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Villard to publish GOATS

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Webcomics are on the move, as Random House imprint Villard picks up the rights to Jonathan Rosenberg’s Goats. It’s a particularly interesting move in that book publishers are just beginning to catch on to the potential for webcomics to become long running book franchises ala Garfield or Bloom County. Dark Horse was the first to have success, but we’d be very very surprised if more webcomics don’t get book deals — instead of waiting two years for creators to complete their original graphic novels, webcomics have tons of material in the can waiting to go — and a built in audience. The hand of über agent Judith Hansen is once again evident in this deal.

ComicMix has an interview with Rosenberg up:

JON ROSENBERG: This is a standard book-type deal as far as I understand, with a royalty rate and an advance paid on those royalties and that sort of thing. It’s a nice deal, I’m not going to retire early on it or anything but I’m quite happy with the terms.

UPDATE: Gary Tyrell also talks to Rosenberg:

A: Each volume will be full color and published at six-month intervals. The first volume, Goats: Infinite Typewriters, set for July 2009, will include newly revised and created material intended to introduce new readers to the colossal and complex Goats universe — and set up the audience for the rest of the epic. Book 1 will cover material published on the Goats website from December 2003 to January 2006. The second book, Goats: The Corndog Imperative, scheduled for a November 2009 release, covers January 06 to March 2007. And the third book , Goats: Showcase Showdown, due out in April 2010, covers March 2007 to April 2008.

PR below:

Villard Books, an imprint of Ballantine Books at the Random House Publishing Group, announced today that Villard will publish three graphic novels collecting the long-running and wildly popular webcomic Goats.

Villard Books will publish the recently completed Goats story arc, The Infinite Pendergast Cycle, as a trilogy —in the style of the great sci-fi sagas Goats so affectionately parodies. Each trade paperback volume will be full color and published at six-month intervals. The first volume, Goats: Infinite Typewriters, set for July 2009, will include newly revised and created material intended to introduce new readers to the colossal and complex Goats universe—and set up the audience for the rest of the epic. Book 1 will cover material published on the Goats website from December 2003 to January 2006. The second book, Goats: The Corndog Imperative, scheduled for a November 2009 release, covers January 06 to March 2007. And the third book, Goats: Showcase Showdown, due out in April 2010, covers March 07 to April 08.

Goats (www.goats.com) was introduced online on April 1, 1997, making it one of the web’s longest-running webcomics. Today Goats receives an average of 1.5 million hits a month and offers a wide range of Goats-themed merchandise.


Goats is a sci-fi parody epic, a Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy or Futurama for the Internet age. This is humor imagined on an epic scale—more than a simple gag-a-day strip, Goats’ on-going story comprised of several distinct story arcs. The anarchic and hyper-inventive Goats has a sprawling storyline concerning two ordinary techies who are tasked with saving the universe from utter destruction—and the demonic chickens, cyborg goldfish, omnisexual aliens, disgruntled hackers, Mayan death gods, and random celebrities they encounter along the way.

“Like Penny Arcade and The Perry Bible Fellowship, Goats has won a devoted web following with its totally original voice and delightfully demented humor,” said Tricia Narwani, acquiring editor at Villard. “We’re excited to bring Goats to an even wider audience.” Goats was acquired in a deal with Judith Hansen of the Hansen Literary Agency.

  1. I hope Rosenberg includes his syndicate rejection letters somewhere in the collection.
    Abrams is publishing a collection of Adam Koford’s Laugh Out Loud Cats next Spring too.

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