Friday, December 30, 2011

Miracle Mile Movie Memories

Sometime in 1997 Dylan came down to LA to hang out when I was in town to work on a writing project (at that time I was actually living in Chapel Hill, NC and I believe Dylan was living in Olympia, WA). For maybe a week, we were both crashing on the floor of a movie producer’s apartment in Miracle Mile. One interesting thing I remember vividly from that week was on one of our walks around the neighborhood, we stumbled upon a small, mystery bookstore. What was amazing about this bookstore, was that they apparently also screened prints of rare film noir and mystery films after hours. We went back there later in the week to catch something, I don’t remember what - nothing special, but what was great was just the experience. Being in a little bookstore after hours, with shelves pushed away and watching some extremely obscure film with 20-30 strangers. It felt like being part of a secret world, a very unique experience.

A decade or more later, when Dylan opened his own store in Portland, Oregon with Tim Goodyear, The Bad Apple, he apparently ended up doing the same thing, showing movies, mostly to his friends, after hours in the store. I know he really enjoyed that, because when I saw him this July, he especially mentioned to me how much he missed doing the screenings (while he had been sick in the first half of 2011), and now that he was getting better (he was supposedly on the road to recovery when I saw him in July), he was really looking forward to being able to start up his screenings again. Being able to share his love of all kinds of movies with others was something that seemed to be a very pure pleasure. I thought it was really great, how he was able to take that weird experience we’d had in Miracle Mile all those years ago, and duplicate it, improve upon it (maybe), and share it with others. He was good at making things others just dreamed about, actually happen. I wish I’d been around Portland for some of those screenings too.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Murder Can Be Fun (Revised)

This is the original art, and the published version of the 5-page comic Dylan made for the Murder Can Be Fun comic book, published by Slave Labor in February 1996. It was based on a true story of The Great Train Wreck of 1918, the deadliest train accident in U.S. history.

He used an experimental approach on this one with loose (for him) inking, sgraffito (such as where he scratched out the words "Oh Jesus H. Christ," and using a thick application of pro-white to paint over certain areas. The areas of black and white were inverted before it was printed. I thought he was nuts when he was drawing this, and I still think it is not entirely successful. For example, we disagreed about his use of vernacular language for his characters here. But my opinion on it has changed through the years, and I have grown to really like this comic. The art is so expressive and beautifully loose. Sadly, though I have stored these pages well, the lettering has begun to fade and migrate through to the back of the bristol paper. Download a pdf of both the original and the published artwork here.

Blurry Bird

I am quite sure he is flipping me off here.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

FRANK ROBBINS 1917-1994 by Dylan Williams

As a young kid growing up in the 70's I can think of only a hand full of comic artists who's styles I recognized and looked for ... Jack Kirby, Steve Ditko, Herb Trimpe, Alex Toth and most of all Frank Robbins. The Invaders, Captain America, Ghost Rider, and (above all) the Human Fly, were some of my favorite comics as a kid, and one man made them look the way they did.

Only in adulthood did I find out that this above average "superhero artist" had been one of the real, greats of the newspaper adventure strips and the comics medium in general. He began drawing strips instead of making money from serious artforms.

His first job, in 1939, was drawing Scorchy Smith (an aviation hero strip once drawn by Noel Sickles). At first Robbins didn't write it, but after eight months he was doing it all. He continued with Scorchy until 1944 when he was hired by a rival syndicate to draw his own version of Scorchy: Johnny Hazard.

At first Johnny Hazard did seem like just another clone in the world of strips (although the drawing was, of course, nearly without peer). Soon the story began to prove it's own though. The stories and art became intensely moody and subtle. Pictures of sad dead bodies lying in the bleak snows of Eurasia. To me, his pictures/words are like the best of German Expressionism.

His life from there seemed prosperous and healthy, but thanks to the messed up world we live in, Robbins art suffered. He was told by editors to tighten up his art to look more like the slicksters of the day. And like a good commercial artist, he did it. While his drawing ability was never (could never be) lost, his vitality was. The strip Johnny Hazard was drawn until 1977 by Robbins (and probably assistants). He began drawing comic books in the 1960's and continued until the late 70's. His comics are great (really great), but the run of Johnny Hazard from 1944 to the mid-50's are some of the greatest stuff ever done in comics. Setting a standard that the rest of us will aspire to, but only once in a lifetime (if we're lucky) achieve.

Thank you Frank Robbins. Rest in Peace.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

And Dylan WIlliams as himself...

A little video I made from APE 2008 while working at the Sparkplug booth. Dylan appears towards the end of it.

