‘Comics Never Stop’ paper debuts at Valley coffee shops

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Comics Never Stop

See you in the funny papers! With today’s technology those six words make up an adage that is quickly going the way of the dodo bird; but not for a group of industrious Arizona artists who are set on putting newspaper comic strips back into the local pop culture scene.

Comics Never Stop” is a collection of strips written and drawn by local comic creators and printed just like the old school funnies section of the newspaper. It’s the brainchild of Denny Riccelli (AKA Dennmann), the artisan behind comics like Cousin Harold and Jenny Spookawski.

A labor of love, it’s no coincidence that the first print run of the free Comics Never Stop paper will hit Valley coffee shops this Labor Day weekend, but you can also get a copy at the First Friday art-walk event in Phoenix this Friday evening (9/4/15). We asked Mr. Riccelli a few questions about his latest project:

Epic Tales of the Mundane by Brad Dwyer
‘Epic Tales of the Mundane’ by Brad Dwyer

What was the impetus behind ‘Comics Never Stop?’

Many of the kids that I have talked with in the last six months list newspaper strip characters as some of their favorites. Several kids have told me about how great Calvin and Hobbes and Garfield are. These discussions got me thinking that many kids are still discovering comics in the newspaper. Plus it’s kind of a comic creators dream to print on newsprint. We all grew up with newsprint comics and reading the Sunday Funnies. Those two things got the ball rolling.

Why a paper versus a web comic?

I think we all like to hold our comics, that how we grew up, reading them that way. The plan is to eventually start posting them on the web and hopefully generate a little revenue to help with the printing costs (and maybe add some color to the paper.)

How often will CNS be printed?

We are starting off with a bi-monthly release schedule with the idea of maybe going monthly at some point. There are plans to start releasing convention ‘Extra Editions’ for different comic conventions, but we would like to have a few volumes under our belts before we start doing that.

Cousin Harold by Dennmann
‘Cousin Harold’ by Dennmann

Are all of the comic creators involved local? How many are represented in the first issue?

At this point all the creators are local, but we have tapped some out of state (and out of country) friends to contribute to future volumes. Each volume will have 8 pages from 8 different creators. The first Volume features Eric Mengel, Bryan ‘BG’ Graham, Damon Begay, Kevin Coulston, Wil ‘Reset Survivor’ Hines, Brad Dwyer, Birdie Birdashaw and myself.

In which parts of the Valley will the CNS paper be available?

The goal is to drop papers off across the valley at different coffee shops. This Saturday (September 5, 2015) we will start out in Mesa and head back towards Phoenix, with 800 copies of the paper. We will also try to attend the First Friday event in Phoenix each month and plan on handing out about 100 papers there each time, with our first event being this Friday, September 4, 2015.

How can people find a copy of the CNS paper?

We plan on having a list up on our website by the end of the weekend, detailing where we dropped off papers. At this point I expect everyone we ask to carry it, but I’m not sure what places we will make it to. I mean the paper is free, we are only asking them to provide us with some space to distribute it.

For more information, please visit: comicsneverstop.blogspot.com

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About the author

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Bob Leeper

Bob Leeper is the co-owner and manager of "Arizona’s Pop Culture and Alternative Art Network," Evermore Nevermore. He is the co-creator of the pop culture events Steampunk Street and ENCREDICON, and is a member of the Phoenix Film Critics Society. He also curates the Facebook fan site The Arizona Cave – AZ Fans of Edgar Rice Burroughs, and is one of the few brave and bold fans of Jar Jar Binks.

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