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New York Comic Con: Matt Fitch & Chris Baker discuss Apollo in NYC

2 October 2018

This weekend, Matt Fitch and Chris Baker, co-writers of Apollo, will appear at the New York Comic Con.

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You'll find them signing on the ABRAMS booth (#2228) at the following times:

Friday 5th October, 17:00-18:00
Saturday 6th October, 15:45-16:45
Sunday 7th October, 15:00-16:00

Plus, they'll be speaking on a panel, Graphic Novels That Make History, on Saturday 6th October at 14:30 (location: 1C03). Chaired by New York Magazine writer Abraham Riesman, it will also feature graphic novelists Peter Tomasi (The Bridge), Nathan Hale (Lafayette!) Ted Fox and James Otis Smith (Showtime at the Apollo) and Mikaël (Giant). They'll discuss what's current in the world of non-fiction graphic novels - and what might come next.

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Fitch and Baker's own non-fiction graphic novel, illustrated by Mike Collins, tells the breathtaking story of the Apollo 11 mission. It does a brilliant job of capturing the moments of high drama and astonishing risk. But it is also a fascinating insight into the lives of three men who, in the most extraordinary of circumstances, are separated from their families and loved ones.

Scientific American praised Fitch, Baker and Collins for their retelling of the "suspense-filled" story: "They convey surprising depth and emotion, as well as rich historical details of the era. The book explores the political tension around the space program at the time, the nerve-wracking anxiety experienced by the families of the crew, and the heart-stopping moments of the mission that proved to be such a milestone."

Here's what's happening at Thought Bubble 2018

18 September 2018

As the Kaiser Chiefs once said, "everything is brilliant in Leeds". But Thought Bubble, the UK's biggest comic art festival, is especially great. The 2018 event takes place this weekend - and this year, we're going all out.

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Signing on SelfMadeHero's stand (tables 195-197 in the comiXology Marquee) are seven - yes, seven - of the UK's finest graphic novelists: I.N.J Culbard (Lovecraft: Four Classic Horror Stories), John Harris Dunning (Tumult), Julian Hanshaw and Krent Able (I Feel Machine) and Matt Fitch, Chris Baker & Mike Collins (Apollo). They'll be signing at the following times:

Saturday 22nd September

I.N.J. Culbard: 10:00-13:00
John Harris Dunning: 14:00-17:00
Julian Hanshaw & Krent Able: 14:00-17:00
Matt Fitch, Chris Baker and Mike Collins: 10:00-11:30

Sunday 23rd September

I.N.J. Culbard: 14:00-17:00
John Harris Dunning: 10:00-13:00
Julian Hanshaw & Krent Able: 10:00-13:00
Matt Fitch, Chris Baker and Mike Collins: 14:00-17:00

But that's not all, folks. If you want an insight into the creative process, look no further than these two festival events:

Event #1 | Q&A: Krent Able & Julian Hanshaw

When: Saturday, 13:00-13:50
Where: Carriageworks Studio Theatre, LS2 3AD

In I Feel Machine, six award-winning comics artists, among them Shaun Tan, Tillie Walden and Box Brown, explore the strange interplay between humanity and technology. Co-editors Krent Able and Julian Hanshaw will discuss the anthology with Jimmy Aquino of Comic News Insider.

Event #2 | Q&A: Matt Fitch, Chris Baker & Mike Collins

When: Sunday, 13:00-13:50
Where: Carriageworks Studio Theatre, LS2 3AD

In Apollo, Matt Fitch, Chris Baker and Mike Collins tell the remarkable story of three men who flew through the void - just to know that we could.
The three creators will talk to Comic News Insider's Jimmy Aquino about reimagining one of the most well documented events in human history.

And if that weren't enough, how about this for a fringe event:

Beer Launch | Rocket Fuel

When OK Comics asked if we were happy for them to collaborate with Northern Monk on an Apollo-themed beer, the response was an emphatic yes. When Mike Collins suggested it be called Rocket Fuel, at least one member of the SelfMadeHero team thought he was joking.

He wasn't. And on Saturday night it launches. Join us at OK Comics, 19 Thornton’s Arcade, LS1 6LQ at 7pm for a can of the newest and most beautifully packaged pale ale on the market. It's as good as it looks, and better than it sounds.

The creators of Apollo will be signing both beer cans and books throughout the evening.

Quite a lot to look forward to, then. Now to pack up the van. See you in Leeds!

Launch Party: I Feel Machine

7 September 2018

Our first release of the autumn, I Feel Machine, launches this Thursday, 13th September, at Gosh! Comics in Soho. Julian Hanshaw and Krent Able, the anthology's editors, will be signing from 7pm.

