Comics A.M. | Matt Bors receives Herblock Award; SPACE winners announced

Awards | Matt Bors is the 2012 winner of the Herblock Award, and the first alternative political cartoonist to do so, according to the Herb Block Foundation. The award includes a $15,000 prize — and that's $15,000 after taxes, which is mighty thoughtful of them. “The prize money is extremely generous and important, as it is more than I’ve ever made in a year from my editorial cartoons,” said Bors, who plans to use it to upgrade his website. The finalist for the prize is Jen Sorensen, creator of Slowpoke and also an alternative cartoonist; she gets a $5,000 prize. [Comic Riffs]

Awards | The Small Press and Alternative Comics Expo, or SPACE, has announced the winners of its annual awards, which will be presented April 21 at the convention in Columbus, Ohio. Winners include Diabetes Funnies by Colin Upton, Sing, Sing by Paul Zdepski, and Spoilers by Kevin Czapiewski. [SPACE]

Comic sales | John Jackson Miller takes a closer look at February's sales: "But perhaps the more important comparisons come by looking at the two-month cycle — the tempo retailer orders are placed on. Most titles would expect to lose significant ground as the winter months are entered; retailers in February 2011 cut their Green Lantern orders more than 6% from the previous December. This February, Justice League's orders dropped by less than 5% from December — and the issue was a Feb. 29 shipping product, so it included only first-day shipments. I would suspect that going down the list we'd find a similar lessening of the usual winter order reductions; retailers ordered nearly 1 million more copies of the Top 300 comics in the month than in February 2011, so that seems likely." [Comichron]

Passings | Tom Spurgeon shares an obituary for Don Markstein, 64, who created and ran the essential Toonpedia website. [The Comics Reporter]

Creators | Brian K. Vaughan discusses Saga #1, his new comic with artist Fiona Staples that hits stores Wednesday. "Yeah, Fiona has had a huge impact. The basic story is still pretty much the same, but the characters and their worlds have evolved completely thanks to her. I knew who our protagonists were, but they didn’t have voices until Fiona’s first sketches arrived. In every panel she draws, Fiona adds these brilliant touches that just help make our insane-o universe feel much more grounded and real than anything I’d ever imagined. And relatable! That’s Fiona’s real gift. She can take the weirdest, most inaccessible daydream, and transform it into something you can connect with emotionally." [Multiversity Comics]

Creators | Brian Churilla discusses his work on The Secret History of D.B. Cooper, the first issue of which also hits stores Wednesday. "D.B. Cooper was a Cold War-era, dimension-hopping assassin working for the CIA, plain and simple. That’s the account put forth in the book. The skyjacking was a story invented by the federal government to cover its tracks. All witnesses who have corroborated this fallacy are either CIA plants or under the direct psychic control of CIA agents. This masquerade was concocted to get the whole country on the hunt for Cooper. $200,000 is a lot of money, more so in 1971." [Spandexless]

Creators | Kyle Higgins talks about the last issue of his Deathstroke run. [USA Today]

Creators | Invincible artist Ryan Ottley discusses how he broke into comics, his early career and being a comic artist in Salt Lake City, Utah. [City Weekly]

Creators | Sam Humphries discusses his upcoming work on Ultimates for Marvel and Higher Earth for BOOM! Studios. [TFAW.com]

History | Did you hear the one about the guy who got five years in Leavenworth for selling comics? Jim Linderman has a fascinating look at the 1932 case of a man who went to the federal pen for selling Tijuana bibles (and assorted other naughty items) through the U.S. mail. [Vintage Sleaze, via The Comics Reporter]

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