100 Hour Tour: The Comic Bulletin Pt 2
What follows are the posts from Dave Sim made to The Comic Bulletin's message board as part of his "100 Hour Internet Tour".
02-26-2008, 11:34 AM
Since this will be the last FULL day I'll be spending at one location on the 100 Hour Internet promotion tour --
[tomorrow, Wednesday February 27, I'll be revisiting Panel & Pixel from 10:30 to 11:45 am EDST; MillarWorld from 12:30 to 2:45 pm EDST; IMWAN (Iron Man With A Nose) from 3:30 to 5:30 pm EDST and finishing off at Comic Forums from 6:15 to 7:00 pm EDST]
I'd like to take this opportunity to thank all of the website moderators for their hospitality and their assistance. Thank you, Comics Village, The Comics Journal, Comics Bulletin, Comicon, NEWSARAMA, Sequential Tart, Comic Book Resources, Brian Bendis' JINXWORLD and all of the above websites!
I'd also like to thank Jeff Tundis and the Cerebus e Yahoos -- Jeff Seiler, Margaret, Rick Sharer, Rantz, L nny -- and the others for helping to "fill in the blanks" in the last month (in so many ways!),
all of the retailers who gave unstintingly of their valuable time throughout my "cold call" phone campaign of January and who have been instrumental in "getting the word out" about glamourpuss through the February solicitation period which ends this Friday
[If you're interested and you still haven't had a chance to see GLAMOURPUSS No.1, when you go in to your local comic store tomorrow on New Comics Day -- or Thursday or Friday -- ask your retailer if you can see their COMICS INDUSTRY PREVIEW EDITION and I'm sure he or she will be glad to let you take a look and make up your own mind about whether you want to order a copy...and reserve one for you if your answer is YES!]
Finally, I'd like to thank John Brenner of LOOKIN FOR HEROES, his son Jake, Duane the Amazing Comics Guy and "Monday and Thursday" Richard for making room here at 93 Ontario St. S. in Kitchener throughout the month of February for an "Internet challenged" individual like myself.
"Shared Risk, Shared Responsibility, Shared Rewards"
The creator and publishing side of the comics business have a ways to go in catching up to the comics retailers when it comes to work ethic and reliability...but ANY time is a good time to both resolve to start anew, giving 110% and then to DO SO.
I'll be doing my best to fulfill my own commitments starting March 3.
Okay, let's see what I missed over the last couple of weeks.
Hi, Claude. No, in Glamourpuss I'm really trying to visit the fashion industry on their own turf and within their own frames of reference which holds that the only real fashion is today's fashion.
They frequently revisit "looks" from the past -- the
1940s, 1950s and 1960s particularly -- depending on the season and mood so the 60s "look" will be turning up in glamourpuss as frequently as it does in the fashion world itself...
...but the goal is really to stick as strictly as possible to "the high fashion comic book that's SO six months ago." One of the first things I have to do when I get back from S.P.A.C.E. is the cover to issue 2, which will be cover-dated July (so I can get hit the 12 March solicitation deadline). I'm going to try to find a usable photo in the January GLAMOUR issue. If necessary I'll look at December or February but I'd really like to be "bang on" the six months where possible.
Well, not to belabour the subject when I'm trying to stick to promoting glamourpuss, but my own views have been shaped strictly by Scripture. Not only would I avoid Blake when it comes to theology, I would also avoid St. Paul, the Talmud and the Hadith since they're a) commentaries and b) not divinely inspired.
I think Scripture has been misread pretty much from the beginning and the Torah, the Gospels and the Koran constitute a dialogue between God (that is, that actual One Divinity) and YHWH (who isn't actually God or even a god -- a "god", and I think that's being charitable). So in my view it isn't 2 gods, it's God and 'god'.
Thanks for posting.
Or PRETEND to forget because you don't want to see!
Remember: that's IRON MAN WITH A NOSE: so you know that it will consist only of the most scholarly treatments of all subjects related to the graphic storytelling medium (HONK! HONK!)
As I've said elsewhere, Bob Chapman of Graphitti Designs -- who has the negatives for most of the Young Cerebus stories from EPIC MAGAZINE -- is still considered by me to be a driving force behind this still-tentative project. Erik Larsen of IMAGE also expressed interest, so we'll see how it develops. If either of them choose to pass on any involvement, I'd be glad to look at serious offers from other publishers.
