BEAR ALLEY BOOKS

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Friday, July 16, 2010

Comic Cuts - 16 July 2010

We're finally on our way tomorrow and despite weeks of preparation and packing I can honestly say that I'm neither prepared nor packed!

Around 6.30 pm Monday evening I had a phone call from The Guardian asking if I could put together an obituary for Harvey Pekar double-quick. I managed to get it started around 9.30 and had it completed at 2 am Tuesday morning, at which point I crawled off to bed. Got to sleep around 3 am and woke up six hours later. A couple of cups of coffee later, I was back onto it, revising a little and trying to trim it down as it was overlength. Sent in a version at 10.30 am, received an edited version to check at 12.20 pm and the whole thing was online at the Guardian website just before two in the afternoon and in the newspaper the next day.

Which was fine because I was out of the house and heading over to our new home at 11.30 am for a couple of hours scampering around with a tape measure. The big worry now is that I have a nasty feeling I won't be able to get all of our shelving into the new place, so my first task after the move will be to make a decision on what has to go and what I can't live without. Some hard decisions are going to have to be made, although I've proved to myself that I can do it when push comes to shove. Two more bags of magazines went out for recycling yesterday reducing two comic boxes to one comic box (they were old copies of Wizard which, frankly, I haven't looked at for 15 years and probably would never have looked at again).

Since announcing my move I've been hearing dozens of stories of other people doing the same thing, including one guy who recently took 3,500 magazines down to the local council dump and skipped the whole lot. I prefer a more human form of recycling, so there might be some bargains to be had in August and September once I sort out what books I can live without.

Next week is going to be frantic and, at this precise moment, I've no idea what I can do for Bear Alley. Hopefully I'll have something running as I enjoy putting these columns together and the contacts and comments I get from readers. The one thing that will almost certainly fall apart is correspondence. If you have any questions, it might be best to leave it a couple of weeks as I'm already falling badly behind and there's a good chance that, once the computer is moved I'll be incommunicado until we can get a decent internet connection and the wireless set up at our new home. I may also have to set up a temporary e-mail contact address.

I'm writing this in the wee hours of Friday morning having just put together a draft of another obituary (for SF writer James P. Hogan). The Al Williamson obituary (published yesterday) was my 33rd obituary for The Guardian, and they've given me my own page! At the back of my mind I have an idea for a novel about an impoverished freelance writer who deliberately goes around bumping people off so that he can write up their obituaries.

A quick round-up of news: I heard today from Geoff that Book Palace Books are to publish Wulf the Briton. This is one of the jewels in the British comics' crown and has been on my wish list of strips that need reprinting for years (along with Heros the Spartan and a complete set of Steel Claw). The details are still to be worked out but it will run to over 300 pages, full colour and will hopefully be published in a volume the same size as the original Express Weekly. Best guess for a publication date is "late 2010" at the moment but, now that the contract has been signed, things are hopefully going to move pretty quickly.

I should add that the cover at the top of the column is only provisional and not the final cover. I just needed something to tease you.

I've also heard from Rob van Bavel of Don Lawrence Collection that the last three Storm volumes (10, 11 and 12) are heading to the printers and should be back at the end of July and ready for shipping out to customers the first week of August. Just what I need: a trio of deluxe hardcovers to find space on my shelves for!

4 comments:

jon haward said...

Wulf the Briton getting a collection fab news can't wait to get that :-)

p.s my Dredd fat fathers strip is out in 2000ad next week issue 1694 got my comp copies and it's come out looking great (sorry for the shameless plug Steve)

Steve said...

Hi Jon,

I can't wait either. I should have mentioned that I'm not doing the hard work (scanning and whatnot) on this one. The man taking on that task is Peter Richardson. I doff my cap to him.

crow said...

Wulf the Briton? That is such cool news! I just can't wait!

Fingers crossed for a Heros collection at some point too!

jon haward said...

i've been seeing the scans on Peter's blog and i was keeping my fingers crossed that the end result would be a published book ,so pleased it's going to happen

next on the wish list
heros and wraith of the gods :-)