Scholastic kicked off the 10th anniversary of its Graphix kids’ comics imprint by announcing new book deals with bestselling cartoonists Raina Telgemeier and Kazu Kibuishi. The publisher plans a year of events and special giveaways to celebrate Graphix’s decade-long history.
Scholastic signed Kibuishi to a three-book deal for three middle-grade graphic novels, and also signed Telgemeier for three new middle-grade graphic novels. Telgemeier’s graphic novel trilogy of Drama, Smile, and Sisters are all currently on the New York Times bestseller lists and have more than three million copies in print. Two of the forthcoming Kibuishi graphic novels will conclude his bestselling Amulet series (1.7 million copies in print) and the third is an untitled graphic novel. Telgemeier’s deal will produce another nonfiction story, a short story collection and another graphic novel outside of her family series.
The new books from both artists were acquired by Graphix editorial director David Saylor and editor Cassandra Pelham. Both book deals are for world rights and Telgemeier and Kibuishi are both represented by Hansen Literary Management.
Graphix was founded in 2005 by David Saylor, Scholastic v-p, creative director, trade publishing, to publish original graphic novels for kids. Among the plans for its year-long anniversary celebration are special events at comics shows and festivals built around original illustrations and prints to be created by 12 Graphix artists. Among the 12 artists creating original 10th-anniversary artwork are Kibuishi, Telgemeier, and Mike Maihack, a small sampling of the acclaimed artists Graphix has published.
The original 10th-anniversary works will also include a print by Jeff Smith, who launched the Graphix imprint in 2005 with the first volume of his acclaimed Bone series, which now has nearly seven million copies in print. Scholastic will also publish a full-color Graphix 10th-anniversary tribute edition of Bone volume 1 in February that will include additional comics from 16 top cartoonists.
Saylor said he was “proud” of what Graphix has accomplished, noting that the year-long lineup of celebratory events and giveaways “is an exceptional way to mark this anniversary and honor the mission of Graphix to publish creator-driven works and get terrific graphic novels into the hands of children.”