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Graphic Novels & Comics Round Table Introduces Comics Librarian Conference Travel Grant with funding from Image Comics and Skybound Entertainment

PORTLAND, Ore. 02/17/2023 — The American Library Association Graphic Novels & Comics Round Table (GNCRT) is excited to introduce a new grant opportunity intended to support the professional development of library workers interested in expanding their knowledge and experience with comics in libraries. By providing funds to attend the upcoming 2023 ALA Annual Conference, GNCRT seeks to recognize the value and expertise of comics librarianship and provide resources for newer library professionals with limited financial support. Applications for the grant are open now and the deadline to apply is April 1, 2023.

Through the GNCRT Comics Librarian Conference Travel Grant two recipients will be selected to receive reimbursement of up to $3,000 toward their attendance at the upcoming ALA's Comics Librarian Conference Travel Grant page.. The funds may be used to reimburse for the cost of conference registration, travel and hotel expenses and meals during the conference. Additionally, GNCRT will provide opportunities for the grant winners to participate in sessions and network with comics publishers and their fellow GNCRT members.  ALA's Comics Librarian Conference Travel Grant page.ALA's Comics Librarian Conference Travel Grant page.

The funding for the first year of these grants was provided by graphic novel publishers with Image Comics and Skybound Entertainment donating a combined $6,000. GNCRT is grateful for the money provided by Image Comics and Skybound Entertainment, which provided essential support to establish the grant. Additional opportunities to support this exciting award will be available going forward.

GNCRT President Moni Barrette said: “Comics librarians have long been called upon to provide value and expertise not only within the library profession and the comics industry, but as trusted resources within their communities who know what readers want. Through their generous funding of this unprecedented comics librarian travel grant, Image Comics and Skybound Entertainment demonstrate their understanding of the role libraries and library workers play in the promotion of comics. Grateful and thrilled don’t begin to cover my excitement at the opportunity for GNCRT to provide well-earned support to our growing membership.”

“In a time when libraries are facing bad-faith challenges from across the nation and seeing their budgets cut, the teams at Skybound and Image felt it was important to financially invest in opportunities for the librarians who fight so hard for marginalized voices every day,” said Arune Singh, Director of Brand (Editorial), Skybound Entertainment. “We thank Moni Barrette and ALA’s Graphic Novels & Comics Round Table for allowing this opportunity to give back to a community who have had such an incredible positive impact on all our lives and remain central figures in the fight for progress as a country.”

Matt Parkinson, VP of Sales & Publishing Planning at Image Comics, added: “We’re always on the lookout for opportunities to support graphic novel librarians and we’re eager to get more involved with the ALA’s GNCRT team to help in whatever way we can. We hope collaborating to build this grant will create a positive ripple effect for library professionals, benefit their patrons, and similarly inspire contributions from others in our industry.”

For more information on the “GNCRT Comics Librarian Conference Travel Grant,” how to apply for consideration, and for comics publishers interested in financially contributing, please visit: ALA's Comics Librarian Conference Travel Grant page and the GNCRT Comics Librarian Conference Travel Grant application.

About the Graphic Novels and Comics Round Table

The Graphic Novels and Comics Round Table of the American Library Association is dedicated to supporting library staff in all aspects of engaging with graphic novels and comics, including collection development, programming, and advocacy. For more information, connect with GNCRT on Discord; Twitter: @libcomix; Instagram: @libcomix; or the GNCRT ALA Connect page.

ABOUT IMAGE COMICS:

Image Comics is a comic book and graphic novel publisher founded in 1992 by a group of bestselling artists and has gone on to become the second largest comics publisher in the United States. The company currently has six individuals on the Board of Directors: Robert Kirkman, Erik Larsen, Todd McFarlane, Marc Silvestri, Jim Valentino, and Eric Stephenson. Image publishes comics and graphic novels in nearly every genre, style, and format imaginable. Its titles run the gamut of science fiction, fantasy, romance, horror, crime, humor, and are created by the top artists and writers working in the medium today. For more information, visit www.imagecomics.com .

ABOUT SKYBOUND ENTERTAINMENT

Established in 2010, Skybound is a multiplatform content company that works closely with creators and their intellectual properties to create cool stuff and deliver one-of-a-kind experiences to fans. Skybound extends their stories across platforms including comics, television, film, video games, tabletop, books, digital content, audio programming, and beyond. The company is home to critically-acclaimed global franchises including The Walking Dead, Invincible,Superfight, and hit new podcast series Impact Winter.

Led by Skybound Entertainment co-founder Robert Kirkman, Skybound Comics is an award-winning imprint of Image Comics and promotes a shared vision to collaborate with top and emerging talent across the comics industry. The Skybound publishing slate includes acclaimed series such as The Walking Dead, Invincible, Ultramega, Stillwater, Fire Power, and Excellence, while also delivering powerful licensed comics, including a partnership with LEGO Books. It is also home to Skybound Comet, a new original graphic novel imprint aimed at Young Adult and Middle Grade audiences, launching in June 2022 with Clementine Book One, by award-winning writer/artist Tillie Walden and set in the world of The Walking Dead. Skybound has seen numerous comics series adapted for the screen, including The Walking Dead, Invincible, Super Dinosaur and Outcast, with more projects in development.

For the most up to date information on Skybound, please visit the company on Twitter (@Skybound), YouTube (Skybound), Facebook (@SkyboundEntertainment), Instagram (@skyboundent), and at www.skybound.com.

About ALA

Established in 1876, the American Library Association (ALA) is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization created to provide leadership for the development, promotion, and improvement of library and information services and the profession of librarianship in order to enhance learning and ensure access to information for all.

Contact:
Tina Coleman, Staff Liaison
Graphic Novels & Comics Round Table
312.280.2152
ccoleman@ala.org
American Library Association