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Kurt Vonnegut once said that to leave technology out of fiction is to misrepresent life. In I Feel Machine, six comics artists - among them, Shaun Tan (The Arrival), Tillie Walden (Spinning) and Box Brown (Tetris) - confront the subject of technology head on, exploring its impact on human relationships and human character. The six stories are:

"UPLOADING" by Box Brown
'STHLMTRANSFER' by Erik Svetoft
'Here I Am' by Tillie Walden
'Be Little With Me' by Julian Hanshaw
'Bloody Kids' by Krent Able

By turns touching and disturbing, these visionary short fictions oscillate between hope and despair. What will be the long-term effects of today's rapid technological change? The answer, it seems, is complicated - but worth finding out.

Join us at Soho's finest book shop on Thursday for an evening of fine conversation and palatable booze.

Here's what we're publishing this autumn

29 August 2018

The heatwave is over. No deal is nigh. Food prices are set to rocket. But there are at least five reasons to be cheerful. Behold SelfMadeHero's autumn lineup!

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The list kicks off in September with I Feel Machine, a landmark anthology of short fiction featuring work by Shaun Tan (The Arrival), Tillie Walden (Spinning), Box Brown (Tetris) and Erik Svetoft. Edited by British comics artists Julian Hanshaw and Krent Able, who make their own inimitable contributions, I Feel Machine explores the strange interplay between humanity and technology. By turns cautionary and celebratory, these visionary short stories offer an electrifying glimpse into our collective future.

Jeff Lemire has said of the book, "I Feel Machine is a truly glorious thing. Some of my favourite cartoonists in the world between two covers, exploring one of my favourite themes. The ultimate comics machine!"

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Our Art Masters series continues in October with Typex's hotly anticipated graphic biography of the King of Pop Art. Andy: The Life and Times of Andy Warhol is a monumental work of graphic non-fiction. At 568 pages, it's a big book - but it rattles along, capturing Warhol's life with astonishing wit, originality and draughtsmanship. Handsomely produced, with silver edges and a fabulous postmodern cover design, Andy is a thing to behold.

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"This is the best way to enjoy Lovecraft." So said Boing Boing upon the release of I.N.J. Culbard's graphic adaptation of The Case of Charles Dexter Ward. The same has been said of his takes on At the Mountains of Madness, The Shadow Out of Time and The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath. In October, Lovecraft: Four Classic Horror Stories collects all four adaptations into a single hardback volume. Wrapped in a stunningly designed dust jacket, this 520-page graphic novel is an object of beauty.

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David Hine and Mark Stafford's adaptation of Victor Hugo's The Man Who Laughs was nominated for the British Comic Award. In October, the duo return with a breathtaking, unforgettable horror story, Lip Hook.

Few travellers take the road to the eponymous village of Lip Hook, but one foggy night, a car arrives. The driver is a dangerously beautiful woman, the passenger a man with a gunshot wound and a suitcase full of treasure. So begins a haunting, pacy tale of rural unease.

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Rachael Ball's captivating and poignant graphic novel Wolf completes our autumn lineup. Published in October, it tells the story of a young boy, Hugo, whose life is upturned by a tragic accident. Hugo's new home comes with new neighbours, among them (according to the boy next door) a dangerous recluse who eats children: the Wolfman. Desperate to return to happier days, Hugo draws up plans for a time machine. But only the Wolfman has the parts he needs to complete his contraption.

Graphic novelist Kate Evans has said of the book, "Wolf is an ethereal, subtle, haunting fable. Rachael Ball has created a time machine, a nostalgic step back to a bygone age, but one which speaks to our present and future with eternal themes of love and loss."

So, there you have it: five glorious things to look forward to this autumn.

New: Tumult by John Harris Dunning and Michael Kennedy

20 June 2018

Our final release of the spring season, John Harris Dunning and Michael Kennedy's Tumult, is a stylish psychological thriller that demands to be read on the beach.

But first, you need to buy it - and what better place than Gosh! Comics, where it launches on Thursday 28th June. Join us there at 7pm for drinks, chatter and bibliotherapy.

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Here's a blurb to whet your appetite:

Adam Whistler topples himself into emotional free fall by impulsively ending his seemingly perfect relationship. He meets the bewitching and troubled Morgan at a party and is instantly ensnared in her life. When he learns that people close to her are being killed, he's determined to protect her. Or is it Adam who needs protection... from Morgan?

Tumult is a stylish contemporary psychological thriller in the tradition of Alfred Hitchcock and Patricia Highsmith.

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Twenty-three-year-old artist Michael Kennedy brings his singular style and bold colour work to a script by John Harris Dunning that is taut, pacy and achingly cool.

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Michael Kennedy is a cartoonist from Tamworth, Staffordshire. He is the artist on Spiritus from Vault Comics and has produced comics in the small press and independent scene. Tumult is his first graphic novel.

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John Harris Dunning is the writer of graphic novel Salem Brownstone. He instigated and curated the Comics Unmasked: Art and Anarchy in the UK exhibition at the British Library, the most prestigious exhibition of comics to be held in Britain. He’s written for GQ, Esquire, Dazed, iD, The Guardian and Metro.