help an underdog!

Lately I’ve been fostering dogs for Underdog Railroad Rescue. They’re a local rescue that is foster-only, saving small dogs from high-kill shelters in Southern California and bringing them up to the Northwest to be adopted. Lord knows we love a dog up here.


They just saved this little sweet little guy Ringo, who was attacked multiple times in the shelter by other dogs. His liver and gall bladder were herniated and he was literally on the table about to be put down. Underdog pulled him at the last minute and now he’s all stitched up and coming up to Portland soon. But his vet bills are… not great. So I’m offering some pet portraits to raise money.

I’m only doing three slots for now, of small watercolors. $200 for a 6”x6” watercolor of your pet! I’ll cover domestic shipping but international can be brutal so I ask that you cover that if you live outside the US.


I’ll add more pets or humans for $100 each. This example has a kid in it, and 3 pets, so it would be $500. (It’s also a bit bigger, obviously.) I’ll cross the slots off as they get taken.




All taken!!!  Woohoo! I’ll get through these and maybe will offer more later. If you just want to make a plain old donation (hooray!), Underdog’s paypal is here: Please uncheck the “goods and services” box so that the rescue doesn’t get stuck with the paypal fee.

 Help Ringo! Help an amazing organization that does great work! Put something cute in your house!

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Well, I didn’t see THAT coming.


At four in the morning one January morning I got a phone call. I got six phone calls. I didn’t pick any of them up, because what kind of monster calls someone at four in the morning. A whole roomful of monsters, as it turns out. Leave Me Alone had been awarded a Caldecott Honor by the Association for Library Service to Children, and they were calling to let me know. I made a little video about that moment, you can watch that here.

I was, and am, completely shocked.  I hadn’t even considered the possibility of getting a Caldecott, and it’s rare in life that you get completely and utterly surprised like that, especially in a GOOD way. I’m so honored that the committee enjoyed my book enough to single it out, and am glad that more kids will be reading it! That is the greatest thing of all.


I’ve gotten to do a few school visits since the book came out, something I was nervous about. I shouldn’t have been – it was so fun to hang out with a roomful of little guys, drawing for them and getting their help with the shouty parts of the book. It made me want to do a whole lot more. If you’d like me to come visit your school drop me a line!


Also! If you would like a signed copy of Leave Me Alone, Green Bean Books in Portland, OR has a bunch, and they can ship! It’s a wonderful store and I’m so grateful for their help and support with the book.

Posted in book, leave me alone | 2 Comments

Leave Me Alone pre-order contest!


It’s finally feeling like fall around here, and Leave Me Alone is out so soon! September 13th, mere days away, holy moly. It’s been getting really nice reviews including starred ones from Publisher’s Weekly and The School Library Journal. This one by Betsy Bird is especially nice! I blushed. I’m so excited for you guys to see this book, I loved making it and it’s so fun to read aloud to kids too. Or lazy  grownups.

If you would like your own copy you can pre-order from one of these lovely outlets:

And once you have pre-ordered, you could be in the running to win an ORIGINAL PAINTING FROM THE BOOK.

giveaway pages

One of these three paintings! You get to pick which one, even. All you have to do is send a photo or screencap of your pre-order receipt to before September 13th. It’s cool if you pre-ordered it before I started the contest. I will pick a name out at random and send the painting of your choice your way. Easy!

There are also four runner-up prizes, little paintings of the grandkids from the book wearing their cute sweaters and enjoying autumn harvests. I will pick which one you get but they are all pretty good I think!

giveaway kids


And if you happen to live in Portland, I’m having a release party on September 18th, here’s some info about that. I would love to see you!

Posted in book, painting | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

leave me alone!

Clearly I like to be left alone, because I have not touched this blog in three years. Well, things have been happening. I left my job at Laika to focus on books, and my first one is coming out in a little over a month! It’s called Leave Me Alone, and it’s about subjects close to my heart: knitting and privacy. Here is the cover:LMAcoverAnd here is a very nice starred review from Publisher’s Weekly. More to come, including signings and news about other things in the works! Exciting times.

Posted in book | 2 Comments

san diego again!

San Diego is upon us! July 18-21st. This year I’ll be there as a Special Guest, which means there are going to be a bunch of places to see me.

Thursday July 18th

10:oo am – TR!CKST3R Symposia #1: Personal Experience: Putting YOU into your project

Stories come from somewhere. From our hearts; our minds; ourselves. We invest our experiences into our art  sometimes sharing deeply personal aspects of our lives with our audience. How can we, as artists –  as storytellers, remain true to ourselves AND tell compelling stories?

This 2-hour discussion is designed to showcase a diverse background of storytellers and encourage you to use your own experiences in your storytelling with confidence. Your audience can handle it.

Participating storytellers include VERA BROGSOL (Anya’s Ghost), FAITH ERIN HICKS (Nothing Can Possibly Go Wrong), CECIL CASTELLUCCI (Odd Duck), DAVE CROSLAND, and more to be announced shortly! Tickets here.

