Author Archive for Adalbert Arcane

The Atlantic Cities Interviews Sophie Yanow

Sophie Yanow was interviewed about War of Streets and Houses by Sarah Goodyear over at The Atlantic Cities site. It’s a really great read especially if you’re interested in Architecture & Urbanism. Here’s a taste:

Your book deals with the tension between two different kinds of freedom: the kind we find in the culture of a city and the kind we find in nature.

That’s an interesting dichotomy to establish. In the city there’s the freedom to find other folks like me (queer folks, artists), and to establish various communities. There are enough different types of people that we can live without constant scrutiny from people that have known us since childhood, or from people that disapprove of our lifestyles. However, public life in the city is scrutinized, and people are policed and surveilled.

Nature is complex in a way that is calming; it’s a different kind of sensory overload and provides a different kind of “cover” than the city. But it can be isolating.

Read the rest here. We’re really proud of this one!

Ed vs. Yummy Fur Now Shipping

They are finally here! We have copies of Ed vs. Yummy Fur Or, What Happens When a Serial Comic Becomes a Graphic Novel by Brian Evenson (yes THE Brian Evenson). It’s the first of a series of books on comics. We’re really proud of this one!

Check out an excerpt on The Comics Journal. From the introduction:

The idea for this book started just a few days after Drawn & Quarterly’s 2012 re-release of Ed the Happy Clown. More specifically, it started when I picked up that book in the bookstore and noticed the subtitle:“a graphic-novel”. Chester Brown’s name was in all-caps, the title too was all-caps, which drew my attention to the fact that the subtitle seemed deliberately lowercase. Part of me felt this was simply just a matter of typography, a choice made to distinguish between title and subtitle. But another part of me believed—and still believes—that there are no accidents, and that it is these small, seemingly random choices that accumulate into the larger distinctions that end up shaping not only a book but an entire genre.

Standing there in Modern Times, I found myself wondering what made a ‘graphic-novel’ different from a ‘Graphic Novel’? It seemed a question of simple arithmetic: the subtraction of capitalization and the addition of a hyphen. The first gesture strips away a level of formatting, going against common title capitalization guidelines. The second adds a piece of formatting we wouldn’t expect to be there, a hyphen, and which isn’t there in any other use of the phrase “graphic novel” that I can remember. Both seem incredibly small things. But it is of such small things that greater effects are both built and sustained.

Speaking of Wile E. Coyote falling off cliffs in his Road Runner cartoons, Chuck Jones talks about how the effectiveness of a gesture can come down to a single frame of film. “When the Coyote fell off, I knew he had to go exactly eighteen frames into the distance and then disappear for fourteen frames before he hit.” “It seemed to me that thirteen frames didn’t work in terms of humor, and neither did fifteen frames. Fourteen frames got a laugh.” So, the humor of the Coyote’s landing depends on the camera staying with his disappearance exactly the right amount of time instead of letting it go 1/24th of a second too early or 1/24th of a second too late. 1/24th of a second is a length of time twice as fast as what the eye can process as a separate image—it can’t actually be seen as an image but only as part of a motion. But that imperceptible difference is still what the humor of Wile E. Coyote’s fall depends on.

Why lowercase, then? And what does the hyphen do? Are these choices arbitrary or can they tell us something about Ed the Happy Clown? Can we gain anything from interrogating them closely?

The preorders started shipping already. Get your copy here.

War of Streets and Houses Bookplate

It’s been a long time coming, but we finally managed to get the promised letterpress bookplates for Sophie Yanow’s War of Streets and Houses done! That means they will be sent out very soon to the preorder and subscription customers! Meanwhile check out some of our process pics.

The negative.


The polymer plate is drying.


Placing the plates on the Van Der Cook press.


The test print. A little off!


The press.

Special shout out to Bikini Press International for helping out!

Eel Mansions 4: The Massive Review

It’s a tradition now. Every new issue of Derek Van Gieson’s Eel Mansions requires a critics round table dissecting the themes and pop cultural minutiae that snake (eel?) their way through each issue. Keith Silva and Daniel Elkin and company are up to issue 4 now. Here are a few things they say:

Eel Mansions is the closest thing to being inside another person’s head I can get, and I love it. I adore the six-panel pages, thematic establishing shots for what has come, what will come, what you wish might come. The oscillation between South Park-level expressive grotesquerie and faces like those I see every day. I can see why you guys find cannon-balling into the depths so rewarding, and like all good works you get out what you put in, but for me, Eel Mansions is an indie soap opera, too smart for cliffhangers or page-turn reveals, but nevertheless dependent on the well placed non-sequitur.


