It has been a while since I had said hi to Keef (check out his K-Chronicles website here). He was in San Francisco doing his presentation on police brutality. (I wonder how Keef stays so positive and nice with such a depressing subject.) I should have done a Spider-Man web-shooting hand gesture so Fox News could say I was doing a gang sign. Go to www.kchronicles.com and see Keef’s work and buy his books!
I have been a fan of Keef for what, 20 years or so? 30? It has been a while. Way back when WonderCon was in San Francisco, Keef was manning his booth and selling books, and he asked me to man it while he visited the restroom. So I stood in his booth. An older white guy came up and asked me if I was Keef. I told him I wasn’t, but I thought about it. Keef told me I should have said yes. (In this photo, I am the white guy with the glasses and the slightly droopy left eyelid.) I gave him a copy of Super Bad Hair Day and Boss by Mike Royko. I think of Keef as a writer as well as a cartoonist. He writes great little stories in his work.
I still have not put Keef into a Super Holly story, but I intend to. It would be a police brutality thing, but with Super Holly and Harry Headbutt to add slapstick comedy. I would move Keef’s home town to Chicago because I know nothing about Boston. I have decided that Keef and his wifey Kerstin (or rather, the characters I create based on them) will be the parents of Tucker and Wrigley, The Puppy Brothers (hear their Malevolent Mystery Meat audio story here), BARK BARK BARK BARK BARK!!!! I can’t wait to write Kerstin’s German accent: Ack, little Schnitzels, stoppen der barking! What would be Keef’s superpower? I had thought about super-speed because Keef is the hardest-working guy I have seen in this business, and had stuck i tout for all these decades. (I have seen a lot of comic book / cartoonists come, and I have seen them go. And mostly go.) Keef once said his superpower would be the power to make people vomit (read that story here).
Great seeing you again, Keef. And great hanging out afterwards at Southern Pacific Brewing and having a ginger beer and a root beer (I always stop after two drinks).
P.S. Kerstin is a sweet lady. I wish I could have said hi to her also.
Batton Lash, story writer and Ditko-esque artist, drew the cover of my book Super Bad Hair Day. He gave me great advice (red cape and up-arrow chest logo for Holly). He created Alanna Wolff, a great female lead and a great lawyer. Super Holly would hire Alanna in a nanosecond.
In this full-color original graphic novel, Wolff and Byrd take on a case in which a ghost is literally “grandfathered in” to a home inheritance. Grandpa has died but his ghost won’t leave the house—much to the chagrin of his son and daughter-in-law! Meanwhile at the law offices, the landlord wants Wolff & Byrd to leave because their clients are disturbing the other tenants. Plus: Someone from Alanna’s past comes back to haunt her, Jeff is having family troubles, and intrepid secretary Mavis has her own challenges! Readers can expect lots of plot twists and turns and a surprising revelation. This is the first all-new Supernatural Law graphic novel in 5 years!
If you want a strong, smart, tough female lead and a great courtroom story with the drama of Law & Order (sound effects: BOM BOM!) and the laughs of Seinfeld, read Batton Lash’s Supernatural Law graphic novels. If you contribute to the Grandfathered In Kickstarter, you can get goodies such as the new graphic novel ($25 and up).
At the PLCAF Small Press Comics Expo today, I bought a comic from Crystal Gonzalez: In The Dark. I had to find out what Super Holly would look like drawn by her. Her style is crazy, loopy, scary, funny, the characters want to leap off the page and stick to your face while screaming. So I had her draw Holly having coffee.
A few tiny glitches. Super Holly has one e-bracelet, not two. (Kinda like Leela on Futurama.) The hip purse is attached to her belt. And her nose should be more eagle-beaky. BUT LOOK AT HOLLY’S INTENSELY CRAZY-SCARY-HAPPY FACE!!! AND THAT ELECTROSHOCK-CAFFEINATED HAIR! AND THAT EARTHQUAKING CUP!!! I LOVE THIS!!!!! (And I sometimes feel this way about coffee.)
Thank you, Crystal. I started reading your comic about the guy tossed into hell and trying to stay alive. It has coffee references. How fitting.
At Alternative Press Expo, I met author and artist Derf Backderf (check out his website at www.derfcity.com). Derf has been in the comic story business for decades. He is even-keeled and a nice guy. I talked with him and learned from him. Some of his advice for writers: younger girls are a big audience, and floppies (that’s what he called comic books) are not a great market so do graphic novels.
I bought two of Derf’s books, which I read… no, I devoured! My Friend Dahmer is about Derf going to high school with Jeffrey Dahmer. Yes, THAT Jeffery Dahmer. It was creepy, fascinating, touching, unflinching truthful, and horrifying: Dahmer’s path from troubled teen to serial killer, ending with him picking up his first victim, a hitchhiker. That death is not shown, but you know. Derf drew a Super Holly sketch in the book I bought. That was nice of him, that was outside his usual subject matter.
Trashed is about Derf’s former job as a garbage man. I read this yesterday when I was at a Toyota service center having a strut repaired. I laughed out loud at and with the working stiffs toughing out the most gut-churning grossest job in the world. (I did not look around to see if anyone was looking at me funny when I laughed.) This book has the best barroom insult ever thrown by a liberal. This book is well-researched, and you will never look at a garbage bin the same way ever again.
I also got a sketch from Joel Stokes (facebook and twitter). I bought Joel’s Daily Diary and Rogues. Fun reads, but I wish I could find a link where to buy them! Joel, if you know, let me know and I will post a link.
Last weekend, I was at the San Francisco Comic Con. I bought a graphic novel called This Yeti For Hire! or The Yeti with the Lace Kerchief. The story of a Yeti police detective. I had Sean Morgan draw Super Holly turned into a yeti (abominable snow-woman), with my barber Lash sizing up the situation and using one of my favorite lines from the old Johnny Quest cartoon.
I also bought another issue of Afterburner: Tales of the Cool and the Wicked. On Friday, I talked to Robert Stewart about his art and writing, and I showed him some Super Holly artwork I had with me. On Saturday, he pointed to his portfolio of artwork, and said I should check it out. I saw this on top.
Wow. Super Holly as film noir, as Heavy Metal. Cool and Wicked. I bought it. That was very nice of him to draw for me before I even asked. Or maybe when he looked at me, he saw a dollar sign. I gave him a little more than his asking price.
As I have said before (click here), I got to know Casey when he did open mics. And he is so going into one of my future stories. Super Holly Hansson appreciates good indy music. And she’d likely think Casey is cute. As Super Holly once told him, “Hey, Casey! Love your music! Lemme show you how much!” (Holly wraps her arms around him and gives him a big kiss, and he tastes her strawberry lip gloss.) “How do you like that… Hey! Watch where you put those hands, guitar boy!”