Crime Clinic Ad

published in Destroy All Comics V.2 #2, February 1994

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Mighty Samson Volume 1 and 3

The recent Mighty Samson reprints Volume 1 and 3 from Dark Horse have introductions written by Dylan.


Banana Nanny

A while back Dylan had the urge to write about a lot of things, but he was struggling with the idea of his public persona as a publisher vs his personal thoughts about comics, art, teaching, process, etc. So, we started a blog called Banana Nanny. It was kind of a free-form, personal blog where he and I would just post our thoughts about all of these things. Dylan wanted to keep it mostly secret, only letting a few close friends know about it. At some point he thought that too many people were reading it and he got uncomfortable and decided to delete the blog.

I thought it was gone forever, and unfortunately most of it is... but for some reason the first 5 lines of most of the entries is still on my blogger account's dashboard. I've been trying to deal with blogger about retrieving the lost information, but it seems hopeless. So, all I have are these screengrabs of the beginning of each entry.

Keep in mind these were pretty personal posts from Dylan.  I think he expressed a bit more of his personal frustrations and anger with the comic industry and art world that he often felt at odds with, but cared about so deeply. We both did. My own posts were often about my frustrations with the art world at the time, but also random things like the spelling bee as a metaphor for the problems with popularity in the arts. Dylan's philosophy about promotion, production and popularity vs. art was a very good one. other stuff about time travel through art and Star Trek. His rants against the Portand Mercury's Comics section were in many ways an exercise of his humorous side - his frustration with that publication was that it ignores so many talented Portland cartoonists who deserve a slot on their local comics page. He channeled that frustration into comical rage directed at the talking dinosaur comic strip. Please keep in mind that this is only the opening thoughts of each entry, thoughts that were fleshed out and explained through lengthy posts, so please don't take offense of judgement to these incomplete posts.

We didn't expect a lot of eyes on this. I feel a little weird posting it here. But I miss this blog. I was sad when Dylan shut it down. I'm even sadder that I can't get to the rest of it. I think Dylan felt like a lot of his ideas needed to be out there somewhere, but he was still uncomfortable with the reality of having eyes on these thoughts. The post "Push Push" and "Links" both spoke about this.

Dylan wrote some really good things on Banana Nanny.  He also wrote some angry rants. And some really funny stuff, too... Here's all that's left of it.

Thursday, December 22, 2011


At some point in 1995 Dylan and I were completely geeking out on 1930's and 1940's pop culture, so we decided to make a minicomic/zine together in which everything was of or from that era. This became Jambalaya #1. Dylan's contributions to this were the front cover, his Hank Williams bio-comic (the first time it was published), and a charming article on the work of Garrett Price. On the inside front cover he wrote " If you want to talk about old comic strip/book artists, then just write me," which I love because, as you know, he absolutely meant it. We planned a second issue, and I still have the cover art I drew for it. But we broke up before it came together, and that was that.

Click here to download a pdf file of Dylan's work from Jambalaya.

Small aprt of long conversation

Dylan and I were having this seemingly endless conversation after we both saw the commentary track on that movie The Limey. I dont think either of us loved that film---we both liekd it OK---but the commentary track features Soderbergh and the screenwriter havign a heated argument about what was left in/left out. Here is a tangent that came out of Dylan and I haggling about that stuff:

I think the problem for me with critiquing other people's methods for creating art is that I don't really have a conscious method any more. I mean, I know, I do have a method but I don't ever think about it and I change it at the drop of a hat when it isn't what I feel like doing. I cut out stuff you or other people might call "the good stuff" and leave in things people call bad drawing and unrealistic writing or whatever. Like you say, doing comics is easier than film but it requires less collaboration. Stubborn people who think they have comics figured out always get mad at me.

I do collaborate with people all the time and it involves having your plans dashed and your heart broken but it can create great stuff and it makes me smarter afterwords. I sort of view each book I do as a collaborative art project where I'm kind of the Producer and the artist is the Director. The problem is that everyone is completely different, so each collaboration is totally unique.

The problem with "good stuff" is that it is totally subjective for me. I don't share taste with almost anyone I've found. Even me and you or me and Tim or me and Emily or me and Andrice or anyone...I just never feel like I agree with people on "the good stuff". Left to my own devices, I would have put out a collection of John Hankiewicz's old comics at 6x9 size or something. But I'm the producer so I listen to the person whose job it is to create the art. I have some say but only as much as the person in charge lets me. Some people want me to be in charge, and I do it only as far as I can.

