Imagining Scotland, 2043… a comic vision unfolds in brave new project


Art by and © Kate Charlesworth

Art by and © Kate Charlesworth


The Edinburgh International Book Festival and Freight Books have announced the six teams of major names in European comics and graphic novels who have collaborated on a new graphic novel which will be launched in August 2014.

As part of the Stripped programme of graphic novels at the 2013 Edinburgh International Book Festival, which was supported by the Scottish Government’s Edinburgh Festivals Expo Fund, a dream team of authors and artists were commissioned to create a brand new graphic novel. Published by Glasgow-based Freight Books, the resulting story, IDP: 2043, imagines a Scotland 30 years in the future and explores the impact of global warming on the country.

IDP 2043 Art by and © Will Norris

IDP 2043 Art by and © Will Morris


IDP (short for internally displaced person or persons) follows the catastrophic effects of a small rise in sea levels on the country’s heavily populated low lying areas and how society reimagines itself in the face of a huge population shift in a world of scant resources.

Scottish crime writer and graphic novelist Denise Mina, the creator of police detective Alex Morrow and who has adapted Stieg Larsson’s “Millennium Trilogy,” into graphic novels for DC Entertainment, was appointed as story editor, and has worked with some of the brightest talents in the European graphic novel world to co-ordinate the six different chapters in this single narrative.

Celebrated French graphic novelist and illustrator Barroux illustrates the chapter written by Denise, while Costa Award winning Mary Talbot collaborated with fellow Sally Heathcote: Suffragette creator with artist Kate Charlesworth on her chapter.

Denise asked me to write the concluding chapter, so what could possibly go wrong?” Mary reveals on her official site. “Ha! Well, I have to say that when I agreed to contribute it was with some trepidation at joining a group project with a tight deadline. But that was before I knew about the great professional line-up.”

The ‘Godfather of British comics’ and creator of 2000AD Pat Mills worked with graphic novelist Hannah Berry, while the enfant terrible of Scottish letters and author of Trainspotting Irvine Welsh was paired with graphic artist Dan McDaid.

Also on board are the graphic novelist and illustrators Adam Murphy (whose work features in Phoenix Comic and The Guardian) and Will Morris, author of The Silver Darlings, published by Blank Slate and one of the contributors to the wonderful Nelson anthology.

‘It has been thrilling to work with such great writers and artists,” says Denise Mina. “Each took the images, characters and narrative to places I couldn’t even have anticipated. At its best collaboration is surprising and stimulating but this was fun too. And everyone was on time.’

Nick Barley, Director of the Edinburgh International Book Festival, said “Welcoming so many of the world’s top graphic novelists and artists to Charlotte Square Gardens last summer in our Stripped programme was just the start. I am thrilled that we will be able to launch our very own graphic novel at the Book Festival this year.

“This has been a truly collaborative effort and Denise has done an extraordinary job in pulling together the six chapters, each of which have been individually written and illustrated by some of Europe’s leading exponents of graphic novels. We are also delighted to be working with Freight as our publishing partner.”

“Freight is delighted, not only to be collaborating with the world’s largest book festival on such a prestigious project, but also to be working with such a talented collection of internationally renowned writers and artists,” added Adrian Searle, Publisher.

“Graphic novels are a hugely important part of our creative culture and IDP: 2043 is proving to be a highly engaging but persuasive way of addressing crucial issues.’

“The Edinburgh International Book Festival has a global reputation for championing publishing, literature and creative writing it all its forms,” commented Scotalnd’s Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs Fiona Hyslop, “and the Expo Fund’s support of the Book Festival’s exploration of this exciting and vibrant storytelling medium through the immensely successful Stripped Programme is a perfect example of this.

“Scottish talent leads the world in the field of graphic novels and comics and I am delighted that the incredible scope of the genre and the range of talents involved is represented in this fascinating new publication.”

IDP:2043 will be published in August 2014 and launched at this year’s Edinburgh International Book Festival.

The Stripped programme of events in the 2013 Book Festival celebrated comics, graphic novels and the people who create them. Over 40 events laid bare the incredible scope of this genre, giving audiences a chance to meet the writers and artists behind this surprising, witty and insightful literary form.

• The 2014 Edinburgh International Book Festival runs from Saturday 9th August to Monday 25th August and the full programme of events will be announced on Wednesday 11th June 2014. Full details can be found on

Categories: British Comics - Books, British Comics - Current British Publishers, British Comics - Graphic Novels, downthetubes Comics News, Events

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