5 Question Interview #101

We put 5 Questions to the brains behind Good Comics...

What’s the secret origin story of Good Comics and how did it all come together?

Good Comics was founded at the end of 2015 by Paddy Johnston and Samuel C. Williams, initially as a venture for publishing their work and collaborating on zines. We realised quite quickly that we both had big ideas about publishing, distribution and generally bringing great work by up and coming cartoonists into print and about things in the small press comics world that we wanted to address. Early in 2016 we were joined by Pete Hindle, and since then the three of us have been focusing on building our business as a new micropublisher, releasing anthologies, zines and exciting new comics from up and coming UK artists.

What inspires you to create?

In terms of our publishing, we just want to tell unique stories, and to publish people whose work in comics really stands out. We aren't restricted to a particular genre or format - we're just looking for really unique work. We're also very driven by making a positive contribution to independent comics as an industry and culture, and encouraging new and up and coming artists to get into making and printing comics. More than anything, we want small press comics to be bigger and better and more encouraging and inclusive.

Since you started, what moment has been your highlight so far? 

We released volume one of Robin William Scott's Every Life I Ever Lived at Thought Bubble this year, which collects the first 100 strips of his diary comics. Robin has been posting his strips quietly on Twitter for years, without fanfare, and his unique visual style has helped him to gain a decent online following. However, we weren't fully prepared for the overwhelmingly positive reception his book got from fans, critics, and the whole scene - everyone has been so nice about it and working with Robin has been such a joy, and his book selling so well has been a real vindication of the strength of his work and our choice to collect it in print. I hope every publisher/creator relationship can be similar.

This is your first year at True Believers, what can people expect to find at your table on the day?

We'll have Robin's book, of course. In terms of brand new comics, we'll have Paddy Johnston's Ballgame #2 zine, and the third volume of our Dead Singers Society anthology zine, which collects comics and art all about Dead Singers. We'll be joined by Rozi Hathaway too, who we're working with on new and exciting projects. She's also contributed to both volumes of Dead Singers and has been a champion of our work from the outset, so it'll be cool to have her along. We may also have some other new work or some new distribution clients too, so our table is likely to be overflowing with great UK small press comics! If you follow us on Twitter you can keep up with what we'll have.

If you could pick one line that inspires you from a comic or nerd culture as your life motto, which would you choose?

It's perhaps not fully comics or nerd culture, but I think often about how D. Boon of The Minutemen always used to shout "start your own band" at the audience at the end of their shows, as well as practicing their ethos of "jam econo." The Minutemen always made the records that they wanted to make, and we want to see cartoonists making the comics and art that they want to make and expressing themselves. Our slightly tongue-in-cheek slogan is "our comics are good," so perhaps that becomes "make good comics" when you turn it in to a motto.

Thanks folks. Be sure to check out Good Comics online on their website and by following them on Twitter @Good_Comics. And don't forget to stop by their table at #TBCF2017 and say "Hello". 

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