Thu, 01 January 2015 Award, award!

I don’t know how many of you get the Father Ted reference in the headline, but considering my audience I suspect many of you will know to which scene I’m referring.

It’s always encouraging to be shortlisted for an award, but it’s rather nice to win one.

I was recently nominated for Best Irish Writer (comics) in the Arcade Awards, and today they announced that I won.

Thanks to everyone who voted for me, and to the wonderful teams I’m a part of when creating comics.

It’s a fun start to 2015. Happy New Year to you all!

Sun, 21 December 2014 A short day with good news

In May this year I announced that my short story ‘Bone Mother’ had been optioned by the National Film Board of Canada’s Animation Studio with the view to make a short stop-motion animated film, adapted and directed by Sylvie Trouvé and Dale Hayward (via their animation company See Creature), and produced for the NFB by Jelena Popovic.

Everyone knows that an option doesn’t necessarily mean that the short film will get made, but I had hope considering the people involved.

So I was delighted when I discovered that ‘Bone Mother’ has been green-lit, and the production is expected to finish in early 2016. Seven minutes of stop-motion, and over a year to make it. It’s a laborious business, but how terrific it looks when it’s done.

Sylvie focuses on Baba Yaga

Sylvie and Dale will be posting updates about the process on their blog, and you can also keep track of their work via their Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram,.

It looks like they’re making much of the characters and sets via their 3D printer, which you can see in action.

Thanks to Sylvie and Dale for sticking with my story for so long, and to the NFB for supporting the project.

I’m so looking forward to seeing the animation when it’s complete!

Fri, 28 November 2014 2014 Laydeez do Comics meeting

Lynda Rucker and I are organising another Laydeez do Comics meeting from 2pm onwards this Saturday in the Odessa Club in Dublin.

Our guests will be C.E. MurphyPhilip Barrettme, and Paul Bolger.

We’re also celebrating being on the cusp of the holiday season, so bring along a wrapped comic book for our blind comic book swap – come with one comic and leave with another!

Everyone is welcome!

Pop along, listen to the speakers, meet the Irish comic book community, and get your comic book fix on!

Sun, 23 November 2014 GoH at Octocon 2015


I’m pleased to announce that I’ve been invited to be Guest of Honour at Octocon 2015, which is taking place in the Camden Court Hotel from 10 – 11 October 2015.

So far the other GoH who has been announced is young adult novelist Emma Newman.

I started attending Octocon as a fan, and then progressed to running the convention for a period, so all these years later it means a great deal to me to be a GoH at the convention which was my foundation for sf/fantasy/horror appreciation.

The convention seems a long way off at this point, but I’m already looking forward to it.

Mon, 10 November 2014 In Conversation with Posy Simmonds

It’s been a wonderful experience to be on the selection committee for this year’s British Comics Awards, as I’ve experienced first hand the variety and talent in the British comic book scene.

The BCA jurors have been reviewing our shortlists, and will deliver their results at the 3rd Annual British Comic Awards ceremony, which will take place at 6pm on Saturday, 15 November at the Thought Bubble Sequential Art Festival in the Bury Theatre, Royal Armouries, Leeds Dock.

The 2014 BCA Hall of Fame entrant is British comic book legend Posy Simmonds, who will be on hand to receive her award. I also have the honour of interviewing her at the event about her career.

The awards ceremony is free to attend for any Thought Bubble ticket holder, but seats are limited so please arrive early.

Sun, 09 November 2014 Irish Comics News Awards 2014

The 4th Annual Irish Comic News Awards has opened for voting, and I’ve been nominated in two categories:

  • Best Irish Writer Published Outside of Ireland
  • Best Irish Creator Comic Published Outside of Ireland

Both of these nominations are for my work on Witchfinder: The Mysteries of Unland, which I co-wrote with Kim Newman, with art by Tyler Crook, coloured by Dave Stewart, covers by Julian Totino Tedesco, lettered by Clem Robins, and edited by Scott Allie. All set in the Hellboy universe created by Mike Mignola, and published by Dark Horse Comics.

Creating comics is a collaborative activity, and of course I’m deeply indebted to everyone on the team for making such a terrific comic book.

Voting closes in all categories on 22 November.

Fri, 17 October 2014 BCA Nominees 2014

As I mentioned on Tuesday I’ve been serving on the selection committee of the British Comic Awards this year. It’s been a pleasure to become acquainted with the sheer range of comic book titles being created in the UK.

