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November 9th, 2011 | Uncategorized

I am way deep down in the mine of my new memoir Are You My Mother, so haven’t had time to blog. But in case anyone’s still reading, here are a few odds and ends.

Here is a picture of me on a recent visit to Quimby’s Bookstore in Chicago signing these two very adorable young peoples’ skateboards. I never signed a skateboard before.


Here is my friend Hillary Chute, who I will be teaching with at the University of Chicago next spring, in front of a beautiful life-size Anders Nilssen comic panel at an exhibit called Cartoon Ink: Emerging Comics in Context, at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. The show is down now but it was really good.


Here are two very worthy Kickstarter projects:
• The Harvey Pekar memorial statue!
Jessica Abel’s new project sounds amazing–a graphic novel about roller derby on Mars. If you pitch in, she’ll give you an article from her wardrobe. (I’m hoping for the vintage 40s men’s swim trunks.) Check out her great little film about what she’s up to.

My buddy Phranc has turned her cardboard crafting skills to artifacts of the old west. She has an installation of cardboard cowboy boots, geetars, and suchlike, at the Autry Store.

Fun Home The Musical is under way. The brilliant Lisa Kron (Well, The Five Lesbian Brothers) has written the book and lyrics. The very awesome Jeanine Tesori (Caroline or Change, Shrek The Musical) is the composer. It’s kind of unbelievable. But I’m starting to believe it. I’ve seen some of their early work and it blew me away. Lisa and Jeanine are working on the play right now at the Sundance Theater Lab.

And if you’re in Chicago, come see the premiere of “Alison and Riva,” a documentary about the artist Riva Lehrer, and our collaboration together as she draws a portrait of me. Riva’s work is fascinating. You can see some of it, and also details about the screening, here.

Okay. I’m now I’m grabbing my pickaxe and donning my miner’s helmet and going back down. OMG. I once had a miner’s helmet! I sent away for it with boxtops from Quake cereal. It was yellow hardhat with an actual flashlight in it!

29 Responses to “new post”

  1. Alex K says:


    Thank you. I feel better now after that Ladydrawers fiasco (see previous post and comments).

  2. Kate L says:

    … a miner’s hat, eh? Perhaps the young A.B. yearned to be a geology major?

  3. Wow! I went back to see what Alex was talking about, and saw the whole Maggie/Marj drama!

    A lot has been going on while I’ve been underground!

    Oh, and on a slightly related note, I forgot to mention in the linkfest above that you can download the 500th episode of In Bed With Susie Bright for free at She’s been doing this podcast for 11 years now. It’s great to hear people talking about sex so freely and articulately.

  4. hairball_of_hope says:


    Damn… I KNEW I should have taken a photo of you signing those sneakers at the NYC Bunns and Noodle event. I’ll bet you’d never signed footwear before either.

    Fun Home The Musical?! I can envision FH as a play, but not as a musical. I suppose that might be the reality of today’s economy and current taste; how many plays sans music make money? All the more reason for me to stuff a check in the TDF fundraising envelope that arrived yesterday. TDF is so much more than the TKTS booth in Times Square and the discount voucher program for Off-Broadway venues.

    (… goes back to wishing that the interrobang [?!] was a generally-accepted punctuation mark …)

  5. Duncan says:

    Dang! I’ll be in Chicago this weekend for a friend’s show, but the “Alison and Riva” premiere isn’t until December 1. So near, and yet so far.

  6. Glenn says:

    My brother had the Quake miner’s helmet. I opted for the Quisp propeller beanie. I don’t think this would surprise anyone who knows me today. 😉

  7. Andrew B says:

    For those nerdy enough to care but not so hopelessly nerdy as to have clicked through already, the Amazon page for Are You now has a cover image. It ain’t the same color scheme as Fun Home, that’s for sure. Also, it looks like there will be a Kindle edition, which is kind of interesting.

  8. Aunt Soozie says:

    I know Andrew… so tempted to pre-order but won’t… want to purchase from somewhere more local. I think. I dunno. Gee. What to do, what to do. And, I love the title. I was obsessed with that book as a child… I think because I secretly hoped the answer would be no. (uh, uhm, don’t repeat that…) : )

  9. Eva says:

    You got a canary down there Alison?

    Thanks for coming up for air and giving us more food for thought. You’re the best.