I don't think I've seen any films by Catherine Breillat. Lang is one director who was famous for breaking people down. I was just reading a part in Mike Leigh interviews where it says he liked Renoir and Lang. Clouzot. I LOVE Clouzot to death but he made his wife have a nervous breakdown on film. He was a dick and he could have gotten great performances out of people without that but the art he had in mind is what he wanted. And cut them up as he wanted. I think, if I didn't like the way somebody was acting like that I'd just leave the group or try and reach a concensous. I was pretty interested in the archetypal approach that Leigh took for Happy Go Lucky, or allowed his actors to take. It sort of deals with why people are the way they are, why we become these extremes. For me, there is this yin-yang mix of control and no-control in art. I love that feeling of letting it go the way it is going and working with people but I also exercise an extreme level of control over where things go. I love how Bresson movies feel more than almost any other movie. He worked with people who were models and he was a control freak but there is this perfect sense of art I get from his movies and it is ultimately because they are his movies first and foremost.

The problem is that the writer wants to leave in everything and not allow Soderbergh to play the conventional role of director. He wants to be the director. And he should. But, when he is collaborating with somebody else in the role of director/producer they get to cut stuff out (they did talk about it though) in most Hollywood agreements. It is frustrating but it is often part of working with other people. It is an interesting situation because it is affected by the conventions of the industry and the art. Watkins makes those choices to allow people working with him to have say on what gets put to film but he will not allow the people selling the stuff to have any say. He still carries bad reviews and bad distribution resentment around like a cross nailed to his back. I mean, in a way he is right, but it is a thing where I believe that complaining about Hollywood or the film industry treats you is kind of like complaining about a Greek restaurant for serving Greek food. That is what they do, they suck. Anytime that the didn't was the result of a few individuals struggle against it, but it never changed. You don't have to be involved in it, you can make your own art. Then a lot less people will see it, but it will be the way you want. Making art isn't what our world has made it into, into making entertainments for money. It can be but that isn't art. Art doesn't entitle you to do well or get what you want out of life. Neither does making entertainment though.

I do believe in the Mike Leigh way of making art, or Watkins too, where you find like minded people and try and work with them as much as possible. It is one way around that system (sorry) but it leads to having to make compromises, they are just less odious. But when you are making a Hollywood movie about the Record Industry with big Hollywood actors, studio backing, and a Hollywood director, that is going to happen. It is something in art that burns out or transforms a lot of artists. They start doing stuff because "they have to" or getting burned out with anger about how nobody respects/understands/allows them to produce their art. I completely sympathize with those people but I also feel like, hey man, try working a day job and then doing what you want. It is actually a more human way to live, less entitlement. Just because you call yourself an artist doesn't mean you have any more rights than anyone else does, and if you engage in a shitty system, then you have all the same rights that everyone else does under that system. You can complain about it and I do feel sympathy but I also feel like telling people "that is what you get."
About two years ago, I sent DW an email asking if he could explain Rosicrutian alchemy to me, and define "philosophical mercury", and this was his response:

I can't pretend to know all the allegorical meanings of the Chemical Wedding of Christian Rosencreutz. I've always understood it to be a metaphorical story about remaking one's self through a series of philosophical examinations/methods. I think that is one of the funniest things about the misinterpretations of alchemy as a literal pseudo science. Mercury (according to my books) represents the "volatile intellect" which is the polar opposite of sulphur which represents the soul.
I like this quote from a "famous rosicrucian" Julianus de Campis, "our material is of the spirit not of the body".
Just like in Taoism, and Sufism, the thing I love about alchemy is how every single fucking thing is allegory, how everything is a means of talking about something else. It is funny, because everyone I've ever encountered who is deep into this shit uses it as a means of differentiating themselves from the great unwashed masses through hidden knowledge that they've built differentiate them from everyone else. My grandfather was a big fan of the Faire Queene which I've always been scared of reading because I feel like you'd have to have a book five times as big as it to explain it to you.
I'd recommend Yates' book on "the Rosicrucian Enlightenment" which has a chapter on the Wedding, she is much more level headed than all these internet alchemists.

Will you guys shut up about old comics already?!

SPX 2009
Jason T. Miles and Dylan talk about old comics
until about 4 am while I try to sleep on the floor of our hotel.

Rasa Theory

From one of the last e-mails I got from him, after a long phone conversation about perceived audiences vs. making art:

On Jul 9, 2011, at 10:10 AM, dylan williams wrote:

This is that Indian theory I was talking bout:
Rasa Theory

Sometimes he seemed to know everything.
I wish I had transcripts of all the phone conversations.

