Sunday, 11 December 2011

And here it is! This exists only as an app! Whatever an app is. This is one of my earliest books. It was last published all in one place in 1993. All the extras take the page count up to twice the original!

Itunes USA*******UK******Australia

In the Days of the Ace Rock'n'Roll Club was a book, or an ongoing series of 7-page stories which I drew between March 1978 and March 1979. The stories interlocked in various ways, with characters from one piece showing up in another. The 'arc', as we say nowadays, came to a logical conclusion after the eighth story, by which time Dapper John had emerged as the main character. A proto-Alec MacGarry appears as the second key character. It was in these pages that I started to get the idea of using autobiography as a starting point for a big serious book.

(The artistic observer might notice that this is where I started all that experimentation with the zip-a-tones.)

I had self-published an earlier book in 1975 (when I was 19) and with that I had realized the hard fact that I knew no way of selling 500 copies of a book. Unwilling to venture into that again, but still clinging to the notion that I was a comics author of some merit, the completely finished art for the ACE book sat on the floor of my Southend bedsit in a neatly folded bright blue plastic laundry bag for the next three years. The parts first saw the light of day in the years 1982-83, in random sequence, in a variety of small press photocopied booklets. Alan Moore was writing a review column (in addition to his many more important endeavors) in 1983 and he reviewed one of these little chapters. This was the first contact between me and Alan, and well, you know where that led.

The package contains, in addition to the core stories, all the relevant small press covers, with their hand-colouring, the Alan Moore review in full, a couple of 7-page tangent stories, all the extra introductory pages in comics form both for the Harrier 1988 printing (cover and six pages- never reprinted), the Fantagraphics 1993 collected edition (cover and three pages, which was the last time I ever drew Dapper John until the cover for the App above), a wise introduction by me at the front and a decent interview with me at the back in which my editor attempts to extract exactly what that 'Rock'n'roll' thing was all about. There is a selection of old photos and news cuttings relating to the subject, with a running humorous commentary by me. And the interview is adorned with some previously unseen pieces of painted colour art. My editor was so pleased with all the extra stuff I supplied that he bought me an ipad! Now I can find out what an app is. When I get the thing off my daughter Erin.

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Blogger Santiago García said...

Downloading right now!

11 December 2011 at 22:12:00 GMT-5  
Blogger Peeboo said...

Love the glowing review from Michael Evans!

12 December 2011 at 03:54:00 GMT-5  
Blogger drjon said...

Gods, I'm feeling all Luddite... dammit all, I wants to hold it in my hands. /sigh

12 December 2011 at 04:51:00 GMT-5  
Anonymous Phil said...

This looks good. Shame I don't own an i-pad.

12 December 2011 at 07:51:00 GMT-5  
Anonymous Michael Evans said...

Everyone should own an iPad or equivalent device, although it does lead to excessive fingering and stroking.

13 December 2011 at 01:32:00 GMT-5  
Blogger spacedlaw said...

What! No paper? Argh.

13 December 2011 at 01:57:00 GMT-5  
Blogger Eddie Campbell said...

as you've probably noticed, there's a huge traffic jam on the paper front. two volumes of Bacchus have been stuck in the bottleneck since 2009, and my Money book is still in the pipeline for a May release. the App publisher came to me two months ago and it's on the market already.

13 December 2011 at 02:01:00 GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I know what you mean Eddie. I'm helping a novelist I greatly admire release new titles as ebooks. He's had a checkered publishing history over 30 years and hasn't been able to place a new book with a publisher for a while. I offered to help him publish something he'd been working on for ten years. 3 weeks after he sent me a CD it's ready to publish. And it only took that long as I was waiting for someone to get back from a holiday.
Sadly I don't have an ipad either to pick up Dapper John, but I did pick up the Fantagraphics ebook from a Bristol comic shop about 10 years ago. There is something a little queer about a photocopied comic coming out as a plush digital app. But where something would have been niche, to say the least, back in the day, it's now more widely avaiable than it ever has been. Even without a ipad I can recognise that. Hope this one's a big success.

Ben Smith

13 December 2011 at 03:20:00 GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

'Fantagraphics ebook'? Twit.

Book. With pages, like.

Ben Smith

13 December 2011 at 03:21:00 GMT-5  
Blogger Faff said...

I hope this makes it as a papperbok one day. I've only got a couple of episodes and love them more than some of my relatives.

13 December 2011 at 11:36:00 GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This looks great.

Sort of apropos: you see this? "For whatever reason, Eddie Campbell has never quite gotten his due as one of autobio’s masters, but the anthology Alec: The Years Have Pants should leave no doubt.",66588/

- Brendan

15 December 2011 at 15:31:00 GMT-5  
Blogger Sean Michael Wilson said...

Ah, deary me - I would like to get this but I do NOT have an ipad or iphone. Is it only readable on those forms? I've got the 1993 version, but would like to see all the extras on this app. My own book just came out in digital last week also, 'The Story of Lee', on the Comixology site, and I cant download that either. But don't need to, I've seen that!

25 December 2011 at 20:00:00 GMT-5  
Blogger Eddie Campbell said...

yes, you need an ipad. Sorry. it wasn't my idea. I'm entering into an arena where I have no idea what's going on. With all these romance comics I've been investigating at the digital comics museum and elsewhere online, i'm finding that I'm doing most of my comics reading on the screen these days, so a digital-only comic seems inevitable.

25 December 2011 at 21:06:00 GMT-5  

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