The Beat’s 2021 Creator Survey Part 2: What are we doing in 2021?

Continuing our 2021 Creator Survey of an eclectic mixture of creators, publishers and reporters, we look back at the large-hearted tale of 2020- not hard to figure this one out- and what will happen in 2021. Bonus previews from a bunch of bibles, most of them from traditional publisher.

You can read Part 1 now .


abby_denson.jpgAbby Denson, Cartoonist

2021 Projects: My brand-new diary, Kitty Sweet Tooth, will be out from First Second in April. I’m really excited to be collaborating with the master Utomaru for it! Her art is just stunning. The floor is about a feline who organizes a movie theater and programs weird movies. She designs wacky snacks to serve at the screenings with help of a mad scientist and a magician!

What was the biggest story in comics in 2020? The exacerbating challenges facing the direct market, including comic shops closing and deployment hurts due to the pandemic, as well as corporate deepens at Marvel and DC were major narrations. The cancellation and postponement of comic patterns too. On the other hand, the success of middle-grade and YA graphic fictions continues.

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2021? Hopefully, the big-hearted word will be post-pandemic recovery, and an blowup of creative and socially relevant brand-new work.

Guilty pleasure for 2021: Watching more Star Trek: The Original Series, I’ve been getting into it lately! The rosy seeing of Earth society’s future, the campiness, the costumes, and Shatner’s acting are a lot of enjoyable to watch, and a great escape.

What did you learn in 2020? Like countless, I knew inventive pauses and feelings tired at times in 2020. I tried to be patient with myself and not feel extremely guilty to the charges being futile. I noted after hold it meter( sometimes a very long time) I has allowed us to get back into it. It’s very important to take care of yourself, and to be kind to yourself and others, peculiarly now. Talking and video chatting regularly with family members or friends aids a lot. I’m planning residence studio syndicate and artistry archiving programmes, which I think should be good projects to get through this winter.


mark_waid.jpegMark Waid, Publisher/ writer

2021 Projects: All things Humanoids-Space Rascals, MPLS Sound, Count, and more

What was the biggest story in comics in 2020? That for the first time in its history, the comics publishing industry shut down for weeks with no brand-new material distributed-and somehow survived.

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2021? How many-or few-publishers and supermarkets are left operational by mid-year.

Guilty pleasure for 2021: To depart three days in a row without having to think about Donald Trump and his progeny of carbon-bag homunculi.

What did you learn in 2020? That the best interests of the employees working in a main office, under one roof, cannot be overstated. Zoom is awesome, but being able to stick your pate into someone else’s office to ask a quick question or to feed off the positive vigour of co-workers at traumatic epoches is priceless. I was altogether unprepared for how even the most elementary arguments of communication could miscarry and had to be rebuilt in a remote-office situation, even though we at Humanoids are ultimately stronger because of it.

angiolini.jpgEnrica Eren Angiolini, Colourist

2021 Projects: I’m working hard on a project that I can’t disclose yet, but I’m super roused about! It’s going to be a BIG announcement coming in 2021! Something I can talk about, is the Kickstarter of second issue of my designer owned programme “Temerity”, with Chard Hardin and Jemma Young .)

What was the biggest story in comics in 2020? I think what really stood out to me was how the comics industry has worked and struggled to find new ways to get to the books: digital liberations and crowdfunded projections stealing the central place! I hope that will carry on in 2021, in addition to the traditionally bred distribution.

Guilty pleasure for 2021: Seeing friends and peers at cons again. Hanging out, fit books and stimulating folks. It might not be a guilty pleasure, but it surely is the thing I look forward to the most.

What did you learn in 2020? Except for a couple of very slow months during the Spring, where things were seeming fairly dark, I thoughts I’m one of the lucky ones. I squandered this unfortunate year to dedicate myself more to portrait and persona motif, which was something I had been meaning to do for a long time. I done a lot of work on my comics, got a lot of enjoyment out of it and learnt to give myself some personal space again, which I had needed for a long time. I would definitely recommend doing that to all my peer masters. Breathe and remember that your physical and mental health are the most important thing.

Temerity preview pages 😛 TAGEND

rich_douck.pngRich Douek, Writer

2021 Projects: Sea of Sorrows, Wailing Blade

What was the biggest story in comics in 2020? Diamond shutting down and the ripple effect that it had on publishers, who, almost across the board had to stop make comics until stores were able to open and receive diaries. But it wasn’t all negative- during the shutdown, you assured a lot of communities rally around their accumulates and a good deal of designers receiving new ways to get their work out there. It was a big shakeup for sure, but if there was a silver lining, it’s that the community came closer as a result.

