Robot 6

Comics A.M. | Ursula Vernon’s Digger wins Hugo Award


Awards | The Hugo Awards were announced Sunday evening, and the award for Best Graphic Story went to Ursula Vernon for Digger. [The Hugo Awards]

Legal | Writer Scott Henry details the lengthy attempt to prosecute Dragon*Con co-founder Ed Kramer on charges of child molestation. The case began in 2000 and has yet to go to trial. [Atlanta Magazine]

Publishing | Bandai Entertainment will discontinue sales of manga, novels and anime, with the final shipment of manga going out at the end of October. The company, a subsidiary of Namco Bandai Entertainment, had stopped publishing new work in January and was focusing on sales of its existing properties. [Anime News Network]

Grants | Christopher Butcher reminds us that the deadline for applications for the Queer Press Grant is Oct. 1, and those who aren’t considering applying for it might consider donating to it. [Comics 212]

Creators | Geoff Johns talks about drawing on his own background to create Simon Baz, the Arab-American who will wear the Green Lantern ring starting in this week’s “zero issue.” [The Associated Press]

Creators | China Miéville will sketch in some of the backstory of the H-Dial in the zero issue of Dial H: “I think of it as a pre-echo of the story line we’re reading now. This kind of thing that is happening to Nelson has happened before, including a long time before.” [USA Today]

Femme Schism

Creators | Tiffany Pascal, a graduate student at the University of North Dakota, discusses her Kickstarter-funded graphic novel Femme Schism, the story of a Native American woman forced by circumstances to live with a white Christian missionary. [Inforum]

Graphic novels | Librarian Stephen Weiner, author of Faster Than a Speeding Bullet: The Rise of the Graphic Novel, talks about how the field has changed since the first edition of his book in 2003: “One, we’ve seen the ascent and to some degree the descent of Manga. One of the things manga’s popularity indicated was that American teenagers were interested in stories aside from superhero stories. Two, the development of graphic novel imprints by trade publishers: This is another indicator that general readers are interested in comics but not necessarily in superhero or genre stories. Three, Hollywood’s infatuation with superheroes.” The second edition is due out later this year. [Graphic Novel Reporter]

Webcomics | Because webcomics live on the web, it matters how they show up on Google. Larry Cruz tests how a search on “webcomics” does with Google’s new Penguin SEO and finds … about what you’d expect, including one outlier. [The Webcomic Overlook]

Hoax Hunters

Comics | This list of “Ten Indie Comics That Prove You’re a Better Nerd Than Everyone Else” is clearly geared to a mainstream audience. [Mancave Daily]

Criticism | The Hooded Utilitarian will celebrate its fifth anniversary with a roundtable on the worst comics ever; editor Noah Berlatsky kicks things off with an explanation of why, exactly, he decided to do this. [The Hooded Utilitarian]

Advice | No fewer than five U.S. editors will be attending the Dublin International Comic Expo, and artist Declan Shalvey has some advice for anyone who plans on pitching there — or anywhere else, for that matter. [Declan Shalvey]

Blogosphere | After a nearly two-year hiatus, the website Comics Bronze Age — it focuses on comics published between 1970 and 1985 — has returned. [Comics Bronze Age]



I’m curious: Anyone here familiar with Digger? I like to think that even if I am not interested in everything that’s out there, I know what things are. And yet I never heard of this, just like I never heard of Schlock Mercenary till it was nominated for a Hugo.

I am always trying to figure out how the Hugo nominees for comics so rarely reflect the other awards, or broader trends. Fables, long past its peak, is up for a Hugo every year. Nothing from Image ever is. And while I bet Saga sweeps the Eisners and Harveys, I would also bet it’s not even on the long list for Hugo nominees next year. This is a very odd category in what I find to be a strange set of awards altogether.

I’ve been reading Digger for a while now; I discovered it because Ursula Vernon also writes a delightful kids’ book series (Dragonbreath), and I found her site online (thanks to another librarian fan). Digger is a great story, with a unique heroine who finds herself in strange and dangerous situations.

Since the Hugos are nominated and voted on by people who register for the World Science Fiction Conventions, and are therefore more dedicated science fiction/fantasy readers rather than comics readers, I think the nominations are going to look much different from the Eisners and Harveys. I used to register each year, even though I couldn’t attend, but even nonattendee costs have risen to the point that I can’t afford the extra expense (Supporting Membership for the 2013 WorldCon is currently $60 and will probably rise in December). Comics fans with friends who are more involved with sf/f fandom (and the Hugos) need to educate these friends and steer them to great sf comics such as Saga.

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