Personally I'm just not inclined towards colour particularly in this day and age when colour shifts so dramatically as you move from one computer to another. All colour proofs in this day and age would be better described as "proofs":
"This is roughly what it's going to look like with an allowance of 2 or 3% plus or minus YELLOW, CYAN or MAGENTA 19 times out of 20."
It's going to be someone else's headache, whoever the publisher ends up being.
Just to keep the record straight, Manichaeism for me is in the same category as Wm. Blake: non-Scriptural and consequently not relevant to the discussion.
In my view the danger is that the further you get from Scripture the more you're trafficking in Jungian archetypes (i.e. here's something Isaiah has in common with Greek mythology) and turn the quest for Truth (or Reality, if you prefer) into an intellectual exercise, LitCrit and so on.
The Chester Brown illustrations will accompany my commentaries, Big Little Book style -- although probably not on every other page.
The news release is under Comics News Bulletins on the front page: Dave Sim's Judenhass.
Not that I'm aware of but I don't know if that isn't just part of the thorough "individualizing" of everyone's lives these days. You pick what you watch on television, what video games you play, what comic books you buy, what comics websites you visit on a regular basis. That's very different from when I was growing up back in the 60s and if you wanted to talk comics you had to go down to Captain George's Memory Lane in Toronto or back in the 70s in Kitchener you had to go down to Now & Then Books on Queen Street on a Saturday. Now you just go on-line and talk about comics with people from around the world.
You're a very lucky bunch of comics fans living when you do.
Well, as I was saying the other day, I can't entirely rule it out. The example I used was developing the glamourpuss character as someone who was on anti-depressants and still regularly drinking alcohol. One of those, to me, inherently funny "lying to myself" things. The next issue of GLAMOUR came out with a very long journalism piece on anti-depressants so I get into it a little more heavily in issue 2 than I thought I was going to.
I am trying to be good natured about it and not upset people but I do take it as a given that people in 2008 are almost compulsively upset about everything.
As I said elsewhere, I think we all have to work at Not Being Offended. Like the Danish cartoon controversy. I really don't think the cartoons were the problem. The problem was overreacting to them.
Or, put another way, you couldn't do a viable cartoon of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) with a bomb instead of a turban if Muslims haven't chosen over the last few years to make themselves pretty much interchangeable with explosives and blowing up innocent civilians.
Each individual is going to make up his or her mind.
I think we have had enough of an impact on society that anyone would feel funny throwing a comic book away ("What if it's worth a million dollars some day?!!") so that's something, anyway.
Little, tiny, ink-stained elves.
It's actually a pretty versatile term. Again, it depends on the individual. Some people would say "Anything that isn't Marvel or DC". Others would say anything in black and white, others would say anything that doesn't make money or vanity press.
The best thing is to ask someone what they mean when they use the term so you know you're both talking about the same thing.
A combination of not knowing the "Origin of Batman" and a fascination with typewriters. I used to fill little brown spiral notebooks with my versions of different comic books and I loved typing just about anything any time my mother borrowed the typewriter from school.
When my father brought a big old Underwood home from work I pretty much appropriated it.
I wanted to type...and I needed something to type.
That's really where it started.
A complete set of CEREBUS trades, both volumes of COLLECTED LETTERS and the COMICS INDUSTRY PREVIEW EDITION of glamourpuss No.1 visibile somewhere around the cash register.
I know. It's always about me, isn't it?
Except when it's about God. Prayer time. Back around 1 pm EDST!
Hi, Billy. Yes, it's an uphill struggle for everyone, each person making his own decision about what factors in and what doesn't. I do think the "publish or perish" axiom applies -- particularly now that the Internet makes "publishing" easier than ever. It's going to be a tough job to keep people from getting offended, but I think it's gratifying that the structure is there when and if we all decide to make use of it.
I hope I can sell a few copies in the comic-book stores. We'll have to wait and see.
I'd be happy to "pop over" to Italy if "popping" was all that was involved. It's a pretty long "pop" though!
