Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Dylan Williams Needs Your Help

As anyone who is Facebook friends with him knows, Dylan Williams is very seriously ill and could use the help and support of the comics industry. The cartoonist and publisher of Sparkplug Comic Books indicated that beyond getting good vibes of support from his many, many friends, he could use financial support in the form of people ordering books.

It's no secret that Sparkplug has been one of my favorite publishers over the past decade, as Dylan has really put his money where his mouth is in publishing work that he truly loves. Please consider stopping by their shop and ordering some books, comics or minis. Williams has been distributing books from like-minded souls for quite some time, so chances are there's something you've missed. Please consider buying something from my suggested shopping list below, or anything that strikes your fancy from their extensive catalog.

Here's a quick baker's dozen or so of Sparkplug's greatest hits:

1. Asthma, by John Hankiewicz. One of the greatest books of the past fifteen years and the best example of comics-as-poetry.

2. Bookhunter, by Jason Shiga. A hilarious and exciting homage to both 70s police procedurals and library practices.

3. Gay Genius, edited by Annie Murphy. A top-notch assemblage of talent mostly unknown in wider comics circles.

4. Orchid, edited by Dylan Williams & Ben Catmull. Sparkplug's first release contains work by a number of cartoonists who would have a big impact, like Kevin Huizgena and Gabrielle Bell.

5. The Heavy Hand, by Chris Cilla. A dizzyingly inventive book, one of the best of 2011.

6. Inkweed, by Chris Wright. A collection of short stories united by Wright's scratchy line and monstrous character design, along with his bleak but humanistic outlook.

7. Department of Art and Habitat, by Dunja Jankovic. Inventive and oppressive "immersive" comics about a woman facing the terrors and ennui of work and then home.

8. Rock That Never Sleeps, by Juliacks & Olga Volozova. A delightful and strange series of interpretations of a town related to memory.

9. Whirlwind Wonderland, by Rina Ayuyang. A lovely collection of autobiographical short stories.

10. The Hot Breath of War and Mine Tonight, by Trevor Alixopulos. Fascinating and cleverly cartooned stories dealing with politics, sex, war and living in the modern age.

11. The Airy Tales, by Olga Volozova. A series of lovely, immersive fairy tales of a sort.

12. Reich #1-8, by Elijah Brubaker. This is a biography of controversial psychologist and researcher Willhelm Reich, told as objectively as I've ever seen.

13. Christina and Charles, by Austin English. English's first long-form comic is still my favorite in the way he depicts music and familial relationships.


  1. I've been meaning to order some of these, and now I have.

  2. Nice idea, Rob. I particularly like:
    Hot Breath of War
    Christina & Charles

  3. Compiling my order now. These are all great books that are worth your attention and money. Also check out Williams' series Reporter, Tales To Demolish by Eric Haven, and Eschew by Robert Sergel. All great!

  4. Asthma is a beast, one of the best books of the decade. And the writing in just about every Sparkplug book I've read is as sharp as a knife.

  5. Thanks so much for putting this out there Rob

  6. Thanks to all of you for keeping this going.

  7. FWIW: I made a list (about half different than Rob's): http://madinkbeard.com/archives/help-out-sparkplug

  8. Thanks. For the record, my list only included the books that Sparkplug published, as opposed to the comics they distribute (like Service Industry).

  9. Thanks for posting this, Rob. I would also recommend Flesh & Bone, along with the recent The Disgusting Room.

    I hope you don't mind, but I posted something at Poopsheet Foundation, and my site 13 Minutes to continue spreading the message.

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  11. Thanks for the tip, Rob. I just went and dropped a TON of change over there.

  12. Saw this info on Comic Book Resources. Bought the 6 titles they recommended and may buy a few more from this list when I get my next paycheck.

    Only thing I'd ever read from the press was Porcellino's Diary of a Mosquito Abatement Men.

    I also linked to the publishing house on facebook, hopefully some of my friends into comics and cartooning will get a couple things.

    I wish him well.