Blank Slate Books

Line Hoven at the British Library

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Line Hoven, author of Love looks Away, made a trip from her home in Hamburg to London last week to be part of European Literature Night at the British Library. What’s that. you ask? ELN is, and we quote, an “annual literary showcase bringing the most interesting writers of contemporary European literature to the UK.” 28 European Cultural Institutes and embassies are involved in putting it together, with lots of arts organisations, and the European Commission Representation in the UK which promotes European literature of all genres in English translation.

It’s been going for six years but this year for the first time, European Literature Night extended to looking at comics, as part of the huge Comics Unmasked: Art and Anarchy in the UK exhibition currently underway at The British Library for the next three months to 19th August.

Four graphic novelists were invited to read from and talk about their work:  Line Hoven (Germany), Lucie Lomova (Czech Republic), Max (Spain) and Judith Vanistendael (Belgium/Flanders).

In front of a completely packed room, Paul Gravett interviewed the four authors, they read extracts and then each of them did a quick drawing on the nearby table, projected on a large screen for us all to gaze at.

Here’s Line and Paul reading aloud a section from Love Looks Away. Paul helped out by doing the men’s voices.

linepaulread Line Hoven at the British Library

Line chose to do a tiny demonstration of her painstaking scraperboard style, which is even more impressive when you can see just how long it takes to turn even a tiny one centimetre area of black scraperboard into white space with the pointy instruments she uses.

linedraw1 Line Hoven at the British Library

Apparently you can use just about anything that makes a mark, from rusty nails to fingertips or hairpins, but Line has a few more conventional tools that she likes to use.

linedraw21 Line Hoven at the British Library

Love Looks Away took Line four years to make. She says she has got a little bit faster since then – it was her first book and she was figuring a lot of things out – but making books is still a slow process.

linedraw31 Line Hoven at the British Librarylinefaceclose Line Hoven at the British Library

One other problem is that scraperboard is getting harder to find, because hardly anyone makes it anymore. Line gets hers from a variety of places but her stocks are running low.

linedraw41 Line Hoven at the British Library

If anyone out there has the recipe for making your own, Line would love to know, she’s prepared to start her own production facility going. Get in touch and we’ll pass the details on and make an artist very happy. There’s nothing worse than running out of your favourite drawing materials.

dinner Line Hoven at the British Library

Line rounded off the evening with pizza alongside BSB’s Woodrow Phoenix and some of the other creators from the panel, Lucie Lomova and Max. Thanks to the British Library, Flanders House, and The Goethe Institute for bringing us Line, Lucie and Max – but especially Line!

Will Morris at the drawing board

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The Skinny magazine have just put up a short video interview with Will Morris, talking about drawing The Silver Darlings and demonstrating his enviable watercolour technique. Our BCA Award-winning champ was recently selected as “one of 40 contemporary Scottish storytellers whose work will define the next four decades of the nation’s culture”, in an article you can read here.

It’s a pretty impressive accolade for this talented BSB author and richly deserved.

Felt Mistress goes into Hiber-Nation

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front Felt Mistress goes into Hiber Nation

Our Creature Couture stars, Louise Evans and Jonathan Edwards, never stop working. Currently showing at the Wales Millennium Centre in Cardiff between now and 5 January is an all-new exhibition of Felt Mistress magic, called Hiber-Nation.

nado Felt Mistress goes into Hiber Nation

On two floors of the Wales Millennium Centre is an installation of new 3D felt, tweed and woollen creature pieces by Felt Mistress, plus the original drawings from which they were derived, in watercolour and pen & ink, by Jonathan Edwards. You can walk in and freely wander around the various creatures and pictures, sit in the foyer and gaze up at the magnificent queen, and then have a latte while you prepare for a face to face meeting with Felt Mistresses’ biggest creation yet, who awaits you next to one of the ground floor entrances – just follow the footprints…

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jont capture Felt Mistress goes into Hiber Nation

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When you’ve finished cramming your eyes full of the intricate painting of Mr Edwards, it will be time for your other senses to take a turn and get interactive with a hug from a nine foot tall yeti. Who could resist? Just look at how happiness is filling that super talented artist Simon Gane!

ganehug Felt Mistress goes into Hiber Nation

It’s Louise and Jonathan’s first show in their native Wales and it’s been a big hit. BBC Wales loved what they saw and the show also drew raves from Inkygoodness.

hug1 Felt Mistress goes into Hiber Nation

It’s the perfect antidote to those winter blues. Dark days getting you down? We recommend a daytrip to smother your end-of-year ennui beneath the furry arms of a giant yeti. The welsh for “hug” is “cwtsh”. Editor Bridget Hannigan is making the most of her yeti cwtsh moment. Don’t you wish you could? You should!

hug2 Felt Mistress goes into Hiber Nation

Hiber-Nation ends on 5 January. Show details here.