Yes, I see that as how it's going to go. Having put in as much hard work as I did for thirty years on CEREBUS I'm looking forward to something that's just pure pleasure. The pleasure is in drawing the pretty girls in my best Al Williamson style so I have no problem incorporating anything as long as that remains the primary thing that I'm doing.
In fact, if anything, I can picture doing a glamourpuss on every page and just fitting the photorealism essay points in and around her.
It's very easy to lose sight of the original idea of why you chose to do something artistically. I was talking to Kitchener's artist-in-residence at City Hall about that -- that we come up with these great ideas for art that we want to do and then shift things around as we go until we're doing very little of what we originally wanted to do and a lot of "prep" we don't want to do.
Why? Artistic masochism, maybe -- but this time I'm determined to not let it happen.
I thought "In cyberspace, no one can hear you scream."
I'll have to be more careful -- John, Jake, Duane and Richard are used to it by now.
I can't say that my opinions have changed hugely, no. I'm not going to get my own laptop and get hooked up, as an example. It eats up a lot of time and I already have writing and drawing comics to do that for me!
As well it's such a diverse environment -- all those websites! all those threads! All those posts! -- that it's hard to imagine how it actually "works": what the net effects are. It's all theoretical.
I think it's probably necessary for any kind of promotion in 2008 and I think there will be a few indie creators who will be looking at what I did here over the last month and be making decisions of their own: more than 100 hours? Less than 100 hours? More websites? Fewer websites?
Also I'd imagine it would come up at a few meetings at DC, Marvel and a few of the other companies: is this a way to promote and can we promote this way? Anything they come up with is going to be pretty theoretical as well. Try it and see if it works.
My bottom line assessment will have to wait until I get my TRU Report from Diamond and see how many glamourpuss No.1 I've sold. Even then it'll be hard to see how much impact the 100 Hours had and how much is attributable to the phone campaign and the free copy in Diamond Dateline.
Distracting attention from glamourpuss is really the least of my worries. The retailers are either tracking "up" or tracking "down" in the remaining t-minus four days. It's hard to picture that anything I can do or say today or tomorrow is going to have much effect.
No, my concern with JUDENHASS is to avoid trivializing the Holocaust and (no offence) the Internet is pretty adept at trivializing everything.
I was supposed to be gone before the URL was announced but I forgot that there are retailers who get their PREVIEWS FedExed. No one jumped the gun with glamourpuss but evidently someone did on the comics journal message boards and, at that point, Jeff and Lou had no choice but to move up the announcement.
I am hoping to keep this from turning into just another Internet circus today and tomorrow. We'll see how it goes.
Well, yes, but to be fair I think it's always worth remembering that women are suffering many, many consequences as a result of the differences between men's nature and women's nature.
To use your own example, most of the guys who read "Mama's Boy" weighed the argument and the discussion points, measured themselves against them and either decided it didn't apply or in several notable instances -- long-time CEREBUS Yahoo Larry Hart comes to mind -- experienced life-changing epiphanies. Nothing remotely like that took place with "Tangent".
Women get easily offended and Being Offended comes with its own very, very severe consequences. Men tend not to get offended and Not Being Offended tends not to have any consequences.
It's one of the reasons that I never "lashed back" at Jill Thompson, Colleen Doran and all the others who were so Offended by "Tangent". There was nothing -- and is nothing -- that I could do to them that would be a patch on what they had chosen to do to themselves.
READING 6,000 PAGES ON A COMPUTER SCREEN? Jeez, Craig, I'll be able to hear your eyeballs crackling from here.
Even if a COMPLETE CEREBUS DVD does happen, i'm pretty sure it won't be by next week
(unless I can talk all the Yahoos into skipping the Thurber House, the spaghetti dinner, the CEREBUS LIVE III taping --issue 51 this year -- S.P.A.C.E., the Day Prize Ceremony, their road trip to the Laughing Ogre and dinner at Schmidt House in Columbus Ohio's Germantown in favour of a 24-hour, three trade paperback scanning marathon)
(What do you say, Guys-and-Margaret?)
(Mmm. It's not looking good, Craig)
Feel free to download any illegal copies that are lurking on the Internet to supplement whatever you can't carry comfortably. Happy reading.
