4 page comic on Daphne Du Maurier on Patreon and All the Sad Songs Featured on Backlisted!

It’s Friday which means there is a new comic on my Patreon! This week it’s a 4 page comic on the British writer Daphne Du Maurier’s obsession with the estate Menabilly. Menabilly was the inspiration for Manderley in her world famous novel, Rebecca. You can access it now along with many other comics and posts for a modest rate!

New comics are still coming every Friday along with occasional posts about my memoir in progress and thoughts about comics as a creative practice. I have really been enjoying having a space to share what’s been happening in my world–come on in! It’s colorful there!


On Monday I had the delight and shock of my life when I discovered that ALL THE SAD SONGS was featured on my favorite podcast Backlisted! Some of you might remember me gushing writing about Backlisted in December when I shared my sketchbook spread of Queens of Crime. Imagine my shock to hear Andy Miller, writer and editor and co-host of Backlisted sharing ALL THE SAD SONGS as his pick of what he had been reading and loving this week! WHAT?? IS THIS REAL??

It’s hard to adequately say what this means to me. That podcast has done more for refueling my inner life in the last year than anything else has in years. In some ways it has recommitted me to a life of reading and writing in a way that I had forgotten was possible. Andy and John Mitchinson, and their array of guests, are so smart, funny, generous, and engaging that it’s truly infectious. To be included in that show and to be read (and praised) by Andy Miller is just…mind blowing (to say the least), and (dare I say it?) deeply affirming. Not all attention helps refuel, but I have to admit, this puts some strength in the heart for me. In the words of Tom Waits, I’m going to take it with me when I go.

It’s perfect timing because ALL THE SAD SONGS just went into a second printing! After a brief period of it possibly going out of print in the US, Retrofit decided to do a modest second print run, and I just got the first shipment of new copies. The price will be going up once my current supplies go out, so if you have been sitting on it–now is the time to get it!

Signed Copies of ALL THE SAD SONGS available and more!

ATSS p15 sample

Just some quick updates from the land of Sad Songs and such:


There are now signed copies of ALL THE SAD SONGS in my shop! Get them while they are HOT! You can also put in the note if you want it personalized. Come and get them!

A Note On Pre-Orders:  If you pre-ordered my book through Retrofit’s Kickstarter, your book is on the way (if you haven’t got it already!). I got news that all packages have been shipped. Thank you for those who did that!

If you pre-ordered it through Amazon or another bookstore, there was an issue with the distributer and you most likely won’t get your copy until October 15th! Dang, I KNOW! I’ve heard that some bookstore orders have come through, so this may just be an Amazon thing. Either way, thank you for pre-ordering and I am so sorry about any and all delays!


Susie Derkins

By popular demand, I’ve also made playlists on Spotify of many of the mixtapes that appear in the book.  I had SO MUCH fun putting this together and have loved experiencing the soundtracks all over again. Go check them out!


I did a podcast interview with Derek Royal on the Comics Alternative all about music, tapes vs. CDs vs. albums, diary comics, talking about your loved ones in comics, and so much more!

I also have done a couple interviews in print elsewhere:

My friend Jennifer Hayden and I chat on her blog about making the leap from short form to long form, PTSD living, making art the art you most want to find, and so much more.

On Smash Pages, Alex Deueben and I talked about cassette tapes, poetry, my history in comics, and the wild ride it took to make this book!

Thanks all for your support. This book means the world to me. Let me know if you like it!

Paper Pencil Life #5 is BACK IN STOCK!


After selling out at MICE I am happy to say that both Paper Pencil Life #5 and Souvenirs: a Travel Diary are BOTH back in stock in the shop! Come on and get them while supplies last!

Speaking of which, both of these volumes got a lovely write up from Dominic Umile who likens Souvenirs to Craig Thompson’s Carnet de Voyage–one of my favorite graphic travelogues. Go and check it out!

Hope your fall is going well—I am hunched over my desk and continuing to work like the wind over my book.  I’ll return to weekly posts I hope in the New Year–I miss you all so!

If You Lived Here You’d Be Home By Now

houseIn comics news:

Rob Clough reviewed some of the spring line up for Kilgore books, including The Kilgore Quarterly #7, where my story “Dappled Light” is first appearing. He gives the story a wonderful review: “To be drawn with any more naturalism would be unbearable.” Go read the review!

The Comics Alternative podcast also included the first 4 issues of Paper Pencil Life in their review of recent self-published works and had LOTS of great things to say about it. Among their comments they said that PPL was one of the more “positive” autobiographical reads they’ve read recently.  I had mixed feelings about this comment because “positive” usually means “uncool” in the art world–but I also know that any “positivity” I express is hard won and comes from years of being in bleaker places. I am insanely grateful for everything I’ve lived and I am glad that my work can remain honest and also make people feel good or connected or hopeful (whatever “positive” means in this context). So there!

And finally: Paper Pencil Life #5 is officially at the printers! Woohoo! This house is in it. Does anybody recognize it? It’s a place many of us visited as kids.

Every time I get a copy of the proof for the new issue of PPL it feels like Christmas. There is something so magical about getting your work in a real and tangible package. Since each issue is about a year’s worth of work, it feel like the culmination of a cycle. Another year of work is put to bed. So it’s also a good time to take stock and see where you’ve been and where you would like to go next. Every single issue of Paper Pencil Life has been filled with places I’ve gone after feeling an inward arrow that said, “Go here!” The results have sometimes been crooked, misspelled, and scratchy, but I’ve never regretted any of it. I have always felt good about what I have made. 4.5 years in, I can say this has been among the most satisfying years of work I’ve ever had.

Here’s to more!

Comic & Interview in My Pace 02 Anthology

My comic “How I Came to Comics” is in the very FINE anthology “My Pace 02” out from Rod+Cone & debuting this weekend at TCAF.  They just posted an interview of 5 questions where I get to talk about my past as a songwriter, the creative habit, peer groups, and dream projects. All this and the DREW ME!

Here’s a taste:


1. You were also a singer-songwriter. How does making comics reflect or differ from the process of writing & playing music?  Was songwriting as autobiographical?

My songs were very autobiographical–very in the moment and very similar to the comics I am making right now (although my comics have a lot less break ups in them!).  One of the reasons I was so drawn to songwriting as a medium was that songs have this powerful emotional shorthand–they don’t have to be specifically about YOU but they can feel like it. In a sense, when a song hits you right, it can feel like the song hears you instead of the other way around. When I stopped being a musician I discovered that this feeling of being “heard” was in so much of the art, books, etc. that I loved–it’s not just songs that can do that.  When I started making comics it felt like I was tapping into the same emotional landscape as the songs I wrote. My friend Jennifer Hayden once remarked that my comics read like songs and that made me so happy.

All this being said, it’s probably no surprise that I find making comics very similar to songwriting. When I draw out the panels it feels a lot like putting music down–a rhythmic system to organize the words & story.  It works.

Read the full interview here! 

If you aren’t going to be at TCAF, you can preorder the anthology here!