Kate Beaton's Blog

December 14, 2016








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If there was one thing I wish I could do, it would be to be able to split my attention among projects equally and deliver well on all fronts. But the book deal is done, and with the advance in the coffers, and I need to sit down and deliver one particular project. But I am still around, of course, on the twitter and tumblr, yakking away or making sketch comics or taking pictures of my dog. I am in St John's, Newfoundland for the winter, working on this book, and it's a small city so I might run into you at the Tim Horton's.






I hope you have a wonderful 2017, my dears.
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Published on December 14, 2016 00:07 • 145 views

November 23, 2016








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As it happens, boring Nelly and self absorbed Lockwood are really the last two people you would want as narrators. Sucks to be you, reader! I guess Heathcliff gives his perspective once, but mostly it's these two clowns and Isabella's letter from inside the madhouse.










As promised, here are the kid and baby items new to the store, for little Scholastic fans! Along with the plushes, I hope you find something for my littlest readers. Here is the link!


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Published on November 23, 2016 00:06 • 110 views

November 3, 2016

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The part of the book leading to Cathy's death is the most interesting, isn't it? I have read chapters over and over.



Here's a collection of essays, an old one but a good one, if you want to start somewhere in thinking about it: 20th Century Interpretations of Wuthering Heights. In all libraries, everywhere. It has in it, though you can just google it up too, Charlotte's 1850 preface to the book in defence of it but courting the morals of the time and explaining why it is so ...different. "Wuthering Heights: Sorry, Sorry, Just Give It A Chance OK?" Then go read all the essays deconstructing that. Then go down the deconstructing rabbit hole until you have no idea what you think anymore anyway. Then watch Netflix or something because your brain broke. Well that's how I do it.



Some people have sent me pictures of pretty great Princess Pinecone and Pony costumes for Halloween. Pumpkins too! I'm so delighted to get those. I treasure 'em, thank you!









We have new plushes (see I made a new button with my computer skills), and new kids shirts coming in to Topatoco soon as well! I haven't really mentioned this before, but stores in the real world can also pick up my things to put on the shelves, through our wholesale department. And I'd love to see more of that, I get asked about it a lot! Well it's no problem, just go HERE and thanks as always for stopping by!



More Wuthering to come!
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Published on November 03, 2016 00:07 • 154 views

October 25, 2016








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Here we are, back at Wuthering Heights after an extended leave. Heathcliff has come home and everyone is reasonable and I don't really see trouble brewing at all.



Thank you all who picked up King Baby!! I went on a book tour to schools and stores, and I loved all the little ones so much. I drew some comics about it:
one

two

three

four



We have new plushes (see I made a new button with my computer skills), and new kids shirts coming in to Topatoco soon as well! I haven't really mentioned this before, but stores in the real world can also pick up my things to put on the shelves, through our wholesale department. And I'd love to see more of that, I get asked about it a lot! Well it's no problem, just go HERE and thanks as always for stopping by!



More Wuthering to come!
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Published on October 25, 2016 00:06 • 88 views

June 7, 2016








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Ahoy there! Allow me to write a bit here! But first, the image above speaks the truth. KING BABY is coming soon from Scholastic books, and Walker books in the UK! It is my second picture book, and its a lot of fun. I hope you'll pick it up!



Well, if you've been around here long enough, you know that this website just updates at random and at this point, not often like many comics you probably read online. I've been doing Hark! A Vagrant for almost nine years, which is crazy to me. And the longer I've done it, the longer it takes to make a comic. I know they look off the cuff, people reviewing my books make a point of saying so! But it's a lot of work for this gal, a full time job when it's going at a rate that you'd probably like to see. Lots of days reading and writing and trying to come up with things, lots of ideas you've spent days on thrown in the garbage can. And when you're done, another blank page.



Hark! is always in the back of my head when I'm working on anything else, and I find myself wracked with guilt for not keeping the updates coming, I have one foot here and one foot there. This push and pull, I have to accept, makes anything I'm working on suffer. And I've been trying to figure out a solution to this! Something better than slow work all around. Because if I'm honest, I'm scared that if I leave this site alone too long, I'll lose something very precious to me.



You.



I've worked a long time to bring you here, and you've been good to come here and read my comics and support my work. I feel that we have built a relationship, my readers and I, it's very important to me, and I never want to put it in peril. So what to do?



Right now I'm working on a tv show pitch, kids book ideas, and my own graphic novel. I don't know what will come together in the end for the first two, and I've been down the tv road before, it's a lot of time for something that might not happen and that you can't really talk about (sorry!). But maybe it will work out! You have to try right?




But the main thing is the graphic novel, which is a memoir of my time in the oil sands, years ago. You may have seen the sketch that launched it, Ducks. Or the few comics on this site that are memoir-ish that don't really fit with the rest of the things on here and I should probably get rid of. It's a very different story from anything in Hark! A Vagrant, and a different mind set to work on. And I need to give that mindset some time and concentration in order to do a good job. So, I'm going to do that.