Well, as Teddy Kennedy once said, "We'll drive off that bridge when we come to it." (nyuck nyuck nyuck)
Sorry, I haven't had a chance to use that one in a while.
Say, you're really getting the hang of this, Craig. Keep it up and you'll qualify for the Legion of Substitute Dave Sims.
To be fair, even if this does work and I get really good orders, that doesn't mean that it's exportable to other creators and other books.
It's one of the things that's factored in and that I had to take into account when I embarked on this in December -- whatever I do, win, lose or draw, good, bad or indifferent it has the weight of 300 issues and 30 years of CEREBUS weighing in with it. If you want to make me the exception to anything, that's always sitting right there to help you make your case.
Mmm. It's still watching comic books on TV. There's an ILLUSION of detail on television but it's still like those old typewriter pictures of presidents. Interesting effect, but I'd rather have a good lithograph of George Washington or even a good photocopy of a lithograph of George Washington.
Actually, I'm waiting until Margaret has posted absolutely everything I ever wrote at her www.cerebusfangirl.com website and then I'm just going to sell sideways laptops with "THE DAVE SIM GUIDE TO LIFE as told to meowwcat" on the cover and the spine.
If there's enough room I'm going to install a little pushbutton on the side that shoots little white plastic bullets out the front.
See everybody will lose the little white plastic bullets in the first week after Christmas, right? So I sell the replacement bullets for like a buck each, right?
And I absolutely clean up.
Can you imagine if Teddy Kennedy actually said that in a speech sometime? "We'll drive off that bridge when we come to it."
Cue oil-painting-shot of the audience.
Funny your should mention that: that was what I was thinking of writing about. Jeff Smith was the TONIGHT SHOW theme. "da da DA JEFF SMITH daddadada." You were "We Are The Champions" "I...am...JAMES OWEN...OF THE WORRLLLDDD!" Couldn't remember Colleen's or mine. Martin Wagner was that lead-up to "CHARGE" that they do on the organ at sports events. "MarTinWagNer..MarTinWagNer...MarTinWagNer".
And me sitting there waiting for someone to say something relevant to Today's Self-Publishing so I could pass it on to the next newbie who asked me.
"Theme Songs." That's the key to self-publishing success in 1995. "Every self-publisher has to have his own Theme Song, kid."
Speaking of Self-Publishing:
This seems like as good a time as any to announce the recipient of the
2007 HOWARD E. DAY MEMORIAL PRIZE:
It's MR. BIG by Matt and Carol Dembicki of Little Foot Comics in Fairfax, Virginia.
Those interested in checking out MR BIG can do so at
I don't know if they have Paypal over there, but the book is $10 plus $2 postage.
Sincere congratulations: Matt and Carol are coming up to Columbus for S.P.A.C.E. along with their two sons, one of whom is (two?) and the other is two months old. They're both looking forward to leaving the boys with Carol's parents (who live in Columbus) and...hopefully ...joining me and the Yahoos for the big spaghetti dinner Friday night that we keep hearing about and which is being prepared in anyone's room but mine.
Remember that website is www.littlefootcomics.com!
Okay, prayer time: I'll be back around 3:40 pm EDST.
Sorry, I'm a little late getting back. I'm trying to put in a full day here and also trying to get ready for the trip to Columbus on Thursday.
I've brought in a copy of the PREVIEW EDITION of JUDENHASS to LOOKIN FOR HEROES and they now have it up on the wall along with glamourpuss No.1.
I figured Duane was the first person I showed glamourpuss to so he might as well be the first person to see a printed copy of JUDENHASS (apart from my technical director on the project, Lou Copeland, who got his twenty copies in the mail the other day).
LOOKIN FOR HEROES customers can drop in any time to have a look.
The website is also up and running at www.judenhass.com
I also went over and checked the Self-Publishing history that Jeff has up at www.boneville.com and -- while it's certainly interesting -- I've never really thought of self-publishing as anything that was sufficiently static to examine in that way. I'd certainly agree with Larry Marder's ROSHOMON comparison in the sense that each person who went through the experience in the mid-90s experienced it a different way.
