Archive for the ‘ Behind the Scenes ’ Category


November 13, 2014
Posted by: Gina Gagliano
Categories: Behind the Scenes

A number of :01 authors have self-published their books, before or in addition to making graphic novels published by First Second.  Here’s what they have to say about these two publishing routes. My experience of self-publishing is limited to mini-comics. My very first comic was spat out of the art school photocopier, the covers screen Read the Rest…

November 6, 2014
Posted by: Gina Gagliano
Categories: Behind the Scenes

(some long books we have published) One of the things that we look for when we’re considering acquiring a graphic novel or signing up a new illustrator to work with a writer on an already-acquired graphic novel is their previous work. Specifically: how long is it? Making a graphic novel is very different from making Read the Rest…

November 3, 2014
Posted by: Gina Gagliano
Categories: Behind the Scenes

(imagine what trouble the Magical Cartooning Elf would get into if he didn’t tell people he was just showing up to help them make comics!) We frequently go to industry events — conventions and book parties and art openings and panels and lectures and classes and workshops.  While we’re there, we frequently have conversations that Read the Rest…

October 27, 2014
Posted by: Gina Gagliano
Categories: Behind the Scenes

(My currently overflowing bookshelves.) We get lots of comics in the mail here at First Second.  And we get lots of them handed to us at shows. They’re from other publishers as a ‘look what we’re doing!,’ by authors and illustrators who’d like to work with us in the future, by agents who want us Read the Rest…

October 23, 2014
Posted by: Gina Gagliano
Categories: Behind the Scenes

(I note that this is a really, really specific set of instructions that will definitely help you out with requesting any First Second requests; possibly not so much with other publishers, depending on their own policies.) “I love to read.” First Second uses Netgalley — they’re a galley service that lets people request advance digital Read the Rest…

October 20, 2014
Posted by: Gina Gagliano
Categories: Behind the Scenes

Not all books that First Second graphic novels are the same dimensions, have the same color palette and use the same paper stock.  We do have a few sizes that are more or less ‘standard’ for our books, the truth is that the books we publish are a number of different shapes and sizes. Our Read the Rest…

September 25, 2014
Posted by: Gina Gagliano
Categories: Behind the Scenes

(cartoon by David Sipress; presumably from The New Yorker) There’s a pervasive myth about big New York City publishers, and it’s that they’re evil — or at the very least malicious.  They’re out to break the hopes and dreams of authors everywhere, to be difficult to impossible for the regular person to get into contact Read the Rest…

September 11, 2014
Posted by: Gina Gagliano
Categories: Behind the Scenes

(Edward the horse, from Adventures in Cartooning.  So adorable!  Unfortunately not for sale.) Sometimes, once they’ve turned their book in, authors will come to us and say, ‘Okay, what happens with the stuff?  Like t-shirts and posters and prints and possibly squishy animals that are all based on the book?’ All of that stuff — Read the Rest…

September 4, 2014
Posted by: Gina Gagliano
Categories: Behind the Scenes

(a panel from Mariko Tamaki and Jillian Tamaki’s fabulous graphic novel This One Summer) When you typically think of an editor, the picture that comes up in your mind is someone sitting at a desk writing notes on a manuscript.  I feel like this is just cultural conditioning — the same way that when you Read the Rest…

September 1, 2014
Posted by: Gina Gagliano
Categories: Behind the Scenes

(the blurb from the back cover of Farel Dalrymple’s The Wrenchies.  It is an excellent example of its kind.) As publishers, we frequently find blurbs to be a pretty contrived thing.  I mean, we’re obtaining them either from people we know or people we (or our authors) are convincing into reading our books through our Read the Rest…