Abysmal incompetence: Verizon has lost our phone numbers

January 23, 2013 by  
Filed under NBM Blog

Post Sandy, it appears we may never get back most of our phone numbers of 22 years!
The problem goes farther back from Sandy to when we moved to our great new digs at 160 Broadway last April. They installed and moved (albeit late) our lines properly but never got the billing right. Then Sandy hit and eventually, even though we were calling them to make sure they took care of us, just let our main number (212 643 5407) back into the available pool to be grabbed by the first schmuck.
To this day, as for much of lower Manhattan, we STILL do not have normal service on the rest of our numbers. Our fax # of 22 years (212 643 1545) is still not operating.
After months of waiting, we gave up and went to Time Warner to get back phone service and also internet which we’d otherwise still not have!
It’s one thing to have your main operating center downtown completely drowned in seawater, it’s quite another to screw up billing so badly as to result in the loss of our numbers for years.
Never mnd the literally hours of being bounced around trying to deal with them on this for the last close to 3 months.
If ever there was the definition of clusterf**k, it’s Verizon.
So now our main number is 646 559 4681, our fax number where you can reach us is 646 559 4838. We hope yet to get our old fax # back.
Thank God we still do have our old 800# working: 800 886 1223.

Congratulations Dara and Brent on your Kickstarter success: still time to get cool stuff!

December 20, 2012 by  
Filed under Author Appearances, Events, NBM Blog, New Releases

The Persia Blues project on Kickstarter has already surpassed its goal and there’s still a few hours to go. Congratulations to Dara Naraghi and Brent Bowman on reaching their goal and as for you, you can still chip in and get some really cool stuff such as signed copies, Persian recipes, or signed original sketches and art pages. Check it out!

And retailers: there’s a couple of packages for you that include them coming over for a signing + original art and copies of the book.

We look forward to publishing this series!

Growing up with Brubeck

December 6, 2012 by  
Filed under NBM Blog

Dave Brubeck just passed away. I grew up with his music. My Dad had that popular album including his offbeat waltzy Take Five. Simple genius that, and same for many other pieces he composed. I heard them often from a tender age all the way into my teens when it primed me for such heavier discoveries of the day (the 70’s) as The Mahavishnu Orchestra, Weather Report or Return To Forever. All experimented heavily with exotic time signatures just as Brubeck loved to do.
Besides my fascination for comics and what I saw as its still mostly untapped potential at the time, another devotion I had was to jazz and those crazy time signatures were one heck of a lot of fun to unlock as a drummer.
Brubeck expanded the art of Jazz and music AND was able to sell a lot of albums to a lot of people.
You gotta respect that.

Sandy: OK, NOW it’s scary!

October 29, 2012 by  
Filed under NBM Blog

Wind is howling through high rises here at times making some parts of them ring with a tone reverberating down the avenue. Our widows are being tested, making cranking noises like we never heard.
In my total of 40 years I’ve lived in nyc, first time I witness this.

Welcome, Steve Weiner

August 9, 2012 by  
Filed under Author Appearances, NBM Blog, New Releases

I’d like to welcome Graphic Novel Expert Steve Weiner to this blog, starting with the post right before this one. Steve was one of the first librarians to recognize the power of comics to bring youth to reading and its worthiness as a library item. He has championed comics into libraries for decades, in fact.

My work relationship with him goes back to the nineties at least where he helped us put together a targeted mailing to libraries when we were among the first to get GNs recognized by library associations such as Rick Geary’s Jack the Ripper going on the YALSA reluctant reader top 10 Quick Picks over 15 years ago!

We’re fellow pioneers and we’ve got his history of the GN in the US coming back out in a revised and updated edition: “Faster than a Speeding Bullet, The Rise of the Graphic Novel.”

 

 

San Diego: a photo gallery

July 19, 2012 by  
Filed under Author Appearances, Events, NBM Blog

Better late than never, right? Sorry, was just too busy to getting around to this but we have some good pics of our doings in SD:

Stan Mack premiering the new edition of his graphic album on the American Revolution.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Fuzzy sorry, but Brooke Allen signing her Home for Mr. Easter and showing off all her fun little cast bunnies. Catch her at SPX, she'll have those with her.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
See her page and blog here.

Cornnell Clarke of Eurotica's Peanut Butter series was signing there most of the time.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

At a dinner at the Royal India in the Gaslamp Quarter, from left: Jim Salicrup, ed.in chief at Papercutz, Cornnell, me, Brooke, Stan Goldberg, famous Archie artist and now artist on Papercutz' 3 Stooges and Nancy Drew and Jolyon Yates, artist on Ninjago.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

I couldn't help it!! Geary's wife Deborah (wearing some outrageous wig that night), Rick, me, Brooke.

