This past Saturday, the latest UK Web and Mini Comix Thing took place at Mile End in London. However, not too far down the road, the inaugural Schmurgen Con took place at the Globe pub. I was there, perhaps you were too. If not, let me tell you all about it, in an uncompromising style worthy of Schmurgen himself.
Schmurgen Jonerhaffs, 22 has reportedly been a pretty well known character round the European comics scene for a while, but in the past year and a half or so has been making friends at the UK conventions. Unable to afford a table at the well established UK Web and Mini Comix Thing this year, Schmurgen decided to call in a few favours, and organise his own low-cost convention down the road. Astonishingly, in less than a week, the event was organised and advertised through Social Networking sites, and on 28th March, a little after 1pm, proceedings began.
Unfortunately, there was one notable absence for most of the day - Schmurgen himself. According to friends, Mr Jonerhaffs had been involved in an altercation in which he suffered a stab wound to the leg. Despite (or perhaps due to) heavy medication, Schmurgen popped by briefly in the afternoon, sans trademark wrestling mask, but had to make a swift exit due to extreme pain. His spirit was very much in attendance however, with art prints exhibited around the room, and a quickly assembled minicomic on sale (unsurprisingly, the comic was a sellout!)
The event was considered a great success by all present. Before passing out, cartoonist Dan Lester remarked "for me Schmurgen Con will probably turn out to the the best UK comic convention this year", high praise indeed. How many conventions offer free entry, chips on the house, cocktails, and sell table selling space for only £2.31 to small pressers? (Not to mention a Schmurgen-con exclusive 'Giant Size Gary the Blu Tac Dog"?)
David Baillie added: "Considering that he organised this awesome show, single-handedly, in a country foreign to him, in under a week... I think Schmurgen should be nominated for an Eagle Award!"
If you missed out on Schmurgen Con 1, Im told he plans to make them a regular affair - Look out for signs around any of the upcoming UK conventions, and keep your eye on facebook for announcements and at his blog schmurgenjonerhaffs.blogspot.com. The final word must go to Schmurgen himself: "Thank you to all who make Schmurgen con a success! I had much fun in two hours I was there, even though everyone too drunk to notice I came! Next Schmurgen con going to be even more uncompromising!"
Jimi Gherkin drops a line to talk about the small press anthology with a deadline about a month away. It looks really good, and I'd like to contribute. If you'd like to know more, ask Jimi to send you an email or bet put on the mailing list. jimigherkin can be reached at yahoo.co.uk
Also, Brighton, theres a fundraising gig for campaign against the arms trade (CAAT) and Paper Tiger's WAR comic (the proceeds of which are going to CAAT)
Thats happening at The Sanctuary Cafe, 1-55 Brunswick Street East, Brighton, BN3 1AU
Thursday 16th April 7pm - 11pm
Oli Smith winds down (prematurely in my book) the rather fun Grumpy Friends, which has seen the adoption of his new style, which I really really liked. Thats at theolismith.com
I've been much too preoccupied to read what went down at The Thing and Schmurgen Con, link to the good stuff!
In addition to the UK Web and Mini Comix Thing this weekend, Mile End London is host to another one-day comics event. Schmurgen Con promises to be in "uncompromising style" Schmurgen is known for.
Seems like a great weekend.
Jas Wilson brings news of "A follow on to the acclaimed 'Him & Her's Smuggling Vacation', between now and print day the entire new book will be offered to read for free as it's produced week by week, with the latest finished pages going up each Sunday night.
The new story, set over 24 hours, features much of the original cast as they become involved in the largest drugs deal Alleyton has ever seen..... the tale of the book's production by including a 'Making of' section on the home page from this Sunday which will document the making of the book."
Jas adds that he hopes this will encourage many future writers and artists who aspire to self publish. The sequel begins here
Team Comics Vs Tabloid Mental Gov continues with some powerful allies joining the discourse. The Comic Book Alliance can be found on the Smallzone Ning here.
New review up on one of the best minis I've read since Ralph Kidson's Giant Clam. Robbins' Inside Outsiders
The interwebs has been chockful of discussion about the effect of The Coroners and Justice Bill on the UK Comics Industry. Working to a detailed Bugpowder post, too much so, I've turned it into a Sheridan Cottage article which you can read it in its unusual home. Lots of links!
Campaign central meanwhile, appears to be Comic Shop Voice
London Underground Comics will be making an appearance at Electric Sheep's Sunday Shock Therapy - Superhero Apocalypse! The anime and pub club event is at Vibe Live, The Old Truman Brewery, 91 Brick Lane, London on Sunday, March 15, 2009. The Facebook event listings are here and "The first 10 people in get a free copy of the new issue of Electric Sheep! You will also have the possibility of winning a year’s subscription to the magazine!"
A few notes lifted off of The Thing Message Forums, which seem to be filling up nicely after last year.
Mallory Chan writes, plugging a small press printing service shes involved in, which interestingly, offers competitive prices and similar rates for low and bulk orders. The Fallen Angel Media.
Cut off date for orders for this show is 2nd March.
the second soda lyric illustration anthology from Paul "Sound of Drowning" O' Connell, *He bought me ANOTHER soda and he tried to molest me in the SAME parking lot AGAIN* is available now, as a PDF in its entirety. Bargain! (although you can buy it too)
Jon Scrivens was broadcasting himself digital drawing 'Little Terrors' live last night. Hes at it again tonight. here
Selina Lock writes
We can now annouce that Caption 2009 will be happening on Sat 15th & Sun 16th August at the East Oxford Community Centre. Put it in your diaries folks! Theme and guests tba.
London Underground Comics has announced LUC176, an event on 27th June to be held in London. Free entry to visitors, and VERY reasonable charge for exhibitor tables promise to make this an exceedingly good day (as Rudyard Kipling, I think, once said).
Video (Contains swearwords):