The Elephant in the convention room

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little elephant from sabahnur on etsy

There have been some rumblings on the internets dismissing complaints about how low sales were at SPX this year. Sales complaints are not a minor problem — these are Troubled Economic Times, and this year, even the bigger publishers at SPX showed signs of cutting back. The show was missing more than a few of the usual faces, and statistically, at least some of them had to have been economic casualties. I love going to SPX, and I have no complaints about how it’s organized, but I’ve questioned whether it’s even feasible for SPX’s attendees to support the number of creators in attendance. So I thought I’d do some math regarding SPX tables in the interest of seeing just how the money in the room spreads around.

EXCLUSIVE: Chris Claremont to headline KING CON November 4-7

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How many conventions can one comics-crazy town hold? We’re about to find out as the dates for KING CON in Brooklyn have just been announced: November 4-7 at the Brooklyn Lyceum. That’s three weeks after the New York Comic-Con, and four weeks before the next Brooklyn Comics Arts Festival. And the show is expanding to four days from two this year. X-MEn writer Chris Claremont has just been announced as the Guest of Honor.

Matt Fraction wins 2010 PEN Center literary award

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Matt Fraction has become the first comics writer to win a prestigious PEN Center literary award for his “Outstanding Body of Work.” The awards are presented annually to writers living west of the Mississippi. A panel of judges choose finalists in ten categories: fiction, creative nonfiction, research nonfiction, poetry, children’s literature, translation, journalism, drama, teleplay, and screenplay.

Are comic book movies passé?

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It seems that the general air of Doompocalypsamagedden has now even extended to the comic book film, a once thriving genre that provided much of the capital that has fueled the biz for the last decade. Over at Comic Book Movie, there’s an unsigned “volunteer contribution” that suggests “comic book movie” could go the way of the Western or the POLICE ACADEMY movies:

October is around the corner!

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All this horror put us in mind to answer the question several of you have emailed: Yes, we will be doing 31 Days of Halloween this year!
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Send us Halloween-themed art or a link and we’ll share it with the world, or at least with people who read The Beat. Send it to heidi dot macdonald at gmail dot com, and try to put the word Halloween in the subject somewhere so it’s easier to find. Thanks in advance.

Nice Art: Nathan Fox's Rabid Rabbit 12 cover

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Speaking of horror, a A new issue of the indie anthology is coming out next month, and here’s the grisly cover.

Morning read: Elevator by Queenie Chan

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From the Bento Comics site, a little horror story, Elevator by Queenie Chan. The story is downloadable for a variety of e-readers as well.

Stephen DeStefano's Monday Strip

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Only three were produced, alas, but they are swell. We have censored some salty language for our younger readers — read the shocking unexpurgated version in the link!

Nice Art: Eleanor Davis's farm illustrations

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Eleanor Davis (SECRET SCIENCE ALLIANCE)) did some illos for Athens Tiny Farm and they are my-t fine. (Click for larger version.)