The Silver Darlings wins Emerging Talent category at the British Comics Awards!

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sdwinner The Silver Darlings wins Emerging Talent category at the British Comics Awards!

Last Saturday at The Royal Armouries in Leeds, the second British Comics Awards Ceremony was held, at the end of the Thought Bubble Comic Festival day one. We are delighted to report that The Silver Darlings by Will Morris was nominated in the Emerging Talent category, and on the night was voted the winner! 

Will Morris’ debut graphic novel charts a week aboard a herring fishing boat for a young man with big ideas and scant experience. It has gathered praise from many quarters, and is now available in a newly translated French edition. We are very proud and pleased for Will, and also very gratified to have one of our books in the winners circle two years in a row.

tbf13 bca will morris The Silver Darlings wins Emerging Talent category at the British Comics Awards!

Photo of Will accepting his award by Sarah McIntyre. Follow this link to her blog to read Sarah’s write up of the events of Thought Bubble 2013, including some photos and observations about Blank Slate’s panel on Humour in comics, hosted by Woodrow Phoenix, and featuring Joe Decie, Donya Todd, Jim Medway and Lizz Lunney.

Speaking of Joe, we should also tell you that this year, Joe was again shortlisted by the BCA’s committee of 9 comic industry professionals and academics for an award in the Best Comic category for his book The Listening Agent. However, he didn’t win, making him the only person so far to be nominated twice and unsuccessful twice! Joe would like you to know that he isn’t bitter about it, as you can see from the acerbic note he placed on his table the day after the ceremony.

joeloses The Silver Darlings wins Emerging Talent category at the British Comics Awards!

Our sincere thanks go out to the BCA Judges and Committee. Yet to read The Silver Darlings or The Listening Agent? We have a very limited amount of signed copies of both at the moment, so we’ve inserted them randomly in our online stock. Order them today – you may get lucky!

Blank Slate at Thought Bubble 2013: Debut Books and Signings!


BLANK SLATE DEBUTS Blank Slate at Thought Bubble 2013: Debut Books and Signings!
If you’re one of the thousands of comic fans descending on Leeds for Thought Bubble this weekend, you already know you’re in for a treat. To sweeten one of the best weekends in the comics calendar even further, we have not one, not two, but six amazing books debuting at the festival! These books will not be available on the Blank Slate site until Monday, so come visit us and grab early access to some of the best comics of 2013.

  • Darryl Cunningham’s UNCLE BOB ADVENTURES Volume 1
  • Darryl Cunningham’s UNCLE BOB ADVENTURES Volume 2 (not on general release until Spring 2014!)
  • Lizz Lunney’s TAKE AWAY!
  • Jamie Smart’s KOCHI WANABA
  • Nigel Auchterlounie’s WEAK AS I AM
  • Line Hoven’s award-winning LOVE LOOKS AWAY
Even more excitingly, attendees will be able to get their books signed by Cunningham, Lunney, Smart and Auchterlounie on the day, as well as by Will Morris, Oliver East, Woodrow Phoenix, Jim Medway, Joe Decie, James Harvey, Dan Berry, Felt Mistress and Donya Todd! Here’s our full signing schedule for Saturday:
  • Nigel Auchterlounie: Saturday 12PM – 1PM
  • Will Morris: Saturday 12PM – 1PM
  • Jamie Smart: Saturday 1PM – 2PM
  • Darryl Cunningham: 2PM – 4PM
  • Jim Medway: 2PM – 3PM
  • Oliver East:  Saturday 3PM – 5PM
MAP Blank Slate at Thought Bubble 2013: Debut Books and Signings!We’ve made some handsome adjustments to the Thought Bubble New Dock Hall map to help you find us more easily.
Stalwart Nelson editor/ Blank Slate’s design brain Woodrow Phoenix will be on the table (#102-103 in New Dock Hall) for most of the day. If you’re looking for other Blank Slaters who have their own tables in New Dock Hall, look no further than:
  • Lizz Lunney/Joe Decie: #157
  • James Harvey: #107
  • Donya Todd (who is tabling with the equally great Jack Teagle): #65
  • Dan Berry: #142
  • Felt Mistress (Louise Evans and Jonathan Edwards: #141

Looking forward to seeing you! Follow us on Twitter on @BlankSlateBooks, where we will be tweeting up a storm from the convention floor.