Blood, Hot Dogs and Jesus

"BLOOOOD!" he was giddy at the site of what might have been blood in the street.

It was so rare that he wasn't ducking out of camera's way, that I was surprised when he wanted to pose in front of this hot dog. It's one of my favorite photos of him.

acting like we're in a death metal band

Wandering around New York
June 3, 2009

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Paging Dylan: Comic Books 1936-1950

At one point Dylan was a very active participant on a private cartoonist's messageboard I ran. I thought I'd post some of his words there, many were lists or mini reviews and thoughts about comics and cartooning. The following is from a thread called "Paging Dylan: Comic Books 1936-1950" asking for Dylan's recommendations. I've collated a few posts into one entry here, but didn't change any of Dylan's text, so some of the references to fellow board members and the conversational nature of the discussion are still very much intact. - ZS

by dylan williams » 26 Feb 2005 05:51 pm
Okay, some of my favorite old comics (some for art, some for story and art):
-Genius Jones (in More Fun and All funny)
-Most of the Atlas Horror books (esp. with Bill Everett, Maneely, Kida, Romita, Jay Scott Pike, Meskin/Roussos, Russ Heath, Joe Sinott art)
-Heroic Comics (great art and real life stories)
-Juke Box (great art and stories about music)
-Big Shot Comics (stay away from these (heh)...I'm working on a collection...but they have Mart Baily's the Face and Skyman which are two of the best superhero comics ever made, writing and art)
-Funny Stuff and Leading Comics with Howie Post or Shelly Mayer Art
-the Sandman (nice archive book)
-Frankentsein (Dick Briefer...of course)
-Scribbly (Shelly Mayer...more of course)
-Bible Tales for Young Folks by Atlas
-Justice Traps the Guilty, Headline, Foxhole, Black Magic and Strange World of Your Dreams (most of the Crestwood stuff has great artists)
-Boy Loves Girl, Crime and Punishment, Crime Does Not Pay, Black Diamond Western, Uncle Charlie's Fables and more Lev Gleason books (I tend to think of Gleason books as really solid old style comics, they have better art and stories than most books from that time and they kept Fred Guardineer in fishing gear...anything he touched I love, hands down)
-The Ringo Kid (Maneely and Kida...and there are reprints in the 60s-70s, thank god)
-Wonder Woman (Peter, so great , I love his non WW stuff but can't afford any of it..Man O' Metal in Heroic and Fearless Flint in Famous Funnies)
-ACG (their writer (wasn't it one dude under all those names) makes silks purse weird stories in both the romance and "horror" books but a lot of the artists aren't my thing except for Emil Gershwin, Ditko, Ogden Whitney and Johnny Craig).
-Al Hartley, Dan DeCarlo, Stan G's Teen/Romance for Atlas
-Tarzan by Marsh (of course)
-The early DC romance books have wonderful art but UGH stories.
-Golden Lad by Meskin
-Black Knight and Speed Carter by Maneely/Kida
-Standard's war comics (really cool art)
-Herbie (of course)
-Plastic Man (of course...and anything by Jack Cole)
-I like a lot of those teen DC books (in the early days)
-Captain Marvel (I love reading CC Beck drawn stuff and even Mac Rayboy...that dude wasn't so bad before Flash Gordon ...which I don't really get)
-I love Dr. Fate (and anything Howard Sherman drew)
-Starman (Burnley is a favorite but the stories are cool too)
-The Ragedy Ann comics dude (CRAZY stories and awesome art)
-Ibis the invicible (Otto Binder writing and cool/stiff art)
That is enough for now. I'm sure there is a ton more.

Mostly, that stuff I enjoy for the art and a simple enjoyable story. Some of it had good solid funny or enjoyable writing but it is far between and often not reprinted. I just have to put that caveat on it cause I always here how comics aren't Madame Bovary or something (not from you Tom). Golden Age superhero writing is a cool thing of its own. More surreal than most any comics writing since then. Maybe it is solid drawing of dudes like Burnley, Sherman, Whitney and so on that make it seem so weird to me with these weird fairy tale/science fiction style stories. All in all Romance comics, Horror and funny comics always seem a little better from back then but I think that is because people go in to the superhero stuff with 60 years of bad superhero baggage. The only popular superhero stuff I really don't care fro from back then is the Marvel stuff and the quality Blackhawk Matt Baker style/non-Cole style stuff.

