last week we set out for minnesota and the FABLETOWN convention. i took a train instead of flying. long train rides are equally relaxing and a test of endurance. i was able to hole up in the cafe car once it closed and stretch out and read. pulling through the country and approaching minnesota i was struck by the emptiness and isolation of the countryside. vast open spaces dotted with a small house here and there. it seemed silent and lonely, and reminded me of an abandoned civilization. i arrived in FABLETOWN thursday night, after an amusing shuttle ride from the train station into rochester, host city of the convention, in which i learned that another word for a skunk is ‘wood’s pussy’. i met up with andrew and josh, who had flown in earlier in the day, and we set off to explore downtown rochester after dark. you don’t see many people out on the streets, owing to the cold and the fact that all of the big buildings are connected by skywalks as well as an underground walkway. this was new to us, and added to the surreal, alien feeling of the place. we walked around and found NEWT’S, a bar&burger joint heartily recommended by andrew’s cab driver. apparently they had a burger named THE JUICY LUCY, and if you poked her with your finger she squirts. a somewhat odd endorsement for a burger, but we bit. none of us tried out the old girl, but josh had a mammoth burger that had to be 2000 calories: that’s a bacon cheeseburger with fried onions wrapped in two grilled cheeses. with some kind of mayo sauce slathered on it. the peanut butter bacon burger i tried seemed genteel & dainty by comparison. back at the hotel, andrew and i planned how to maximize the handsomeness at josh’s command. friday was the start of the con, and we were up early and ready to set up. a bellman from our hotel, caleb, helped us bring our boxes over to the civic center. little did we know that caleb would help turn us into a hot commodity when we gave him a copy of ONCE UPON A TIME MACHINE. this was the before. there’s no after. i got caught up and never got the pics. the con got rolling, and we had a good response to the book right off the bat. and it wasn’t long before we met our biggest fan, jacob. jacob, we adore you.by the time the opening ceremonies kicked off at 5 we already knew this was going to be a great trip. bill willingham, creator of FABLES, was the host of FABLETOWN, and he took to the stage during the opening ceremonies to set the tone for the weekend and introduce some of the folks most responsible for putting this show together. stephanie cooke, seen here behind bill apparently updating her OK CUPID profile, is bill’s assistant and a delightful, thoughtful wonder. the empty chair belongs to brad thomte, bill’s partner in crime. brad’s a high-energy fount of enthusiasm. next to him is stacy sinner. it turns out stacy runs the prisons in rochester and the surrounding area. she also is a warm, accommodating, charming woman who made me smile when she told me i was one of her favorite characters from the whole weekend. she likes red wine. if you see her, buy her a glass. speaking of wine…
Things are hopping at Locust Moon as we shake off the winter doldrums and resurrect this dusty old website. What’s keeping us busy, you ask?
* TRAVELING. We climb back into the time machine for a trip up to Bill Willingham’s FABLETOWN convention in Minnesota, which looks like it’s shaping up to be a pretty special event. (March 22-24th) Then it’s down the shore for the ASBURY PARK COMIC CON (March 30th) and, hopefully, some surfing. We’ll also be speaking at William Paterson University on March 12th. (Also, we really wanna go to Toronto. Anybody have extra space at a TCAF table?) Look out world. Locust Moon is gonna be all over you.
* THE DEPRESSED PUNX COLLECTION. We’re putting the finishing touches on the complete Robert Woods’ DEPRESSED PUNX. To be released sometime in the summer, this book will collect all four issues of Rob’s brilliant mini-comic, along with 40 new pages. We’ve had the privilege of watching Rob work as Locust Moon’s artist-in-residence on the last couple of stories to be included in the book, and they are the finest work of his young but remarkable career. DEPRESSED PUNX is a book filled with heartwrenching comedy and hilarious tragedy, a lot of sadness and a jagged edge of hope. Rob’s characters may be laying in the gutter, but they are looking at the stars.
* LOCUST MOON QUARTERLY. We’re starting an as-yet-untitled quarterly comics magazine to collect great idiosyncratic work by our favorite cartoonists and friends. Featuring new work by Mark Robinson, Dave Proch, Bodie Chewning, James Comey and a host of others, this magazine-style collection should keep a constant flow awesome cartoonin, straight from our minds into your hot little hands. Contact us if you want to be a part of it, or have any suggestions for a title.
* LITTLE NEMO: DREAM ANOTHER DREAM. Our passion project, our white whale, our true-blue comic book love song. The train to slumberland rolls on as this tribute to Winsor McCay and his brilliant early 20th century newspaper strip begins to take form. It has been our honor and privilege to spend the past six months rallying comic creators around this unique and remarkable collection. The dream team so far consists of Robert Woods, Jimmy Comey, Bill Sienkiewicz, John Cassaday, David Mack, Jeremy Bastian, Farel Dalrymple, Camilla D’Errico, Dave Proch, J.G. Jones, Sam Hiti, Brandon Graham, Theo Ellsworth, Dean Haspiel, Roger Langridge, Charles Fetherolf, Box Brown, Jim Rugg, Jeremy Tanner, Maria & Peter Hoey, Mike Sgier and Jason Lex. Winsor McCay can be considered among the likes of Jack Kirby, Will Eisner and Moebius, earth-shattering talents whose work landed like a neutron bomb, leaving the landscape of the comics medium forever altered. We are humbled & lucky to be the ones uniting many of the world’s greatest cartoonists in a tribute to the master. To be printed as a big broadsheet newspaper and a giant-sized (16×21″!!!) hardcover book. We’re going to do this one right. Oh! Um!
The beat goes on. Expect this site to be updated regularly, and check out our event calendar for more info about what’s going on at Locust Moon. Stay beautiful, moonies.