Come to Thoughtbubble 2011!

Yep, I’ll be at Thought Bubble this weekend (19/20th November), which looks like being a real humdinger. Two massive halls crammed with a billion cartoonists (count ’em).  I’ll be at Table F in  Saviles Hall, alongside the marvellous Douglas Noble.

I’ll be selling my last remaining copies of the officially-sold-out-never-to-grace-the-face-of-this-earth-again Derek The Sheep book. Not got a copy yet? Then you’d better hurry up cos it’s officially a masterpiece and one of 1001 comics YOU MUST READ BEFORE YOU DIE!!!!

I’m on page 785 (I know that page off by heart now). Here’s the evidence, purposely shown at low-res so you have to go out and buy the book, (which is actually an amazing read I have to say, including many reviews from fellow Fleece Stationer Ellen Lindner and her partner Stephen Betts, mastermind behind Eurocomics translation site Comics Influx)

(See Mr. Beano? See what you’re missing?)

I’ll also have my extremely scarce Bad Dog Newspaper, collecting all my favourite Bad Dog strips from over the years. I’ll not be reprinting this one either, seeing as it cost me a million pounds* to make! (*approx) Yeah, I know it’s more expensive than all those lovely full colour newspaper anthologies doing the rounds, but this is ALL ME and I only made 50 of them, so they’re FLIPPIN’ RARE!!! So get those before they disappear.

Hot off the press will be a Burp mini-comic fold out thingy…

And last, but not leastly, I’ll be signing NELSON at some point. Nelson the brilliant anthology from Blank Slate…

I’ll talk about it more another time, but here’s a panel from my little strip in all it’s sparkling, clear glory…

So, that’s it. Hope to see you all at the weekend!

Derek the Sheep comes to New Cross!

Derek The Sheep Is Dead! Long Live Derek The Sheep!

Whilst the nation still mourns the loss of regular comic strip shenanigans in the Beano from our favourite woolly nutjob Derek the Sheep, it’s time to rejoice at his major new reappearance this Sunday 24th July at the spectacular festival knees-up New Cross Turn Left!

Check it out!

At 2pm you can bear witness to my brand new Derek the Sheep play for all the family, starring Chloe Lewis as Cecil the Bee and Nick Ofield as Derek the Sheep! Directed by Robert Clayton of Legend Theatre, this production will bring to life the madcap comicstrip craziness we all know and love in front of your very eyes. It’s very stupid and perfect for the kiddies, but kids of all ages (i.e. everyone) will undoubtedly love it too!

The actors aren’t being paid, so punters are encouraged to donate spare change to show their appreciation. I’ll also be selling and signing limited copies of Derek’s book.

And there’s plenty more going on at New Cross Turn Left! As well as exclusive exhibitions in the Olde Police Cells (including a topical, slightly deranged, performance piece by me and Matt Abbiss), there’ll be Lauren O’Farrell‘s Graffiti knitting workshops, comedy with Shabs and Nathaniel Metcalfe, comic clinics, an exciting book launch, DJs in the evening and a plethora of comics for sale during the day (alongside tea, cakes and booze for sale).

Here’s the timetable:

2PM – Derek The Sheep and The Quest for the Googly Glasses
3PM – Comics Clinic in the Fleece Station
4PM – Graffiti knitting workshop by Lauren O’Farrell
6:30PM – Art History Dropouts Launch
7:30PM – Comedy: Shabs Kazim and Nat Metcalfe

Check out the website for regular updates and directions.

A big thank you to Ellen Lindner for organising this amazing event! Check out her new comic Art History Dropouts co-created with Barnaby Richards exclusively launched in the evening!

Hope to see you there!

Woohoo! I’m famous!

Yes, it’s fame at last for me! The Irish National newspaper The Irish Sunday Independent have interviewed me for their financial Q&A The Paper Prophet. I talk about baked beans, mars bars, chips, all sorts of important things for readers to think about over their morning Frosties.

This is all in anticipation of an invasion by me and fellow Fleecestationer, Sarah MacIntyre to Dublin in a couple of weeks as part of the Children’s Book Festival. In fact, I’ve just remembered we’re being filmed for a kids TV programme on RTE too! Wow. Get those rotten tomatoes ready to throw at the screen.

In other news, yesterday me and my dad had a crazy day meeting long-lost relatives. I’ve been digging around my family tree for over 10 years now (one of my long-standing uber-obsessions) and it was great to finally put some faces to names of some of my ye olde ancestors.

Check out this mean-looking dude (my Great-Great-Grandfather) on the left from about 1900…


Apparently he was a right hard fella and to be truthful, with that scowl, I wouldn’t want to mess with him. He had a tough old upbringing; his rogue sailor dad was lost at sea around 1863 and in 1883 his step-dad murdered his mum (a sad story I’ll save for another blog post).

Here he is wrestling an anchor 20 years later…

(I keep thinking that’s his hair blowing in the wind, but it’s probably a tree).

His son (my Great Grandfather), in the first picture on the right, was no different. According to an article in Island History News (all about the Isle of Dogs), he joined the Merchant Navy and went round the world three times, was iced up in Greenland for nine months, got torpedoed three times in the First World War and worked as a diver for the PLA. (And that was all before breakfast! Hahaha!!!)

And the little baby dude on his mum’s lap? He did the last trip on the Cutty Sark! So cool.

Thanks to everyone for such a brilliant day yesterday, especially Brian Lang for organising the get-together.

I’ll leave it upto my great uncle once removed for the final word. Cheers Jack!