asThe annual San Diego Comic-Con International ended July 26, leaving 125,000 attendees—the unofficial attendance figure of the sold-out convention—alternately dazzled and exhausted by the four-and-a-half day marathon of comics, movies, panels, signings and parties. More than ever, the show has become the biggest marketing platform of the year for film and TV as well as comics—including comics material aimed at children and teens.
Although comics are generally identified with children, the San Diego Comic-con’s focus is not really aimed at kids. That said there is still plenty of kids’ material available. Sunday is designated as a children’s day and offered a series of kid-focused panels featuring, among others, French comics artists Lewis Trondheim (Tiny Tyrants), Gene Yang (American Born Chinese), Jimmy Gownley (Amelia Rules), Eric Wight (Frankie Pickle and the Closet of Doom), David Petersen (Maus Guard) and other cartoonists focused on materials for kids and teens. The show also offers workshops on drawing manga for kids as well as cartoons and writing workshops.
Certainly the biggest kids’ comics news at San Diego was the announcement that Scholastic has reached a new publishing deal with cartoonist Jeff Smith to create new books and stories based on Bone, Smith’s bestselling epic fantasy adventure series. Papercutz was on hand to launch its Geronimo Stilton graphic novel series, about a time-traveling mouse who gives history lessons, with a 50,000-copy first printing—“our strongest launch ever,” said publisher Terry Nantier—as well a preview of Stinky Dead Kid, a zombie-parody of Diary of a Wimpy Kid, which was also generating a lot of interest. And Abrams was on hand to show the forthcoming Toon Treasury of Classic Children’s Comics, an collection of classic kids’ comics compiled by Art Spiegelman and Françoise Mouly.
There was plenty of Twilight talk (and legions of fans) at Comic-Con. The Hachette booth showed off character sketches from the planned Twilight graphic novel from the house's Yen Press division.
Just a few of those aforementioned Twilight fans.
A force to be reckoned with: (l. to r.) Tony DiTerlizzi, his wife Angela, actor Mark Hamill and Holly Black. The DiTerlizzis are collaborating on a new series about a space elf, Adventure of Meno; it debuts this fall with two paper-over-board titles: Big Fun! and Wet Friend! (S&S, Oct.).
Loyal to two universes, a fan wearing a Star Wars X-wing fighter pilot uniform shows off a poster for Kristin Cashore's new novel, Fire (Dial, Oct.).
Author Perry Moore, whose 2007 novel Hero came out in paperback from Disney-Hyperion this past May, with Marvel Comics legend Stan Lee. Hero is potentially slated to become a Showtime series.
Debut author Eric Wight signs copies of his new graphic novel/chapter book hybrid, Frankie Pickle and the Closet of Doom (S&S, May). PW's review praised the book's "singular" protagonist and said it's "full of rib-tickling irony."
Jarrett J. Krosoczka, who appeared on the convention's Kids' Graphic Novel Panel, with the first two titles in his new Lunch Lady series from Knopf (July). In a recent Q&A with Children's Bookshelf, Krosoczka discussed his own grade school lunch lady as well as a recent option on the series from Universal.
Author Frank Beddor (center) and crew won Judge's Choice at Comic-Con's masquerade party, dressed as characters from Beddor's Looking Glass Wars series (Dial).
Captain Jack Sparrow of Pirates of the Caribbean fame checks out a December novel from Little, Brown: Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl (Little, Brown).
Over at the S&S booth, a monster battle was taking place between actor/author Robert Englund (aka Freddy Krueger from Nightmare on Elm Street) and Brobee from Yo Gabba Gabba!
Authors Michael Reisman (the Simon Bloom series; Dutton), Mary Pearson (The Adoration of Jenna Fox; Holt) and P.J. Haarsma (the Softwire series; Candlewick) participated in the "Future Fond Memories" panel.
Fans of Alison Goodman's Eon: Dragoneye Reborn (Viking, Dec. 08) pick up some swag.
Writer James Owen (Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica, S&S) with Fahrenheit 451 author Ray Bradbury.