2010 Glyph Comics Award Winners Announced

The Glyph Comics Awards, which aim to “recognize the best in comics made by, for, and about people of color”, announced the 2010 winners last night at the East Coast Black Age of Comics Con. Here are those winners:

Glyph Comics Awards logo

Story of the Year
Unknown Soldier #13-14, Joshua Dysart, writer, Pat Masioni, artist

Best Writer
Alex Simmons, Archie & Friends

Best Artist
Jay Potts, World of Hurt

(For those like me who weren’t familiar with this title, it’s a blaxploitation webcomic that launched last year.)

Best Male Character
Isaiah Pastor, World of Hurt, created by Jay Potts, writer and artist

Best Female Character
Aya, Aya: The Secrets Come Out, created by Marguerite Abouet, writer, Clement Oubrerie, artist

Rising Star Award
Jay Potts, World of Hurt

Best Reprint Publication
Aya: The Secrets Come Out, Drawn & Quarterly

Best Cover
Luke Cage Noir #1, Tim Bradstreet, illustrator

Best Comic Strip
The K Chronicles, Keith Knight, writer and artist

Fan Award for Best Comic
Luke Cage Noir, Mike Benson & Adam Glass, writers, Shawn Martinbrough, artist

Time for some commentary.

Once again, as I said last year, I’m disappointed at how often one project wins multiple Glyphs. This year, World of Hurt won three, with two other titles each winning two. Last year, Bayou won five; the year before, a previous installment of Aya again won two, with Satchel Paige and Sentences: The Life of MF Grimm both also doing the same. In 2007, Stagger Lee won four. And, as this year’s press release points out, The K Chronicles has won Best Strip four years out of the last five.

Those are all fine, worthy projects, but it disturbs me that there isn’t more variety because I think that would indicate a healthier market in the long run. It’s great that there are a handful of outstanding works about people of color every year, but wouldn’t it be better if there were more, so we could have some true competition for these awards?

Then there’s the question of female representation. There’s at least one woman recognized each year (so they’re doing better than some other awards), but last year, it was just barely, as G. Willow Wilson wrote the fan-selected best comic, Vixen: Return of the Lion. This year previous winner Marguerite Abouet wrote the twice-awarded Aya: The Secrets Come Out, but her name wasn’t even mentioned under the second award, Best Reprint Publication. I’m curious as to why only the publisher is cited for that honor.

But don’t let my questions distract from honoring these fine works and creators. It’s for a good cause, plus, the Glyphs are notable for not distinguishing between print and web publication in its categories.

6 Responses to “2010 Glyph Comics Award Winners Announced”

  1. Rich Watson Says:

    Hi Johanna. Reprints usually aren’t the responsibility of the creators (unless they self-publish their work), which is why the Best Reprint award goes to the publisher (or editor in some cases). It’s the only category in which publishers/editors are eligible.

    Interesting thoughts about the distribution of wealth (so to speak). Personally, I don’t see multiple winners in the GCAs as being that different from multiple winners in, say, the Eisners, or for that matter, the Oscars or Grammys. If a comic resonates strongly enough with the judges, I don’t see this as necessarily a bad thing. At ECBACC this weekend I had one person tell me that he discovered BAYOU for the first time after reading about all the GCAs it won. Make of that what you will. The variety shows through in the overall nominees, where corporate comics like WAR MACHINE and LUKE CAGE NOIR compete on equal footing with indies and webcomics like ORIGINAL JOHNSON and WORLD OF HURT.

    As for the women, well, past winners also include Gail Simone and Spike, and looking back, there have been a number of women creators nominated who aren’t exactly household names. And I always make it a point to include women as judges every year. You yourself were one.

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts about the awards. I hardly ever get feedback of this nature.

  2. Johanna Says:

    I guess I’ve known of too many cases where a creator worked to get their project either back into print or placed with a new publisher to consider a reprint the decision of the publisher.

    I think awards with many more categories, multiple winners don’t seem as overwhelming — but that’s not asking you to add more categories! I think the small number you have is great.

    Thanks for sharing the explanations, and for taking my comments in the positive spirit intended.

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