest story of the year, but it was certainly the one I found most inspiring.

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2015?  How comic companies are going to honour their pledge to spotlight minority characters. Will Falcon remain Captain America all year? Will the current ace run of Sensation Comics last through 2014? Will Thor remain female? Is Catman going to finally be confirmed as bisexual, after years of off-comic teasing? 2015 feels like a year where comic companies will be forced to properly follow through and support characters like Captain Marvel and Batgirl, who received high-profile marketing when their new books launched this year. I want these books to continue on, but sales are faltering, and I don’t know if companies have a long-term plan to support them. What will fans do if all the dusty white blokes reclaim all the solo titles?

What guilty pleasure (of any kind) are you looking forward to in 2015? I’m fervently holding out hope that somebody gets in touch with Taylor Swift’s people and lets her write comics of some kind – any kind.


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Janelle Asselin, writer/editor

2015 Projects: Only thing I can talk about is writing for ComicsAlliance!

What was the biggest story in comics in 2014? Young women as the fastest growing demographic!

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2015? Mostly just hoping for another year of great comics.

What guilty pleasure (of any kind) are you looking forward to in 2015? More Outlander on Starz! Absolutely my guilty pleasure.

 


mike-Baehr

Mike Baehr, marketing director, Fantagraphics (Photo by Jonas Seaman)

2015 Projects: Cheech Wizard’s Book of Me by Vaughn Bode is my first editorial assignment at Fantagraphics. I’m working with Mark Bode and it’s shaping up to be the biggest, bossest Cheech collection ever. That should be out in late Spring/early Summer. I also dreamed up a special collectible edition of Ed Luce’s Wuvable Oaf collection which will also be out in Spring. Oaf fans, be on the lookout for an announcement soon.

What was the biggest story in comics in 2014? The Kirby family/Marvel settlement, which reverberated through the past, present, and future of the industry.

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2015? Fantagraphics will announce a filmed entertainment division, with 2,200 employees in a deluxe office high-rise in L.A. The publishing arm will remain in the house in Seattle, which, for an amazing 26th year in a row, will not burn down.

What guilty pleasure (of any kind) are you looking forward to in 2015? Spending too much of my meager salary on comic books, as always.


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Zak Sally, cartoonist, publisher lamano21.com

2015 Projects: wrapping up Sammy the Mouse. AUTOPTIC. PFC 5. other things that are so important and secret, i don’t even tell myself.

What was the biggest story in comics in 2014? “Shia LeBouf” actually translates to “Shit A Beef”. it’s true, look it up. (was that this year?)

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2015? That new Pope will write a comic, and it’ll be better than anyone expected.

What guilty pleasure (of any kind) are you looking forward to in 2015? 1) breathing.
2) “World, Get Your Shit Together” by Pope Francis, drawn by Josh Bayer (48 page Risograph zine, $3)
3) swearing.

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1 COMMENT

  1. There are multiple Steve Jobs manga (oh yes), but of course the one to get is the one by “Thermae Romae” creator Mari Yamazaki. It will heal our troubled nation.

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