Kelly Thompson is about comics. And she’s also sometimes about novels. She often goes by the name 1979 Semi-Finalist, which is its own whole (not terribly exciting) story. This is the place where she’s making her new creator-owned comics with some incredible collaborators, writing exciting new prose, and giving subscribers a peek behind the curtain of making comics.
Here’s a page full of answers to questions! It will be a living document for you guys to refer to and that I will add to it as necessary. Here’s what we’re starting with…
WHAT CAN I GET IF I GO PAID?
Glad you asked! Here’s a cute little flyer we made to outline the benefits of subscribing:
You can also of course read more in the WHAT’S NEXT post from the Substack.
IF I AGREE TO DO A PAID SUBSCRIPTION, HOW WILL I READ THE COMICS?
It’s really easy! Currently there are four different ways you can read:
You can read just directly on the Substack site (right here!) — scrolling through posts.
Similarly, if a comic isn’t too long, you can just read directly in your email inbox!
You can download the PDF file available and read however you prefer to read PDFs
You can download the CBZ file available and read on whatever Comics Reader you prefer. On my desktop I prefer Simple Comic - a free and super easy app.
WILL THESE BOOKS EVER BE IN PRINT?
Yes! BLACK CLOAK Volume 1 released in 6 single issues in 2023 from Image Comics and the Volume 1 TPB will release in September 2023. You can find all of them except the not yet released trade on my webstore too.
Volume 2 of BLACK CLOAK (2024) will get the same treatment — single issues followed by a TPB.
THE CULL is releasing with Image Comics monthly beginning August 2023 and a trade will follow in spring 2024.
ARE YOU LEAVING BIG TWO BOOKS?
Nope! I am writing the new BIRDS OF PREY for DC Comics starting in September! And IT’S JEFF Season 3 is halfway written and being drawn. I also have a few other projects in development that I’ll be excited to talk about int he coming months.
WHY DO THIS ON SUBSTACK?
I talk about this a little bit in the OG announcement post, but the simple fact is that they’re offering something nobody else in comics is – the ability for creators to control and own what they create and enough funding to actually make those projects. I have been trying for years to get the time or funding or both to make some creator-owned comics work again – this is the first time it’s been possible and that’s thanks to Substack.
I HAVE ISSUES WITH SUBSTACK, I DON’T WANT TO SUPPORT IT, WHAT DO YOU HAVE TO SAY ABOUT THAT?
Fair enough. I have some issues with Substack too. But I have those issues on nearly every platform and company I am on, contribute to, or work for. The purity test doesn't work. Nothing is pure. Every platform is flawed, every corporation is flawed, and quite frankly, every person is flawed. Are there degrees of acceptable and not acceptable? Absolutely. But I think that valuation is different for each of us.
I also think there's value in not ceding an entire platform to the bad guys just because a handful of them are loud and horrible on this platform. It's not ideal. But, to be honest, I have found little in life that is thus far. I'll take this money and make something positive and feminist and gay with it...and I think that's a win. Every little good thing helps beat back the dark a bit, right?
And while we’re here, if you think that a handful of hateful conservative writers are just too much to bear...I urge you to check out what's already here beating back that dark - and I don't just mean all these cool new comics people…how about absolute badass Roxane Gay on THE AUDACITY? Or if you’re into pop culture commentary Hunter Harris is doing fun stuff on HUNG UP as is Ira Madison III on FRANK. Jessica DeFino’s THE UNPUBLISHABLE is a terrific take down on the beauty industry and my feminist rage very much enjoys Jessica Valenti’s ALL IN HER HEAD and I’m also really enjoying Charlotte Clymer’s CHARLOTTE’S WEB THOUGHTS. Her piece a last year “If I Had My Own Summer” is a favorite. And ND Stevenson is straight up doing some of the best “journal comics” I’ve read in a very long time.