Sunday, May 1, 2016


May will be an incredibly busy month for me, but I do hope to make time to smell those May flowers I’ve heard tell of. In mostly good ways, these are exciting times for me and, begging your indulgence in advance, today’s bloggy thing is where I do a bit of “out loud” thinking to create order out of chaos.

Let’s start with the personal appearances...

I’ll be spending Free Comic Book Day (Saturday, May 7) at Toys Time Forgot in Canal Fulton, Ohio. For more that two decades, this place has been selling vintage toys and comic books. I’ve heard so many good things about it. I’ve always wanted to visit it and, thanks to being invited to be its Free Comic Book Day guest, I’ll finally be able to see it. At this time, Sainted Wife Barb is planning to make the trip with me. You’ll get to meet the most patient woman in the history of patient women.

The store’s address is 127 Cherry Street E. The FCBD events will be from 11 am to 5 pm, but the store itself is open until 8 pm. I’ll be there for the opening and, depending on this and that, hope to be there until 5. I’m told the store will have copies of both Black Lightning Volume One and Marvel Masterworks: The Champions on sale. A great time will be had by all.

Sidebar. Every year, I try and fail to read and review all of the FCBD offerings. Will this be the year I finally succeed?

My only other May appearance will be at the East Coast Black Age of Comics Convention in Philadelphia. This is one of my very favorite conventions. It’s dedicated to comics and creativity by, featuring and for people of color. I am honored and so grateful to have been accepted so warmly by this great community. Schedule permitting, my son Eddie will be joining me on the trip.

Travel conditions permitting, we will be attending the 15th Annual ECBACC reception and the 11th annual Glyph Awards ceremony on Friday night, May 20, at 6 pm, at the African-American Museum, 701 Arch Street.

ECBACC itself is Saturday, May 21, 11 am to 7 pm, at the Enterprise Center, 4548 Market Street. I’ll be there to see old friends and to make new friends and, perhaps, future collaborators. I’m bringing copies of Black Lightning Volume One to sell, which will hopefully finance my purchases from other creators.

I’ll be appearing on a writers panel - Writing Challenges and How to Break Them - at 11:15 am. The moderator is that terrific writer (and dear friend) Alex Simmons. Also on the panel are author Regine Sawyer and Milton Davis.

It’s a long drive to Philadelphia, but the ride home always seems much shorter to me. That’s because of the incredible energy you’ll experience at ECBACC. If I could, I’d attend the convention every year. That’s how much it means to me.


My writing dance card for May is full. I just wish I could tell you more about it. I’m commencing a major new project that I’m pretty sure will delight my readers. I’m writing another introduction for an upcoming collection of comics from the 1970s that will include a few things I wrote back in that decade. I’m also giving a little assistance to one of the comic-strip creators I’ve done work for in the past. I never dreamed I’d be this busy at age 64, but I’m eager and ready for all of the above.

This bloggy thing will continue to run as often as possible. Daily publication is the goal, but work and travel will sometimes get in the way of that. Our “Rawhide Kid Wednesdays” are back and should appear most weeks. I’m also bringing back another bloggy feature I have neglected for far too long. Of course, I’ll also have my usual mix of news, views and reviews.

My Tony’s Tips column continues to run weekly at Tales of Wonder. I hope you’re checking that out on a regular basis.

Over on my Facebook page, I’m posting comics industry birthdays and remembrances, as well as birthdays and remembrances that don’t fit that category but which are important to me. The historical notes will also appear on a daily basis. The only exceptions will be when I’m on the road.

I am the poster child for online excess.


My Vast Accumulation of Stuff is as vast as ever. I’m planning to resume my Vast Accumulation of Stuff garage sales, very likely as early as Memorial Day weekend. There will be a few changes to the garage sales this year.

Right out of the starting gate, you will see a lot of the popular five-buck mystery boxes. I want to clear out some of the stock from previous years to make room for new stuff. I’ll still have boxes of quarter comics, but not as many of them as in past years. You’ll be amazed at what I’ll be turning up as I explore the VAOS. My goal is to make every visit to my garage sales an adventure.

Unfortunately, I will *not* be doing online VAOS sales this summer. Those have proven to be too time-consuming for a old fellow with as much on his plate as I have. However, I may resume them in the late fall or early winter.


If you’d like to meet and perhaps get some Isabella-written comics signed, and you live to far away to come to my garage sales, here’s where you’ll find me the rest of the year.

June 17-19: Indy PopCon 2016 (Indianapolis)

July 15-17: G-Fest (Chicago)

July 21-24: PulpFest (Columbus)

July 29-30: Monsterfestmania (Akron)

August 3: Euclid Library (Euclid, Ohio)

August 14: Neo Comic Con (Strongsville, Ohio)

September 17: MECCA Con (Detroit)

October 1-2: Cleveland Comic Con 2016

October 21-23: Grand Rapids Comic-Con

November 5-6: Akron Comic Con

It’s within the realm of possibility that I’ll add appearances in September, November or even December. Convention promoters should e-mail me with their requests.

That’s all for now. I'm taking a few days off to get my schedule back on track, but expect to return before the end of the week.
© 2016 Tony Isabella

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