Pimo & Rex now available!

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p r e01 Pimo & Rex now available!PIMO & REX is available NOW on the Blank Slate webstore. 

Guess what just touched down at Blank Slate HQ? The hot-off-the-press PIMO & REX english edition we’ve co-published with our German BFFs Rotopolpress ! Grab a copy from the Blank Slate store here and be sure to read what It’s Nice That had to say about the comic here.





Announcement: Thomas Wellmann’s PIMO & REX

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Bildschirmfoto 2013 08 27 um 21.33.27 Announcement: Thomas Wellmanns PIMO & REX
We’re excited to announce that we’ll be co-publishing the amazing Thomas Wellmann’s upcoming comic Pimo & Rex with our friends at Rotopol. We’ve been huge fans of Thomas (and Rotopol) for a long time, and so it’s great to be helping bring his brilliant work into English.

But – aside from working with great people – why co-publish? By teaming up with Rotopol, it means that we can unleash German and English versions of the book upon the world at the very same time! This October, Anglophones will be able to read the comic in English at the very same time as German-speaking readers are first getting their hands on it. Pretty neat, huh?

If you follow Thomas on Tumblr, you’ll already know the book will contain two stories about Pimo, a struggling novelist and Rex, a successful chef. Stay tuned to the Blank Slate and Rotopol Twitter accounts for more info as we approach release. Until then, here are a couple of pages to tide you over:

pimoundrex en 6 Announcement: Thomas Wellmanns PIMO & REXpimoundrex en 7 Announcement: Thomas Wellmanns PIMO & REX


Ain’t they special?

Roto+Blank 300x150 Announcement: Thomas Wellmanns PIMO & REXLINKS OF NOTE:

Blank Slate: New British Comics – Signing & Exhibition

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blankslateweb Blank Slate: New British Comics   Signing & Exhibition

Are you coming to our huge New British Comics launch at London’s Gosh! Comics tomorrow night? You are? Great! Here’s the Facebook event page, just in case.

As if having a drink with and getting your books signed by Joe Decie, Dan Berry, Oliver East, Jim Medway and Donya Todd wasn’t reason enough to come, the shop will also be exhibiting work from each of the creators on the night. Not only will you be able to examine the original work and process behind each book, Gosh! will also be selling the art on the night and beyond.

Rich friends tell us that art is the best investment, so come grab yourself a masterpiece from some of the best talent of the current UK comics explosion. There will be 15 original pieces on show and for sale, including Donya Todd’s painted Death & the Girls cover and Dan Berry’s astonishing watercolour art.

frontcover DT Blank Slate: New British Comics   Signing & ExhibitionScreen Shot 2013 08 08 at 09.38.41 752x1024 Blank Slate: New British Comics   Signing & ExhibitionSee you there!

Blank Slate: New British Comics Launch Party at Gosh!

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blankslateweb Blank Slate: New British Comics Launch Party at Gosh! London beware! On August 9th a legion of Blank Slate banditos are riding into town for a massive launch party at Gosh!. Publishing new talent has always been a huge priority for us and so we’re proud to be showcasing book debuts by Donya Todd, Dan Berry and Jim Medway alongside brand new work from Oliver East and Joe Decie.

Come down to Gosh! between 7 and 9pm to grab a free drink a get the following books signed and sketched in by the artists:

Death and the Girls - Donya Todd
Playing Out – Jim Medway
Swear Down – Oliver East
The Listening Agent - Joe Decie
The Suitcase - Dan Berry

Gosh! have always been ultra supportive of our books and it’s so much fun every time we get to go party at the shop. Also, a huge thanks goes to Donya for hooking us up with the amazing poster for the night featuring the artists. We shall see you there!

PS) there’s a Facebook event page for the book here – tell your friends!

Brand New Books: Donya Todd, Joe Decie & Jim Medway!

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TODEL TRIP Brand New Books: Donya Todd, Joe Decie & Jim Medway!

Hot off the press and available to buy via the Blank Slate bigcartel account now are Death & the Girls, The Listening Agent and Playing Out! Head on over to their respective pages for more info.


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