“The Stringer” – How it all started.

“I have an idea for a new graphic novel (…). Any interest?”

And with these two simple questions, Ted put the poison back in me.

After publishing “The Year of Loving Dangerously” with Ted Rall in 2009, I fell in my usual state of “feeling-void-after-finishing-a-book”. “YOLD” had been a colossal effort -although a rewarding one- in terms of searching references and creating an appropriate graphic atmosphere. Being myself a maniac of documentation and historical coherence in the silliest details – a car seen in such and such a scene, a magazine cover, the inside of a subway car of NYC in 1984… – and with the level of detail with which Ted elaborates his scripts, the work was simply exhausting.

This “I have lost all my energies and skills” lasts usually for some months for me. But in this case, aggravated by personal trouble, it took around three years until, in February 2013, I received a message from Ted that rang a bell in my brain.

“I have an idea for a new graphic novel.

The book is about a washed up reporter/war correspondent who is largely out of work because newspapers and magazines are all going under and slashing their budgets and closing their foreign bureaus. (…) A wicked take on the state of the media, the collapse of the economy, the Internet, the nature of warfare, etc.

Any interest?”

Of course I was interested!!! So I climbed aboard, never imagining that I was embarking on a 6-year-152-pages-task.

First discussions were about what style would match better the story. I am always experimenting with new things, changes of style, attempts at evolution. At that time I was trying out a style that was not as realistic as “The Year of Loving Dangerously”…

Mmmm… Not this time, sorry!

… nor as dark as “Bluesman”.

No-no…

I was looking for something more schematic, that synthesised reality in order to, without losing realism, give it a more “cartoonish” touch that would fit better with Ted’s satirical-cynical writing.

Much better!

Ok, so we have the style… What about the main character? How should Mark look? He was a guy in his late 40s/early 50s, a little rattled by life but still in the mood, a bit cynical but still confident in himself and his ability. Someone just like Robert Redford in “All the President’s Men” or maybe Nick Nolte in “Under Fire”.


But there was something that didn’t fit the “schematic” style I was looking for. Also, it was necessary to reflect the passage of time – decades – as we told Mark’s story. An obvious recourse would be to make the protagonist’s hair greyer, so he needed to be dark-haired.

So I switched to a most modern look, dark hair and gray temples. Got it!

Discussing with Ted a cast if “The Stringer” were a movie, I see Ben Affleck as Mark. Ted’s betting more on George Clooney, who’s not bad either.

Anyway, Ben or George: if you’re reading this, know that we’re counting on you for the role of a lifetime 🙂

Thank you for reading. More to come on the creative process of “The Stringer” in the next days.

NBM April 2021 Releases

Here are upcoming titles, now being solicited in comic stores through Diamond Previews for an April 2021 release.

 

NEW

THE STRINGER
By Ted Rall and Pablo Callejo

Suffering from budget cuts, layoffs and a growing suspicion that his search for the truth has become obsolete, veteran war correspondent Mark Scribner is about to throw in the towel on journalism when he discovers that his hard-earned knowledge can save his career and make him wealthy and famous. All he has to do is pivot to social media and -with a few cynical twists- abandon everything he cares about most.

A paean to when fact-based journalism mattered, The Stringer, set at an important turning point a few years ago, is a globe-trotting action-packed timely statement about how a society without a vibrant independent culture of reporting can degenerate into chaos and a warning of the dangers of sophisticated new technologies that enable the manufacture and modification of ‘truths’ with no basis in fact.

8 ½ x 11, 152pp, full color HC, $24.99; ISBN 978168112272452499; DIAMOND CODE: FEB21 1422
Pub Date: April 14th, 2021

PREVIEWS

 

AVAILABLE AGAIN

THE YEAR OF LIVING DANGEROUSLY
By Ted Rall and Pablo Callejo


It’s New York City in the 1980s and Ted Rall is in college. Everything is fine before his pranks, lack of focus and restlessness get him expelled. Unable to find a job and rejected by his parents, he considers suicide.

