in having Gene Ha do a signing at your Con or Store?
The deal is simple. If you can provide for transportation,
a decent meal, and decent lodging for my wife and me, I'm
willing to schedule an appearance. Go to the Mail
link and send me a note!
2004 Political Rants
2004 News Posts
I am a mean old man*
A few minutes ago a crew of high school kids who don't live in my building set up shop on the front stoop of my building. Yelling to their friends walking by and beeping on their newfangled cellular phones. It's the nicest day of weather this year.
I stuck one of my stereo speakers out my window and blasted the Borodin Quartet
covering some Debussy at maximum volume (which isn't much, my stereo isn't so big). Lots of tremolo and pizzicato.
It took longer than I thought but the kids left. For all I know they liked the music and just had places to be. I think the music contributed to their decision.
I'm just mean mean mean to the bone.
*Bonus points if you know the geek culture reference! No real prize, but I'll say that you're nice too. And Simon Lee doesn't get to play. 'Kay, Lee?
America's Future in the World
on the strains the occupation is placing on our troops. The absence of a long term plan is obvious to our voters and our enemies.
If you've been reading me regularly you know I'm a regular reader of Defense and the National Interest
. It's written by traditional (pre-Karl Rove regime) conservatives so I agree with their foreign policy and hate their domestic advice. Even when I disagree I always learn something new.
They have a new post
about long term strategy. It's really very optimistic. If you believe that America's ideals (Democracy, crass capitalism, human rights and trashy pop culture) are the birthright of humanity then you believe that our enemies abroad are doomed. The PC phrase for this is "global democratization." Our enemies are fighting the tide. Nations accepting global democratization (Europe, east Asia, Latin America) have mostly prospered. The alternative is stagnation and poverty. If our enemies get weaker every year we should maintain a strong defense and show great hesitation before intervening abroad. A Cold War with our enemies is ideal. Read How American Can Prosper
: it does a much better job than I can.
The only way to stop the invasion of global democratization is to centralize control of the media and the economy. This is economic suicide and can't work without steady oil income. Read up on Thomas Friedman's First Law of Petropolitics
. The only anti-American tyrannies prospering have steady oil income. Islamic terrorism thrives because they get spare petro-dollars (and I do mean US dollars). This isn't a long term strategy for them: oil fields always decline and high prices aren't stable. Anything we do to tamp down demand forces the terrorists to get day jobs.
I'm a bigger supporter of spreading our ideals. My work gets republished in Japan and Poland, but not Russia and Saudi Arabia.
A quick update on my work. I'm busy working on JLA #11 and hope to make it spectacular. It will be in the new style. It begins like the style I used on The 49ers, but is brilliantly shiny full color. Lisa and I are also ready to buy a house. Busy doing the open house and home tour circuit with our real estate agent.
There's something I've been meaning to write for a few months. A friend told me he'd seen new recruits in the US military being sent off without enough training or proper equipment. They only had one trip to the firing range before getting shipped to Iraq. Their flack jackets were Vietnam era. He really feared for the troops' safety.
Now that conflict has come, the only way to limit its duration is to apply decisive force. And I assure you, this will not be a campaign of half measures and we will accept no outcome but victory.
Oddly enough, it's all been half measures. Not enough troops, equipment, and training for Iraq and not enough working brains in the White House. The Washington Post reports
that this unending war is close to breaking the Marines and Army. It's obvious that Bush's Surge is going to break our military before it stops the insurgency. At best the insurgents will stay home with their families until they readjust tactics. Meanwhile
"You take a lap around the globe -- you could start any place: Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Yemen, Somalia, Sudan, Venezuela, Colombia, Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia, North Korea, back around to Pakistan, and I probably missed a few. There's no dearth of challenges out there for our armed forces," Pace warned in his testimony. He said the nation faces increased risk because of shortfalls in troops, equipment and training.