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2021? Since the early tumble, things have been on an upswing and I think that will continue. We’ve all been stuck inside binge watching pictures and I fantasize people are looking for all forms of entertainment- I hope comics can fill that need for a lot of them.

Guilty pleasure for 2021: Meeting up with friends at a table, or restaurant. Or library. Anywhere!

What did you learn in 2020? I given to understand that if you’re struggling, there are people you can reach out to, and you’ll often be surprised at how supportive they are willing to be. Asking for help is hard, but so is struggling in isolation. In most cases, we’re not as alone as we try to convince ourselves we are.


ron_chan.jpgRon Chan , cartoonist

2021 Projects: EARTH BOY, a middle-grade sci-fi OGN written by Paul Tobin, with prowes by Ron Chan. Available Spring 2021 from Dark Horse Comics!

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2021? The return of international conventions and what that looks like.

Guilty pleasure for 2021: Hug friends, eat at restaurants, sing karaoke, baby dogs, and simply generally not having to be cautious all the time about social distancing!

What did you learn in 2020? I’ve learned to go ego care more seriously. And while I miss investigating many friends in person, I’ve also had the opportunity to connect to others more frequently via Discord and Zoom.

clayton-cowles.jpgClayton Cowles, Letterer

2021 Projects: Adventureman, Batman, Bitter Root, Captain Marvel, Daredevil, Die, Eternals, Rorschach, Star Wars, Strange Adventures, Venom, X-Men, and others.

What was the biggest story in comics in 2020? Allegations of sex wrongdoing against Warren Ellis by 100 people.

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2021? I have no clue.

Guilty pleasure for 2021: More magnitudes of Witch Hat Atelier, which I feel no guilt about cherishing whatsoever.

What did you learn in 2020? Tribalism is more powerful than survival.


eric_reynolds.jpegEric Reynolds, Associate Publisher of Fantagraphics Books

2021 Projects: CELESTIA by Manuele Fior, CRISIS ZONE by Simon Hanselmann, QUEEN OF THE RING by Jaime Hernandez, RED ROOM by Ed Piskor, UNIMPRESSED by Miranda Tacchia, CRASHPAD by Gary Panter, NOD AWAY by Josh Cotter, AFTERNOON AT McBURGER’S by Ana Galva [?]+-, YOUNG SHADOW by Ben Sears, ongoing issues of LOVE AND ROCKETS and NOW: THE NEW COMICS ANTHOLOGY.

What was the biggest story in comics in 2020? DC’s coldblooded move to drop Diamond at a time when the market needed stability more than anything.

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2021? The fallout from 2020: will Diamond be able to recalibrate? Will comic stores rebound? Will the comic book format be further marginalized by the extremely entities that have propped it up for decades?

Guilty pleasure for 2021: Schadenfreude

What did you learn in 2020? Take nothing for granted; we are all in this together.

paolo_villanelli.pngPaolo Villanelli, Cartoonist

2021 Projects: Star Wars Bounty Hunters

Guilty pleasure for 2021: Miniature wargames!

What did you learn in 2020? Find time for yourself!

jim-zub-bio.jpgJim Zub, Writer

2021 Projects: Conan the Barbarian( ongoing at Marvel ), Stranger Things and Dungeons& Dragons( mini-series at Dark Horse ), Stone Star Season 2( digital first at comiXology Original ), the Skullkickers 11 th Anniversary Special( one shot at Image ), and more to be announced.

What was the biggest story in comics in 2020? DC Comics leaving Diamond was the biggest story in North American comics this year and it all seemed to cascade out of COVID closes and the resulting publishing uncertainty.

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2021? The ripple effect on mass media we’re riding out from the pandemic- film/ Tv/ streaming, competitions, publishing and recreation as a whole are going to feel the effect of this. How we constitute things and how people buy them were already changing, but the stormy days of 2020 kicked all of it into overdrive.

Guilty pleasure for 2021: More tabletop RPG conferences toy via Zoom. I jump-start on a game with some industry friends for what was supposed to be just a one-shot adventure and we’ve been playing steadily since June- New alliances, lots of comradery, and a much-needed dose of escapism.

What did you learn in 2020? The Negative: Almost every industry only needs 2-3 weeks of fiscal indecision before it starts losing its goddamn mind.

The Positive: Things modify, campaigns crumble, but there are always new creative opportunities to tackle, even if I have to reach some of them myself.

reailly brown.jpgPhoto: Luigi Novi

Reilly Brown, artist

What was the biggest story in comics in 2020? Makes helping retailers keep open

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2021? Agreements getting back on their feet.

Guilty pleasure for 2021: Spending too much money at a comic convention.