 

 

Brooke, Stan, Jolyon

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
…and only in San Diego: an endless freight train lumbering past the Con. ctr. while thousands of fans wait to be able to leave the ctr at the end of the day!!

 

Welcome Stan Mack and Margreet de Heer

Quick post to welcome two new artists to our blog:

Stan Mack, formerly of the Village Voice, who’ll be talking about his upcoming:

 

 

 

 

 

 

of which you can see more right here… This is being solicited at comics stores now…

 

 

 

 

 

and Margreet whose charming, concise and clear presentations of the baffling (for most of us) will win you over. This month, we ‘re also soliciting through comics stores this from her:

 

 

 

 

see more here (our site) and here (her site). Should this work, we’ll have more ‘discoveries in comics’ from her. Go ahead, ask them impossible quiz questions on Philosophy and History.

Our best MoCCA, featuring Craig Russell

April 30, 2012 by  
Filed under Author Appearances, Events, NBM Blog

This last weekend’s MoCCA was excellent and generally brisk for us thanks in good part to a great reception of Guest of Honor P. Craig Russell’s latest volume in his Fairy Tales of Oscar Wilde, The Happy Prince, we premiered there.

Many fans had come to the show with stacks of accumulated comics of his, going back all the way to even his earliest for him to sign, besides the new book. Craig had done a gorgeously roccoco/art nouveau-ish poster for the show. That art ended up making beautiful T-Shirts and postcards as well!

In all, we sold out of most of the books we brought and this time Sunday, normally a much slower day, came close to the level of sales we had on Saturday. I have to say, the show started also much more slowly on Saturday than usual but the crowds accumulated and throughout it was good and steady.

Had a good time entertaining Craig for the weekend, he doesn’t travel often -this was his first time back in nyc in 10 years.  We also had Brooke Allen at the booth and Neil Kleid appeared as well. A little tease: had good discussions with all about forthcoming books! Stay tuned…

In honor of a great publisher in Europe: Jose Maria Berenguer

April 25, 2012 by  
Filed under NBM Blog

Just learned that the greatly influential publisher Jose Maria Berenguer of La  Cupula passed away a couple days ago. He was only 67, not only too young to die in age but mostly in spirit. He would have remained eternally young in mind.

He rose right after the fall of Franco in Spain to create the subversive magazine El Vibora which brought a lot of US underground to Spain and Europe but also brought up many great Spanish artists such as Max, Mariscal, Marti, Pons… His publishing became a beacon of the new freedom in his country and one that shined well beyond his country.

I did business with him quite a bit over his other magazine that just had pure fun being naughty and nasty: Kiss magazine featuring really good erotic comics which we’ve been publishing a lot of over here. From Noe to Gambedotti (you need to be 18 to go to these links), these books are not sausage factory sex but have a great sense of humor, good storytelling and characterization. You might remember that there was for a while a US edition of Kiss (called French Kiss). I didn’t hold it against him. There was plenty of good stuff to go around!

One of the great figures of a very lively comics scene in Spain has left us…

Right now, he’d just want us to continue the party, the thumbing of our nose at the system, having fun disobeying as a statement.

That’s why I admired him and liked him very much.

Visiting The Center for Cartoon Studies

April 11, 2012 by  
Filed under NBM Blog

Last week, I was invited to be part of this center’s Industry Day, along with Gary Groth and Judy Hansen amongst others. They’re up in bucolic Vermont, a far cry from the hectic NYC pace and a nice breather. A long picturesque ride on the train and they’re in what was a train boom town, White River Junction. Obviously it’s suffered with the decline of rail but it’s coming back and the Center has some to do with that but it also still retains a lot of the old time charm. Staying at the Coolidge Hotel was a gas(lamp) [sorry, couldn’t resist], a little like the Horton Grand in San Diego, all classic of a century ago but this one more rustic.
We engaged in a lively conversation of where the industry is, poured tons of cold shower onto the poor students there but when it came to portfolio review, I was generally impressed. Told a few we’d like to publish ‘em! It is amazing, despite such low odds and bad money for most, how much great talent just really really wants to be in this medium.
Also the school is at a human size with 40-50 students and a great faculty roster. Besides founder James Sturm, Steve Bissette, Jason Lutes and others teach there. Impressive.
Great to be away from the ever devouring Big Apple and go see what the latest aspiring generation is up to.

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