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Supanova November 4-6, 2011.

Supanova is back in Brisbane from November 4-6. The best thing about these convention-style events is that they're open to the best talents around: all you need is the business sense to hire a table. The fans never know what they're going to get, or what viewpoint the artist or writer will have. It's very democratic and everyone gets a chance to display their wares. I went along to the last one and picked up some good reading tips.

Jim Demonakos and Kyle Stevens are in a band called Kirby Krackle, and play songs about comics and comic fandom. Jim recommended King Dork which is a coming-of-age novel by Frank Conroy. Kyle liked First Flight, a novel by Chris Claremont.
Comics artist Douglas Holgate liked The Passage by Justin Cronin. And he liked the graphic novel Tamara Drew by Posey Simmonds. It’s a mixture of prose and comics with a lot of good twists.
Ben Templesmith is the creator of Thirty Days of Night, which was a comic that was later made into a movie. It’s about vampires overtaking a town. He also wrote and drew Fell, Wormwood- Gentleman Corpse, and Welcome to Hoxford, which he described as a werewolf prison romance horror drama.
He liked the comic Palestine by Joe Sacco. He said he was a history buff, and he liked The Devil’s Horsemen, which is a novel about the Mongol invasion of Europe. And he liked Tom Holland’s novel Persian Fire, which is history in the form of a novel.
Hugh Freeman is an excellent illustrator who was demonstrating his drawing at one of the tables at Supernova. He starts drawing with a red pencil then inks with a fine tipped black pen before erasing the red pencil. He liked Roald Dahl’s Boy, and Joshua Middleton’s Nyx Wannabes.
Hugh was sitting next to Jeffrey Cruz, another fine illustrator who works in comics. He liked manga, and his favorites were Dr. Slump, and Yotsuba&!.
Greg Capullo used to draw comics with another friend at school. Later he worked as a bellhop in a hotel where he would draw superheroes on a stand, when he was supposed to be standing to attention waiting to carry guests’ bags. His boss took away the stand because of that, and this angered the other bellhops. Later his friend told him to make use of his drawing power and put together a portfolio. Now Greg Capullo is known around the world for his work on the comic Spawn.
He had a nine year break from comics after working on Spawn, then got his fire back and returned to the industry.
He said the thing he looked for the most in stories was visual action. He disliked stories with just talking heads, he didn’t care how nice the prose was, and he wasn’t particularly interested in gore. He liked “good old-fashioned superhero asskicking”. He wanted to see the Joker kick Batman’s ass, and then Batman kick the Joker back again.
He said he read just about anything comics artist Frank Miller created.
Robin Hobb liked The Joyous Story of Astrid. She also liked Spell Wright by Blake Charlton. She was also fond of The Twilight Zone.
Jennifer Fallon is a writing teacher and a fantasy writer. She liked Too Late the Hero by Patrick Tilley.
Rowena Cory Daniells taught creative writing at Qantam College and is also a fantasy author. She liked Fritz Lieber who was a pioneer of sword and sorcery novels.
Trent Jamieson is the author of books about the undead. He liked Lud-in-the-Mist by Hope Mirrlees, which was written in the 1930s.

-copyright Simon Sandall.