Big Shot was an anthology comic from the 40s that ran Skyman and the Face as well as Boody Rogers stuff and Dixie Dugan. Wait till I get them all to start buying them or I will hunt you down and kill you.
Skyman was in like 1-45 (or so) and then 49-105 or someting really close to that. It was started by Paul Reinman, mostly drawn by Whitney except when he went into the military (same unit as Fred Guardineer). By the late fourties those are definately him. His style got more open as he went on, the shots became more medium and less long. Also, if it has Hitler and Space Aliens then YES! That is Whitney.
I sent the first one to Toth and got his comments on it, they are up over on the Toth board.
The funniest thing about the comments are that he keeps on going "this isn't Whitney." or "This is an assistant." and then he gets to the autograph (which Whitney would always bury in the later pages of a story for obvious reason) and he goes "Well, maybe this is Whitney."
I tend to think, based on the sheer volume of work that is obviously by him (esp. at ACG) that dude was a workhorse who didn't use assistants but was trying different styles out.
Gardener Fox started Skyman but I'm betting Whitney had something to do with writing those Space/Hitler ones. Fox had left by that point. I don't think I've ever seen that one answered for sure. Bailey was writing the Face/Tony Trent after a while though. Bailey also filled in on some of those Skymans, I seem to remember.

Skyman is basically one of the top 3 or 4 golden age superheroes (I'd say the Face, Sandman and Plastic Man would be my other picks). He is so cool, and the stories are really fun to read. Also, as it goes on it gets so weird. Did you read the Face (Tony Trent) story in that Big Shot? Mart Bailey is so cool once you start reading the stories.


Dylan Williams and Jason Shiga
San Diego Comic Con 2007

The Publisher looks at the artist's work

Austin English studio visit
Lower East Side of NY
June 11, 2006

Depiction of a man's butt in my face

Dylan sent this in an email, it's a good example of him being able to turn a stinky situation into something better. - ZS

Seed and Sprout

I knew of Dylan longer than I knew Dylan and over the past 3 years Dylan quickly became one of my closest friends, ever. The following emails represent the seed and sprouting of our friendship (as well as the same for my friendships with Zak Sally, Chris Cilla, and Tim Goodyear). Instead of running photos of Dylan (of which I don't have many) I've decided to run photos I think Dylan would've liked (I'll be forever impressed that one of the postcards Dylan made to promote Sparkplug was a photograph of a statue). – Jason T. Miles

From: Chris Cilla
Date: Wed, Apr 16, 2008 at 12:25 PM
Subject: Re: short trunk town

Hello Jason,

I internet-chatted with Dylan Williams and he said you could sell yer stuff at his table(Sparkplug), he is already selling Dead Ringer, so it makes sense. I will be tabling there & at the Pony Club table, depending on what is going on.

OK I'll see you then!

Chris C.

Sent: Wednesday, April 16, 2008 11:16:03 PM
Subject: Hi
To: Dylan Williams


I just thought I'd email you. I've been emailing with Chris Cilla about Stumptown and Chris sez you're cool with me trying to sell my stuff at your table. I appreciate this very much. Also, I've been emailing with zak sally and he sez you've been representing La Mano at shows and that you have copies of Dead Ringer (again, much appreciated). I don't know if you have other people going in on the table with you...? Is there a flat rate? If so please let me know and I can paypal you the money. Or is the cost determined by space? If it's determined by space I guess you should know that I'll have 2 standard sized zines and 1 quarter sized zine. If space is tight I can easily remove the quarter sized zine. I'm down for working the booth or spotting folks for breaks etc. the only thing I have to do time commitment-wise is represent Fantagraphics (my day job) on a panel about submitting work to publishers.

Alright... I think that's it, I'm excited about coming down for the show. I think I'll be driving down from Seattle the morning of Friday the 25th.

Hopefully we can get to know each other better. I first met you a long time ago at the Danger Room in Olympia, and then we met again on the beach in San Diego 4 or 5 years ago - we were both shitfaced and we were drinking a bottle of Maker's Mark whisky together - at one point you were having a hard time standing and you were trying to keep yourself upright and you sort of fell into me and almost pulled my pants down – it was pretty funny. I think it was later that night I drove drunk up the coast and pulled off into a parking lot to pass out. The next morning when I came to, the parking lot had been taped off with that yellow police tape and there were two cops "guarding" the entry/exit of the parking lot. I was pretty scared because I couldn't remember how I got there and I was worried I'd hurt someone. I started up my truck and drove to the exit, rolled my window down and asked the cops which way it was to San Diego and they told me "that way" and I drove off! I was pretty lucky. Anyway, miraculously, I don't drink anymore.

