Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Comic Arts Brooklyn 2013

The day I found out that my dad's cancer spread to the innards of his giant skull, I went to CAB. I was not as social as I wanted to be and I didn't see as much as I wanted to. I ran into people I work with, people I see only on the internet and people I see only at cons.
Stage decoration by Erik Z and Chris Uphues
I really enjoyed the show, despite my state of mind. I thought the space was used well, the green cast of the upper floor comfortingly unpleasant and the folks courteous. The volunteers were sweet and didn't laugh too much when I asked if there were any CAB T-shirts still available. But is the fest still invite? If that is the case, what is the deal with Microcosm being invited?

My haul:

Mostly picking up debut comics that my patchy memory thrust forth, I did manage to browse a bit and find some things I'm really excited about like should-be superstar Eroyn Franklin minis and Caroline Paquita's Womanimal #3. I saw many more books that called out to me than my wallet could help me buy--an excellent sign for the revamped fest. There prints galore and fewer neon meltface bullshit items and a ton of inky stinky handmade books. Kids and oldsters mingled freely in the cramped aisles which made browsing a little tough but more conducive to getting a "excuse me" from your comics crush. Micro presses were out in full force and I regret not taking more notes on who is putting out whom. I missed picking up the Sam Alden and Laura Knetzger comics on my list but I know that my local store will carry them soon. At least those tears will not have to fall!


Hellen Jo's mail teasers
Oily Comics publisher Charles Forsman, blurry but unbroken

Hic and Hoc publisher Matt Moses, mid-wink

Katie Skelly mid-smile

Not tabling but winning in life: Aaron Cockle and L. Nichols

Natalya Balnova

Neoglyphic Press' Drew Miller

Pat Barrett, the battling barbarossa
Jen Tong pedals gorgeous fantasies.
Yam Books, home of the new Renee French
Check out the Comics Arts Fest tumblr for many better pictures done by better people than I.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

I'm sorry, Paul

This year I picked up no leaves to tuck into the pages of my journal. I love doing that for some reason, but this year I missed it. Not totally, of course, the trees are still raining down colorful bookmarks, but I still find myself thinking more about doing it than actually looking at the ground for something pretty.

This is how you interview an author. Kameelah Rasheed balances familiarity and interrogation well while talking with Wendy C. Ortiz and the end result makes me want to read more by both.
"I have the courage in my late 30s and now at age 40 that I did not have in my 20s. To be honest, some of it—maybe most of it—is a feeling of what do I have to lose?" 


An excellent dead brother essay by Karen R. Tolchin.
Like a pervert poised to cop a feel, I looked around to make sure no one was watching and then I put my hand on Paul’s coffin. It looked as if it had been buffed smooth as a river rock but felt rough as a cat’s tongue to my fingertips.
“I’m sorry, Paul,” I whispered, rubbing my finger across the grain. “I miss my brother."


I greatly enjoyed listening to this story about alien abduction over at Clarkesworld: "The Aftermath" by Maggie Clark, read by Kate Baker.
Mostly, you recall, you were left in a garden of some kind—communal, or just large—and you could not tell the owners’ children from other pets allowed to roam within. 


Oh shit this is a great essay about reading and grieving over at Bookslut: Magic and Loss: Reading Akilah Oliver by Mairead Case
“My grandma died,” I’d say, or “I had a family emergency,” or else I just wouldn’t go out. It is impossible to talk about everything a person is, or everyone they were to you. Especially right after they go. Once I told my doctor I was late because the alarm was working wrong, which was a lie unless you count my brain as the alarm.