Greetings Mr Graham. You were due to be interviewed by The Beast Must Die, but sadly he is too busy travelling the globe as an international podcasting megastar with his good friend/mortal enemy Gary Lactus. Therefore you will instead be strapped into the Quizzlertron, and be interviewed by Disembodied Narratorbot X-15735. Expect no fleshy soft peddling and ego-stroking – Disembodied Narratorbot X-15735 is hard-hitting interviewer. Expect Frost/Nixon style hardball, human! Be warned –any deviation from the truth will result in severe electric shocks to the balls, nipples and brain. You have been warned fleshy one. Now on with interview good times, yes sir!

Section 1: Secret Origin

1) First question, simple. Or is it hard? YOU DECIDE FLESHY ONE. Why comics?

BG – It was a decision that I made before I remember making it. My mom says that when I was Seven I announced that I was going to do comics for a living. Past that incredibly well thought out life choice comics has been amazingly rewarding, there’s so much that can be done when you consider what’s possible in mixing words and images and how much of it is still so untapped. My big fear is not doing nearly as much as could be done with it. I feel like I’m on a comic book continent and I’ve just explored the coast but behind me is miles and miles of untapped mysteries. Tell me Disembodied Narratorbot X-15735, have you ever really loved a woman? You’ve got to know her deep inside hear her every thought see every dream and give her wings if she wants to fly…

Read the rest of this entry »

CHANGE is… coming soon!  In fact, it’s possible that it’s already here.  Perhaps you’ve already read the comic, and are looking for more information on the people who made it.  Or maybe you’ve been here before, and have found yourself stuck in a loop, struggling to get out.   Regardless of your circumstances, I’m glad you’re here.

CHANGE is… a bracingly modern pulp adventure comic, set in Los Angeles, in which an astronaut, a screen writer/car thief, and a rapper caught midway through a transition into a Hollywood afterlife find themselves entangled in the tendrils of a plot that mixes showbiz horror with Lovecraftian glamour. Or is that the other way round?

CHANGE is… written by Ales Kot, drawn by Morgan Jeske, coloured by Sloane Leong and lettered by Ed Brisson.  Quite a line-up, I’m sure you’ll agree!

CHANGE is… a stylish, ambitious comic that makes perfect sense as part of of Image’s attempt to make popular genre comics that aren’t totally stylistically and thematically inert.  Comics that read like they were made with care, energy, enthusiasm, and maybe even that earth element you call… love.

As such, I’m happy to present to you with a “Choose Your Own Adventure” style interview with two of the creators involved in this comic, Ales Kot and Morgan Jeske.

If you don’t think you’ve got the heart for this sort of postmodern gambit, you can click here to read the interview straight.

If, on the other hand, you’d rather experience the adventure your own way, click here and enlightenment will follow.

In which two men enter and one frisky little blog post leaves…

With his feather-frazzled early fictions (Vurt, Pollen, Automated Alice and Nymphomation), Jeff Noon presented the world with a distinctly British (no, wait – English!) version of cyberpunk – one that side-stepped all those designer shades and phallic head jacks in favour of something that was a little bit less ashamed of its fantastical status. In his short stories (Pixel Juice, Cobralingus) and transitional ode to musical Manchester Needle in the Groove, Noon drifted even further from traditional modes of science fiction, working to match the ever-adapting techniques of then-contemporary electronic music and – in Cobralingus – offering a “how to” guide to the curious reader in the process.

Until recently, 2002′s Falling Out of Cars looked like it might be the last Jeff Noon novel. If the fractured mirror landscape of the book often proved to be as startling and dissociative for the reader as they were for the characters then that was probably a feature rather than a bug – Falling Out of Cars made the fact that all of Noon’s adventures in wonderland had been tainted by life on this side of the mirror horribly clear.

This notion was always there in Noon’s work – no amount of strain is going to make a looking glass show something that isn’t already here waiting to be reflected, after all – but in Falling Out of Cars it became inescapable. This made the subsequent absence of a “new Jeff Noon novel” seem more explicable, if still somewhat tragic – what better note for an author to stop writing on than this, a story about people whose very ability to comprehend the world and words around them was slipping away.

There were some signs of writerly life though, like 2008′s 217 Babel Street - a collaborative hyperlink fiction the served as the real world scaffolding on a fictional location – and 2012 has seen Noon’s strange pollen corrupting the air stream on a previously inconceivable scale. Noon’s endlessly imaginative twitter account is one of the best follows out there for those in a Mindless frame of mind, and if his microfictional “spore” fictions leave you craving more there’s always the echovirus12 account, to which Noon also contributes.

For those who like their fiction to occupy a more traditional form, there’s also a new novel, Channel SK1N, the story of a pop star who finds her skin overridden by the signals all around her as she transforms in a way that blurs the line between broadcaster and receiver. I’ve only just finished reading the book, and I hope you’ll forgive the ecstatic tone of this introduction because Channel SK1N combines the lysergically enhanced rush of Noon’s early fiction with the queasy comedowns of his later work, and in doing so reaffirms sci-fi’s status as the best tool available to writers who want to explore a future that’s here somewhere, already hidden.

