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Friday, March 18, 2016

Comic Cuts - 18 March 2016

The second proof for Iron Mask is on its way... it may even arrive today, in which case you might see the payment page go live any second now—or it may already be live by the time you read this. If that's the case there will be a link in the text under the cover picture at the top of the column to your right. Go take a look.

So I'm thinking about what I'm going to do next. I've an idea and I've even started doing some of the scanning that I'm going to need to do if this turns into Project 27. It could be a bit pricey because it needs to be full colour but I don't think it will work in b/w. It's something I've got to think about because it is going to involve cleaning up a lot of book cover scans.

We went to see Richard Herring at the Colchester Arts Centre on Saturday. The show was sold out and 300 people were packed in like sardines, although thankfully this is March and it wasn't nearly as uncomfortably hot as it sometimes can get at packed gigs at the Arts Centre. Herring was on good form, the show following the trend towards cheery, bubbly optimism of last year's Lord of the Dance Setee. If anything, this year's show was even more joyful and upbeat as it centres around the birth of his daughter.

I took my annual photo—one taken last year was later used in Herring's newsletter, so I'm hoping for big things this year.

We have a couple of other comedy nights out lined up for March—Jenny Eclair and Simon Evans. And we're planning to see Sara Pascoe again later in the year. Let's hope they're as good.

Maybe it's my age, but I screwed up spectacularly on Thursday when I was buying a couple of cheap old paperbacks. A little bookshop has opened up locally and I stuck my head in to find it was a very pleasant little place with about 25 shelves of second hand books tending towards reference and literary fiction. Burrowing deep, I spotted a British Library 'Crime Classics' reprint that I didn't have for £3 and an old wartime Services Edition of a slim book called The Reluctant Erk, for £2. The only really good find was a rather tatty copy of Ernest Dudley's Armchair Detective Reader, with a nice Denis McLoughlin cover, which was priced at 30p.

So I took my three books to the desk and the nice lady said "We'll call it a tenner". It was at that point that I realised that when I'd glanced at the price of Reluctant Erk I'd read £2 when it actually said £7. I should have put it back but, perhaps thrown by the fact that she was giving me a free Boardman paperback, I smiled at the shop owner and left.

But did I win the day? After an admittedly fairly brief search of the internet, the asking price for only copy I can find is £73.99. Which makes my free copy a bit of a bargain... certainly enough for me to forget the extra fiver I paid for the Macadam collection.

Continuing our collection of covers by Ray Theobald, here is a small gallery of Theobald's war covers for Badger Books. I can't recall whether Theobald ever signed any of his Badger covers... probably not as they were unlikely to have turned down any of his work, however poor, as long as the price was right. They're very good examples of what was wrong with his work: there was usually absolutely nothing wrong with the idea behind the image but it was let down by his stiff figurework and minimal effort to put in any detail. A shame, as he was able to improve when given the chance.

 
 
 

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