Hark! will have some updates in the fall, that's the plan! And I'm going to take the summer to sink my teeth into this, because it's been slow progress, and I need to do it. It's the first time I've taken on a comic project that wasn't this website and the books that come out of it. I'm nervous about it. Maybe I will welcome the break from the other book for a while by the fall, and have the right kind of energy to come back to this. Maybe that's a good system to use, a few months on this, a few months on that, dedicated time instead of trying to pull in every direction all the time. It's an idea, anyway. Something has to change, so, fingers crossed.



I always write way too much instead of being short and sweet. If you made it all the way down here, bless you my child, bless you.



-your friend, Kate
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Published on June 07, 2016 00:04 • 186 views

May 30, 2016








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We'll get back to Mary Anning later. Is Kelis' milkshake song a gift to humanity, or what?
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Published on May 30, 2016 00:05 • 94 views

April 18, 2016








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I had a lot of fun with this on twitter, so I just kept on going with it. But you know, I'm always kind of touched by how strongly fans support their favourite characters, and there is a lot of love for Cloak and Dagger, and you can see why because there are some pretty great things about that pair. But that costume, come on, it's a big old slice of tit window pie. They don't always dress Dagger like that, but yeah they mostly do! But they probably won't on the tv show!


I didn't dwell on Cloak very much in a comic about tit windows, but, here's something. I tweeted this essay a while ago when I read it, but Cloak's lack of a body really brought it to mind again, and you should totally read it, though mostly it is about the character Cyborg, it is relevant here too:




Humanity Not Included: DC's Cyborg and the Mechanization of the Black Body by Robert Jones, Jr.
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Published on April 18, 2016 00:07 • 139 views

March 18, 2016








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I wouldn't say these two follow the rules of medieval society exactly, but they are my favourite pair of dirty peasants. And at least in reality they would have lived in a time without the cursed plague of KEEP CALM. A better time.



Today's book recommendation is Ian Mortimer's classic The Time Traveller's Guide to Medieval England. It's so good! And if you think you don't like reading history, this one will make you think again, it's so entertaining and engaging.


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Published on March 18, 2016 00:06 • 98 views

February 24, 2016








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Here is a comic about a man I admire very much! Karl Heinrich Ulrichs was an early champion of LGBT rights, and maybe the first person to speak publicly for them as he did in Munich in 1867. The last picture there is the place where he spoke. He used the word "Urning" for gay men, a term he coined, because even the word "homosexual" wasn't invented yet (it would be soon after). I only found out about him last fall, which is surprising and also sadly not surprising. But he was really amazing, I'm sure you will agree.



Hark! A Vagrant is a strange mix, sometimes the comics are straight jokes and sometimes, like here, I just want to talk about someone I think is great in a way that's easy to pick up on - comics are great for that! And I tell you what, I got so much out of this particular collection, of all the things I read. Here is a link:


Karl Heinrich Ulrichs:
Urning Pride and the First Known Gay Activist

Translated and Edited by Michael Lombardi-Nash, PhD




The document is a mix of things, essays and Karl's own writings and I think you will like it very much. I'm going to leave you with the epitaph on the stone his friends put up for him, he had many friends and admirers. It reads like a little affectionate biography.





Karl Henrich Ulrichs

who was born in Westerfeld near East Friesland

He distinguished himself and became renowned among

his equals by his mental faculties in the humanities and other disciplines

through instruction he received in Gottingen and Berlin.

He was concerned about new problems in anthropology and jurisprudence.

He had a remarkable sense of duty.

He was not elevated to prosperity nor was he humbled

by the attacks from his adversaries.

As a pauper he left the region of Hanover and went into exile.

He traveled through a great part of Europe.

He displayed everywhere a model character by his knowledge and virtue.

Finally he came to live in Aquila in central Italy to live for a long time.

He edited a Latin journal titled "Alaudae" [Larks]

which received praise from the old and new world.

Not complaining, not anguished, he died in our city in his 70th year

on the day before the Ides of July 1895

His loyal friends and admirers here and across the Alps

joined in to pay for this gift for their best friend whom

they mourn the loss of, and mock his lack of fortune

by this truly excellent monument.







"New problems in anthropology and jurisprudence." Victorians, amirite? But still I mean, who doesn't want their friends to mock their lack of fortune with truly excellent monuments?
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Published on February 24, 2016 00:05 • 111 views

February 4, 2016








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Hello! It's been a while.



If you're a fan of Joan of Arc (and I mean, who isn't? Who has ever been like her before or since?) you should definitely look up the 1928 movie, The Passion of Joan of Arc. Maria Falconetti as Joan gives what is widely regarded as one of the best performances on film, ever - though certainly at a cost. Mesmerizing.





Hey, ponies are back in stock! They were out for a while, but they are back! woop woop woop!
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Published on February 04, 2016 00:07 • 122 views

Kate Beaton's Blog

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