Still buzzing off my contact with his SK1N, I got in touch with Noon to discuss his dazzling reemergence as a self-publishing internet invader…

 

GITW Illogical Volume: It’s been ten years since you slipped through the darkly reflective cracks of Falling Out Of Cars; ?dlrow rorrim eht ni emit ruoy saw woH

Jeff Noon: Falling Out Of Cars seemed like the end of a period in my life, work-wise, and also I’d just left Manchester (my home town), so it felt like a good time to make some changes. I fell into screenwriting, and had some fun days and some bad days in that world. I was working on various scripts for a number of production companies. I also went back into the theatre, which was my first love in writing terms. I did a play for The Crucible Theatre in Sheffield about the early days of the Mod movement and a science fiction audio play for Radio 3. I still hang onto hope regarding the film scripts, but it’s a difficult media to succeed in, no doubt about it. Eventually, I realised that I’d been without a proper audience for 10 years, so I started writing prose again. I dug out Channel SK1N, which I written a draft of a couple of years previously, and started working on that. And that was the transit point.

That was a transit point, and so is this – click here for more vurty goodness!

 

That’s quite a line-up, isn’t it? Click here to find out more about what Kot and Jeske are doing in it!

The Great Unwashed by Gary and Warren Pleece, Escape Books, 2012

Are you looking at him?

August’s Cartoon County turned out to be the dawn of a bright new age for comics as David Lloyd and Bambos unsheathed their plans for the unique webcomic project, Aces Weekly.

 

Aces Weekly is a genuinely exciting venture which involves original new work from the likes of Herb Trimpe, Bill Sienkiewicz, Kyle Baker, John McCrea, Phil Hester, Steve Bissette, David Leach, Colleen Doran, David Hine, Henry Flint, Mark Wheatley, David Hitchcock, Lew Stringer, Carl Critchlow, Phill Elliott, Rory Walker and more!  Here’s how it’s going down:

Aces Weekly

 

It really does seem like a great model for creators and readers alike so get along and subscribe!

Cartoon County is an association of over 100 cartoonists and comic artists in the Sussex area. Our regular meetings are usually on the last Monday of every month at The Cricketers, Black Lion St, Brighton, from 6 til late. If you’re a cartoonist or a comic artist, or use those particular styles of drawing in your work as an illustrator, animator or storyboard artist, you are very welcome to join us.

 

 

So Glenn “AMAZING!” Fabry came to Cartoon County back in April. It was almost literally like this:

LISTEN TO IT, FOOL!

 

Click here to download our Glenn Fabry interview

 

Cartoon County is an association of over 100 cartoonists and comic artists in the Sussex area. Our regular meetings are usually on the last Monday of every month at The Cricketers, Black Lion St, Brighton, from 6 til late. If you’re a cartoonist or a comic artist, or use those particular styles of drawing in your work as an illustrator, animator or storyboard artist, you are very welcome to join us.

Aardvark Comments?

September 19th, 2012

Dave Sim, who since the death of Will Eisner has been probably the greatest living all-round comics creator, is releasing his classic graphic novel High Society as a Kickstarter-funded digital version on October 10.

To promote this release, he is doing a virtual tour of comics sites, including Mindless Ones, on October 10, answering interview questions. However, he’s doing it with a twist — he wants us to post the questions we’re asking here *now*, in advance of the blog tour, and leave comments open for readers to ask questions, some of which he will also answer. Anyone whose question is chosen will receive a free autographed back-issue of Cerebus, with a personalised head sketch.

Questions, and explanation of who Sim is, under the cut

Way back in March, Cartoon County played host to two speakers.  They were nice and good.  There names were Karrie Fransman and Ian Hague.

Karrie Fransman has created comics for The Guardian, The Times, The Telegraph, The New Statesman and Psychologies Magazine and published a graphic novel The House That Groaned with Random House’s Square Peg.  This is what it sounds like when she speaks:

Click to download Karrie Fransman

Ian Hague is the director of Comics Foruma website and annual event which aims to increase the visibility and accessibility of comics scholarship. When he opens his mouth, this happens:

Click to download Ian Hague

 

Cartoon County is an association of over 100 cartoonists and comic artists in the Sussex area. Our regular meetings are usually on the last Monday of every month at The Cricketers, Black Lion St, Brighton, from 6 til late. If you’re a cartoonist or a comic artist, or use those particular styles of drawing in your work as an illustrator, animator or storyboard artist, you are very welcome to join us.

 

January’s Cartoon County meeting was lucky enough to play host to Chris Weston, artist for The Filth, 2000AD, The Twelve and lots more. Listen now as Chris talks of his apprenticeship with Trigan Empire’s Don Lawrence to working on films such as Akira and The Book Of Eli and his shamanic meeting with Bizarro.


Click to download

Cartoon County is an association of over 100 cartoonists and comic artists in the Sussex area. Our regular meetings are usually on the last Monday of every month at The Cricketers, Black Lion St, Brighton, from 6 til late. If you’re a cartoonist or a comic artist, or use those particular styles of drawing in your work as an illustrator, animator or storyboard artist, you are very welcome to join us.