Comics A.M. | ReedPOP partners with Australia's Oz Comic-Con

Conventions | As comics conventions continue to become an international phenomenon, ReedPOP bags a big one: The company behind New York Comic Con, C2E2, Star Wars Celebration and Penny Arcade Expo has announced a partnership with Oz Comic-Con, which runs several conventions in different locations in Australia. [press release]

Passings | Paul Burgarino reports on Sunday's memorial service for Wee Pals cartoonist Morrie Turner, who died last month at the age of 90. Wee Pals was the first comic strip by a black creator to get a national syndication deal, and speakers remembered him as both a pioneer and an inspiration. "Through your unique artistry and personal kindness, you've helped show the world what we can be, should be and must be," said David Shaffer, the son of one of Turner's close friends. [Contra Costa Times]

Passings | The Cambodian cartoonist Ung Bun Heang, who survived three years in a Khmer Rouge labor camp and went on to satirize his country's politics on his blog Scrivatoons, has died at the age of 62. Bun Heang moved to Australia after the war, but the Cambodian government was sufficiently threatened by his work that its ministry of communications ordered his blog and website blocked. [The Cambodia Daily]

Comics | The year got off to an anemic start in the direct market, with comics sales down 0.42 percent from January 2012 and graphic novels down 14.28 percent, for a combined drop of 5.09 percent. [ICv2]

Creators | Queenie Chan, creator of The Dreaming and the artist for the Odd Thomas graphic novel adaptations, is starting a series of essays on her life as a creator, with reflections on the changes the publishing industry has gone through and some advice on self-publishing. This post is an introduction to her work, and it's worth bookmarking the site as Chan will be speaking from ten years' experience. [Queenie Chan]

Creators | Writer Karl Bollers and New Paradigm Studios President Brandon Perlow talk about Watson and Holmes, which re-imagines the famous detective and his sidekick as a doctor and a private investigator in modern-day Harlem. Bollers and Perlow talk about re-imagining the classic characters as African American, diversity in the comics industry, and their decision to drop the monthly comics format and instead go from digital single issues directly to a print graphic novel. [Diamond Bookshelf]

Creators | Artist Mort Todd talks about his involvement with The Charlton Arrow, which features new stories about the old Charlton Comics characters. [13th Dimension]

Commentary | Gene Luen Yang's Boxers and Saints was one of the most talked-about graphic novels of 2013, but here's a take I haven't seen before: a teacher who used it in a classroom compares it to the source material and actual Chinese culture. [Frog in a Well]

Exhibits | Here's a more in-depth look at the exhibit we mentioned last week of the work of three black creators at Pittsburgh City Hall; this one includes interviews with Joe Wos, director of the Toonseum (which helped put the show together) and others, as well as photos of some of the work. [The New Pittsburgh Courier]

Conventions | The Los Angeles Comic Book and Science Fiction Convention sounds like it has seen better days, but Graham Clark argues the lack of glitz isn't an entirely bad thing. As blogger Tracy Dearing observes, "You can really look through the comic books and look at the toys, whereas at the San Diego Comic Con comics have kind of taken a back seat. So I really appreciate the, kind of, smaller conventions like this." [Neon Tommy]

Conventions | You think Comic-Con International is crowded? Attendance at the Taipei Comics Festival last weekend topped 400,000. [Want China Times]

Conventions | David Lloyd, Mark Waid and John Layman all talk about their experiences at India Comic Con and their interest in international partnerships. [Business Standard]

Conventions | Here's a more locally focused take on India Comic Con. [Hindustan Times]

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