... I didn't know this was going to turn into story time! I hope you don't mind.

Thanks again,
Jason T. Miles.

From: dylan williams
Date: Fri, Apr 18, 2008 at 10:57 AM
Subject: Marker's Make

Oy! I'm looking forward to having you squat at our tables. There should be plenty of room. I'll work up a schedule depending on who shows up but I'd, of course, love your help with sales or whatever. Hopefully I'll run into you at the Friday party.

Now, as for this whole drinking 5 years ago thing... I quit shortly after that too. I kind of remember your story, so I think we talked about it after that but to be honest, I was completely blacked out well before I was sinking into the sand. That was the first time Tim Goodyear and I hung out too. Ah memories. Anyway, I loved your story about that night though, since I can only reconstruct it from various recording devices and the memories of other drunken idiots. In short, NO MORE DRINKING for me.

I also like the idea of meeting you at the "Danger Room." Sadly I'm old and have alzheimer's or something.

Looking forward to this show for some reason,

Some emails I got from Dylan in 2004

These are emails I still had that Dylan sent me in 2004. Topics covered include publishing, comics, movies, music, health and mutual friends. I think the emails provide a nice, small glimpse of how wide ranging his interests could be and the way we tried to encourage each other to keep digging deeper. I’ve edited them very slightly, just fixing some obviously unintended spelling errors, removing a phone number and one negative trash-talking comment that I doubt Dylan would have wanted public. Sadly, I seem to have lost all our earlier correspondence, which would have dated back at least until 1996, when I moved away from San Francisco. I do have more emails from 2005/6, which I’ll try to post at a later date.
- Jeff LeVine

Thursday, March 11, 2004
Jeez- I've been meaning to write for a while but I'm doing too much shit as always. I'm sorry. Landry was up here for a week and a half too. It was fun. I miss that guy. We talk a lot but I love hanging out with old friends. I have a few good friends here but none that I've known for longer than 5 years.
I'm totally interested in publishing #2. I think, it is obvious, that I'm steering sprkplg in the direction of a comic book publisher and not a book one like TS or Highwater or those guys. I don't know if this is the smartest thing to do in today's market but I feel like it is the thing that makes the most sense to me and it feels genuine. I've still got a lot to learn about how to do this right though. It feels good to publish stuff like yours that I like though so that is what I'll continue with. I think the smaller format thing would work fine. I'm fine with that. Bigger is okay too. I think we could do it around x-mas. I'm thinking we could solicit it a couple months earlier for a December release? So that would mean having it on disk in like Sept/October to send in to Diamond. Then it would get printed in Dec. and sent to the stores in January? Would that work for you? We could even start earlier in August/Sept too.  Thanks for the tip off about the jpg too. I'm a slouch on the websites some times. I'm really into Paypal. I get a couple orders a week even now on the old stuff. It helps a bunch and the more I have up the more likely I am to sell the other stuff. I like it cause is a really easy way to track orders. Can't wait to see that new thing you do. I'll write back to the other email from my other address. Thanks for giving me a chance at #2.

Re: san diego / sparkplug Sunday, April 11, 2004
Yo Jeff- Welcome back. I hear from bak that you met him out there. He is a good cat.
I won't be at the table at SD this year but I will send stuff down and it will be a split table with Jesse Reklaw, Thien and Tom Neely. If you want to show up and push the book, I'll check with them but it should be cool. I can also promote it if you want. I'm really jazzed about publishing stuff this year but have NO energy to do shows so I may not go to any and just use the money to do books. I'll be going to stuff next year though.  I'll be at the Portland Zine thing and something up in Oly this year though. Thanks for the tip off on some movies on DVD on your site btw. All is dope. I'm back at work in a couple weeks. I'm doing well healthwise.
Let me know if you come up here. I'll be gone one week at the start of June. Take care.

Sunday, April 18, 2004
--- dylan williams <> wrote:
Hey, Thank you so much for the zine. GREAT stuff. Me and Ems both were ogling it on the way back from the PO box. Yeah, bak is funny, he pops up everywhere.
So, I just splurged and bought the 200 buck all region player on sale at HKflix at the moment. I loaded up on a ton of kung fu movies (my current re-fetish). I was looking at the new Zatoichi by Takeshi on this site: as recommended by somebody here: As you know, I'm sure, this is gonna be a BIG problem for me. SO much stuff I can now see. I'm having to go with the best of the best to begin with. I'm thinking of which Shaw Bros movies to see and I remembered you got a set.  I'm interested in Eighteen Diagram Pole Fighter and Heroes Two. Would you rate those two well. Also, I was gonna get that Mizoguchi doc from here: id-6926/ but it sold out. Is there a place you'd go to find it and other Mizoguchi movies. Also, Bresson? know what I'm like, where do you go?
I'm doing really well and go back to work in a few weeks. So it means I'll have more all region money...sadly.

