This Sunday (5th November), British newspaper The Observer is celebrating 10 years of the Observer / Jonathan Cape / Comica graphic short story prize with a graphic novel special section as part of its New Review section.
This year’s winner and runner-up will be announced inside, and the special supplement features a cover by Chris Ware and an interview with comic creator Alison Bechdel, author of the long-running comic strip Dykes to Watch Out For, who came to critical and commercial success in 2006 with her graphic memoir Fun Home, which was subsequently adapted as a musical which won a Tony Award for Best Musical in 2015.
This year’s finalists entries are currently being exhibited at London’s Orbital Comics until tomorrow.
Below is a list of the finalists and their respective graphic short story. The first prize is £1,000 and the publication of the four-page story in The Observer New Review.
The runner-up will receive £250 and their work will appear on guardian.co.uk
- 4.42AM – Peter Cline
- Dennis and June – Emily Bob
- Greedy Guts – Tom Eaton
- Haunted – Andi Watson
- I Think Collin has Dementia – Author Unknown
- If You’re so Wise, How Come You’re Dead? – Tor Freeman
- Madame and Me – James Albon
- Mister-e Car Wash – Oliver Elliott
- My Father in Berlin – Astrid and Jonathan Goldsmith
- On a Friday – Panosbaros
- Plop – Stref
- Prim – Andy Hixon
- Sea Change – Ginny Shinnel
- The Slug Finger – Lily Shaul
- Start Up – Peter Duggan
- The Three Ravens – Alé Mercado
- Tom and Gerry – Jessica Barrah
- Varicose Veins – Jessika Green
The quality of the entries, many from already-established creators, is impressive and I’m sure it can’t have been easy deciding this year’s short list. It will be interesting to see who the winners are.
• Orbital Comics: www.orbitalcomics.com
• Artist Myfanwy Tristram has found some entries that didn’t make the short list, noted here
With thanks to Richard Sheaf
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.