Hello everyone, and welcome to a special Some Good News edition of Previously on Comics. Inspired by John Krasinski’s YouTube show by the same name, my goal today is to highlight some of the ways that people are helping other people, whether that be through offering grants and money, to creating art that makes people smile as we all struggle through this quarantine alone, together.
Before I begin with the good things, I want to share that there have been some not good things this week too, including Image Comics laying off four staffers, or the great cartoonist Mort Drucker passing away.
Headlines are only going to become more sad, and more grim, as time goes on. Which is why I know that I need Some Good News–and sometimes just something actionable–that shows me the best of humanity right now.
Support Your Local(ish) Bookstore
A new platform called Bookshop allows you to search independent booksellers for the books you want, and the prices you want, without needing to go through Amazon, or Powell’s (who, despite being in Portland laid off 300 employees when the stay-home order happened and they had to close their physical stores). And right now, who doesn’t want a bookstore alternative to Amazon?
With many comics companies giving the pencils down orders, one of the best ways to support creators and artists is through their Patreons or other platforms.
Erica Henderson has been sharing quarantine comics on her Patreon. I highly recommend supporting comics creators on Patreons if you have the extra income to do so, and Erica is one of the best.
Melanie Gilman has organized an anthology with recipes called Parsley, Sage, Rosemary & Quarantine and it’s delightful.
In case you missed this yesterday: I organized an anthology of social-distancing recipe comics! $5 gets you a 27 page pdf chock full of tasty, easy-to-cook recipes, AND all proceeds are being split evenly between the 21 cartoonists who contributed! https://t.co/U4oNXSuhCG
— Melanie Gill Man (@melgillman) April 11, 2020
And of course, WWAC has a Patreon, and for two years we’ve been trying to get enough support to pay our contributors, to no avail. The money we generate through Patreon is enough to keep our website technically running, but we could do so much more with your support. You can also support WWAC’s younger sister site, Sidequest, which is all about the games that I know I’m playing more than ever before.
Other artists are also posting their own quarantine comics, or opening commissions to support themselves, so check out your faves to see what they’re up to. It may not be what you expect. Like Rob Liefeld drawing Deadpool, Jungle Book, and Tiger King crossover fanart.
View this post on Instagram
Caption This!! SKETCH #11! Deadpool & Tiger King. Look for this up on eBay, 3 day auction starts right now, link in my bio!! Bid up and help a comic store! INTO THE SAVAGE LAND!!!” And don’t forget to smile today!! #joeexotic #deadpool #junglebook #marvel #netflix #robliefeld
If you’re someone who is one of the over 16 million Americans (I don’t know the numbers outside of the US but I assume it’s similar all over) who are facing economic hardship due to COVID-19, here are a couple opportunities.
Here’s a COVID Quaranzine Micro-Grant opportunity from Broken Pencil Magazine.
Hi #quaranzinefest family! We are stoked to announce that we’re opening up some funds and trying to raise some more to commission zines from our community during COVID life! https://t.co/Dq31MW7FHd to chip in and https://t.co/3CY3zQrFub to apply now! pic.twitter.com/ig4Rs49dTR
— Broken Pencil ✄ Magazine of Zine Culture & DIY (@brokenpencilmag) April 5, 2020
Saladin Ahmed posted on Twitter about the Artist Relief fund as well, which, as he points out, has over $10 million they want to give to artists in need.
$5000 US-based grants for 'artists able to demonstrate a sustained commitment to their work, career, and a public audience' who are 'experiencing dire financial need due to the COVID-19 pandemic.' Apply here: https://t.co/kgx6kvxOpS
— Saladin Ahmed (@saladinahmed) April 11, 2020
I’m sure there are more opportunities WWAC has already covered and RT’d, so be sure to follow us for more news, in case you miss it.
I’m going to close by talking about Todd MacFarlane, who makes both the Something Good and WTF lists this week by opening his own Kickstarter for a remastered Spawn comic with bonus action figure that is over $1 million after two days, and also giving a really smart, really great interview on Forbes no less, about the comics industry in the wake of COVID-19. Only in 2020, I guess.