Comics A.M. | Protesters rally against cuts to SC colleges

Graphic novels | An estimated 200 students, faculty and community members gathered Saturday at the College of Charleston in South Carolina to protest proposed budget cuts to that school and the University of South Carolina Upstate in retaliation for selecting gay-themed books -- including Alison Bechdel's Fun Home -- for their summer reading programs. The South Carolina House of Representatives approved a proposal early this month that would slash $52,000 cut from the College of Charleston and $17,142 for USC Upstate, which represent what each school spent on the programs. The budget is now before the state Senate. [The Post and Courier]

Passings | Editorial cartoonist Mark Ritter, former president of the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists, has died at the age of 48. Ritter worked for the East Valley Tribune and the Scottsdale Tribune, and his cartoons were syndicated through King Features. In recent years, he was the art director for GA Voice, an alternative newspaper for the gay community in Georgia; Alan Gardner notes that during his time working for the Tribune newspapers, Ritter was one of the few openly gay staff cartoonists. [The Daily Cartoonist]

Publishing | Publisher Denis Kitchen and designer John Lind talk about their new Dark Horse imprint, Kitchen Sink Books, and their first publication, The Best of Comix Book: When Marvel Went Underground, a collection of the underground comics published by Marvel in 1974-5. [The Quietus]

Manga | Justin Stroman assembles a group of veteran manga editors, including Dark Horse's Carl Horn, Kodansha's Ben Applegate, and several editors from Viz Media, Tokyopop, and the Digital Manga Guild, and quizzes them about their work. [Organization Anti-Social Geniuses]

Creators | Vicki Scott, who stepped into some pretty big shoes as the artist and co-writer of BOOM! Studios' Peanuts comics, talks about working on their third graphic novel, The Beagle Has Landed, in which Snoopy goes to the moon. Scott says she feels like Charles Schultz is looking over her shoulder as she works, adding, "I try very hard for my drawings to be more his than mine. Maybe that makes me sound kind of odd, but I get a huge kick out of drawing these characters as 'on model' as humanly possible. It's a big challenge, and I love that." [USA Today]

Creators | Tom Spurgeon's Sunday interview is a twofer: He starts out talking to Robot 6 contributor Chris Arrant about his work as a comics journalist, then segues into a conversation about Arrant's book, a volume on Cliff Chiang for TwoMorrows' Modern Masters series, and winds it up with a shorter interview with Chiang himself. [The Comics Reporter]

Creators | Mark Voger interviews underground comics pioneer Jay Lynch, who will be appearing at Asbury Park Comicon in a few weeks. [The Star-Ledger]

Creators | Snuffy Smith cartoonist John Rose talked about his work recently at the Raleigh County (West Virginia) Public Library. [The Register-Herald]

Digital comics | Jeffrey L. Wilson reviews the Comics Plus app for Android. [PC Magazine]

Apps | James Hoare talks about Uncanny Comics, his monthly magazine app that features interviews, recommendations, and feature stories about Golden Age and Silver Age comics. [Paste Magazine]

Collecting | Michael Gavin of Scranton, Pennsylvania, talks about the challenges and joys of collecting original comic art and shows off a few pieces from his collection. [The Scranton Times-Tribune]

Awards | Kaoru Mori's A Bride's Story (available in English from Yen Press) has won this year's Manga Taisho Award. [Anime News Network]

Manga | Nusrat Ali looks at the manga scene in the United Arab Emirates, where Japanese culture is popular and there's even a homegrown title written in Arabic and illustrated by two Japanese artists. [Gulf Business]

Conventions | The local paper reports in, with plenty of photos, on Wizard World Louisville Comic Con. [The Louisville Courier-Journal]

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