I think a persuasive argument could be mounted that most of the participants in that time period saw the massive consolidation of the Direct Market with Diamond emerging preeminent in the distribution end of things as being apocalyptic. In retrospect I might have invested some more time and effort in letting people know that change is very much the norm in the comic-book field. It was, I suspect, a failing on my part to not try to get that across more.
We certainly hadn't experienced those sorts of convulsions on the distribution side before, but I was a veteran of comic book companies that declared themselves to be the next big thing and pretty much while you were contemplating that, they'd disappear. Pacific Comics, Eclipse, First Comics. They were all pretty big deals and lasted long enough that everyone factored them into their thinking through the 1980s only to have them all just sort of POOF go away.
I've also become more emphatic about on-time shipping since those days -- James Turner certainly credits me with drilling that into his head when he was first developing REX LIBRIS. Of the self-publishers who dominated the mid-90s there were barely a handful who came anywhere close to on-time shipping.
Did I put too much reliance on there being this Huge Difference between when CEREBUS started and when everyone else started? I think that could be true. Put your book out on time and if things don't work, then come and talk to me.
Well, here I go again with glamourpuss. I'm going to get three issues out on a strict bi-monthly schedule and try to maintain the quality. I don't think the retailers or the fans are unreasonable asking for that. I really don't.
The more the merrier when it comes to the Yahoos. It's always funny watching them meeting each other for the first time because it often happens in front of my table.
You know, Bob Corby kept trying to get the folks at APE to tell him when they were having their show -- last year they scheduled for the same weekend -- and no one would get back to him, so he finally picked the beginning of March figuring that would leave APE most of March, all of April and all of May to pick from.
So they ended up scheduling APE for the beginning of November.
The problem with a summer date for SPACE is that you end up competing with the big summer cons.
It's thrown me off a little bit, I admit. I always associate the arrival of spring with going over to Tomkar on Francis Street to pick up the Day Prize plaques. Not this year, boy.
I wish I was at home so I could check that in my Kingdom Interlinear translation which is word-for-word from the Greek.
It is interesting that even at a remove the "in me" is retained. Usually the translators would change it into something more familiar like "by me".
"Whosoever shall not be offended IN me."
It doesn't conjure an automatic mental image. How can you be offended IN someone?
I just finished chapter 19 of Luke in my preliminary commentaries and there (19:48) the disciples are literally hanging out of the Synoptic Jesus, which -- in a spiritual and metaphorical sense -- they were.
Oh, right I forgot about that. But that's not the contents of the books -- those you'll have to get some place illegal.
Yes, it came out really well, I thought. All credit to Jeff Tundis for taking my rough ideas and making them work. I just googled Judenhass during a lull there and got a lot of strange anti-semitic publications and a few comic book references which all appeared to be Lou's press release.
So, I suspect speechlessness followed by "wow" a few minutes later might be the industry norm at this point.
Well, yes, and I've mentally prepared myself for an uphill struggle for the rest of my life here in this "vale of tears".
One of the things that I cite a lot is the injunction from the YHWH in Exodus for the Hebrew people to stone someone to death for gathering sticks on the Sabbath.
"Even the most devout and most orthodox Jew isn't going to advocate stoning someone to death for gathering sticks on the Sabbath."
Well, yes, everyone agrees with that.
But, if you're a scriptural literalist -- one of those people who waves a Bible around saying "If you don't believe every word in here is a true, you're a hypocrite" -- then don't you have to both defend and advocate stoning people to death for gathering sticks on the Sabbath?
And if you don't believe in that, doesn't it stand to reason that you're supposed to examine everything in the Torah and the Gospels and the Koran the same way: does this make sense? Is this a good thing to do?
See: READER'S DIGEST version that's what I think is the purpose of Scripture. It's a test and we're the guinea pigs. YHWH firmly believes that we're evil -- "The imagination of man's heart, evil from his youth" -- and God knows we're good.
So, that's one of the major contentions that's going on. YHWH is right because when YHWH told men to stone someone to death for gathering sticks on the Sabbath, they did so. But God is also right, because eventually they stopped doing it.
Right now we're going through the same thing with Islam. There was the town in Quebec that got accused of being racist because they passed an ordinance banning x number of things: you can't stone adulterers to death, you can't chop the hands off a thief. They're Islamophobic.
