Pipe Dream

Kreigh with his pipe, northern Michigan, c. 1930.

A very busy week with my day job has led to having nothing ready to post today. Instead, here is a quick update.

As previously mentioned, the reason I started this blog was to raise awareness of my grandfather’s career as a cartoonist. One of the reasons I wanted to raise his profile was my plan to publish a collection of his comic strips and I hoped to sell books to folks outside my immediate family!

My first idea was to do a book featuring KEVIN THE BOLD, but this seemed intimidating because the strip ran for so long. While searching for KEVIN episodes to fill the holes in my collection, I acquired the complete run of MITZI McCOY, and the idea of putting together a book with only about 100 episodes seemed much more manageable for a first-timer like myself.

Once the book came out in 2018, this blog continued, and I circled back to my original idea—doing a book on KEVIN. By this point, I had become more familiar with the 78 story arcs of Kreigh Collins’ better-known comic feature and my publishing plans evolved into the pipe dream of publishing all of KEVIN’s adventures in five volumes—each with about 200 episodes. This dream included a sixth volume with UP ANCHOR!’s run of 174 episodes.

Knowing how much work went into the MITZI book, I realized I’d be lucky to do a single volume on KEVIN, but unlike producing six more collections, this was a viable plan. KEVIN THE BOLD, Volume 1 would feature the strip’s first 205 episodes—the 15 chapters that appeared from October 1, 1950 through August 29, 1954. I was confident that I could find a new publisher; however, this step proved to be harder than I expected, and I paused on my color-correcting efforts.

If anyone has any leads or suggestions for a publishing partner, please let me know by commenting below or by sending an email to brianedwardcollins1[at]gmail.com. (Even if you don’t have any leads, I love hearing from fan’s of my grandfather’s work!) Besides the wonderful episodes that Volume 1 would feature (about 95% of which are beautiful half page examples from the Chicago Sunday Tribune), I have plenty of other material to include, and I think it would be a fantastic book.

Thank you! Schedule permitting, a chapter from 1958 will start next week.

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A Golden Age Classic

The Lost Art of Kreigh Collins, the Complete Mitzi McCoy, features all of MITZI’s eleven chapters, plus the transitional sequence where the comic strips morphs into KEVIN THE BOLD.

Mitzi McCoy Cover 150

MITZI McCOY ran from 1948 to 1950 and showcased Kreigh Collins’ skill as an illustrator and storyteller. His picturesque landscapes, lovely character designs, and thrilling action sequences brimmed with detail and charm, and the strip’s ensemble cast rotated in and out of the spotlight taking turns as protagonists in the dozen story arcs collected in this volume. The last story collected in “The Complete Mitzi McCoy” is the narrative bridge that set Collins and his characters off on a new journey, beautifully told for the next couple of decades in the much-lauded adventure strip Kevin the Bold.

The collection includes an introduction by Eisner Award-winning author Frank M. Young, an afterword by Ithaca College’s Ed Catto, and previously unpublished artwork and photos. Longtime comics artist Butch Guice also provides a new pin-up of the character Mitzi McCoy.

The book’s price is $30. For domestic shipping, add $4; for international orders, add $25 for first class shipping. To place an order, leave a comment below or email me at BrianEdwardCollins1[at]gmail.com, and I will give you PayPal or Venmo information.

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For more information on the career of Kreigh Collins, visit his page on Facebook.

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