Editor’s Note: This is the first interview of several we’ll be publishing this month, all with our section editors. They’re an eclectic bunch, each with their own projects and day jobs. Like the rest of the LARB ecosystem, they rely on the donations of our readership, and we hope you’ll consider giving this month. This first one is with Anne Elizabeth Moore, our Comics editor.
Jacob: Give us some background – how did you end up working at LARB? What do you do for LARB? What do you do when you’re not working for LARB?
I founded the Best American Comics series for Houghton Mifflin and used to edit The Comics Journal and Punk Planet, at which I focused on comics fairly substantially, and since there aren’t a ton of other people in the world who’ve edited comics and comics criticism for a wide literary audience, I called Tom up when the former editor left. As I recall he said, “Who else could do it?” I took it as an endorsement, and not an act of desperation.
When I’m not editing the section — or actually even when I am, ’cause I’m doing it right now — I’m either traveling for some reporting or comics project or teaching and hanging out with my cats in Chicago. At the moment I’m working with a bunch of comics creators in the Nordic and Baltic states on the first-ever international comics creatorship, readership, and resource distribution survey. We’ll be launching the results at European comics conventions in 2015, then Stateside the following year.
Jacob: Could you talk about one of the pieces you submitted for the 2014 LARB Digital Anthology? What was it, what was the editing process, and why did you submit it? (The 2014 LARB Digital Anthology is available as a thank-you to donors of $50 or above during our fund drive.)
The comic I was most excited about was Austin English’s review of This One Summer, which was an original piece of comics non-fiction in Austin’s unique and smart style. It really opened up what we can do with non-fiction comics, I think, and I just adore Austin’s work. I’ve known him since he was really just starting and it’s so great to watch creators grow.
Jacob: Talk about a book you read this year you’d recommend – could be recent or old, well-known or unknown. As long as you read it this year and you think it’s worth reading.
I just started Mana Neyestani’s An Iranian Metamorphosis, a new piece of comics non-fiction from Uncivilized Books. I’m quite enjoying it, but haven’t quite wrapped my head around why it’s such a compelling read yet. Maybe I’ll write something up on it, so we can both find out more about what I think about it.