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Friday, March 07, 2014

Comic Cuts - 7 March 2014

This is probably going to be a short column as I don't really have much in the way of news. I have spent the whole week working no the Countdown/TV Action index and have made some good headway, but most of it was reading through the strips and jotting down notes about the shows that the strips depicted. A great way to spend a week, you might think... OK, it's a great way to spend a week, I'll admit.

But I still have to drag myself out of bed in the morning and psyche myself up for a day's work, same as everyone else. The difference is that I've got no guarantee that I'll have earned a penny by the end of the day, which can be a bit nerve wracking. Couple that with a family history of high blood pressure—I'm only exaggerating slightly when I say my mum rattles when you hug her thanks to the combinations of pills she's on—and I sometimes wonder if freelancing is really the job for me!

But enough of this medical malarkey... how's the book going, I hear you cry. We're up to 11,500 words on the introduction but took a nice little step forward when I heard from one of the early sub-editors who has promised to answer a few questions. Researching comics isn't only about reading strips eight hours a day... there are the hours of frustration trying to track down information on the creators of the strips. And the number of creators it took to put together some comics is amazing: the Boys' World index listed 265 people who contributed to the paper and its annuals. If you spend a couple of hours on every name... well, you can do the math.

Countdown had a smaller pool of talent from which it drew, but trying to find out something about some of the lesser-known names takes time... which explains why the word-count has only jumped by about 5,000 words these past two weeks. At least you can be assured that they're well-researched words.

I was hoping to have the new book out in March but it's looking more like April. Although the introduction is slowly heading towards a complete first draft, I still have a lot of other things to do. One of them is to track down a copy of the Thunderbirds Holiday Special for 1971, published by Polystyle, for which I need a content listing. It's the one pictured above, so if anyone has this, drop me a line and I'll let you know what I need. [Update: I now have the info. I need. Thanks to everyone who got in touch.]

And on the same-ish subject, does anyone have a copy of the Countdown font that I can have? [Update: ditto the above.]

I've only managed to clean up a couple of covers for our random scans this week. Both are by the queen of gangster crime, Dail Ambler, who was the subject of one of my Kindle features, The Lady Holds a Gun! The Story of Dail Ambler, which covers her fascinating career from journalist to author to screenwriter.

I'm not sure how things are going to work out this weekend. I have to hand a piece written by penny dreadful researcher Robert Kirkpatrick which I'll be running shortly. I also have another lengthy comic strip to run at some point but I'm hoping to save that for when I'm doing the layouts for the book. I'm guessing that will be running within the next couple of weeks.

1 comment:

Steven Docker said...

Re: Countdown Font: This looks pretty close ...


Steve Docker