I think all they did in that town in Quebec is what we're all going to have to end up doing: going through the Koran and deciding what we can live with as Shariah Law and what we can't. Yes, it says you're supposed to scourge the whore with 100 stripes. No, we don't think that's a good idea. So, no you can't do that in North America. The divorce laws? Yes, there are a lot of good divorce laws in the Koran, most of which favour the woman. Those we can see allowing in North America.
I mean, it's interesting to me because right now the Anglican Church in Canada is tearing itself apart over whether or not to bless same sex unions and I keep reading over and over again that there's nothing in Scripture that constitutes a defence of homosexuality.
And I keep wondering, "Isn't there someplace you can go to say, 'Uh, I think Luke 17:34-35 constitutes a defence of homosexuality -- I think the fact that Luke 17:36 was added in after the fact and wasn't in the earliest copies pretty much guarantees that's what it is.'"
And, no, there isn't.
And I'm ambivalent about keeping bringing it up because it was said by the Synoptic Jesus who I believe was basically a mouthpiece for YHWH so I'm deeply suspicious about just about everything that he says.
But at the same time it seems intellectually dishonest not to say "Two men in a bed, one will be taken and one left and two women grinding together, one will be taken and one left" [on Judgement Day]: well I think there's really only one way to read that.
Personally, I wouldn't stake my future on the Synoptic Jesus, but virtually all Christians believe he's the Son of God and the defining Core of Truth, so if you think that, I think you really need to examine what's being said there and admit to yourself that -- if nothing else -- it means gays are not AUTOMATICALLY bound for the lake of fire.
But even if I found somewhere pertinent to say it, I know the reaction would be the same as it is to just about everything I say, "Oh, that's just Dave."
Well, that was interesting. Dave Kostis just dropped by -- that's the first time that I've seen him since Now & Then Books closed. Still has all of the stuff from the store in storage. Turns out he DOES still have the framed piece that Harry and I are holding up on the back cover of CEREBUS 279, so we've made arrangements to get together for a coffee next week or the week after.
Still looking for work. It's a tough job market out there.
Keep your eyes out for his eBay auctions of Now & Then Books stock.
Okay, I guess that'll be it for today. Thanks to everyone who showed up to check the thread out over the last couple of weeks.
Tomorrow I'll be wrapping up the 100 Hour Internet Glamourpuss Promotion Tour at Pen & Pixel, MillarWorld, IMWAN and Comic Forums.
Hope to see some of you then.
02-27-2008, 11:24 AM
Hi, Greg. I don't know if you'll actually get this -- maybe someone reading it can relay it to you -- but the word-for-word translation from the Koin Greek is
"and happy he is who if ever not might be stumbled in me."
It's in answer to the question relayed by the disciples of John the Baptist from John TO the Synoptic Jesus:
"You are the ___ coming or another we are expecting?"
The Synoptic Jesus performed a rash of miracles and then said to them
"Report back to John what you saw and you heard. Blind ___s are seeing again, lame ___s are walking about, lepers are being cleansed and deaf ___s are hearing, dead ___s are being raised up, poor ___s are being told the good news; and happy he is who if ever not might be stumbled in me."
I suspect that John, being a man of God recognized an intentional evasion when he saw it but that the Disciples and the early Church fathers didn't.
The Synoptic Jesus doesn't answer the question directly which is a given when a non-monotheist is addressed by a monotheist.
You'll note that "happy" gets changed to "blessed" in the KJV which isn't really the same thing at all. There are lots of happy people who are far from blessed (although all blessed people are happy, I think) and "stumbled in me" gets downgraded to "offended in me", I suspect because the "stumbled in me" is self-evidently what it is: if you choose to believe in my miracles and ignore the fact that I evaded your question, you will be "stumbled in me" that is "tripped up" as a man of God.
It's also worth noting that it was only the Johannine Jesus that actually raised the dead (Lazarus). The Synoptic Jesus refers to himself as having done so (or appears to) but there is no record of his having done so.
The compelled inference appears to be that raising the dead was believed by Jews to be a sign of the Davidic Meschiach.
Ultimately, John the Baptist only acknowledged the Johannine Jesus as the Agnus Dei, the Lamb of God.