By happenstance he finds comfort in the arms of many women as he bed-hops around the five boroughs. It’s better than homelessness, but the psychic toll of selling himself and his affection was higher than he imagined.

Both acidly funny and brutally honest, Rall, a cartoonist both beloved and reviled for his edgy politics, pours out his guts in this remembrance of this most difficult chapter in his life. Revised paperback edition.

8 ½ x 11″, 128pp, full color TPB., $15.99; ISBN 978168112215151599; DIAMOND CODE: FEB211423

PREVIEWS

 

2024
By Ted Rall

Move forward two decades. See the world as the giant media moguls and software companies have become our new big brothers. They want the best for us. They know what’s best for us. And maybe we don’t always know so well.

Ted ‘I-need-more-enemies’ Rall updates 1984 in a scathing look at where we could be headed; and this is all Rall, no holes barred, no prisoners. His best and most chillingly funny work yet!

6×9, 96 pp., B&W, jacketed hardcover: $16.95; ISBN 156163279151695; DIAMOND CODE: FEB211424

 

SILK ROAD TO RUIN
By
Ted Rall

Part graphic novel travelog, part tongue-in-cheek travel guide, here are the adventures of caustic cartoonist Rall in the wild and wooly central Asian countries, a powder keg sitting on tomorrow’s oil…

Combines articles with comics chapters relating his experiences retracing the old legendary Silk Road starting with the sublime history of China and ending in the absurdity of the petty dictatorships of the “The ‘Stans” where Rall had the temerity -or was it blustery stupidity?- to go back, including once with a group of listeners to his radio show, on a dare.

It’s exotic adventure, satire and a fun way to find out more about a part of the world that looms in importance with its immense reserves of oil…

6×9, 304pp., B&W TPB, US $19.99; ISBN 978156163885751999; DIAMOND CODE: FEB21 1425

PREVIEWS

 

TO AFGHANISTAN AND BACK
By
Ted Rall

The World’s first “Instant Graphic Novel”! When U.S. bombs started raining on the Taliban, Rall didn’t just watch it on TV–he jumped on a plane straight to the war zone to get the real story for himself. But the only cartoonist to go to Afghanistan got more than he bargained for, way more than his previous gut-wrenching trip deep up the legendary Silk Road.

Within days of arriving, armed men were hunting down journalists to murder and rob them. Waving funnies didn’t help. From the gruesome spectacle of a Taliban prisoner blowing himself up with grenades to the hilarious image of mujahideen lining up for shaves and DVD porn a day after joining the Northern Alliance, you can count on Rall for a decidedly different take on this gritty war.

To Afghanistan and Back, features as its centerpiece a 50-page graphic novel travelogue of his experience as a cartoonist and war correspondent. It also includes Rall’s articles, cartoons and photos as filed from the front for the Village Voice and syndicated throughout America.

6×9, 112pp., B & W clothbound, US $15.95; ISBN 978156163325851595; DIAMOND CODE: FEB211426

PREVIEWS

 

BOB MARLEY IN COMICS
By Gaet’s and Sophie Blitman

In the middle of a depressing youth in a ghetto of Kingston, Jamaica, Robert Nesta Marley sees only one way out: music. And that music will be what Jamaica made of rock and pop locally that had hardly been heard anywhere else: reggae!

It is Marley who brings the unmistakable beat of reggae to the entire world. From small stages in Jamaica, his partners of the Wailers accompany him all the way to the most fabulous world tours and adulation. Beyond a rocketing musical career, the most famous rasta wants to shake things up and proclaim all over his humanitarian and egalitarian values.

The next volume in the sellout series featuring the Beatles and the Rolling Stones.

7 ½ x10,176pp.,  full color HC: US $27.99: ISBN: 9781681122449652799; DIAMOND CODE: FEB211427

PREVIEWS

 

TAMBA, CHILD SOLDIER
By Marion Achard and Yan Degruel

“My name is Tamba Cisso. When I was eight years old, I lived in the village with my father, my mother and my sister. I went to school and had learned to read. I knew there was war in my country, but I didn’t know that children could wage it.”

