Categories: Features, Subway Stories
Once a year Bethesda, Maryland becomes a magical place, overrun with indie cartoonists, where alcohol-fueled karaoke madness and brick-based awards ceremonies rule the day. It seems, perhaps, a bit of a nuisance to hold one of the country’s largest alternative comics gatherings in a city like Bethesda, rather than, say, New York, San Francisco, or Portland. Ultimately, however, SPX’s relatively out of the way location is one of its bigger strengths, assuring that the after-show festivities don’t suffer the same fragmentation as their bigger city counterparts.
And, of course, we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention the fact that the show also tends to draw one of the strongest artist lineups in indie comics. After the jump, check out a rundown of appearences and book debuts from the artists themselves.
If you’d like to be added to list, drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Liz Baillie: I’ll be debuting My Brain Hurts: Volume Two (collecting issues 6-10, plus bonus material) and Freewheel #3. I’ll also be taking part in a reading at Atomic Books that Friday as part of their 2nd Annual SPX-plosion event, which will also include readings from MK Reed, Ken Dahl, Julia Wertz, John Porcellino, Emily Flake, and Peter Kuper. This event will also be the first of two weeks’ worth of readings and events across the east coast and midwest as part of the Punchbuggy Tour, which includes myself, MK Reed and Ken Dahl.
Daniel Barlow: Hi! I’m one of the co-founders of the New England groups Trees & Hills and Offshore Comix. Trees & Hills will debut Shelter, a comic anthology about housing issues … with 25 percent of sales going to benefit housing organizations. Offshore Comix will release Big Sexy, a 90-page anthology of erotic comics. For adults only! Both comics feature contributions from Ignatz Award nominees Colleen Frakes and Cat Garza.
Jonathan Baylis: I’ll be premiering my new book, So Buttons #2, featuring six autobiographical stories on marriage, Vietnam, Republicans, Forrest J. Ackerman and John Lennon.
Box Brown: I’ll be at the Top Shelf Table Sat and Sunday with copies of Love is a Peculiar Type of the Thing, These Dreams Keep Me Going These Days: A Bellen! Collection, and Bad High School Poetry #1.
Jeffrey Brown: Not sure if I’ll be there yet – I think I’ll be going, but I might end up not going, but either way, I’m working on decorating a guitar for the CBLDF.
Buenaventura Press: Jerry Moriarty, Matt Furie, and Lisa Hanawalt will be with us throughout the weekend celebrating the releases of their new books as well as the following Kramers Ergot 7 contributors. This will be Jerry Moriarty’s second appearance at a show, making this a rare opportunity to meet him and see him talk about his work. This will also be the first East Coast comics show for Boy’s Club creator Matt Furie.
Center for Cartoon Studies: CCS will be exhibiting at table G6. Please drop by to learn more about our unique program and to browse our latest student publications. Visit other CCSers in the neighbors, including Sundays, One Percent Press, I Know Joe Kimpel, and cartoonists Colleen Frakes (CCS ‘07) and Jon Chad! Trees and Hills, Jen Vaughn (CCS ‘10), Morgan Pielli (CCS ‘08) and our friends at Secret Acres are just around the corner.
Comic Bakery: Tables H7/H8 Outreach #2 by Raina Telgemeier, X-Men: Misfits vol. 1 by Raina Telgemeier and Dave Roman, Untitled Zombie Comic by Marion Vitus, and Life Meter Volume 3. Raina will be giving away two copies of the galley for her new book, Smile: one by raffle, and one for the most horrific dental story!
Ken Dahl: I’ll be at the Secret Acres table debuting Monsters, my graphic novel about STDs. We’ve made herpes temporary tattoos for the occasion!
Abby Denson: Dolltopia is debuting at SPX. Here’s a 12-page preview.
Will Dinski: I’ll have my new book Covered in Confusion and my kind of almost new book Mind Mapping.
Drawn & Quarterly: We are going to have R. Sikoryak, Kevin Huizenga and John Porcellino at our booth, and we’ll be debuting John Porcellino’s Map of My Heart and Tove Jansson’s The Book About Moomin, Mymble, and Little My, our first ever kids’ book!
- Gahan Wilson
- Carol Tyler
- Hans Rickheit
- Paul Hornschemeier
- Paul Karasik
- Miss Lasko-Gross
- Zak Sally
Cheese Hasselburger: Look out for House of Twelve #5: Touching Children’s Stories debuting at SPX. Ho12’s first all ages anthology features such indie comics art-stars as Miss Lasko-Gross, Kevin Colden and K. Thor Jensen to name a few.
Paul Karasik: I will be at the Fantagraphics booth signing copies of You Shall Die By Your Own Evil Creation, and also presenting “The Fletcher Hanks Experience” a multimedia tour over the craggy landscape of Fletcher Hanks narrated by his son.
James Kochalka: I’ll also be debuting my illustrated chapter book, Yellow Bear and the Shiny Penny and also Dragon Fire, a book by my 6 year old son, Eli.
Peter Kuper: Sat. 26th SPX talk/ signing 3-4.
Pat Lewis: I’ll be there, with a brand-new minicomic, Cragmore: Book Two, the second part in what will eventually be a full-length graphic novel. Also, t-shirts.
Microcosm: We have Liz Baillie’s new book My Brain Hurts Volume 2. Some of our authors, including Liz of course, are doing the Atomic Books pre-SPX reading:
Friday, September 25th
7PM. Atomic Books.
NBM: We will have two artists appearing at our tables premiering books at SPX: Ted Rall with Year of Loving Dangerously as drawn by Pablo Callejo, weeks ahead of store release! Jesse Lonergan with Joe & Azat. We’ll also have a selection of recent GNs of ours.
L. Nichols: I will be debuting a brand new Jumbly Junkery #8 (the largest yet at 44 pages) and will be sharing table C4 with BT Livermore.
Oni: After a year of waiting, Matthew Loux returns with Salt Water Taffy v3: The Truth About Dr. True, premiering at Small Press Expo Sept 26th -27th in Bethesda, Maryland.
Rafer Roberts: Plastic Farm #16 Ed Erbmas and the Great Book Buyback Scam (pt 2) $2.50 Minicomic. On sale at the Plastic Farm Press table, which is part of the DC Conspiracy row.
Bill Roundy: I’ll be at the show with The Amazing Adventures of Bill, a 300-page collection of my journal comics from 2003 to 2008 . I’ll also have various gay romance mini-comics.
Karl Slominski/Joshua Jenkins: I’ll be debuting the second installment in the Plan B series (created by writer Josh Jenkins and myself) as well as a creator-owned collection of short stories called Pretty Little KillJo.
Matthew Smith: I’ll be at SPX to represent 80 Pork Comics, bringing along the first five issues of our first title The Adventurers of Liberty City and debuting our new anthology series Wichita Gravy. WG features several short comics, dabbling in horror, humor, and weirdness. My 8 year old son, Christopher, will also be with me, as he co-wrote and co-created a story in Wichita Gravy no. 1. And of course, Christopher will be providing free sketches of a character of your choice with every purchase!
Sparkplug: We’ll be sitting with Tom Neely and Zak Sally’s La Mano at tables W37/W38. Come by and say “hi”.
- The Top Shelf crew: Chris Staros, Leigh Walton, & Van Jensen
- Brett Weldele
- Andy Runton
- Jeffrey Brown
- Nate Powell
- James Kochalka
- Matt Kindt
As for debuts, we’ll have the newest book in James Kochalka’s Johnny Boo series (Johnny Boo & the Happy Apples), as well as Grant Reynolds’ Comic Diorama.