• Conventions

    here comes the sun

    It’s a goregeous summer day and I’ll be spending a chunk of it travelling up to the 2-D Comic Book Festival in Derry. I’m looking forward to showing the first issue of Róisín Dubh to a new audience, and meeting old friends and new. It’s a bank holiday weekend in Ireland so I hope the sunshine lasts to warm up our bones over the next three days. Enjoy it while we have it!

  • comic books

    Róisín Dubh 1 out

    There’s been a lot of fuss and bother in Dublin over the last two days: roads closed and traffic diverted, which has made some people cross. On the same day royalty arrived in Ireland issue 1 of Róisín Dubh was delivered safely to Sub-City in Dublin despite the government kowtowing. If you wish to purchase it online it costs €5.00, plus €1.00 postage for Ireland, €1.50 for England and and extra €0.50 for other countries. Copies will be arriving in Sub-City in Galway by Monday, and in other outlets soon. Issue 1 is a limited run, so get your copies while you can! We’re already at the editing stage of issue…

  • comic books

    Kapow! – with added women

    The Kapow! Comic Book convention is going on this weekend, and it’s good to see that in the face of criticism over its initial all-male line-up the event has adjusted its guest list. I was not the only one who pointed out the lack of women, and I’m not claiming this result is due to my input alone. Honestly, this is a positive response, and I hope it means more women featured at the event (if they hold it again) when they have time to include women in the planning from the very beginning. Millar is even talking up the female angle now, mentioned a 30% female readership in this…

  • Conventions

    FanSciCon 2011

    University College Dublin is hosting a new sf/f convention called FanSciCon, which will be taking place all-day on Friday, April 15th. The convention is free to enter, and the poster gives you an idea of the kinds of events that will be taking place. Guests listed are: Robert Curley, Stephen Doweny, Alan Nolan, Barry Keegan, Paddy Lynch, CE Murphy, Micheal Carroll, Deirdre de Barra, Hilary Lawler, Gar Shanley, and me. The event is in aid of Dublin Wicklow Mountain Rescue Team, which is a great cause, and members of the Team will be attending (as long as nobody gets lost up a mountain!). It looks like it will be a…

  • Thoughts

    just the facts ma'am

    I’d like to add a few observations based on my last piece of detective work, and other similar projects I’ve tackled regarding re-adjusting the representation of women in creative fields. I’ve often been frustrated at how difficult it is to discover basic information like how many women work in a certain field with any accuracy. Wikipedia, for instance, is very inconsistent with its category listings, and more importantly: Women creators are often not listed in Wikipedia, or their entries are insubstantial. This exacerbates the perceived ‘lack’ of women in a field. If someone can’t Google the information and get a quick answer in the top ten entries then an assumption…

  • comic books

    women in comics in UK/Ireland – overview

    There are occasions when perhaps it’s best not to promise a blog post on a subject. Regular readers might remember that in January I commented upon the utter lack of women comic book guests at the forthcoming Kapow! comic book convention in London. This was followed by an entry in which I posted a number of women artists/writers working in the field in the UK (and Ireland), with a promise to put together a much more detailed listing of women working in the field. The follow-up post has been a long time coming because: There are loads of women working in comics in the UK and Ireland People might remember…

  • comic books

    women in comics in UK/Ireland – redux

    The promised follow-up to the British women in comics blog post in January. I’ve written an overview of this entry also. A list of female writers and artists (colourists, inkers, pencilers, etc.) who work in sequential storytelling in the UK and Ireland. I’ve created a permanent page for this list on my web site – it’s linked on the sidebar. This post will no longer be updated. All further updates will be on the page. Update: for a comprehensive overview of the history of women who have worked in the comic book industry in the UK read The Inking Woman, edited by Nicola Streeten and Cath Tate, published by Myriad.…

  • comic books

    warren ellis in Galway

    Last night at the National University of Galway the Literary and Debating Society and the Comic Book Society showcased a public interview with legendary British comic book writer Warren Ellis. When I arrived for the event I met Galway cartoonist/caricaturist Allan Cavanagh and writer/editor Stan Carey, and we all sat together. This turned out to be a dogsend because we discovered the Lit and Deb Soc were going to have an hour of their usual debates before the event. Thus, the three of us were subjected to two discussions: “That the House Welcomes the Queen of England to Ireland with Open Arms” and “That the House Endorses Gender Quotas in…

  • Conventions

    PCon VIII

    The Phoenix Convention (4-6 March) is an annual event in Dublin focusing on Horror, Fantasy and Science Fiction in literature and comics. This year the Guest of Honour is the multi award-winning Belfast writer Ian McDonald, and there will be a slew of other guests at the convention including me. Here’s my schedule: What is it bout Ghost Stories? Room 1: Saturday, 5pm The Growth of the Graphic Novel in Ireland Room 1: Sunday, noon Genre Demarcation – Laws or guidelines Room 2: Sunday, 4pm I’m looking forward to hanging out with friends and colleagues for the convention!

  • art

    artistic inspiration

    My mind is currently full of research and ideas for my next graphic novel project, which I’m writing at the moment. Whenever I do a period piece I soak up as many images from the era as possible. Most of the 1920s was a truly inspiring time – change was in the air, and the young people in particular embraced it. It absolutely was the beginning of what could be termed modern life. I’ve been looking at a lot of the artwork from the 20s, including magazine covers, and I’m entranced. The above image is the February 1921 cover of French Vogue, drawn by Helen Dryden. I love the sense…