Providing a testimonial to one of the most heart-wrenching and chilling developments in modern warfare, this graphic novel chronicles the realities of hundreds of thousands across the world, kidnapped and forced to commit atrocities.

8.5  x11”, 112pp., full color HC, $24.99 US/ $32.50 CAN; ISBN: 9781681122366524499; DIAMOND CODE: FEB211429

PREVIEWS

 

THE LOUVRE COLLECTION: THE RED MOTHER WITH CHILD
By Christian Lax

In Mali in Africa, a red Mother with Child, a 14th century African sculpture, is saved from the destructive madness of Islamists by Alou, a young honey hunter. In the company of other migrants, sisters and brothers of misfortune, Alou goes all out to reach Europe. His goal and his obsession: entrust the precious statuette to the Louvre Museum!

An epic adventure, touching upon the burning worldwide issue of refugees and immigration, in the ever-expanding Louvre collection commissioning graphic novels from leading world artists to spin tales around the famous museum.

9×12, 144pp, full color HC, $27.99 US / $36.50 CAN; ISBN: 978168112257152799; DIAMOND CODE: FEB211428

NBM November 2020 Releases

Here are upcoming titles, now being solicited in comic stores through Diamond Previews for an November 2020 release.

NEW

PLUTOCRACY
Created by Abraham Martínez

2051.The world’s largest company, The Company, has seized power on a planetary scale and runs the world as if it were a business.

In a plutocracy, the richer one is, the more powerful one is. The elections have been replaced by general shareholders’ meetings where the votes are linked to the number of shares owned by citizens. Government is made up of those who own the most shares and it is the laws of the market that govern everything, creating a strange political system.

In this context, an anonymous citizen becomes compelled to uncover how the world came to this situation, without paying any attention to the official version. Without knowing very well why, several members of the government end up encouraging him to carry out this investigation which apparently goes against their interests, by giving him access to all the information. From then on, he decides to pursue two objectives: to discover the true history of The Company and to try to understand what are the various interests that are trying to influence his investigation. The truth behind this power and uncovering it can be frightening but he is determined and has little to lose.

At a time when it seems more and more natural that wealthy people such as Silvio Berlusconi or Donald Trump come to political power, this graphic novel envisions the possibility that, in the near future, the world will be governed by a plutocratic system in which it will go without saying that politics and wealth go hand in hand.

6×9, 144pp., full color HC, $24.99; HC ISBN 9781681122687; DIAMOND CODE: SEP201343

PREVIEWS

 

AVAILABLE AGAIN

GHETTO BROTHER: WARRIOR TO PEACEMAKER
Created by Julian Voloj and Claudia Ahlering

Introduction by Jeff Chang, author of Can’t Stop Won’t Stop: A History of the Hip Hop Generation

An engrossing and counter view of one of the most dangerous elements of American urban history, this graphic novel tells the true story of Benjy Melendez, son of Puerto-Rican immigrants, who founded, at the end of the 1960s, the notorious Gh managed to extract an incredibly positive energy from this riot ridden era: his multiracial gang promoted peace rather than violence.

After initiating a gang truce, the Ghetto Brothers held weekly concerts on the streets or in abandoned buildings, which fostered the emergence of hip-hop. Melendez also began to reclaim his Jewish roots after learning about his family’s dramatic crypto-Jewish background.

6×9, 128pp., Black &White, trade paperback., US $12.99; PB ISBN: 9781561639489; SEP201345

 

2024
Created by Ted Rall

Move forward two decades. See the world as the giant media moguls and software companies have become our new big brothers. They want the best for us. They know what’s best for us. And maybe we don’t always know so well.

Ted ‘I-need-more-enemies’ Rall updates 1984 in a scathing look at where we could be headed; and this is all Rall, no holes barred, no prisoners. His best and most chillingly funny work yet!