    The late Harvey Pekar’s library rules the earth.

    Quake??? Is it an earthquake/miner themed cereal? And Quisp? What on earth is THAT?

    Nice AYMM cover. I will be buying my copy at my local independent bookstore, for sure.

  10. Wow. I’m really looking forward to the Fun Home musical. Has anyone ever taken a pass at a DTWOF musical? Because I’ve been playing with that idea for a while – as an exercise; obviously I don’t have any sort of permission to do so, nor the credentials of the Fun Home collaborators. I’m just trying to get my composer/lyricist mojo working after a long time away from the theater.

    Anyway, enough fatuousness. Thanks for the update, but don’t interrupt your work on our account. 🙂

  11. grrljock says:

    Yay for “Are You My Mother”! The classic P.D. Eastman version was my one of my favorite childhood books. So the Alison Bechdel version is sure to be one of my favorite books now.
    Double yay for Fun Home the Musical! How can it go wrong with Lisa Kron and Jeanine Tesori at the helm?

  12. […] Alison Bechdel posted on her blog. […]

  13. DianaMlvz says:

    I’m looking forward to Fun Home on stage. Yes, a play can survive w/o it being a musical, and I think you have a great team working on it. Cheers!

  14. judybusy says:

    Eva, Quisp is a super-sugary food-like substance for which I have great memories. I even have bike socks with the little character on them.

    Great to see so much creativity going on! I’m really looking forward to “Are You my Mother.” I picked up the best Comics of 2011 at the library and just have to finish Richard Dawkins’ “Unweaving the Rainbow” before I delve into it. (Yes, I find it basically impossible to stop reading one book to switch to another.)

  15. Therry and St. Jerome says:

    I preordered Best Comics with Medusa and I preordered AYMM from Medusa UK. I am shameless!

  16. Ellen Orleans says:

    Gosh, I do remember the Quisp and Quake “battle.” My gay brother and I had our favorites, but I don’t remember who liked whom. I think we did have a yellow helmet, though.

  17. Eva says:

    Judybusy and Alison – thanks for the illustrations/explanations. I’m trying to figure out how I missed these icons of cereal days gone by…is it a early-ish 1960’s central Pennsylvania thing? I was born in ’66 and I never got any further west than Allentown.

    I just saw a friend on face book post a proud link claiming ‘Burlington girl makes it to Broadway’ all about the Fun Home musical. Huntington, Burlington, close enough, eh? Congratulations!

  18. freyakat says:

    Ellen, thank you for letting us know of the death of
    Barbara Grier. She was one of the shining lights of the lesbian feminist movement, so steadfast and strong.

  19. dc says:

    I’m sure you’re way too engrossed in finishing your next book to read more reviews of Fun Home. But if you still need any reminder of how powerful it was and how deeply it resonates in multiple ways with your readers, here’s another:

  20. rinky says:

    Geez, Jessica Abel, talk about making a person feel like an under-acheiver.

  21. rinky says:

    Also, will Fun Home the musical be coming to Australia or do I have to start saving?

  22. rinky says:

    @ Darren (10)

    I can so visualise DTWOF the musical, oh please please bring it on

  23. Ben says:

    Eagerly anticipating the new book. And I hope to be able to see Fun Home the musical one day.

  24. bean says:

    I always say, don’t trust anyone who doesn’t remember Quisp AND Quake (i.e. under 40!)

  25. Pam I says:

    OK Brits, who still has their Weetabix 3D viewer?

  26. j.b.t. says:

    Alison signed a t-shirt of mine once in the early 90’s at the MI Womyn’s Music Festival – while I was still wearing it. 🙂

  27. mlk says:

    haven’t been around much, and it’s good to catch up w/your work-in-progress.

    last time I visited the website the new book didn’t have a name. Are You My Mother — I love it! can’t wait to see it in print!!

    have been feeling a bit out of touch as I read about cereals from way back when. somehow, I remember Quisp (from the commercials) and that goofy little character, but forgot about Quake completely!

    love it that you link to other artists’ work in your post. it shows a deep humility that you may not always feel. we’re a mass of contradictions and it’s entirely possible to take pride in your own achievements while having a deep appreciation for what others can and have done. that’s something I’ve seen in you again and again. it’s a lovely trait.