Wednesday, 26 June 2013


The Drowntown Launch Party took place on Friday 21st June at GOSH! Comics, Berwick Street, London. Thankfully the evening didn't end up like this . . . 

In fact, as I'm sure you can tell from this normally dour Scotsman's sunny expression, the party went very well indeed. A big thank you to Josh, Andrew, Tom, Steve, Julia & the rest of the GOSH! team for all their hospitality.

(Photo: Steve Cook)
A number of comics luminaries turned up, including: Jonathan Cape publisher Dan Franklin, David Lloyd (V For Vendetta artist, founder of Aces Weekly), John Higgins (Watchmen colourist, RazorJack creator), Rian Hughes (Dan Dare, Yesterday's Tomorrows designer/artist), Dave Hine (Storm Dogs and The Man Who Laughed writer), Steve Cook (photographer and former Doctor Who and 2000AD designer), Geoff Senior and Simon Furman (Transformers comic artist and writer respectively)Laurence Campbell (PunisherWolverine artist), Deborah Tate (former Marvel UK'er and Sonic the Comic editor), Martin Griffiths (Thundercats & Ghostbusters artist), Giulia Brusco (Scalped and Saucer County colourist), Sally Hurst (colourist), and Julie Tait from the Lakes Comic Art Festival ( Also, thanks to Kevin Barnes and Ronnie Taylor for their support and for representing London's taxi drivers for the evening.

David Lloyd, John Higgins, Sally Hurst & David Hine.
(Photo: D Tate)
With Deborah Tate & John Higgins.
(Photo: Sally Hurst)
Rian Hughes & Wolverhampton Steve from The Cartoon Gallery.
(Photo: D Tate)
London Taxi Driver, Mr Barnes reveals his secret identity.
Laurence Campbell heads for the exit on hearing it's his round next.
(Photo: D Tate)
Same book, different party: Legendary artist Cam Kennedy
compliments Jim's art at the Derry 2D Festival earlier this month.
(Photo: D Tate)

Customers hailed from Croatia, France, Ireland, Italy and Spain, as well as the UK. A number of people commented that the style and format of Drowntown reminded them of Bande Dessine, the hardback albums that are prominent on the continent, and were definitely an influence when we were developing the book. 
Jim and I may have our names on the cover, but a number of individuals behind-the-scenes deserve a tip of our respective hats for the parts they played in helping to bring the book to life.

Firstly, thanks to Jonathan Cape Publisher Dan Franklin for taking Drowntown on, and to him and his dedicated team for putting together such a stylish book.

Thanks also to our smooth-talking agent Rob, for his hard work, support and truly indefatigueable enthusiasm.

I'd like to thank my fiancee for coming up with the title (Deb normally has a song in her head, and this time she pulled out Petula Clark's Downtown). Jim and I had trawled through dozens of dodgy potential titles prior to that, and the reject list probably deserves a blog entry of its own.

Last but not least, I'd like to thank artist extraordinaire Jim Murray, who unfortunately couldn't attend his own launch party. He's a good friend and one of the best artists I've ever worked with. Collaborating with Jim on Drowntown has been a fantastic experience and has resulted in what are certainly some of my favourite characters to write, and a brilliantly realised world that I think offers almost limitless scope for future stories. 

After GOSH! a fair few folk carried on the celebrations in the Blue Post pub, Soho. 

Transformers comic dynamic duo Geoff Senior & Simon Furman.
(Photo: D Tate)

Walking Dead fan Jackie Barnes, artist Vikki Hine & Deborah Tate
Robbie & Robo (-Cook, that is).
Photo: D Tate
Some shameless freeloader, a gruesome gatecrasher by the name of Leo Noiret, turned up to say a slightly slurred, but heartfelt 'Cheers!' to everybody who came along to lend their support and pick up a copy of the book.

Some characters will do anything for a free drink!    

Wednesday, 5 June 2013


The opening pages of Drowntown exploded onto the Jonathan Cape Tumblr on Friday night - - so it's only fair that they make a splash here as well.

Didn't I say things could only get worse for Leo Noiret? When in Drowntown, don't leave home without your snorkel...