The webcomics blog about webcomics

Quality Books For Quality Folks

Hey. How you doing? Me? Oh, nothing, just a Wednesday. You know how it is. Webcomics stuff, some of it pretty random.

  • Speaking of random, you’d be hard pressed to find something moreso than a rough caricature of Stan Lee Sharpied onto an egg, with voice supplied by Los Angeles resident Dave Kellett, so let me point you to that lil’ gem right away. It appears roughly 10 seconds into this video, which is in support of LArDK’s latest book Kickstart, Anatomy Of Authors. After you finish muttering Oh, that ain’t right to yourself, take a look at the campaign itself.

    One may, if one so desires, recall the heady days of 2017 and LArDK’s previous Anatomy collection — animals, that time — presented as a faux-1920s reference text, with drawings of various critters from around the world, and commentary on their physical condition supplied by a not particularly astute naturalist¹. The book is very pretty, the contents very funny, and since wrapping up the series of illustrations, LArDK’s been giving the same treatment to prominent authors from throughout history. Case in point: Jules Verne from a few days ago.

    Chances are your favorite author is there (unless they’re still alive; I think that all the authors illustrated have been deceased, and thus safely beyond the chance of being offended at the loving jibes), and if the (as yet, unannounced) stretch goals are anything like Animals, you’ll end up seeing extras like ribbon bookmarks, fancy endpapers, UV cover treatments, and protective wrapping as free bonuses.

    As of this writing, the campaign’s a hair over US$13,000 of the US$20,000 goal; I’d include the FFF mk2 treatment, but LArDK’s in the habit of announcing his Kickstarts on the down-low to his Patreon supporters 12+ hours before they go public, so the numbers on the first 24 hours aren’t suited to the math. It’s gonna fund, it’s gonna hit the stretch goals, it’s going to show up in December as promised (barring the trade war with China getting even stupider than it is now). If you like laugh-chuckles of a literary bent, get in while the gettin’s good.

  • Y’know who else does good books? Everybody associated with Iron Circus Comics. I got an email from Iron Circus Supreme Dictatrix For Life And Don’t You Forget It C Spike Trotman that had a list of the accolades piled on various Iron Circus titles, and they included little things like Stonewall Book Honor, starred reviews in Kirkus, Booklist, School Library Journal, and/or Publishers Weekly, Lambda Literary Award nomination and/or winner, Prism Award nomination and/or winner, YALSA Great Graphic Novel For Teens, and so forth. Good stuff. But the gist of the email wasn’t to brag about the books², but to describe a solution to a problem that people have been having.

    I’ve mostly bought my IC books either direct from the creator/the Iron Circus table at a show, because hey — direct support and usually a sketch, too. But when shows are far distant and I’ve tried to give the business to my local comic shop, I wait forever and ultimately get told it’s out of stock and unavailable. This is because comic shops deal with the Diamond monopoly, and Diamond are terrible in every respect. The book isn’t out of stock, Diamond just can’t be arsed to handle less than a few zillion copies of any given book when they’re dealing with book trade’s own monopoly, Ingram. The solution is to go around them. From Spike for your friendly local comic shop:

    To get access to our award-winning, critically acclaimed titles, we encourage you to register an account with Consortium—the division of Ingram in charge of our account—and order directly. You can also order through iPage, if you already have an Ingram account.

    To get started with Ingram, and the ability to order the complete line of award-winning, critically-acclaimed (and fully-returnable!) Iron Circus titles, head over here and register! It’s easy, we promise. And it’ll get you access to even more comics by other publishers, like Uncivilized Books, Alternative Comics, and more!

    That’s how I know that Spike’s more interested in stickin’ it to Diamond than selling books³ — she’s pointing out that the same channel can be used for other publishers, with whom she is nominally in competition. But Alternative or Uncivilized will never take money out of Spike’s pockets (or each other’s, for that matter) to the degree that never making who knows how many sales because Diamond is determined to suck will cost them. Pass it along, and maybe someday Diamond will actually shape up and ha ha ha ha, I almost finished that sentence. Not a chance Diamond ever gets their shit together.

Spam of the day:

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Asshole, I am an electrical engineer that studied communications systems at the undergraduate and graduate level. I worship at a shrine in the shape of Shannon’s Figure 1. Noise is the enemy. Noise is always the enemy.

¹ But, presumably, said naturalist was at least a gentleman of the requisite background and breeding, and therefore must needs be paid attention, despite any dearth of actual factuals.

² Welllll, mostly. Spike’s always bragging about her backlist, and with justification.

³ Welllll, mostly. Spike’s always selling books. Gotta respect the hustle.

I found the Anatomy of animals strips so clunky that I stopped reading Sheldon because they had seemed to have taken over the strip, so Your Mileage May Vary on ‘the contents very funny’.

It is settled law that people like what they like.

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