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The Creator's Bill of Rights:
A Letter from Mark Martin

Below is an e-mail letter that I received from Mark Martin on January 10, 2006. Mark was addressing Dave Simís previous letter on creatorís rights. -Al Nickerson

Hi Dave

Hope you don't mind me addressing you through Al (and Al thanks for being a conduit) but I am too lazy to go address-searching! I stumbled into your comments to me in the latest "Creators Rights" jabber - which is kind of a fluke. What made you think I was in the room? Are you psychic?

This is a bit off-topic, but just curious. Here's what you wrote:

"Hey MARK MARTIN! Hey, how are you doing? Still got my Lillian Spencer Drake Catalogue. "Rectangles! Women Love Them!" Easily in the top five sight gags of all time.

I was on a panel with Jim Woodring in New York back in November. Got him to autograph my Frank first printing from 1994. He didn't exactly strike me as thinking of himself in the "where he is today" terms you seem to mean. To be honest, I don't think any of us ever get to that point. The wolf is always at the door. Some of us just have thicker doors than others. But it doesn't matter how thick the door is you're always aware that some wolf has managed to get through one just as thick.

I can't think of a better guy to have a hair-brained scheme in the works than Mark "20 Nude Dancers 20" Martin, though. Good luck with Runaway."

Hey DAVE SIM! I'm fine. Hang onto your LSD Catalog, it is worth $35 on eBay now!

You seem to be addressing a specific comment I made about "where Jim Woodring is today". But I don't know which one, or where it's from. Hmmm - I think he is pretty well established in any event. Of course the wolf is potentially at Stephen King's door. But I think he'll be okay.

Thanks on the Runaway wishes. Have you told your local comics store to order it? Have YOU, Al Nickerson or anybody else in the universe who may be reading this???

One day I hope to write my comments on the whole "Rights" thing, past and present. And Tundra, and all that stuff from that era. Maybe soon, now that you have engaged me. I've always got something else more pressing, but now that I am blogging and trying to stay daily with it (just one of my hare-brained Runaway promo schemes!) it could make good fodder for that.

I'll go ahead and just barely get started here, and leave you with a good ol' cliff-hanger:

My whole view of the Creators' Rights summit was tainted from the very beginning. I thought the whole pow-wow was going to be a bunch of small press creators getting together to form a strength-in-numbers publishing co-op. And I was very enthusiastic about that. But when everybody started yapping about all this idealistic Creators' Rights crap, and then it went on and on and on, and I realized that is ALL we were going to talk about, it was all I could do to keep my mouth shut and be polite.

I'm not dissing the whole Creators' Rights thing NOW, it was just incredibly disappointing to me at the time. A Creators' Bill of Rights was not going to help me sell books in the short run. I don't know where the communication breakdown occurred. I do not archive every single scrap of paper in my life like some CRAZY VERMONTERS that we know.

So, before I have to run off to a press check, let me just ask you, Steve, Scott, anybody else who was there: Did you come into that summit knowing and planning for it to be a "Creators Rights" summit? Or is that just what evolved out of the whole thing? Just curious. Hell, I still don't even know THAT, that's how out of the loop I stay. If it was PLANNED TO BE a Creators' Rights summit, and if I had realized that at the time, I may have been more focused on the task at hand.

More later... hopefully soon...

Next: A Letter from Dave Sim 15 Dave Sim's letter to Mark Martin.

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