Wednesday 29 November 2006

It's not a graphic novel, Percy.

Another reason I wanted to start a blog is that I've noticed i often tend to be misrepresented around the Internet, and If I put my actual words here then people can just link instead of trying to paraphrase. For instance, there's a guy here saying : "William Hogarth...early work that bears similarities of form, although Eddie Campbell has argued that these may be more a collection of cartoons rather than actual comics. " No, what I said is : ARGUING ABOUT LABELS IS A PAIN IN THE ARSE. (and anyway, both comics and cartoons are anachronistic terms in relation to the satirical prints of William Hogarth). There's a review of my Fate of the Artist by a fellow with impeccable taste (he likes PG Wodehouse) which begins "Not a graphic novel per se...". (Actually, I don't mind this because it fits with an idea I want to get around to in a few days. Tomorrow, or tomorrow, or tomorrow.) But it's remarkable that there is somebody who knows what a graphic novel is. I just wrote a sidebar for an article in World Literature Today explaining that the term is used in four mutually exclusive ways. So anybody who knows for a fact what it is... is doing better than me.back
* * *
First person to ask for it in the comments can have that little Campbell drawing signed (I've only just noticed it's unsigned but I'm not rescanning it) and sent to them. If you don't want to leave a street address, give some way of opening email contact. When "It's not a graphic novel, Percy" becomes the catchphrase on everybody's lips and t-shirts over the next few months you can say you have the little sketch that started it all.
* * *
When I give a reason above for blogging, I naturally understand that there are much bigger forces at work that subject little folk such as me to 'the nihilist impulse'. Breach has just drawn my attention to Geert Lovink's interpretation of the blogosphere: "Blogs bring on decay. Each new blog adds to the fall of the media system that once dominated the twentieth century. What’s declining is the Belief in the Message. That’s the nihilist moment and blogs facilitate this culture like no platform has done before." I can go for this. I've always believed in a kind of nihilism as a postive thing, the throwing away of the crutches, of naive credulity.
nothing works.
* * *
In last night's comments Lucy tells us we can still find most of the old Eddie Campbell Comics webpages at the Wayback Machine. Thanks for the help. I printed them out from the start, which is not much use to anybody else, and I'm not sure this goes all the way back to the beginning. It definitely doesn't go further than April 11 2003. After that, somebody else nabbed it. Happy rummaging

Labels: , ,


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Eddie, you've got a great thing going here. I'd definitely love to have that drawing - it's cute. You can reach me at and I would be glad to give you my address.

I'm also going to give that review a look. Hey, any chance of a complete collection of Bacchus? I'd love to see that happen. Maybe an Absolute-style treatment would work for that.

Anyways, glad to have you around the blogosphere. It's a much better place with you in it.

29 November 2006 at 04:40:00 GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bloody hell, I just clicked on the first archived web page and found out that we we selling DeeVees 5 to 11 for 70% off!

sx boi

29 November 2006 at 05:38:00 GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


29 November 2006 at 05:39:00 GMT-5  
Blogger Gabriel Villa said...

too late. snif.

29 November 2006 at 10:31:00 GMT-5  
Blogger James Robert Smith said...

Yes. Collected Bacchus, please. One of the funniest comics ever.

29 November 2006 at 13:59:00 GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Goddammit, too late to get my OWN catchphrase in my very own Eddie Campbell drawing. Ah well. I'm going to ask for royalties.

Of course, I don't know what a Graphic Novel is. But I do think Fate is more of a ... hmm... illustrated novella? That's semantics, really. I don't know, but I just felt that it didn't sit awfully comfortably with the other books that firstsecond sent me at the same time, almost all of which I could look at and say 'Graphic novel in the widely accepted sense of comics', whereas yours I couldn't.

Of course, that isn't the only definition of Graphic Novel by a long way (I've had too many arguments in the pub with my mate Ben to think that). But then, that's why I didn't say it wasn't a Graphic Novel at all ;)



1 December 2006 at 12:32:00 GMT-5  
Blogger spacedlaw said...

OOOh ! Dandy. I've always wanted to be a nihilist...
What a nice thought to finish a bad week upon.

1 December 2006 at 15:27:00 GMT-5  
Blogger Eddie Campbell said...

Marcus, nathalie
more on nihilism and chaos coming up , and we're not finished with percy either.

1 December 2006 at 23:07:00 GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Weird, I click through to here from tcj blog and find Marcus mentioning pub debates...

Eddie, I'd be really interested to hear what you reckon the four mutually exclusive uses are (and I can't find WLR online). "Graphic Novel" is a term I really try to avoid as, except maybe for some of Will Eisner's stuff and Lynd Ward's woodcut novels, it seems to be mainly a bit of marketing speak.

The amount of times people have said that they really liked a comic and followed it with: "But that's not a comic, its a graphic novel." Presumably because reading comics is below them, but I guess at least it gets them reading 'em. Grrr.

*waves at Marcus*


2 December 2006 at 09:34:00 GMT-5  
Blogger Eddie Campbell said...

Ben. I thought somebody was bound to ask.
I intend to get back to that one shortly. Meanwhile, you can just keep arguing in the pub.

(which is what i intend to do myself)


2 December 2006 at 20:42:00 GMT-5  

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home