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Archive for the 'The Cattle Raid of Cooley' Category

12th Aug 2019

Things are happening

A significant redesign for my website. My serialised webcomics have been taken down, because I’m on the verge of publishing them as collected editions.

My first Ulster Cycle comic, Ness, was serialised in 2007-2008. I wrote and drew it in an improvisational style, in red pen, no script, no pencils (here’s an old blog post on how I did it), but originally converted it to black and white to post it online, and published it as an A5 black and white graphic novel in 2008. The first print run sold out, and I reprinted it with a new cover in 2013.

That run’s now almost gone, so I’m going back to print. This time, though, it’s being printed in oversize (17.7 x 25 cm) format, and in red ink, as originally drawn.

In even bigger news, the follow-up, The Cattle Raid of Cooley, is being collected in a single 284-page volume. Starring the grandson of the heroine of Ness, it’s an adaptation of the ancient Irish epic Táin Bó Cúailnge. I serialised that (in red) between 2008 and 2015, and have been printing it as a series of ten comics since then. Keeping those issues in print has been a bit of a struggle, and I figure it’s about time I published it in in a more manageable format.

I’ve created my own publishing imprint, Beetletongue Books, for these books. More news to follow.

Elsewhere, I’m continuing to work with writer Mark McCann on short strips for Belfast’s 2000AD fanzine, Sector 13 – and we potentially have something longer in the works. More news to follow on that front as well.

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12th Mar 2014

The Comics Journal reviews The Cattle Raid of Cooley alongside About a Bull

Shaenon Garrity, The Comics Journal‘s webcomic specialist, has written a very nice review of The Cattle Raid of Cooley, alongside another webcomic adapting the same story, MK Reed’s About a Bull. I’ve often said that the Táin is big enough, gnarled enough and complicated enough to stand multiple interpretations, and Shaenon agrees, saying “In different hands, the same material can be a stark historical novel about bromantic battles between men or a sly tragicomedy about women asserting their power.” Her review is perceptive, and reassures me that a lot of what I’m trying to do is working.

You really should look at About a Bull, by the way. MK’s version is way funnier than mine, and the variety in the art – aside from MK’s own storybook style on the main story, flashbacks are drawn by different artists – is a nice interpretation given how patchwork and variable in style the original text is. She covers some of the same ground as I have, but in different ways, and she includes stories I haven’t. And as mine is (slowly) approaching a conclusion, hers is just getting started – four chapters in, they haven’t left Cruachan and Cú Chulainn has yet to make an appearance, so it’s set to run for a good while yet.

About a Bull: Ailill and Medb by MK Reed

About a Bull: Ailill and Maeve by MK Reed

About a Bull: Rucht and Friuch by Caroline Kelsey

About a Bull: Rucht and Friuch by Caroline Kelsey

About a Bull: Nes and Cathbad by Hilary Florido

About a Bull: Nes and Cathbad by Hilary Florido

About a Bull: Fergus and Nes by Hilary Florido

About a Bull: Fergus and Nes by Matt Wiegle

About a Bull: Macha by Farel Dalrymple

About a Bull: Macha by Farel Dalrymple

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22nd Dec 2011

New interview

I’ve done an interview about The Cattle Raid of Cooley with jounalist Matthew Symington over at Eamonn Mallie’s website – go read!

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19th Nov 2011

Washington Post want webcomics of the year nominations

Michael Cavna at the Washington Post is looking for nominations for the best webcomics of 2011. Please feel free to let him know about my award-winning efforts, and any others you feel deserve it, naturally. My own favourites of 2011 include:

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04th Nov 2008

Opinion Poll

Like most of us, the characters of The Cattle Raid of Cooley don’t have a vote in tonight’s US Presidential election, being as how they live in Ireland two thousand years ago and all.  But, inspired by this blog post by Rick Marshall, I decided to do a quick straw poll.

Medb is tempted to vote McCain on PUMA grounds (she was backing Hillary), but ultimately thinks Obama and Biden would be more likely to do what she tells them.

Fergus, as an old soldier, is McCain all the way.  Plus, that Palin woman has a lovely arse on her.

Cú Chulainn’s only sixteen, so he doesn’t have a vote, and doesn’t much care either way.  Láeg isn’t sure about Obama – too smooth by half – but definitely thinks McCain’s an eejit.  He’ll probably go for Nader, or not bother.

Lug Longhand, god of youth and glory, is quite taken by Obama’s charisma.

The Morrígan, goddess of carnage, hasn’t stopped singing “Bomb bomb bomb, bomb bomb Iran” since she heard McCain on the radio that time.

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