As of December and in addition to my roles at The Beguiling and TCAF, I officially became the Marketing Director for UDON Entertainment (http://www.udonentertainment.com). For those of you that don’t know UDON, they’re a publisher here in Toronto releasing about 24 books per year, mostly licensed video game-related art books and manga translated into English and distributed internationally. They’re also producing licensed comics (based on the Street Fighter video game franchise) and original comics and artbooks. I’ve cited them before as being people who I think take doing licensed work seriously, and I’ve always admired their commitment to quality and that they truly believed in their products.
I mention this now because I’ve started doing more public work for the company in the past few weeks and, while it wasn’t really a secret, I figured it might be a bit weird not to mention that here since I’ve been so public about my professional life at Comics212 for the past 15 years (srsly). I’m proud to be working with Erik, Jim, Matt, Stacy, Ash, and the legion of talented creators and production folk that make up the company. I like that, because I’m working in the comics industry in so many other capacities, UDON is really doing their own thing, and the potential for conflict of interests is more or less zero. In the eventuality that something does pop up, like UDON choosing to debut their new graphic novel Makeshift Miracle at TCAF this year, Marketing Coordinator Stacy King (handling primarily our kids/young adult lines and kids manga) will be able to take over.
The reality of the situation is that I’d been good friends with the folks that make up the company since its inception 11 years ago, and I’d been helping out at various times and in various capacities (mostly running convention booths for them) for the past few years. Formalizing the relationship feels pretty right, and while it’s mostly confined to working with press and developing relationships there, occasionally I’ll do something nice and public like write about out of print books or conduct an interview with a mangaka. In short, stuff I’d probably do anyway.
It’s a good fit and I’m happy to be here. Thanks to Erik Ko for the opportunity, and thanks to Peter Birkemoe at The Beguiling for his faith that I could do both jobs without fucking them both up. So far, so good.