Archive for the ‘News’ Category

The NEW American Dream – now with gorgeous Karl Stevens art!

Thursday, March 22nd, 2012

Click to see larger image

Some of you might have noticed the serialisation of The American Dream went into hiatus some time ago. Well, I’m very pleased to announce that a new and improved version of the book is in the works, with artwork lusciously drawn and painted by one of my favourite artists, Karl Stevens.

I’m very excited about this collaboration; I’ve been following Karl’s work since the 1990s and absolutely love his previous books The Lodger and Guilty, and his regular strip in the Boston Phoenix (currently known as ‘Failure’).

For a small taste of the work-in-progress, and for more on Karl’s comics and art, follow the link above.

Steam Girl

Friday, March 16th, 2012

(unpublished sketch)

It’s high time I mentioned this: ‘Steam Girl’ is my first published prose story (i.e. without pictures), which came out late last year in Steampunk! An Anthology of Fantastically Rich and Strange Stories, edited by the wonderful Kelly Link and Gavin J. Grant, and published by Candlewick Press in the US and Walker Books in the UK. I’ve written prose fiction all my life (in between the comics), but never felt brave enough to publish any until now.

Steampunk! also includes prose stories by M. T. Anderson, Holly Black, Libba Bray, Cassandra Clare, Cory Doctorow, Elizabeth Knox, Garth Nix, Christopher Rowe, Delia Sherman, Ysabeau S. Wilce and Kelly Link herself and comics by Shawn Cheng and Kathleen Jennings. It’s a fantastic anthology and I’m thrilled to be included.

The cherry on the cake is that ‘Steam Girl’ has just been reprinted in The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year, volume 6, edited by Jonathan Strahan (published by Night Shade Books), which is very humbling. Guess I’d better finish that damn novel now, eh?

Ways to buy it and a couple of reviews after the jump:

A workshop in Wellington and a competition.

Friday, November 25th, 2011

Two upcoming events I’m involved with:

I’m running a 2-week workshop in Wellington in December and January, as part of Whitireia Polytech’s Summer Writing Courses. It costs $300 and all are welcome (even if you can’t draw). The course runs over two separate weeks; part 1 is December 12-16th, part 2 is January 9-13th. Details are here.

And I’m judging the Graphic Fiction section in the AUT New Zealand Creative Writing Competition. It’s the first time AUT has included a Graphic Fiction (i.e. comics) section and I’m looking forward to seeing what people come up with. Prizes include in iPad (perfect for reading all those digital comics on) and entries close January 31st, 2012. Details are here.

Sparkplug needs your help

Wednesday, August 24th, 2011

Sparkplug Comics’ Dylan Williams is one of the true heroes of comics – a fine cartoonist and a smart, courageous publisher with great taste. Unfortunately, he’s pretty ill right now, and as we all know, being sick in America ain’t easy when you’re living on the income of an alt comix publisher…

So here’s where we come in – and by “we” I mean all of us who love great comics. Sparkplug’s online shop is packed full of wonderful treasures, with comics from Chris Wright, Emily Nilsson, Dave Kiersh, John Hanckiewicz, Julia Gforer, John Porcellino, Renee French, Rina Ayuyang, T. Edward Bak, Ted May and so many other great cartoonists! All you have to do is go buy some – and you’ll be helping Dylan and the whole world of comics.

And if that’s not enough to convince you, Sparkplug have expressed an interest in publishing New Zealand’s very own Timothy Kidd. Now that’s what I call excellent taste…

Darkest Day – the Christchurch Earthquake benefit comic

Thursday, April 7th, 2011

When the earthquake hit Christchurch on February 22nd, around 180 people were killed, many more were injured, and buildings around the city were damaged and destroyed. Everyone in New Zealand knows people affected by this disaster, and Christchurch will be reeling for years to come. Aftershocks continue, basic services like drinking water, sewerage outflow and electricity are still disrupted, businesses are closing and jobs are being lost. For many families and friends, of course, there is mourning and grief.

Christchurch is New Zealand’s second largest city and home to many writers, artists, and – of course – cartoonists. Within days of the quake, the city’s (and New Zealand’s) longest running comics anthology Funtime Comics started putting together a special issue, inviting contributions from around the country and beyond. sometimesyoufeel-pg1Assembled at lightning speed, Darkest Day is now ready and will be launched this weekend at Armageddon Expo in Wellington. It includes a three-page comic by me, Sometimes You Feel (see sample page to the right).

All proceeds from Darkest Day will go to the Red Cross, to help with disaster relief.

You can buy Darkest Day online, here.

And if you’re at Armageddon Expo this weekend, make sure you visit the New Zealand Comics Creators table, where you’ll find a cornucopia of fine New Zealand comics and graphic novels (including Chris Slane & Matt Elliott’s Nice Day for a War, Ant Sang’s Shaolin Burning, the latest Bristle, and many more!), and meet some lovely talented cartoonists.

