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Mini-comic: The Infernal Organ

When I created this comic book in November, 1990, I wanted to make something that felt like the fairy tales of Hans Christian Andersen. I was also inspired by the stream-of-consciousness stories that comic book master John Stanley created in his Little Lulu stories when Lulu makes up stories to keep Alvin out of trouble.

My own story took a darker turn than my inspirations. It was all intuitively created.  The story was totally spontaneous, and found its own form. I am a little uncomfortable with the horrific imagery, but it was the song in my heart that day, and I am glad that I honored it.

This was my first comic book work after taking a 3,000 honeymoon bicycle ride with Susan. I remember feeling very focused and powerful.

Staying at a temporary home in the isolated hills of Pennsylvania and having no money, I only had a blue-ink ball point pen and a black felt-tip marker available to draw with. I figured it would make little difference when Xeroxed, and it didn’t… it printed out in even blacks. I made 25 copies of the little mini comic on pink paper, of which I still have one copy. If memory serves me right, Randy Paske (of High School Comics) kindly sent me his copy back in the mail when I realized I didn't save one for myself. That's the copy I scanned here. Thanks Randy!

I recently learned from Steve Willis that one copy of The Infernal Organ (as well as several of my other comics) is actually in the Lynn Hansen Collection of mini-comics and self-published comics, housed at Washington State University. 20 years ago, Lynn used to buy my comics through the mail -- and it turns out he amassed a huge collection of similar publications. It's an honor to be included in that collection and my thanks to Steve Willis for setting it up!

I don’t know where the other 23 copies are, but they were all mailed out to various friends and fellow comic book creators. I hope they still get read once in a while.

Copyright 2012 Paul Tumey



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