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  This year's New York Comic Con was held October 10–13, 2013. Four days of geeking out, shopping, and hanging with friends, colleagues, and hundreds of photographers of all skill levels. Four days of costuming, interviews, panels, and screening. Celebrities, professionals, and artists all meeting with fans of all ages, types, and passions.  
The venerable Miami Book Fair continues to spread the word about great comics and graphic novels. See below for important news about the comics-related programming coming this year.  
As the idea of what a graphic novel can be continues to expand, so does the belief that they are no longer simply means of entertainment. 
  Upon my arrival at New York Comic Con, I was struck with a sense of awe. It was clear to me that the world of my youth was no more. I had no plans, no supplies nothing but… my trusty red gel pen and a fresh Dark Knight notebook. For the first time, my life had meaning. I would bear witness to this strange new world.                  
San Francisco’s Alternative Press Expo (APE) celebrated its twentieth anniversary on October 12 and 13. APE is different from most cons in that it shines a light on self-publishers and alternative creators so they don’t have “to compete with major publishers or movie studios.”
I was thrilled to see this spotlight on teen-services librarians in the Boston Globe. For one thing, it gives them some much deserved accolades for the work they do; and for two, it mentions friend of the site Robin Brenner, who has often written for GNR. Robin was one of the first graphic-novel-loving librarians I met when I first started editing GNR and also one of the most enthusiastic. Her love for the format is contagious. 
Martha Cornog clued me in to this great article by Manfred von Vulte, 10 Reasons Children Should Read Comic Books. I think he nailed every one. It's excellent to see the comics-reading experience broken down this way, and not just in the obvious ways. No. 1, "Their Lexicon of Complex Words Is Higher Than Most Publications," is often cited by many comics readers and enthusiasts, and it is of course quite true.
The crowds won't be as large at Comic Arts Brooklyn as they were at New York Comic Con, but enthusiasm for the art form will certainly be just as high. The one-day festival, running from 11 a.m. till 7 p.m. will be split between Mt. Carmel Church at 275 N. 8th St. (that's where you'll find all the publisher booths and artist displays) and The Knitting Factory at 361 Metropolitan Ave. (for panels and discussions).
Congratulations to Gene Luen Yang for being named a finalist for the venerable 2013 National Book Award for Boxers & Saints in the Young People's Literature category.
New York Comic Con Is Less Than a Week Away   New York Comic Con, the East Coast's answer to San Diego Comic-Con, starts next week! Are you ready? Here's our guide for teachers and librarians to use to plan their schedules; we've culled through the entire listing of panels and events at NYCC to bring you the ones of specific interest for you. Use the list below to plan your days at NYCC accordingly. (For the full list of events and panels at NYCC, click here.)