Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Changes for the new edition of “Boys of Steel”

Boys of Steel: The Creators of Superman came out in 2008.

In 2013, it is venturing into two new territories: paperback and ebook. I suggested a paperback to acknowledge Superman’s 75th anniversary. Putting out a new edition would also enable us to a) make a few corrections and b) pitch the book to the Jewish Book Council Network. (A title must be new the year you propose it.)

These are the tweaks I requested:

1) cover - add starbust to the effect of “Superman’s 75th anniversary: 1938-2013”
2) change the year of Superman’s creation from 1934 to 1933 (the year had been debated but after Boys of Steel came out, close-to-conclusive evidence for 1933 surfaced)
3) change the black-and-white movie screen on the second-to-last illustrated spread to this:

4) last page of author’s note - italicize Action Comics
5) copyright page - insert “Superman © DC Comics” (a big oversight, I know, yet one that has thankfully not caused any problem)

A note on the movie theater scene: The fall before the book came out, my editor e-mailed me a PDF of the entire layout. In that version, the movie screen is in color; it’s where I captured the image above.

When I next saw the book, the screen had been changed to black-and-white without consulting me. I suspect an art director assumed color was a mistake, and understandably so. However, the first screen representation of Superman was the Fleischer cartoons that began running in 1941, and they were in vivid color. I did not know of this change until it was too late to change it back.

Alas, due to cost, it will also not be changed for the new edition.

If you have found any goofs in the book, speak now or you may have to hold your peace until the 100th anniversary.

1 comment:

Bill said...

Marc, congrats on getting a 75th anniversary edition out.

I just picked up Brad Ricca’s SUPER BOYS, last week (ordered through my local comic book store, of course) and I'm looking forward to it even more after your recommendation.