6×9, 96 pp., B&W, jacketed hardcover: $16.95; HC ISBN 156163279151695; DIAMOND CODE:SEP201344

PREVIEWS

NBM Heads To Brooklyn Book Festival

The Brooklyn Book Festival is one of America’s premier book festivals and the largest free literary event in New York City. Running from September 16-23rd, NBM Graphic Novels can be found at the Marketplace at Booth 327 on Sunday with some of our latest titles.

Cartoonist Ted Rall will be on hand signing copies of his books including the new paperback revised version of The Year of Loving Dangerously, Silk Road To Ruin and To Afghanistan and Back.

For more details, visit BrooklynBookFestival.org

NBM Announces SPX Schedule

On September 14th & 15th, NBM Graphic Novels heads to the annual Small Press Expo (SPX). The Small Press Expo is North America’s premiere independent cartooning and comic arts festival, bringing together more than 4,000 cartoonists and comic arts enthusiasts every fall in Bethesda, Maryland.

On hand will be writer/artist Jessica Abel, who will be signing copies of the sister imprint Supergenius’ release, Trish Trash: Rollergirl of Mars Omnibus and writer/artist Ted Rall, who will be signing the new paperback revised version of The Year of Loving Dangerously, Silk Road To Ruin and To Afghanistan and Back.

Both Jessica and Ted will be participating on panels:

Butt In The Chair: How To Ensure That Your Comics Projects Get The Love They Deserve With Jessica Abel (Workshop)

Saturday, September 14th
12:00 pm – 1:00 pm, Glen Echo Room

Join Jessica Abel and design your days with clarity and purpose, so the things that get done are what you care about most. Figure out where your time really goes, and use that information to create an action plan for your week built around your current reality, not some fantasy version of your life. Make smart, conscious decisions about your time, and take control of your creative life.

and for Ted Rall:

Graphic Journalism: On The Road

Sunday, September 15th
4:00 pm – 5:00 pm, White Flint Auditorium


Graphic Journalism doesn’t have the immediacy of typical news, but it allows the artist a chance to go in-depth and in-person for long periods of time to get at deeper truths. Award-winning author and policy advisor Andrew Aydin (March) will moderate the panel with road veterans Ted Rall (To Afghanistan And Back: A Graphic Travelogue), Aimee DeJongh (Taxi!), Josh Kramer (The Cartoon Picayune), and Jérôme Tubiana (Guantánamo Kid).

SIGNING SCHEDULES
BOTH ARTISTS WILL BE AT G1-2


SATURDAY

Ted Rall: 11:00-12:30
Jessica Abel (following her workshop): 1:00-1:30
Ted Rall: 2:30-4:00
Jessica Abel 4:00-5:00
Ted Rall: 5:30-7:00

SUNDAY
Jessica Abel: 12:00-1:00
Ted Rall: 1:00-2:30
Ted Rall (following his panel): 5:00-6:00





NBM October 2019 Releases

Here are upcoming titles, now being solicited in comics stores through Diamond Previews for an October 2019 release.

NEW

Tamba, Child Soldier

Written by Marion Achard and Illustrated by Yan Degruel 


9781681122366

“My name is Tamba Cisso. When I was eight years old, I lived in the village with my father, my mother and my sister. I went to school and had learned to read. I knew there was war in my country, but I didn’t know that children could wage it.”

Providing a testimonial to one of the most heart-wrenching and chilling developments in modern warfare, this graphic novel chronicles the realities of hundreds of thousands across the world, kidnapped and forced to commit atrocities.

8.5 x11, 112pp., Full color hardcover, US $24.99
HC ISBN: 978168112236652499; DIAMOND CODE: AUG192086

PREVIEWS

OFFERED AGAIN

All Star

Written and Illustrated by Jesse Lonergan

all_star

It’s the end of the school year in 1998. Mark McGwire is racing Sammy Sosa to break the home run record, Bill Clinton is being questioned about a White House intern named Monica Lewinsky, Semisonic’s “Closing Time” is on top of the charts, and Carl Carter is leading the Elizabeth Monarchs of rural Vermont to the state championship in his senior year. A full scholarship to the University of Maine is waiting for him, and everyone says he has a shot at the pros. He’s so good he can do whatever he wants. 
Until he makes one very arrogant mistake.

6×9, 176pp., Black and White trade paperback. US $13.99, 
PB ISBN 978156163835251399
; DIAMOND CODE: AUG192087

PREVIEWS

 

Silk Road To Ruin

By Ted Rall


SilkRoad

Part graphic novel travelog, part tongue-in-cheek travel guide, here are the adventures of caustic cartoonist Rall in the wild and wooly central Asian countries, a powder keg sitting on tomorrow’s oil… Combines articles with comics chapters relating his experiences retracing the old legendary Silk Road starting with the sublime history of China and ending in the absurdity of the petty dictatorships of the “The ‘Stans” where Rall had the temerity -or was it blustery stupidity?- to go back, including once with a group of listeners to his radio show, on a dare.

It’s exotic adventure, satire and a fun way to find out more about a part of the world that looms in importance with its immense reserves of oil…

6×9, 304pp., B&W trade paperback, US $19.99,  ISBN 978156163885751999; DIAMOND CODE AUG192088

PREVIEWS

 

To Afghanistan And Back

By Ted Rall


afghancoversmall

The World’s first “Instant Graphic Novel”! When U.S. bombs started raining on the Taliban, Rall didn’t just watch it on TV–he jumped on a plane straight to the war zone to get the real story for himself. But the only cartoonist to go to Afghanistan got more than he bargained for, way more than his previous gut-wrenching trip deep up the legendary Silk Road. Within days of arriving, armed men were hunting down journalists to murder and rob them. Waving funnies didn’t help.

From the gruesome spectacle of a Taliban prisoner blowing himself up with grenades to the hilarious image of mujahideen lining up for shaves and DVD porn a day after joining the Northern Alliance, you can count on Rall for a decidedly different take on this gritty war.

To Afghanistan And Back
, features as its centerpiece a 50-page graphic novel travelogue of his experience as a cartoonist and war correspondent. It also includes Rall’s articles, cartoons and photos as filed from the front for the Village Voice and syndicated throughout America.

6×9, 112pp., Black and White clothbound, US $15.95 
ISBN 978156163325851595; DIAMOND CODE: AUG192089

PREVIEWS

 

NBM Heads to the 
2019 ALA Annual Conference

40367240_10156637242769771_8551950090212737024_n

NBM Graphic Novels is excited to announce that Silent Invasion creators Michael Cherkas & Larry Hancock and The Year of Loving Dangerously writer Ted Rall will join the award-winning publisher at the 2019 American Library Association (ALA) Annual Conference, to be held June 20-25 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, DC. Attendees will be able to find the creators and NBM Publisher Terry Nantier at the NBM/Papercutz booth #3535.

nbm

The ALA Annual Conference is an annual gathering of publishers, authors, exhibitors, librarians, teachers, bookstore owners, and more to showcase new titles, products, and services. It is not open to the general public. NBM will have booth copies of upcoming titles on display and several signings throughout the event.

Michael Cherkas & Larry Hancock Signing Schedule

  • Saturday 10:30 am – 12:00 pm
  • Saturday 3:00 pm – 4:30 pm
  • Sunday 9:30 am – 11:00 am
  • Sunday 12:30 pm – 2:00 pm (Larry only)

Ted Rall

  • Saturday 12:00 pm – 1:30 pm
  • Saturday 3:00 pm – 4:30 pm
  • Sunday 12:30 pm – 2:00 pm
  • Monday 10:00 am – 11:30 am

During these signing sessions, The Silent Invasion volumes and The Year of Loving Dangerously will be available for $5.00 each.

