Saturday, January 22, 2011

"Unexplored Worlds" featured in Montreal Gazette

Click HERE to read the review of my "Unexplored Worlds: The Steve Ditko Archives v2" book that debuted last month. Nice to read this part: "the quality of the reproductions is outstanding".

We'll return to a lot of "Bill Everett Archives" news this week! Working today on replying to all the great response to our call for scans help. Need to also tie off the introduction to the book soon, and we'll be revealing the title of the book, as well as the cover image.

We're also going to have a special treat posted this week: my sit-down with Wendy Everett from the Toronto release party for "Fire & Water" back in September. It's a fascinating look into the man and the impact his career and personal struggles had on his family.

Monday, January 17, 2011

"Bill Everett Archives" news: Help with Scans needed! Earn free copies! 10% of royalties goes to The Hero Initiative!

This is going to be "Bill Everett Archives Week" as I look to finish off work on the collection that I'm editing of Sub-Mariner creator Bill Everett's 1938-1942 (non-Marvel) stories that have never been collected before.

And, as you can tell from the longest-Blog-Post-title-ever above, I need your help with scans from the original comic books or the collections will not see the light.

Do you have the comics listed below? If so (regardless of condition), please email me at (before scanning anything, please contact me for instructions; this is also to check if we've received worthy scans of a story already):

  • Amazing Adventures Funnies #1
  • Amazing Mystery Funnies v1 #1-3a, 3b; v2 #2-7, 18
  • Amazing Man Comics 5-11
  • Blue Bolt Comics v1 #4-11
  • Blue Bolt Comics v2 #1-3
  • Famous Funnies #85
  • (Reg'lar Fellers) Heroic Comics #1-9, 11-15
  • Keen Detective Funnies v2 #11, 20
  • Silver Streak Comics 20, 21
  • Target Comics v1 #1-9
  • Victory Comics #1, 2

As we did with the two volumes in the "Steve Ditko Archives" series from Fantagraphics, the pages of the comics are "rinsed" from the original source material. God blessed me with the material that I do have in the original comic-book form, but for a kid born in 1970, and rich only in wonder, purchasing these expensive books from the Golden Age of Comics was not my destiny. I instead found solace in microfiche, scans, photocopies and B&W stats.

There are enough Bill Everett stories from this period to make up two volumes if we find and scan all of them. Will you help? You will be rewarded if so. Contribute at least 5 pages and we'll send you a free copy. Contribute 10 pages and we'll send you two. Contribute 20 or more pages and we'll send three copies!

Help The Hero Initiative! As I am doing with my "Fire & Water: Bill Everett, the Sub-Mariner & the Birth of Marvel Comics" book, I am donating 10% of my royalties on the "Bill Everett Archives" to The Hero Initiative that helps comic-book artists going through financial struggles. So, let's help make these two volumes a reality for the worthy cause and to ensure these rare works of Bill Everett live on for future generations!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Reflecting on "My Bill Everett Year"

When I reflect on this past year, I am very grateful for having realized a life-long dream: to honour Bill Everett with a book worthy of his talent and career. I said this to Wendy Everett on numerous occasions in 2010 - "Fire and Water" would have been a nice picture book (that would have perpetuated many a myths about Bill...that he himself helped craft) without her contributions. Because of her, I think we have the best portrait of her Dad that we could have hoped to create, especially so long after his passing in 1973.

My favourite moments were 1) being able to add to and correct all the bio. data out there that has existed as "fact" in people's heads for a good forty years; 2) seeing the scans come into my inbox of those 1937 sketchbook drawings and that 1935 piece that opens the first chapter. Unearthing something that no one has seen before is always a treasure; 3) spending time with Wendy Everett in San Diego (handing her a copy of our book on her Dad) and then our marvellous show in Toronto where we really improved on our presentation and chat (I have a copy of it, just need a server to store it on), and especially our dinner afterwards with my son, Luke.

Having discovered Bill Everett's work when I was 12 back in 1983, when even artists like Steve Ditko weren't in vogue, it's really gratifying to share my vision of what represents his work with everyone. Thank you to all who have provided feedback on the book and your enjoyment of it, to those who contributed to its creation, and to Fantagraphics for stepping up and being very enthusiastic about publishing it.

2011 will continue "My Bill Everett Year" as we get to see "The Bill Everett Archives" come to fruition, rightfully reprinting his 1938-42 (non-Marvel) work for the first time for all to enjoy. Have a great new year, Everett Nation!