*UPDATE* Where is he now?
To see what 1918 creator Ken Boesem's been up to since 2003 check out:
11/2004 - REVIEW
BROKEN PENCIL MAGAZINE
by Brian Burch
The magazine of zine culture and the independent arts features a review of Ken Boesem's 1918 in Issue 26.
28/08/2003 - RADIO INTERVIEW
THE ONOMATOPOEIA SHOW (101.9 CiTR FM)
Broadcast Date: Aug.28, 2003
Robin Fisher - Host
Ken Boesem appeared as the featured guest for an hour-long interview to discuss his development as a cartoonist and his appearance in the 2003 SPX Anthology peppered with his own eclectic musical selections.
28/07/2003 - MAGAZINE ARTICLE
MACLEAN'S MAGAZINE- Cover Date: Aug.4, 2003
"THE ADVENTURES OF . . . THE SPANISH FLU?"
by Danylo Hawaleshka, Senior Writer
Maclean's, Canada's weekly national newsmagazine (!), published a full page story on Ken Boesem, "1918" and it's publication in the SPX anthology. The article included a photo of Ken Boesem and a one-and-one-third page excerpt from "1918." The article also appeared, without pictures, on their Web site at http://www.macleans.ca/.
15/06/2003 - NEWSPAPER ARTICLE
QUESNEL CARIBOO OBSERVER - Vol 90, No 83
"EPIDEMIC COMIC TO HIGHLIGHT 1918"
Ken Boesem's hometown newspaper published a half page article about the publication of "1918." He even managed to get a photo and blurb on the cover: "Comic book epidemic: Quesnel-born artist published."
13/06/2003 - WEB ARTICLE
COMICON.COM "THE PULSE"
"COMICS 101: SPX ANTHOLOGY CONTRIBUTORS"
Comicon's "The Pulse" posted a brief bio and synopsis of each contributor to this year's SPX anthology, including Ken Boesem's "1918."
09/06/2003 - PRESS RELEASE
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - June 9, 2003
COMIC BOOK TALE REMINDS US OF FORGOTTEN PANDEMIC.
As the world struggles with SARS, little has been said about the 1918 influenza outbreak that circled the globe in just a few months. Every country on the planet was affected as one fifth of the world’s population became infected. This strain of influenza was so deadly that many people went from having no symptoms to being too feeble to walk within hours. Several would die the next day. During the 18 month outbreak, 20 to 70 million people died.
Vancouver comic creator Ken Boesem’s short story "1918" details the deadly human consequences of the 1918 pandemic and has been chosen for inclusion in the prestigious 2003 SPX Anthology.
"I had already written the story and begun laying out the artwork when SARS became front page news. It was eerie. Especially when the disease picked up steam and I began to see a proliferation of SARS-masked people on TV." People wore similar masks in 1918 to prevent infection. According to Boesem, one of the oddest things about researching the background for his story was the absence of a significant body of reference material concerning the influenza pandemic of 1918.
"Here was a disease that wiped out more people than all the fighting in World War I and it didn't even get a passing reference in any of my high school history textbooks," says Boesem. "Except for a few recent books, it’s as if the pandemic never happened." Boesem’s story is one of only a handful of works, fiction or non-fiction, to deal with this devastating outbreak.
In ten sensitively drawn pages, Boesem takes the reader on a journey with the deadly virus from its first recorded outbreak on a Kansas army base, to the blood-soaked trenches of France and back across the Atlantic to the quiet heart of a quiet Canadian community.
"I am very excited to be included in the anthology. I think this story offers a window into a very important but overlooked period in human history," says Boesem. "The anthology also raises money for a worthwhile cause."
The 2003 SPX Anthology is published in conjunction with the ninth annual Small Press Expo (SPX) held in Bethesda, MD, just outside Washington, DC. This year’s SPX runs from September 5th to 7th. The anthology acts as a showcase for emerging and established cartoonists, and as an important fundraiser for the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund (CBLDF), which helps to protect the rights and freedoms of comic book retailers, publishers and creators. Last year the anthology raised $13,000 for the CBLDF.
This year’s SPX Anthology boasts almost 300 pages of travel-themed stories ranging from the humorous to the heart-rending by 48 talented cartoonists. The book features a front cover by master comic artist Jaime Hernandez. Hernandez’s Love & Rockets series, produced with brother Gilbert, is the alternative comics success story of the 80s, 90s and 00s. The anthology’s back cover is painted by Joel Priddy, whose Pulpatoon Pilgrimage debuted in and has been nominated for a 2003 Eisner Award.
The 2003 SPX Anthology will ship to stores in July. It will be available from comic book shops or wherever fine graphic novels are sold. The comic-shop deprived can order it from on-line comic book retailers or directly from the CBLDF Web site. The anthology retails for $9.95 (US).