Friday, January 28, 2011

Comic Cuts - 28 January 2011

Another week of not much news interrupted by a mid-week panic to get my accounts done and my tax paid before the deadline. I should be used to doing these by now as I've been freelancing for twenty years and the only time HM Revenue have bounced a return was the year they wouldn't let me claim a pizza as tax deductible—despite my strenuous arguments that hotels don't let you cook your own food and it costs a hell of a lot more to eat in a restaurant than nipping into Sainsburys and cooking for yourself. If MPs can claim food as a legitimate expense, why can't I?

The point is, I've never had any problems bar that one, yet I always feel panic stricken despite the fact that I'm pretty well organized about keeping receipts and bills, invoices and bank statements and everything else I need to fill in my tax returns. Even when we moved I made sure that I could find everything. It should be a fairly relaxing job, tapping away with a calculator, filling out a form, writing out a cheque. Nothing scary about that.

But I do wonder how many people say "Yes" to the question: "Are you involved in any tax avoidance schemes?"

The rest of the week has been pretty low-key. My regular weekly chores have been done and I put in some more work on the Hurricane/Champion Index, which will be the first of the new series indexes I'm planning to publish, chosen because they were both "the companion paper to Valiant". The introduction clocks in at around 6,600 words at the moment with more to write. The format will be A4, stapled, softcover with a colour cover, lots of b/w illustrations inside and as complete as I can possibly make it as far as identifying artists and writers. There's also a second project up my sleeve which should debut around the same time... but I'll get to that closer to the time. Hopefully next month.

The latest Paul Temple adventure will be coming to an end shortly so I'm not sure what strip we'll be running next week as we head in February. I'll see what I can find. Hopefully I'll also post the framework for the next part of the Peter Cheyney covers' gallery over the weekend. This will only be partly complete and I'll add more as and when I get time, as I did for the first part. There will be a third section to follow and, once that's filled, I'll repost the lot.

Today's random scan is another pairing... a mate of mine over in the States has been scanning some particularly rare old British paperbacks for me to clean up. These scarce little pamphlets were often badly printed on the worst scraps of paper available and many of them haven't survived the sixty plus years in the best of condition. Mind you, it's a miracle they've survived at all, so I'll post a few of these gems whenever I get a chance.

For a starter, here are two old US pulp yarns given the paperback/pamphlet treatment by Gerald G Swan in 1943 (Into the Fourth Dimension, below) and 1953 (The Man on the Meteor, our column header). I'm still missing a scan of The Shadow Girl from 1946 if anyone has a copy.


  1. Hi Steve

    Re "...the Hurricane/Champion Index...": I have a large pile of Hurricanes, about the first six months worth, if I remember correctly, at home; if that can help you in any way with the above index, let me know.

    David Simpson

  2. Hi David,

    That could be very useful. Perhaps you could drop me a line at the e-mail address top left (below the pic) to discuss it.



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