Comics & Medicine Conference, Post #1!

Hellooo from Baltimore, Maryland! Off to visit a teen summer class at Johns Hopkins, and wanted to have access to The Toilet Demon, the comic my pediatrician mother used to have laminated and hanging in her exam rooms so she could talk with parents about their children’s somewhat irrational fears. It’s in Monkey Food, The Complete Seven in ’75 Collection. Here:


One Year of Civitella Dreams

Boggles my mind: I will be doing a six-week residency in June/July 2015 at Civitella Ranieri. Civitella Ranieri is a castle in Umbria, I was invited to go, there will be artists from all over the world. I have time to learn a little bit of Italian if I can manage to pry my eyeballs off the photos on their website. Ecco tutto..!

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The Bipolar Emily Post

Conversations captured for your reading and listening pleasure! With…

…Cartoonists Megan Kelso and Raina Telgemeier, for The Comics Journal’s “Women and Autobio Comics Roundtable”, moderated by TCJ’s Kristy Valenti. Megan sticks up for fiction comics, Raina wrote bad poetry in her diary as a teen, and none of us care what terminology people use as long as they’re reading comics.

…Dan Savage, on the May 6 Savage Lovecast.  A bipolar woman called in to ask about dating etiquette – when do you tell the person that you’re crazy? – especially complicated since she’s a lot flirtier when she’s hypomanic – and Dan asked me to be “the Bipolar Emily Post.” Okay!





Thank you, Rutgers and GWU!

Just got back from a few talks on the east coast (hello, Spring!) The first at Rutgers University Camden was part of a big graphic novels art exhibit, “Compulsive Narratives: The Graphic Novel as Confession and Inspiration,” and the second was part of George Washington University’s “Composing Disability: Diagnosis, Interrupted” symposium, an interesting array of talks on topics including sex and disability, how the DSM is used and misused by lawyers, and the different ways personal stories can be told. I also wandered around on the Mall, and saw an fascinating exhibit about creation and destruction at the Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn Art Museum. (Note to self: COME BACK TO DC AND VISIT THE MUSEUMS.)


Signing books at Rutgers U!

Hooray, Chocolate for Choice!

Last week’s  Chocolate for Choice was probably the funnest fundraiser I’ve ever attended, and I was lucky enough to be a judge – meaning I had to eat chocolate and chew ponderously, as opposed to the rest of everything which was pretty much just eating as much amazing chocolate as possible, -o-rama. There were volunteers wandering around with trays of milk (cups of whole, 2%, skim, and soy). It was bananas. Good show, NARAL!

1891100_10152057849692736_349326991_nI filled that box in front of me with chocolates to take home. I was offered another box but I was too overwhelmed at that point!

Woman of Letters

Hey, San Francisco! I will be in this (and I’d like to add, it is a special day not only because of this, or because March 8 is International Women’s Day, but also because it will be my BIRTHDAY):

Women of Letters

A Show and Tell Presentation

March 8, 8:00pm, Z Space

Smash-hit Australian literary salon Women of Letters returns to the US for the second year running. Co-curated by writers Marieke Hardy and Michaela McGuire, the bestselling events revive the lost art of letter writing. In 2013, Women of Letters staged shows in Los Angeles,  Austin, New York and Indonesia to huge acclaim.  Their international stages have seen incredible women sharing stories, and this year’s US tour will be no exception. These fabulous women will each be penning and reading ‘A letter to the person who told me the truth.’

San Francisco’s line up features:

Acclaimed novelist and essayist AYELET WALDMAN
Comedian and actress KATE WILLETT
Award-winning author of The Lovely Bones ALICE SEBOLD
Graphic novelist and author of Marbles ELLEN FORNEY
Linguist and member of The Long Now Foundation LAURA WELCHER
Award-winning performance poet DAPHNE GOTTLIEB and
Writer and author of Queen Sugar NATALIE BASZILE

“We admire and support these women—and hope you will too by seeing this rare appearance…Celebrate International Women’s Day!! ”—Susan Harloe and JoAnne Winter, Artistic Directors, Word for Word Performing Arts  Company

Tickets and more info here.

A Little Ketchup

Here are some recent things! Like, some things since… July!

At the end of my Artist in Residency at Town Hall last fall, Scholar in Residence David Montgomery and I gave a presentation about how a cartoonist and a geologist spin our nonfiction material into stories. It was fun, it went great! Here is a video of that talk.

I won an Inkpot Award at the San Diego Comicon in July, and the trophy is totally adorable:


I interviewed the charming and wildly popular Allie Brosh (“Hyperbole and a Half”) at Bumbershoot in Aug.:

Bumbershoot 2013 Seattle, WA Photo by Christopher Nelson (c) One Reel 2013

PsychCentral interviewed me for an article in Dec., descriptively titled “The Biggest Lesson I’ve Learned in Managing My Bipolar Disorder.” Not my main point but here is one thing: treats. I still hate blood draws even after all these years, so I’ve started buying myself a fancy matcha tea drink afterwards, and it’s done wonders. I even found myself happily thinking about my tea drink as I was walking to the lab a couple months ago. Success!

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette ran a full-page interview in Dec. as the end of a yearlong series about mental illness.

I’ll be a keynote speaker at the 2014 Comics & Medicine Conference at Johns Hopkins. Very very excited!!

Another talk in a medical context: a symposium at George Washington University in April 2014, “examining the fraught relationship between the diagnostic work of the medical industry and the embodied lives of disabled people.”

Another talk in April 2014: part of “Compulsive Narratives: The Graphic Novel as Confession and Inspiration,” an exhibit at Rutgers-Camden University, which includes a bunch of Marbles originals and an installation that looks like a psychiatrist’s office, with my sketchbooks and pills scattered on the floor.

Right now I’m working on a comic for The Stranger about a disastrous attempt to make a nice dinner for my sweetheart, the murals for the Sound Transit light rail station, teaching “Graphic Novels as Literature” and “Comics: Essential Tools” at Cornish College of the Arts, a couple of private commissions, and….. a new book!

San Diego Comic-Con Schedule, July 18–21

Ooh, the enormous Comic-Con Of All Comic-Cons approaches! I am a “special guest” this year, and Marbles was nominated for an Eisner in the “Best Reality-Based Work” category. Woo! (Alison Bechdel won in 2008, and noted into the mic, “As opposed to a Faith-Based Work?”)

Ta-da, my San Diego Comic-Con schedule. Busy busy!


Thurs., July 18, 11am–12pm
Signing, Prism Comics
Booth #2144
Thurs., July 18, 4pm–5:30pm
Signing, Fantagraphics Books
Booth #1718
Thurs. July 18, 6pm – 7pm
Panel, Anything That Loves: Comics Beyond Gay and Straight
Rm 28DE
Fri. July 19, 11am–12pm
Spotlight On Ellen Forney
Rm 9
Fri. July 19, 1pm–2pm
Panel, Humor in Graphic Novels
Rm 9
Fri. July 19, 3:30pm–4:30pm
Autograph Area
Fri. July 19, Eisner Award Ceremony
Presenting three awards with Rebecca Cloonan
[Nail-biting until the Reality-Based category is over!]
Sat. July 20, 11:45am–12pm
Interview, Comic Outpost TV
Booth #802
Sat. July 20, 5pm–6:30pm
Signing, Fantagraphics Books
Booth #1718
Sun. July 21, 11am–12pm
Autograph Area
Sun. July 21, 1pm–2pm
Signing, Mysterious Galaxy
Booth #1119