Not all comics are corporate global franchises spun off into endless merchandise and movies. Some of the very best comics are cult comics, defined as “honest, heartfelt, homemade” by Ilya, editor of The Mammoth Book of Cult Comics from Running Press Book Publishers, which will be launched at the Comica Festival on Friday 7th November at Foyles. Ilya joins three other leading graphic novelists to discuss their work and its place in comics culture.
Ilya is a committed comics creator himself, whose latest graphic novel is Room For Love from SelfMadeHero and whose stories are published in the US (Marvel, DC, Dark Horse), Japan (Kodansha) and Europe. He’ll be joined in this Comica Conversation in association with Broken Frontier by Rob Davis, co-editor of the acclaimed UK anthology Nelson (published by Blank Slate Press) and creator of a brilliantly bizarre solo debut, the recently-released The Motherless Oven (SelfMadeHero).
Also taking part is Carol Swain, one of the most distinctive and lyrical voices in British comics, whose latest book Gast (Fantagraphics) traces a teenage girl’s investigations into the death of a Welsh cross-dressing farmer.
And another debut graphic novelist, Paul Rainey, will discuss There’s No Time Like The Present, a mind-expanding speculation about how the future evolution of the internet could radically disrupt our lives. His self-published, seven-year serial is now revised and collected in hardcover by Escape Books. The panelists will be signing their books afterwards.
Hosting the discussion will be expert and critic Andy Oliver, whose ‘Small Pressganged’ columns on the Broken Frontier website ‘shine a spotlight on the often overlooked world of small press, self-published and altcomics.’
• Comics Festival 2014: ‘What Makes A Cult Comic?’ with Rob Davis, Ilya, Paul Rainey & Carol Swain Friday 7th November 7, 2014 7.00-8.30pm, The Auditorium, Level 6, Foyles, 107 Charing Cross Road, WC2H 0DT Tickets: £8.00/5.00 Book Here!
• Running Press Official Site: www.runningpress.com
The founder of downthetubes, which he established in 1998. John works as a comics and magazine editor, writer, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. He is currently editor of Star Trek Explorer, published by Titan – his third tour of duty on the title originally titled Star Trek Magazine.
Working in British comics publishing since the 1980s, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Babylon 5 Magazine, and more. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War” and “Dan Dare”.
He’s the writer of “Pilgrim: Secrets and Lies” for B7 Comics; “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood.