So, here’s the thing, what do you do when someone sends you a comic which is both beautifully drawn and very funny but at the same time about as lacking in political correctness as you can get. That’s Spleenal, Nigel Auchterlounie’s fantastic, totally misanthropic comics creation. At first I wondered about it, too many years of reading the Guardian obviously oversensitising me to some of Spleenal’s more endearing moments – like the constant use of bitch when referring to womenfolk, general obsession with sex or rampant obnoxiousness. More I thought about it though I realised how much I enjoyed the cartooning and manic energy of it all. Then Isobel, our translator and editor, read it and laughed her socks off. Right, deal done then, we’ll publish that. So in February the first Spleenal book will roll into stores – just in time to be a Valentine’s Day present like no other. It’s going to be quite a big book – I’d guess around 140 pages – and will feature two previous stories that Nigel has shown in episodic form on his blog plus a 40 to 50 page, all new, story which sub divides into Young Spleenal, Teenage Spleenal and Student Spleenal and acts as a sort of commentary and link for the other stories. In which you see baby Spleenal, very Old Spleenal and more. A whole lot of Spleenal. It’s going to be colour and I’m currently trying to convince Nigel to expand this cover rough so it will turn into an all bells and whistles wraparound.
Nigel has been around the UK comics scene for a good few years now and I reckon that Spleenal sees him finding his true voice. He already has an established fan base for his work via his blog and we hope this first book will find many more readers and this will be just the first of many Spleenal books to come. Every company needs a cartoonist who pushes the boundaries a bit, a Johnny Ryan or an Ivan Brunetti for instance. We think Nigel is that man for BSB. Look for more info on Spleenal nearer to release or via Nigel’s blog.