What did you learn in 2020? I can’t work in a house with children running around!

lucy-sullivan.jpegLucy Sullivan, Writer/ Artist

2021 Projects: Shelter- written& gleaned by me( one shot)/ Sweeney Todd& I- a Razorblades story written by Dan Watters, outlined by me. Artwork on tales from Fraser Campbell& Dave Cook and hopefully writing my next graphic romance, The Bad Old Days.

What was the biggest story in comics in 2020? Downfall of large-hearted 2/ 4 through Diamond. Subsequent move into Kickstarter by well-known architects& publishers and the conflict it’s generated amongst the community& small press creators.

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2021? New chairwomen in service industries: Vault, White Noise, TKO. Change in reader delicacies& how that will affect storylines& make owned content.

Guilty pleasure for 2021: Sleep

What did you learn in 2020? Moving everything online- launchings, comic cons etc implies 3X as much work. You cannot do everything, so sometimes you need to accept what you can do or just put your pen down. Go for a go, read a book, anything that gives you a break.


shaenon_promo.jpgShaenon K. Garrity, Writer/ Artist/ Editor

2021 Projects: Jeffrey Wells and I will be wrapping up our long-running webcomic Skin Horse . My firstly graphic novel, Willowweep Manor, with creator Chris Baldwin, will be out in 2021 from Simon& Schuster. It will be awesome.

What was the biggest story in comics in 2020? No hypothesi, but some of my favorite cartoonists did some of their best work this year. I was blown away by Joe Sacco’s Paying the Land, Derf Backderf’s Kent State, and Allie Brosh’s Solutions and Other Problems.

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2021? Slowly building a new world from the rubble of the cataclysm, Barter Town-style.

Guilty pleasure for 2021: Three cruelty movies is a ordinary number of horror movies to watch per period, right?

What did you learn in 2020? It turns out six-year-olds don’t like being in Zoom meetings all day.

Willowweep Manor preview pages 😛 TAGEND


Kat Halloween 2020.jpgKatharine Kan, Librarian/ Graphic Novel Specialist

2021 Projects: In February I will moderate a graphic novel webinar for Brodart Books& Library Business. I’m also on the Executive Board of Reading With Pictures, a nonprofit organization working to connect professors with comics. RWP has reorganized in the past few months, and we’re planning to do more to help schoolteachers use comics in the classrooms.

What was the biggest story in comics in 2020? The DC distribution debacle was the large-hearted bad legend. The floor that has had a large impact on the library/ clas/ record market is Jerry Craft’s graphic story THE NEW KID victory the Newbery Medal in 2020. It’s the first time a graphic story has won the biggest award for young readers’ literature. 2020 has also been a great year for Gene Luen Yang, who published two graphic tales- DRAGON HOOPS and SUPERMAN SMASHES THE KLAN- and both have been appearing on many” best of” listings for 2020.

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2021? Continuing fallout from COVID-1 9 on comics publishing, distribution, and retail.

Guilty pleasure for 2021: Being able to go to a restaurant and feel safe.

What did you learn in 2020? Unfortunately, too many parties in my community don’t make COVID-1 9 dangerously. I work in a public library, and I have to help everyone, including those who refuse to wear a mask, or wear it incorrectly. I feel fortunate in that I’ve always been someone who prefers to stay home rather than go out and socialize, so it’s not been a burden to stay within my little family circle. So far, we’re doing okay. Okay is about as good as it gets during this time.

clough.jpgRob Clough, Critic, journalist, and publisher

2021 Projects: A potentially big-hearted projection for Fieldmouse Press, more review for SOLRAD, my blog( highlowcomics.blogspot.com ), my patreon( patreon.com/ highlowcomics ), TCJ.com, and looper.com. My capper to every year is my feature on the artists of the Center For Cartoon Studies in December.

What was the biggest story in comics in 2020? The acces in which so many cartoonists and comics depicts detected a room to rotate toward some rich, mesmerizing online occasions. There were some very good books, to be sure( Joe Sacco and Derf had the biggest ” identify” notebooks ), but the response of cartoonists to both COVID and the events of the months of protest against George Floyd’s murder was heartening.

What will be the biggest story in comics in 2021? Hopefully, the return of publishing expeditions and presents like SPX.

Guilty pleasure for 2021: I desperately miss the vaccine and subsequent herd exemption to be effective enough to put on comics depicts again.

What did you learn in 2020? Now more than ever, I learned that reaching out to others when you need assistance, being honest about your feelings, and telling beings how much you love them are all absolutely crucial. You can’t take the presence of others for awarded, but 2020 learnt me and many others that “youve got to be” wary and deliberate in showing others how much you love them-because everyone greetings in kind.

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