weekend seems to have an event for most everyone, including comic
book lovers who will get a chance to see creativity in action.
24 Hour Comic Book Day takes place over at Night Flight Comics this Saturday and Sunday, giving local comic artists both experienced and unknown the chance to take an idea and make it a reality over a day, with several others doing the same right by their side. I got a chance to chat with Mimi Cruz about the event and the details behind it.
Gavin: Hey Mimi, how's things been lately?
Mimi: Exciting! We're preparing for 24 Hour Comic Day this Saturday. I'm hoping I don't need disco nap before the 24 hours is completed.
Gavin: For those who don't know, what is 24 Hour Comic Book Day?
Mimi: 24 Hour Comic Book Day challenge is to create from scratch 24 pages in 24 hours and successfully tell a complete story.
Where did the idea come from and how long have you been doing
Mimi: The 24 Hour Comic Book Day started back in 2004 when the All About Comics publisher, Nat Gertler issued an international challenge to the comics industry; in other words, daring artists all over the world to create, from scratch, a 24 page comic book which tells one story, in 24 consecutive hours. At the same time inspiring stores (like ours) to support those who want to accept the 24 hour challenge with a safe location to work in and share in the camaraderie of all those working towards the same goal. Night Flight Comics has been honored to host 24 Hour Comic Day for the last four years; this year we kick off the marathon Saturday, October 18th - 10AM local artists of all ages, skill and experience will gather at Night Flight Comics located on 6222 South State Street.
Gavin: Are there any set guidelines or specifics they have to follow while creating these?
Mimi: Yes, every participant must come rested and prepared to create a comic book from scratch. They are not allowed to bring in work in progress, but to extend their creative talents to the utmost extreme in order to achieve the goal. Every artist involved who succeeds in accomplishing the task at hand, will find their craft improved.
Gavin: What kind of comics have come out of these over the years? Any we would know?
The 24 Hour Comic Book Day challenge has thwarted and rewarded such
comics luminaries as Scott McCloud, Dave Sim, Neil Gaiman, Kevin
Eastman as well as many other professionals. Joining the ranks are
locals like Jett Attwood, Trevor Nielson and Ryan Ottley (to name a
few). Jett was also published in the 24 Hour Comic Day 2005
compilation of artists from all over the world.
Gavin: You said the store will be open the whole 24 hours. What kind of activities and plans do you have for patrons?
Mimi: We plan to stay awake and working! There will be a special Midnight to 5AM Wake-Up Sale which helps to get a lot of people in and it really helps to energize the artists for hours.
Gavin: I understand there's a special phone call that comes in during the night. Tell us about that.
World famous and long time friend of Night Flight Comics, Cerebus
creator, Dave Sim phones from Kitchener, Ontario, Canada in to speak
with the one artist who has completed the most pages half way through
the night. That also creates intense anticipation as everyone starts
taking stock of what they've completed when he calls in.
Gavin: Who do you have set to come and participate in the event?
Mimi: Well over two dozen people have requested sign up forms and submitted their information. I suspect we will have at least that many this year. However, this is a difficult task and we really cannot fault anyone if they decide not to finish or back out at the last minute.
Gavin: What will happen at the very end on Sunday? Will we just see the finish products or is there something else planned?
Night Flight Comics collects everyone's work and makes copies before
returning the originals back to the artists. We hope to compile all
the work and house with a local library eventually.
Gavin: Any suggestions to those attending or participating?
Mimi: Get lots of sleep before Saturday morning. Get a ride in and a ride home for safety. It is never a good idea to drive yourself when you are sleep deprived. For those interested in attending the event, we will remain open while the challenge is in progress. Please stop in to support local artists and see their work progress throughout the day and night.
Gavin: Aside from the obvious, anything you'd like to plug or promote?
Mimi: We are once again partnering with The City Library to celebrate Literary Luminaries December 6th. Dozens of local authors including Shannon and Dean Hale, Rapunzel's Revenge authors and Nathan Hale, Rapunzel's Revenge artist will be speaking, available for questions and signing their books. This year, we've invited one non local, author Steve Niles, creator of 30 Days of Night, and currently writing Batman: Gotham After Midnight and Simon Dark for DC Comics to name a few of his exciting must reading for all horror enthusiasts.