Thanks again.

Monday, April 19, 2004
WOW! Thanks for all the info. It helps so much to know all that stuff is out there. 36th Chamber is said to be great so, that is at the top of my list and I'll find Come Drink with me. Thanks for the tip off about Bresson and Mizoguchi. Tonight I found this place, I'm in hog-heaven with this thing but I bet I'll burn out: the other Bengali directors are the ones I really can't believe they have.

Tuesday, June 22, 2004
Yeah, thanks man. It is nice to be free of the monster for a while. My condition is chronic so it may or may not come back. Either way, I'm just enjoying all I can. I haven't told everyone yet (you were on my list) cause I've sort of been in shock about it.
I'm back on work fulltime and publishing is all go for the time being SO...hurry up and finish...heh. Nah, take your time and do what you want. I can't wait to see it either way. I'm knee deep in Kung Fu movies these days thanks to that all region player, though I did just get the two new Bresson DVDs. Life is good, but there is still never enough time.
Take care.

Friday, July 2, 2004
Hey Jeff- Man, I'm back at work and back up to my kneck in shit. Okay, I think it is awesome that Balzac sparked the interest. Only you...or maybe Austin...and me.
Okay, so, it turns out that Longbox was dead until about a week before you wrote when I  agreed to work on it with Zack Soto. He and I are sort of co-editing it. We would LOVE to have you involved (of course DAC was my inspiration..duh) and basically doing whatever you'd like. It will have a sort of nerdy bent. The thing we REALLY want to run are reviews. The first issue is packed up with everything else. The second issue is a special issue (on Chinese comics...if you are interested...mostly the Jademan stuff) but after that it is wide open.  Let me know what you think? And if you have other ideas. I'm sort of intent on well written articles and so on. I've been kind of picky about the other people involved. Trying to make something about comics that I would actually read. As I barely read the Journal anymore and much prefer Alter Ego (though it is REALLY fannish...). I want a mix of old and new.
Thanks...okay...have to run...ugh. No time...must slow down.

Monday, July 19, 2004
Hey Jeff- I'm sorry to take so long to thank you for the Mizoguchi list. It seems like I never have enough time to do what I want and TOO much time to post stupid shit on the internet. We would love to print anything you feel like writing about comics. After all, honestly DAC is the only real model I've ever had for a good magazine about comics (no BS). Our first issue aims to be done in August to come out at SPX but that may or may not happen. Second issue is going to be all about Chinese comics so if you a have any inclination to learn or write about any Chinese comics (I'm doing it to learn more, the only reason I write about stuff these days...a big excuse to learn shit)....oops I read your email below and I see I already told you that. I think we should expand it to include some of the other cool Chinese stuff.
So, I've been meaning to say, thanks for the push on the all region player. It is the best investment I've made in a while. Seeing those classic Shaw Bros movies and new Japanese, Korean, Indian, European stuff (and classics) is WONDERFUL. I always felt like I'd run out of movies to watch some day, now I know that will never happen. I've had to cut back on buying stuff (spent too much already) and am using  that Nicheflix a bunch. But, thanks for the Mizoguchi thing cause I kinda think I'm gonna get it. Have you ever tried to return stuff to Yesasia?  They have another CRAZY movie called Chasing Girls that I'm most likely gonna get too. Kevin H. is big into Chekov. I like him but am not overly into what I've read (just short stories and seen the play Cherry Orchard). I'm reading American Tragedy right now by Dreiser and LOVING it. Dude is like the source of so much of my favorite kind of writing. The best of turn of the century Journalism added to 19th century writers like Crane. POIFECT for me. I keep on getting interrupted with other books (research for comics and stuff) and things like that wonderful new 8ball. When I get annoyed by things like that Graphic Novel Manifesto I have only to prop open an issue of 8ball and feel my love for comics return. Thank God.
Take care. Let me know if you need anything for SD. If you feel like going? I've sent some extras of the first issue with Jesse. I can't wait to do number two.

