Tuesday, September 21, 2010

In the Wild, Old World Style

My friend MK Czerwiec, a Chicago nurse who makes comics under the name Comic Nurse (go figure), was in a Paris bookstore recently when she saw some familiar artwork and took a photo:

That's the French edition of Mom's Cancer, and it was very cool of MK to take the shot and send it to me. Once in a while, I'm still brought up short when I realize people in different parts of the world read my words and pictures in languages I don't even understand.

I got to know MK via e-mail before we finally met in person in London, where we both attended the Graphic Medicine conference at which I was honored to give a keynote speech. (Look, it's another sentence I never could have imagined writing a few years ago!) MK had been thinking about organizing a similar conference in the United States even before the one in London, and I suspect she may yet get her chance. I hope so.

I came home from London feeling like I'd been part of the start of something with the potential to be important. I don't know quite what or how, but there's untapped potential in this intersection of comics and medicine that seems useful and worth exploring, and a lot of other people agree. It'd be great to see that potential realized.

With MK in London.

1 comment:

Mike said...

Even in the world of print, the new interconnectedness suggests that niches are critical, and, if there is a niche where cartoons and medicine come together, that's great. A book that would have languished in obscurity a generation ago can get incredible word-of-mouth if it is part of an established niche. As demonstrated here, you don't need a geographic niche like, say, History of California, where all the little tourist places will put your book on the shelf, because niches are not about geography or even "conferences" and other physical get-togethers.

It ain't the niche of "teenage girls and vampires," but it will do.