No jokes today, just the deadly serious news about people who make long stories with cartoons.
Item! Diane Obomsawin is interviewed about her new D+Q book, On Loving Women: “Always my wish was that we feel it’s light, but we feel the river of sadness — just not at first sight. It’s inside. I don’t know how to explain it. The reality is, I just go with the flow. It’s very quick, the decisions I make, and I really felt like it had to be this way. In the end, I just knew if I liked it or not. I feel honored that my friends were so generous in telling me their stories. I feel like I had something precious to take care of. There is a deepness, even if it’s light and short.”
Item! Kate Beaton is interviewed at The Appendix: “Cape Breton Island is made up of a few distinct cultural populations, but in Mabou and area it’s predominantly people of Highland Scots ancestry, who left Scotland during or after the Clearances. It was an isolated area for a long time, so though I am ninth generation or so, my grandparents’ first language was Gaelic. And we learned it in school, and the signs are English/Gaelic bilingual, though that’s not really necessary now. You are very aware of your own history in Mabou—your family line, where they came from, your relation to anyone in town. And there is a great cultural pride about it—not being Scottish, but being Cape Breton Gaels, is its own thing. I am not descended from great musicians, that is in other families. I used to wish “the music was in us” as they say, but I am descended from local bards, so that fits well enough, since I am a storyteller too in a way.”
Item! A preview of Gerhard’s contribution to a comics anthology devoted to raising money for First Nations schools in Canada, One Tribe.
Item! 35 years ago a man named Bus Griffiths published a semi-autobiographical graphic novel about working as a logger in the forests of BC. It was a weird, wonderful book with no precedent in Canadian comics. Although Giffiths has long since passed on, his art remains as testament to an unusual life and Now You’re Logging is once more in print as a deluxe 35th anniversary book. As the publisher notes: “Whether readers are interested in logging history, a good yarn or folk art, they will be enthralled by Now You’re Logging, British Columbia’s first graphic novel and a enduring West Coast classic, published in celebration of what would have been Bus Griffiths’ 100th birthday. Now You’re Logging is the story of Al and Red, who go to work in a small West Coast logging show during the dirty thirties. As they learn their trades, the reader is treated to an amazingly detailed view of the camp’s varied operations—falling and bucking timber by hand, topping and rigging of spar trees, moving steam donkeys and making up log booms, plus all the colourful characters, camaraderie, romance and life-threatening exploits of a BC adventure story.”
Item! Michael Cho shares the cover for and his publisher’s press release about his debut graphic novel, Shoplifter, a 96-page duo-shade tome Pantheon will be bring out in the Fall. Of Cho’s titular heroine: “whenever she shoplifts a magazine from the corner store near her apartment, she feels a little, what? A little more alive. Yet Corinna knows there must be something more to life, and she faces the same question as does everyone of her generation: how to find it?”