House Gen. Peter Pace, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
The 2008 presidential candidates, Republican and Democrat, will run on who can fix what George Walker Bush
broke. It'll be a long to-do list.
This Wednesday I emailed out a new issue of My Neopolis, the newsletter I started when I was living in Minneapolis. I was drawing Top 10 full time then which is set in Neopolis.
Some silly Neopolis factoids. I tried to convince Alan to make Neopolis a scifi version of Minneapolis. Didn't happen, probably for the best. Also, the city of Naples in Italy used to be the Greek colony Neopolis
. That's why it's residents are known as Neapolitans.
In the latest edition I gave details about the latest Top 10 project I've started. Zander Cannon is writing, I'm doing the art chores, and Art is doing the coloring chores. I'm only six pages into the pencils and I've got lots of other projects I've got to do first. If you'd like to learn more, read on... A Newsletter so Irregular that we hired Gene Ha to illustrate it!28 February 2007Got back from the big con in New York Monday night. I met some great people and ate weird foods such as Tasti D-Lite: the healthy frozen treat that tastes just like chemically inert soft serve! I want to go again soon so I can finally check out Koreatown and get tickets to the Colbert Report. It's hard to resist New York .
Look ma! We really did use the $90 to get into a comic convention! In this issue:Good news on the release of Authority #2 and JLA #11.
Not-so-good info on Authority #3.
Big sale on original art.
San Diego Wizard World 2007 plans with the Friends of Lulu.The Authority and The Justice League of America and Zander Cannon's Top 10According to the Wildstorm website Authority #2 is scheduled to come out March 7. Just to make sure you weren't disappointed I double checked this info with the charming and professional Kristy Quinn, WS Assistant Editor. The date is good. Unless supervillains attack the printing plant or your local shop owner misplaced his or her order there should be a pile of my new comics in your town that Wednesday. As a bonus, the team actually shows up on page 2 of their own book!
Art by Gene, Colors by Art Lyon from Authority #2, out March 7. Of 2007!!!!!
That's the good news. The bad news is that after that The Authority
will be on hiatus for a bit. I've been shifted over to Brad Meltzer
's The Justice League of America #11
. I'll be experimenting with a new art and coloring style .
Brad's doing his usual push at the edges of the art form. It will be pretty, it will be gritty, it will be witty. I wish I could say more but Brad's got some surprises up his sleeve and I don't want to
After JLA #11
is drawn ,
I should be hard at work on more The Authority pages by Grant Morrison.
Each artist on the series will do four issues, so I'll be end my run with issue 4.
My next project will be a Top 10
series written and laid out by Zander Cannon. I've been dying to draw a Zander script for years. I've read the first few issues and I'm pretty damn excited about this one.
I'm selling a condo and a picture of Lois Lane... In the next few months Lisa and I will be buying a new home. Our current digs are nice but we're dog owners and they need a place with a fenced back yard.
Beagle bassets. The reason I'm having a sale.
That's why I'm slashing prices on my art to raise some quick cash. Most pages have been reduced by about 50%. Prices will go back up again after we move so check it out while you can.
I've just posted pages from The Authority #1 on my webstore. Shortly after #2 comes out I'll try to post art from there too. It includes some dramatic shots of the heroes and a very Gene Ha interpretation of the Carrier. By that I mean detailed and textured. The Con Schedule: I'm a friend of the Friends of LuluI met President Shannon Crane of the Friends of Lulu in the aisles of the New York Comic Con Sunday. Seems like just two years ago she was only a table volunteer! FoL is a great organization and I've been a longtime supporter. I made an art donation for their next auction but the last San Diego con gave me the itch to innovate.
At the 2006 San Diego Comic Con I donated an X-Men: The End cover to the auction. Silly me, I forgot to mention that the picture of Gambit was a cover. It went for $90. My table was only 20 yards from the auction but at that con that was a few minutes walk. If I could have I would have bought the page myself.