In addition, Larry Hancock and Terry Nantier will be in attendance at the GNCRT Comics Breakfast on Saturday morning from 8:00 am -10:00 am, at the Renaissance, Grand Ballroom North.

Ted Rall will also take part in the following ALA panel on Monday, June 24th:

Exploring Trauma and Recovery through Comics
9:00 am – 10:00 am, Washington Convention Center, 158A-B

Trauma is life-changing, from living through the explosive conflict of a war zone to recovering from personal ordeals. Eyewitness accounts are particularly well evoked in the constraints and freedoms of a graphic narrative. This panel will draw together creators who can speak from their first-hand knowledge of violence and the work that goes into expressing a traumatic event in comics. Attendees will learn about expressing strong emotion and experiences graphically, the difficulties of first-person narration and reportage, and receive suggestions for their collections.

 
For ALA tickets and more information, visit 2019.alaannual.org.

NBM Heads to MoCCA Arts Festival

mocca.19.sliderOn April 6th & 7th, NBM Graphic Novels will be attending The MoCCA Arts Festival, a 2-day multimedia event and Manhattan’s largest independent comics, cartoon and animation festival, which draws over 7,000 attendees each year.

With 400 exhibiting artists displaying their work, award-winning honorees speaking about their careers and artistic processes and other featured artists conducting workshops, lectures and film screenings, the Festival mission accelerates the advancement of the Society’s broader mission to serve as Manhattan’s singular cultural institution promoting all genres of illustration through exhibitions, programs and art education.

This year, NBM and Papercutz will be premiering two titles at the show.

Appearing on behalf of NBM is Ted Rall, writer of THE YEAR OF LOVING DANGEROUSLY.

yearcover_300

It’s New York City in the 1980s and Ted Rall is in college. Everything is fine before his pranks, lack of focus and restlessness get him expelled. Unable to find a job and rejected by his parents, he considers suicide. By happenstance he finds comfort in the arms of many women as he bed-hops around the five boroughs. It’s better than homelessness, but the psychic toll of selling himself and his affection was higher than he imagined.

Both acidly funny and brutally honest, Rall, a cartoonist both beloved and reviled for his edgy politics, pours out his guts in this remembrance of this most difficult chapter in his life in this revised paperback edition.

Ted will be appearing at the NBM Booth (#D149-150B) throughout the show and will be signing during the following times:

Saturday

  • 11:00-12:30 PM
  • 2:00-3:30 PM
  • 5:00-6:30 PM

Sunday

  • 12:30- 2:00 PM
    3:30-5:00 PM

Also premiering from our sister company, Papercutz, is THE ONLY LIVING GIRL. Writer/co-creator David Gallaher will be in attendance.

olgcover(2)

Zandra ‘Zee’ Parfitt is one of the last human survivors of a cosmic disaster that merged hundreds of planets into the mysterious patchwork wasteland of Chimerika. After learning that the experiments of her late father, the diabolical Doctor Once, created this world, Zee and her companions — classmate Erik Farrell and mermaid warrior Morgan — embark on a dangerous quest filled with robots, monsters, unknown civilizations, and unlikely allies. Together they push back against the relentless Consortium, who want control of this new world at any cost. Through it all, Zee searches for the truth of her past so she can redeem her father’s legacy.

David will be appearing at the NBM Booth (#D149-150B) throughout the show and will be signing during the following times:

Saturday

  • 12:30-2:00 PM
  • 3:30-5:00 PM

Sunday

  • 11:00 – 12:30 PM
  • 2:00 -3:30 PM

All of our latest titles will be available at our table and we’ll also have looks at upcoming releases.

The 2019 MoCCA Arts Festival will take place at Metropolitan West in New York City with programming mere steps away at Ink48 (653 11th Ave).

Greetings NBMers!

THE YEAR OF LOVING DANGEROUSLY

I’m not new to NBM but I am new to the new and improved NBM blog so an introduction is in order. Below is some biographical information. I’ll be chiming in now and again about my latest project for NBM, the revised, bigger paperback edition of THE YEAR OF LOVING DANGEROUSLY, my “graphic memoir” about surviving post-Ivy League homelessness in 1980s New York City.

