[The following editorial appears in Shards #5, Hidden Years #18, New Blood #24, Blood of Ten Chiefs #13, Jink #2, and The Rebels #2. --MK]
It occurs to me that over the last few months, Warp has been the recipient of generosity from a number of people. Since I am in the running for the "Most Procrastinatory Correspondent" award (again), I thought maybe I could peel a few layers from my own karmic onion and give credit where it's due right here.
Heartfelt thanks... to Kelley Bradley for organic chemistry class casting of Cutter (no one missed the loincloth!).
...to Michael Hirtes for the intriguing 3-D photo of Wendy and me from the San Diego Comic Convention.
...to Rand Stamm for two very nicely done elfin character sculptures
...to Kirsten Ottmann for the wonderful Elfquest doll (sort of Leetah in Go-Back garb).
I also want to extend our deep appreciation and thanks to some people, all of whom have something in common, whom you're going to meet next month - and perhaps in the months that follow. They are: Takayuki Matsutani and Yoshihiro Shimizu, Tomoko Kanai, Yumiko Igarashi, Fred Schodt, Will and Annie Eisner, and Brian Stelfreeze and Christine Walsh, as well as a cast of dozens of cartoonists, editors, publishers and newfound friends and associates.
What do all these people share? From October 25 to November 1, 1994, they were our hosts, our interpreters, our traveling companions, our fellow ambassadors on what was probably the most incredible trip Wendy and I have yet taken, as cartoonists from the United States met with their counterparts in Japan for the first of what everyone hopes will be many such cross-cultural exchanges. To meet, to learn, to trade, to discuss--all in the name of comics.
Many of you who read ELFQUEST also enjoy manga - Japanese comics. But did you know that the Japanese have been making comics--narrative sequences of words and pictures intertwined--for longer than the U.S. has been a country? The page illustrated here is from the story "Mamesuke Banashi," illustrated by an artist named Kunimaru and published in the year 1817. It's comics. There's nothing else it can be.
So, starting next month (January) and running through all the ELFQUEST titles for as long as it takes, yours truly does the foreign correspondent bit, with strange and amusing photos to boot, as I begin the tale of "A Gaijin in Manga-land," or, "All in Color for 39,000 Yen." Be here; I've got a lot of notes in hand and memories in the brain-pan that are jostling to get out!
Richard A Pini