At San Diego I'm going to do a sketch to raise money for FoL. It will be the ONLY full color sketch I do there. Details are still fuzzy, but I'll probably accept bids the day before I draw it. The winner will tell me what character to draw and I'll go to the Copic booth and buy any colors I need. Expenses will come out of my own pocket.
As usual, I'll try to fit in free drawings for reluctant spouses and cute children!
Here's my convention and signing schedule for the next few months:
March 11: Kowabunga Comics in Oconomowoc, WI. I'll be signing from 1-4pm. Small store signings are the best place to get free sketches and detailed question and answer.
March 31-April 1: The Emerald City Comicon in Seattle, WA. They're working hard to provide an amazing roster of talent. Should be a great show near great seafood!
April 7: Not really a signing. My friend Meredith's band The Fervor will be playing in Chicago. I'll be in the audience. If you can't make the Chicago concert catch them on tour. If you buy me a drink and bring a Sharpie I'll give you a decent drunken sketch.
May 5, Free Comic Book Day: The St Joseph County Public Library in South Bend, IN. For a gray Rust Belt town the Bend has some pretty amazing people in it. A lot of them hang out at this library!
June 23: The Chicagolandz Comic Con in St. Charles, IL. I'll only be able to attend Saturday of a three day con. Dedicated and friendly artists like Mark Texeira and Art Baltazar will be there all three days. Should be a good show.
July 25-29: The Comic-Con Intl in San Diego. America's biggest con keeps getting bigger. I'll be there for my first Preview Night and hope to survive till Sunday.
August 9-12: Wizard World Chicago. No firm plans here, but I skipped last year so I'd better show up this time! I'll probably spend some time signing at a charity and the DC booths.
September 11-15: XI Jornadas del Cómic de Avilés in Spain! A great excuse for Americans to visit Europe: a week with artist like George Perez and Adi Granov on Spain's Atlantic coast.
Early October: The FallCon in Minnesota's Twin Cities. An amazingly friendly and well run convention. There's no date on the website yet but expect me there.
October 27-November 3: Brazil's 3ª FEIRA DO LIVRO INFANTIL, JUVENIL & QUADRINHOS DE SÃO PAULO.
November 30-December 2: The Florida Supercon. After this bitter winter I couldn't resist a invitation to the South for next winter. Details for the November show won't go on the website until after the June show is over.
Notes on the New York tripI got to meet lots of my readers*. Had a good mix of the casual readers and hardcore collectors like Lambert. It's both jarring and delightful to meet an Asian American with a good New Yawk accent! Lots of families with kids, including many patient and loving spouses who will be expecting payback soon. And a good pile of artists I was pleased to see again and those I'd never seen before. I got just a few minutes to meet David Mazzuchelli and Brian Bolland. I need to schedule more time walking the floor so I can have real conversations with folks like that.
I learned not to overload a NY style pizza with ingredients. The first pizza we ate at John's of Bleeker St. was piled with vegetables. The crust was mediocre. But the second was just cheese and pepperoni and it came out perfect. I know it makes me a bad Chicagoan but John's still makes my favorite pizza in the world. I passed up a chance to try Pinkberry and I'm still wishing I'd gone. The Tasti D-Lite really was good tho.
I'm going to finish with some photos of folks I like.
Note that all of these photos were taken within 12 feet of my Artists' Alley table. Sigh. Must wander cons more! [correction: the DC booth was further away, but I visited it before the show started and the editors and artists arrived]
(If you'd like to be removed from this mailing list just reply and let me know. I understand, my mailbox gets overwhelmed too).
*I feel odd calling you folks fans: you're not insane "fanatics" and I don't fancy calling you Gene Ha "fanciers". I like the term geek personally. I'm feeling pretty intensely geeky right now. On the flight back the frame of my glasses snapped when I unfolded them after a nap. It'll take two weeks for Lenscrafters to get the high index polycarbonate lenses I prefer so till then I'm wearing glasses held together by electrical tape.