Ted Rall’s Bio

Editorial Cartoonist Ted Rall became nationally known for his work during the 1990s, when he brought the multiple-panel format of newspaper comics to the political cartoon format. Rall helped modernize political cartooning, inspiring a younger generation of alternative-weekly artists with a more direct, less metaphorical approach to satire before moving on to publishing his work in major daily newspapers including The New York Times, where he became its most reprinted cartoonist.

Born in Massachusetts and raised in Dayton, Ohio, Rall left in order to attend Columbia University in New York, which became his home and inspiration for his gritty urban style. New York was where Rall met pop artist Keith Haring; it was Haring who suggested that Rall take his political cartoons directly to the people by posting them on subway entrances and other public spaces in order to attract attention and find readers. Within a few years, his cartoons were published in weekly newspapers such as NY Weekly and The Village Voice, as well as across the United States and Canada.

Rall’s work was signed for syndication in 1991. He has been with Universal Press Syndicate (now called Andrews McMeel Syndication) since 1996.

Rall’s cartoons have appeared in hundreds of publications around the world, including Rolling Stone, Time, Newsweek, Esquire, The Washington Post, San Francisco Chronicle, Los Angeles Times and smaller papers like the Des Moines Register and Dayton Daily News. Today he is one of the most widely syndicated U.S. political cartoonists, as well as a nationally syndicated opinion columnist.

Rall is also a graphic novelist, having won prizes for his works of comix journalism such as “To Afghanistan and Back,” the result of his on-the-ground cartoons and essays filed from the front lines of the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan in 2001 as an unembedded reporter living with local families, and his series of cartoon biographies “Snowden” and “Bernie,” about the NSA whistleblower and 2016 Democratic presidential candidate. “Bernie” was a New York Times bestseller.

As an editor, Rall has worked to elevate and promote cartooning. He edited the three-volume “Attitude” book anthology, which defined the “alternative” genre of modern political cartooning that followed the donkeys-and-elephants era. He edited round-ups of comics for sites like The Daily Beast and is now the Cartoon Editor at Forbes.com. As Editor of Acquisitions and Development for United Media, Rall worked to diversify daily comics, signing more women and people of color into syndication than any other executive in history.

Rall’s most recent book is a graphic novel-format biography of Pope Francis.

10 Years Later: The Year of Loving Dangerously Paperback Edition

THE YEAR OF LOVING DANGEROUSLY

In 2009 NBM published my first and only collaboration with another creator, THE YEAR OF LOVING DANGEROUSLY. I wrote the story—my story—and Pablo G. Callejo, the Spanish genius behind BLUESMAN, drew the artwork. I was really happy with the way it turned out. Despite never having visited New York before, much less during the 1980s, Pablo managed to channel what NYC felt like during the bad old days of the Reagan era.

YEAR OF LOVING is about my year (really a year and a half, closer to two) that followed my expulsion from Columbia University for both academic and disciplinary reasons. In short order I lost my girlfriend, a place to live and my job. With only a few buck in my pocket I got ready to face the reality of homelessness in Manhattan.

Until I lucked into a place to stay with a woman who picked me up.

YEAR OF LOVING did OK. But it was, I think, ahead of its time. Besides, the economy was terrible. With 500,000+ Americans losing their job every month, not a lot of consumers were picking up graphic novels. Personally, I think the 6×9 trim size of the hardback didn’t do Pablo’s artwork justice.

The new paperback coming out in April 2019 fixes the size problem: at 8.5×11 the artwork really shines and you can easily read it. The #MeToo movement puts this story into a textured context (I’ll blog about that next time); here’s a story about a man relying on the kindness of women rather than the clichéed opposite scenario in which men wield their power over women. And of course the paperback is  more affordable and the economy doesn’t suck as badly.

More on the book.