Thursday, March 03, 2005

It's pretty, but is it art?

I know I'm a bit remiss in posting right now. I will do as soon as I get a bit more time. Today I found myself on a panel about things that happened "in the margins", with art spiegelman. Art and I were on the panel to talk to the association of publishers about graphic novels. Neither art nor I had planned a talk, both of us figuring that we knew what sort of thing we ought to say well enough to wing it. But as the panel went on, I jotted down a few topics to discuss while art drew small people on his notepad. Different people on the panel spoke about different things. Then art took the microphone, and proceeded to give, point by point, the speech I'd outlined for myself, sometimes even line for line (my handwriting is small and scritchy enough that I can assure you he wasn't cribbing). I couldn't be horrified, it was too funny. So when it was my turn to speak, now speech-less, I burbled about other things and tried to add grace notes and anecdotes to art's talk, and people seemed to enjoy it. Personally, I think it demonstrated that if you have a panel discussion, if you've got art, you probably don't need me.

Wound up chatting to Don Katz from, who was also on the panel, and am hatching lots of plots to make stuff available through (cheaply!) as we approach the publication of Anansi Boys later in the year. Tomorrow is all talks with Morrow about the publication plans for Anansi Boys -- where I'll be going on the signing tour, all that. (Please, please do not ask me to come and sign in your town. I don't decide where I go and sign. People who run bookstores who want me should talk to Harper Collins about it.)

Lots of people writing to draw my attention to this story, in which William Poole, accused here of trying to "recruit a gang to take over the school," Detective Berl Perdue said.
"He didn't have a gang, but he was attempting to organize one," Perdue said. Police said writings in which Poole tried to persuade other students to take part in the takeover were found.
This article explains that the writings in question were a short story written for English class about a zombie attack. I'd be more inclined to doubt Mr Poole if there hadn't been a number of similar cases of the authorities being unable to tell the difference between fact and fiction (one of which I wound up joining Harlan Ellison, Michael Chabon, Peter Straub and others in an amicus brief, for a California teen who was expelled after showing classmates his poetry), including, famously, the Mike Diana case.