This meant it was tough to select a mere five titles in each category from such a competitive field, but we have picked our nominees, and they have been announced:

Best Comic

  • Dangeritis: A Fistful of Danger – Robert M Ball and Warwick Johnson-Cadwell (Great Beast)
  • In The Frame – Tom Humberstone (New Statesman)
  • Raygun Roads – Owen Michael Johnson, Indio!, Mike Stock and Andy Bloor (Self published)
  • Tall Tales & Outrageous Adventures #1: The Snow Queen & Other Stories – Isabel Greenberg (Great Beast)
  • The Wicked + The Divine #1 – Kieron Gillen, Jaime McKelvie, Matt Wilson and Clayton Cowles (Image Comics)


Best Book

  • The Absence – Martin Stiff (Titan Books)
  • Celeste – I.N.J. Culbard (Self Made Hero)
  • The Encyclopedia of Early Earth – Isabel Greenberg (Jonathan Cape)
  • Lighter Than My Shadow – Katie Green (Jonathan Cape)
  • Sally Heathcote: Suffragette – Mary Talbot, Kate Charlesworth and Bryan Talbot (Jonathan Cape)


Young People’s Comic Award

  • Bad Machinery Vol 2: The Case of The Good Boy – John Allison (Oni Press)
  • BOO! – Paul Harrison-Davies, Andrew Waugh; Warwick Johnson-Cadwell, Jonathan Edwards, James Howard, Gary Northfield and Jamie Smart (Self published)
  • Corpse Talk: Season 1 – Adam Murphy (David Fickling Books)
  • Hilda and the Black Hound – Luke Pearson (Flying Eye Books)
  • The Beginner’s Guide to Being Outside – Gill Hatcher (Avery Hill Publishing)


Emerging Talent

  • Alison Sampson (Genesis, Shadows (In The Dark) – artist)
  • Briony May Smith (Tam Lin, The Courting of Fair Spring and Red-Nosed Frost, The Mermaid)
  • Rachael Smith (House Party, One Good Thing, Flimsy, Vicky Park (Leicester Mercury), The Amazing Seymore (Moose Kid Comics))
  • Becca Tobin (Eye Contact, Peppermint Butler’s Peppermint Bark (Adventure Time #30), numerous short comics)
  • Corban Wilkin (Dreams of a Low Carbon Future – artist, Breaker’s End, If Not Now Then When (Offlife #6))


Hall of Fame

The third entrant to the BCA Hall of Fame will be the one and only Posy Simmonds.

Posy Simmonds

A huge congratulations to all the nominees!

The nominated titles will now be passed over to our Judging Panel who will decide the winner for each category except the Young People’s Comic Award which is chosen by reading groups of young people from schools and libraries around the UK.

The 3rd Annual British Comic Awards Ceremony will take place at 6pm on Saturday 15th November in the Royal Armouries Bury Theatre in Leeds as part of the Thought Bubble Festival, the biggest and best celebration of sequential art in the UK.

Wed, 15 October 2014 Unland 5 out now

Issue 5 of Witchfinder: The Mysteries of Unland is out from Dark Horse Comics today. You can buy it online, or in any good comic book shop.

Here’s the blurb:

Sir Edward Grey digs deeper into the shocking truth about Unland even as the city drowns in the rising waters. With the help of a mysterious woman, Grey faces raging waters and the eel assassins that have haunted his every step!

This comic is part of a five-issue Sir Edward Grey: Witchfinder story, which I have co-written with Kim Newman, with art by Tyler Crook, coloured by Dave Stewart, covers by Julian Totino Tedesco, lettered by Clem Robins, and edited by Scott Allie.

All set in the Hellboy universe created by Mike Mignola.

It’s both wonderful, and sad (for me), to see the end of this run. It’s been a pleasure to work within the Mignolaverse and with such talented people.

I count myself extremely lucky to have had this opportunity, and I hope Mike’s fans have enjoyed our take on Sir Edward Grey.

Tue, 14 October 2014 British Comic Awards 2014

I’m still in New York, recovering from an incredible, intense New York Comic Con.

I’m interrupting my time with friends here as It’s nice to be able to reveal finally that I’ve been a member of the British Comic Awards selection committee this year.

As part of the work I’ve read over 200 British comic book titles, and I have been very impressed with the vitality and diversity of work being created in the UK currently.

On Sunday this year’s judges, who will determine the winners in each shortlisted category, were announced:

  • Jonathan Entwistle – A film director currently developing a UK based adaptation of Charles Forsman’s comic TEOTFW.
  • Jessica Hynes – An award winning actor and writer known to many as Daisy Steiner from the influential sitcom Spaced.
  • Danny John-Jules – An actor, singer and dancer who has appeared in numerous musicals and films. Best known for his role as Cat in Red Dwarf.
  • Jonathan Ross – The infamous television and radio presenter and comic book writer.
  • Suzy Varty – Comics creator and tutor known for her work in the British Women’s Comic movement of the 1970s.

The shortlists for all the categories, chosen by the BCA Committee, will be announced on Friday, 17 October.

The winners will be revealed at the 3rd Annual British Comics Awards Ceremony on Saturday, 15 November as part of the Thought Bubble Festival in Leeds.

Sun, 05 October 2014 The Mysteries of Unland TPB Revealed

Up on The Beat there’s a lovely announcement: the reveal of the cover for the trade paperback of Witchfinder: The Mysteries of Unland, which is drawn by Mike Mignola.

It’s wonderful to have artwork by Mike on the book – it should be out early next year.

The announcement is part of the 13 Days of Hellboy festival that Dark Horse Comics is running currently.