Friday July 19th

12:00pm – Drawing Stories: What’s New in YA Graphic NovelsVera Brosgol (Anya’s Ghost), Gris Grimly (Frankenstein), Faith Erin Hicks (Nothing Can Possibly Go Wrong), Hope Larson (Who is AC?), and Paul Pope (Battling Boy), five of the hottest teen graphic novel creators in the industry, discuss their current books, what’s involved in creating graphic novels for young adults, and why words and pictures go so well together in books for teens.  Room 25ABC

1:30pm – Vera Brosgol, Faith Erin Hicks, Hope Larson, Autographing Area signing (AA09)

Saturday July 20th

12:oopm – Signing at the First Second Booth #1323

4:oopm – Spotlight on Vera Brosgol

Eisner Award winner and Comic-Con special guest Vera Brosgol (Anya’s Ghost) talks about her background and influences in writing, art, and animation with YA rock star Holly Black (The Coldest Girl in Cold Town). Room 4

5:30pm – Vera Brosgol and Holly Black Autographing Area signing (AA05)

Sunday July 21st

Sleep? Eat sandwich? Go home?

I am so excited and honored to be a special guest this year! Hope you see you there!

Posted in convention | 1 Comment

hourly comics saturday

11amRemember the hourly comics I did last year? I was supposed to do them again on February 1st, but I was slammed at work and it just wasn’t happening. So instead I did them the following day, February 2nd! And I have to say I enjoyed it a lot more, because my Saturdays are not under an NDA. Here they are!

Posted in comics | 9 Comments

things since august

It has been a while since I wrote! Paranorman came out, and will be out on DVD soon (November 27th in fact). Anya’s Ghost won a Harvey Award for Best Original Graphic Publication for Younger Readers. I did an illustrated book review for the New York Times. I drew a few more dresses. I cut down a giant tree in my backyard and made a bunch of jam. It’s raining and cold and Portland’s all hunkered down for the winter. I’m super busy at Laika so I don’t know how much will be showing up on this blog, but I’ll try to pop in and post some drawings as they happen. Stay warm and dry folks!

Posted in anya's ghost | 5 Comments

paranorman is OUT

Tragically this is probably the closest to on-model I’ve ever drawn him.

Paranorman is out August 17th, which is TODAY!!! In North America as well as Iceland, Vietnam, Taiwan and the Netherlands. I saw it last week and am seeing it again tonight (and hopefully even more times after that). I am so so proud to have worked on this movie with the most talented and awesome crew I’ve ever encountered. Please go see it this weekend with as many of your friends as you can muster! Brave independent animation needs your support! I promise it’s way better than Expendables 2.

Reminder that I’ll be in LA on Sunday for the Nucleus Paranorman panel!

And another reminder that today is the last day to vote in the Harvey Awards, possibly for Anya’s Ghost. The ballot is online here, it’s super easy!

Okay, back to refreshing Rotten Tomatoes.

Posted in anya's ghost, paranorman | 21 Comments

adventure time!

I painted this for the Adventure Time show at Nucleus comin’ up on the 18th! It will be for sale at and after the show. I don’t sell paintings very often so if you want to own one of my paintings and like Adventure Time, well, you’re all set.

Also! I will be at Nucleus on the 19th for their Paranorman Artist Panel! Lots of cool dudes who worked on the movie will be there showing art. I’ll be bringin’ along a couple of storyboard sequences to pitch through, it should be fun! If you are in LA come on down.

Oh man. Paranorman is out in less than 2 weeks. So excited. Have you seen the awesome featurettes on the Weird Wins site? Or seen the amazing Art of Paranorman book? I hope you are half as stoked to see it on opening weekend as I am. That would make you pretty damn stoked.

Posted in painting, paranorman | 5 Comments


Man, you can’t beat that. This last weekend I had the amazing honor of winning the Will Eisner award for Best Publication for Young Adults (or possibly teens).  Fortunately they gave that one out pretty early so I got to stop being sweaty and miserable and enjoyed the ceremony quite a bit. Seeing so much love and appreciation for the medium (and George R. R. Martin breathing my AIR) was so invigorating, and made me want to run right home and work on my next book! But spending two more days seeing friends and looking at crazy stuff wasn’t so bad either.

There was a Paranorman panel that was a lot of fun to attend – the press junket for the movie is gearing up and there’s all kinds of cool stuff. Mondo posters showing up in different cities, creepy boxes being sent out to bloggers, and maybe my favorite, a site with some behind-the-scenes featurettes focusing on the amazing, strange people who made the movie.  This studio’s strength is in its craftsmanship and the amazing individuals making the movies, not a star-studded voice cast (not that that hurts) and it’s so nice to see that get some of the spotlight.

Thanks so much for everyone who voted for Anya’s Ghost in the Eisners, and the folks who came by the First Second booth to say hi, and everyone who told a friend about the book or asked their library to order it or ever supported it in any way! The comics community fills my heart with joy. Comics fill my heart with joy. YOU fill my heart with joy.

I will leave you with a picture of me and my comic-con boyfriend Robb Stark. Back to work!

Posted in anya's ghost, comics, convention | 22 Comments