Spare a thought, too, for the organisers of Armageddon Expo, who are based in Christchurch and suffered extensive damage to their home and office. The annual expo in Christchurch was supposed to take place last weekend, but had to be postponed due to the earthquake (they hope to hold a special event later this year, if things have settled down enough). So amid all the hustle and bustle, the crowds and the cosplay, remember to be nice to everyone you meet. It’s been a tough year – here in New Zealand, over in Japan, and, come to think of it, all around the world.

As Kurt Vonnegut wrote, “There’s only one rule that I know of… ‘God damn it, you’ve got to be kind.'”

Book launch: Chris Slane’s new graphic novel!

Thursday, April 7th, 2011

Nice Day for a War
The mighty Chris Slane, one of New Zealand’s greatest cartoonists, is launching his new graphic novel tonight in Auckland. Nice Day for a War – Adventures of A Kiwi Soldier In World War 1 by Chris Slane and Matt Elliott recreates the experiences of Matt’s grandfather Corporal Cyril Elliott, who enlisted as a teenager and soon found himself struggling to survive in the trenches of the Western Front. The book is part graphic novel, part illustrated history book – and 100% pure Chris Slane greatness.

Those of you who remember Chris’ earlier graphic novel, Maui: Legends of the Outcast (written by Robert Sullivan), or his many other great comics, will know that this is an event worth celebrating.

So come along to the Grey Lynn RSA tonight, pick up a signed copy and toast Chris and Matt (you can even buy an ANZAC Day poppy).

Nice Day for a War – the Adventures of a Kiwi Soldier in World War 1
by Chris Slane and Matt Elliott

6.00-8.00pm Thursday 7 April

Grey Lynn (RSA) Returned services Social Club upstairs.
(Kids allowed upstairs)
1 Francis Street, West Lynn shops, Grey Lynn/Westmere, Auckland.
(50 steps from Moa, and Harvest Wholefoods)
Click here for map
Enter main door, turn left and follow the chair lift rail up the stairs to the cosy lounge bar.

Even if you can’t make it tonight, you can buy Nice Day for a War from good NZ booksellers everywhere, or online.

Shaolin Burning!

Wednesday, February 2nd, 2011

Apologies for the lack of new Magic Pen pages this past week. Page 56 is turning into one of those pages that takes a week to draw, which has thrown things off schedule. It is, however, getting there…

While you’re waiting, please check out this very important event: the launch of New Zealand cartoonist Ant Sang’s brand new graphic novel, Shaolin Burning.

Ant Sang is one hell of a cartoonist, and a fabulous guy. His serialised story, Dharma Punks, was one of the most impressive New Zealand comics I’ve ever seen, and his inspired work as lead designer on the TV show Brotown has made his style familiar to everyone in the country. Shaolin Burning deserves to sell like crazy – and I can’t wait to read it!

The book is published by Harper Collins, and has already been spotted in some bookstores. The official launch party is tomorrow night (Thursday, 3 February), in Auckland. There’ll be original artwork on show, limited edition prints, copies of the book to buy, and Ant himself to stalk and admire.

Wild horses couldn’t keep me away, and if you’re anywhere near Auckland, I hope I’ll see you there!

P.S. If you can’t make it to the launch, don’t despair. The exhibition will be up till the 18th of February. Details can be found on Adrian Kinnaird’s excellent NZ comics blog, From Earth’s End. And, of course, you can still rush to your local book store for your very own copy of Shaolin Burning!

Now you can wear Hicksville Comics on your chest.

Monday, December 20th, 2010

Yes, I finally got around to making a Hicksville Comics t-shirt, which you can buy from RedBubble. Drape your delicate frame with an assortment of characters from Hicksville, The Magic Pen and Atlas. Or perhaps the delectable frame of a loved one or family member. Or hang it in the closet and forget you ever bought it. Use it to dry dishes. Put it on the dog. Really, it’s entirely up to you.

Also available on kids’ clothing.

Sharing is caring

Friday, December 17th, 2010

demonoid1I’ve just had this pointed out to me: a torrent on Demonoid with all 10 issues of Pickle, the comic book I did in the 1990s (published by Black Eye).

I am, of course, delighted, and wish to thank whoever uploaded it (not to mention whoever went to all the trouble of scanning it in the first place!).

Just remember to seed, folks…

Update 1: Andrew Dubber has kindly made those Pickle issues available via Rapidshare (in case you don’t have a Demonoid account).

Update 2: Because people have been asking, here are some ways you can buy my books and/or help feed my kids, if you feel compelled to do so:

You can buy Hicksville here from Drawn & Quarterly.

Or you can buy Hicksville here from Amazon.

Or you can leave a tip (via Paypal) in my Tip Jar.

Pohutukawa Coast Art Exhibition

Friday, October 15th, 2010

Just a quick note for those of you in Auckland this weekend. Our local school, Maraetai Beach School, is holding an art exhibition to raise funds, and there are three pages by me in there (two from Hicksville and a School Journal illustration). So if you feel like a drive out to the beach with a peek at some local art along the way, come along!

The Pohutukawa Coast Art Exhibition
Maraetai Beach School hall
Opening: Friday 15 October, 7.30pm: $10
(includes an auction of drawings by NZ celebrities)
Hours: Saturday 16 – Sunday 17 October, 9am – 4pm: $5 entry (children free)