If you can’t pick ”the Mick Fleetwood statue” out of a Hellscape Bert and Chee Chee find themselves in than you don’t get it and won’t get it and that’s O.K.


Think of the Doomin P.S.A in this issue where the figure bemoans how Motown has been ruined for him(?) by corporate consumerism and over-exposure. The Doomin Dancers step in to reveal the beautiful belly underneath the behemoth. The gritty gems of R. Dean Taylor, the bat shit crazy drama of The Hit Pack, Chris Clark’s haunting “I Want To Go Back There Again” — the sound track to Eel Mansions is a love letter to the possibilities the individual creator can bring, even within the concrete dictates of corporate culture. The independent artist will always find a way. Van Gieson has all of his narrative layers infused with this realization, the heartbeat of creation, the procreant urge (again) of love.

Read the whole thing here.

Also, don’t forget that issue 5 was just released! We’re about to send copies to subscribers and pre-order customers. Order now!

Eisner Nominated!

We got a couple of Eisner Awards nominations!

David B.’s Incidents in the Night Book One is now ALSO (it was an L.A. Times Book Prize finalist as well) nominated for the Eisner Awards in the Best U.S. Edition of International Material category! Big congratulations to David B. and the other nominees! We’re extending the sale on this book (20% off!) in light of this announcement.

Also, our publisher/editor-in-chief/art director/accountant/cartoonist AKA the guy who runs Uncivilized Books AKA Tom Kaczynski, garnered an Eisner nomination for Best Publication Design for Beta Testing the Apocalypse. You can get his book from Fantagraphics, or you can get a signed copy from direct us.

Congratulations to both!

Uncivilized New York

Uncivilized Books is coming to New York for the MoCCA Festival and a couple of post MoCCA events. Here’s what’s going on:

• April 5 & 6. 11 am – 6 pm. MoCCA Festival. We will be tabling with Gabrielle Bell, Sophie Yanow, Jon Lewis, Sam Alden, Alex Holden & Tom Kaczynski. We’re debuting Sophie’s War of Streets and HousesWest Side Improvements by Alex Holden and Eel Mansions #5 by Derek Van Gieson. We’ll be at table C25. Stop by! Info.

• April 5. 1 pm. Sophie Yanow will participate in the Comics and Protests Movements panel on Saturday at MoCCA Festival. Info.

• April 7. 7 pm. Sophie Yanow will read from War of Streets and Houses at Bluestockings in New York. Info. And here’s our Facebook event page.

• April 8. 7-9 pm. Sophie Yanow and Sam Alden are guests at Ben Katchor’s NY Comics & Picture Story SymposiumInfo.

War of Streets and Houses Launches at Librairie D&Q

If you’re in Montreal today you should go see Sophie Yanow talk about War of Streets and Houses at the launch event at Librairie Drawn & Quarterly! Should be loads of fun! I wish I could go!

Spring 2014 Subscription: Last Chance!

Today is the last chance to get our Spring 2014 Subscription! What a deal! Only 9 spots left for the free minis! Get it now!

First Review of War of Streets and Houses

The first review (starred!) of Sophie Yanow’s War of Streets and Houses was just published on Publishers Weekly. Here’s what they say:

Engaging and informative, the book covers a surprisingly broad range of subjects given its brevity. The black-and-white artwork may appear simple but each illustration conveys a wealth of emotional detail, from demonstrations to Yanow’s stripped-down view of herself. The book’s quiet deliberation becomes more impressive with each read; Yanow is an author/illustrator to watch.

Check out the rest of the review here.

Ed vs. Yummy Fur Excerpt on The Comics Journal

If you’ve wanted to get a feel of Brian Evenson’s (amazing!) new book on Chester Brown’s Yummy Fur and Ed the Happy Clown, check out this excerpt from Ed vs. Yummy Fur over at The Comics Journal. The book is the inaugural volume in Critical Cartoons, a new series of books of comics criticism. The second volume will be Carl Barks’ Duck by Peter Schilling Jr. More on that and the series, soon!