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Tales of Syzpense #7
Forecast for Rain at the Eisner Awards
A quick one for now, to just acknowledge and celebrate this week's Eisner Award nominations, which were released in full here.
The Eisners are, for anyone unfamiliar, the Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards, which are generally regarded as the most prestigious award in the comics industry. They’re handed out every July during the San Diego Comic-Con.
The nominations were just released, and we were pleasantly surprised to see that the first book we released under our new Syzygy imprint, Joe Hill’s Rain, garnered three nods:
Best Adaptation from Another Medium: Rain by Joe Hill, adapted by David M. Booher and Zoe Thorogood (Syzygy/Image)
Best Painter/Multimedia Artist: Zoe Thorogood, Rain (Syzygy/Image)
Best Cover Artist: Zoe Thorogood, Joe Hill’s Rain (Syzygy/Image)
Now, I share everyone’s feeling that in general, comparing art doesn’t make any practical sense, and there are always exponentially more great and deserving books released every year than each Eisner category allows.
That said, I’m really happy that our first book got some notice, because I love the work the creators did on it. And even more, I’m happy for all involved in Rain. The nominations name the principals: Joe Hill, who kindly licensed the prose story to us and who worked with writer David M. Booher in adapting the story to a different medium; to David, who did a masterful job re-crafting that story over 5 issues (and who was also nominated for his Killer Queens series; and artist Zoe Thorogood, who managed to illustrate this story in such a perfectly fitting way even while she was creating an amazing graphic novel all her own (a book that was likewise honored with Eisner nominations this year. That book definitely worth your attention. Only 23, Zoe is already doing some wildly unique and clever things with the form, all while telling a very personal tale, too. I’m just glad that, during her current ascension, she found the time to bring the Rain with us.
And the nomination is shared with the series’ colorist, Chris O’Halloran, and the letterer Shawn Lee, along with logo designer and art director Ashley Wood, and the assorted variant cover artists who helped us along the way, too.
Last fall, we released the regular edition of the complete Rain graphic novel as a nice hardcover, with Zoe’s great Gustav Klimt-inspired cover below. And you can find the original novella tale in Joe Hill’s Strange Weather, too).
I also produced a very limited number of exclusive hardcovers with the red variant Zoe cover below. This one’s only available through Syzygy, not available at retail. But it occurred to me that our humble Syzygy operation didn’t yet have a great way to offer people these books.
So I’m working on fix that. Started building a Ko-Fi store if you might want to pick up either copy directly from Syzygy HQ. The variant edition, we only made 100 of ‘em and there are probably half that many copies remaining right now.
I’ve only added the hardcovers for now but will get the other Syzygy offerings, and the individual Rain issues, up there, too. Just drop me a direct line if there’s anything you might want access to sooner than that.
Last time around, I offered a couple free comics as downloadable PDFs that were behind a paywall to give some added material to the kindly paying folk… only it seemed everyone could access them. And so it goes while I work to master Substack. So I’ll forego the paywall thing for this week and just offer everyone the first issue of Rain as a downloadable PDF. Enjoy! And congrats again, to all the Eisner nominees. I’ll probably talk up more of them here as we get closer to the show but I can tell you now that every book on the list is worth seeking out.
Spinner for a Rainy Day
Because this is a bonus newsletter for the week, I thought I’d also add a bonus comic spinner-rack theme for the week, too. Celebrating, naturally, Rain-soaked covers.
Now, there are probably too many Batman and Spider-Man covers than would be reasonable to include here so I went with just one of each. And I’m sure there are scores of others I missed but here’s a good array to get you started if you want to build a similar theme in your own spinner rack. Only the Metal Men cover makes falling rain look as lethal as it does in our Rain series, but it’s hard to beat how great David Mazzuchelli (Daredevil), Darwyn Cooke (The Spirit), Norm Breyfogle (Detective Comics), and John Romita Jr. (Peter Parker, Spider-Man) are at using rain to evoke a particular mood on their covers below.