Wednesday, September 15, 2004
Hey, sorry I've been flakey. My mom was in the hospital this time. All is good now though and she seems to be out of harms way. I will be at SPX and I'll bring enough WD to hook Mr. Pittsburgh up. Any word on #2? Look forward to it is all, no rush. But as your publisher "Get it done now!"
Hey, I've been so all region crazy lately. I went to the bay and Ben took me to some stores in Chinatown that ROCK, on the main strip there. I found one movie in this Cathay Classics series and am now getting more:§ion=videos& It was a VCD and seemed fine.
I've been loading up on the Shaw Bros movies at Yesasia too, but did manage to find (thanks to Ben) a couple for even cheaper at one store. I figure those Cathay non-kungfu films sort of even out, and I bought the Murnau collection. Have you seen Sunrise? Wasn't in the collection but I rented it through Nicheflix. That was one hell of a movie. I also got Napoleon but turned it off after the Snowball scene. I just didn't care for all that camera work. Murnau does it but it seems more tasteful to me somehow, rather than just being flash. Speaking of that I got a Kino Harold Lloyd collection that is awesome. Really great camera work too. I didn't even realize.
Okay, take care.

Wednesday, September 22, 2004
Hey Jeff! I'm super happy to see that cover! It looks great. I was looking at all the comics you have for sale on the site and thinking how much I enjoy publishing your stuff. Hey, can I sell any of those at the SPX show? I could buy like 10 of each just for the show or something? If you are interested. If not, no worries. I could use a PDF of the cover to make a promo or something but we can do that after SPX (in a couple weeks). I figure on having both your book and Eric's new book premier at APE this year. New Reporter will be out for SPX, I'm hoping.
I like the cover. I have an idea, just an idea, see what you think: what if the text were all in a row at the bottom and smaller, like a quarter of an inch to a half an inch tall. I just like the art enough to want to really see it. I'm totally cool with it the way it is though, the colors are GREAT, like last time too. I can't wait to do it. I will give you UPC code. What are the specs for the book: page count, size (smaller still right?), grey tones?, same stock cover/guts?, made out of gold?
Super into girl singers from the sixties these days, saw a show on John Lennon's Juke Box that blew me away.

Tuesday, October 26, 2004
Hey Jeff- Sorry I've been kind of rude, I've just had a ton of crap going on. Writing, drawing, publishing and more. I'm excited to hear you are coming up and would love to hang out. Saturday is always good for me. Sunday and Monday are a little harder. Ah, but I read your email and it sounds like those are the days. I think lunch on Monday would be cool or something before 3pm on Sunday.
I did get your books and sold them at the show. Thanks so much. There are a few left which I may sell at future shows if that is okay. I also got your email about the site. That was just a temp thing that quickly came down after the show. Hopefully future ones won't be so cut and paste as that one.
So, yeah, I'm looking forward to seeing you. Give me a call. Friday nights I'm usually around no problem.  Other nights are sort of irregular.

Thursday, December 9, 2004
Hi- Just checking in. I just realized that I never heard from you when you came up here AND I forgot when it was. I'm sorry. Ben Catmull may move down your way so I may come down there some time. I still have fond memories of the movies down there. I think I had more fun on that trip with Frank to LA than I did living in LA. Although I'm sure it wasn't fun at the time (nothing ever is...heh). So anyway, I have a new comic out which I should be send your way one of these days. I've been watching movies, going to work, drawing and more. Life is at its most sublime when it is boring and mundane (for me). Just saw the Swimmer thanks to Sammy's plug, think you'd like that one, I didn't even know of it. All my cancer shit seems to be in remission so I'm cool on that front too.
I hope everything is cool down there. How are you doing? How is the art? Are you still interested in doing something for APE? I will have 1 table there, at which you are welcome. It will be a Sparkplug only table with me manning the helm. Got more plans for world domination in 05.
Take care

Wednesday, December 29, 2004
No problem. I'm sure you mentioned this earlier but it is 6x9 too, right? Less heavy paper if I can? I'm thinking that bar code idea is a waste on non-books, so if you think so too we can leave it off. Let me know if I'm right about the other info and I can ask for the quote. I'm sort of thinking around 4 bucks but we'll see. 
I got Yakuza Papers this week but have no time to watch it. My mom got me the Marx bros set with all the good ones (most of the good ones). I watched Animal Crackers (the school one..I think that is the name). I hadn't seen that in years and was so SO happy to watch it. I also finally watched Gertrude (the Dreyer movie) which was a  movie made for me. I loved it. With all the horror in the world I'm trying to remember to enjoy any little moment I can.
Take care, happy Holidays and all that shit...
Oh yeah, the piece about the Egyptian theater on Black Rose Mansion made me want to come down there BIG time.

Thursday, December 15, 2011