Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Case Study No. 0996: John Meier and Steven Herb

2011 Lynd Ward Award Graphic Novel Prize Winner - Adam Hines
Graphic novelist Adam Hines receives the inaugural Lynd Ward Graphic Novel Prize for his book "Duncan the Wonder Dog." University Libraries librarian and Prize juror John Meier makes the announcement and University Libraries librarian and PA Center for the Book director Steven Herb speaks with Hines via phone at the award ceremony in the Foster Auditorium in the Paterno Library at Penn State University on March 22, 2011.

The Lynd Ward Graphic Novel Prize honors Mr. Ward's seminal influence in the development of the graphic novel and celebrates the gift of an extensive collection of Ward's wood engravings, original book illustrations, and other graphic art donated to Penn State University Libraries.
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[scene opens with a male librarian ("John Meier, 2011 Lynd Ward Graphic Novel Prize Juror") standing at a podium and speaking to the assembled audience]
JOHN MEIER: On behalf of the entire jury, I'm going to announce the winner of the inaugural Lynd Ward Prize for the graphic novel of the year, and ...
[he looks over at someone off camera]
JOHN MEIER: I wanna make sure that he has the winner somewhat on the line ...
[someone off camera says "I think so"]
JOHN MEIER: Alright, we're hoping that everything's connected, so the winner of the Lynd Ward Prize for graphic novel of the year ... is Adam Hines, for his book "Duncan the Wonder Dog," which I have up on the, uh, the display.
[cut to a full-screen image of the comic book's cover]
JOHN MEIER: [from off camera] As published by AdHouse Press in Two Thousand and Ten.
[cut to further along in the presentation]
STEVEN HERB: [from off camera] Let's see if we can pick this up. Adam, uh, can we hear you? Let's try it out here.
ADAM HINES: [over the phone] Yes, hi.
STEVEN HERB: [from off camera] Good.
[cut to another man standing at the podium]
ADAM HINES: [over the phone] Everyone!
[he laughs]
STEVEN HERB: Um, is there anything you'd like to say to the audience, Adam?
["On phone, Adam Hines, 2011 Lynd Ward Graphic Novel Prize Winner" appears on screen]
ADAM HINES: [over the phone] Um, yes. I'm mentally elated to get the award.
[cut to a panel from the graphic novel]
ADAM HINES: [over the phone] I mean, it's not everyday that a college gives you a call to say that you're cool, so--
[the audience laughs]
ADAM HINES: [over the phone] Um, and too, on a personal note, I believe that Lynd Ward was born in Chicago ...
STEVEN HERB: [from off camera] He was.
ADAM HINES: [over the phone] And so was I, and that's kind of a nice thing.
[he laughs]
STEVEN HERB: [from off camera] I think you're right. Congratulations.
ADAM HINES: [over the phone] Thanks, thanks.
STEVEN HERB: [from off camera] Um, we understand you're heading toward Australia next month, is that right?
ADAM HINES: [over the phone] Yes, yeah.
STEVEN HERB: [from off camera] And you promised you will come back so you can receive this at some future point, right?
ADAM HINES: [over the phone] We'll see, but--
[the audience laughs]
ADAM HINES: [over the phone] Yeah, yeah.
STEVEN HERB: [from off camera] Otherwise, we'll have to all come over there, y'know.
[he laughs]
ADAM HINES: [over the phone] Yeah.
STEVEN HERB: [from off camera] Well, congratulations, Adam, and we'll be in touch, and uh--
ADAM HINES: [over the phone] Thank you, thank you.
STEVEN HERB: [from off camera] And congratulations on creating a wonderful book.
[the audience applauds]



The Lynd Ward Graphic Novel Prize honors Ward's seminal influence in the development of the graphic novel and celebrates the gift of an extensive collection of Ward's wood engravings, original book illustrations and other graphic art donated to Penn State Libraries by his daughters Robin Ward Savage and Nanda Weedon Ward.

Sponsors include: The Pennsylvania Humanities Council (PHC),, a nonprofit organization, inspires individuals to enjoy and share a life of learning. PHC's statewide speakers bureau and packaged book discussion program for public libraries serve as resources for residents of Pennsylvania. PHC also offers grants which support humanities programs centered in arts, history, literature and other humanities fields. The PHC is supported with LSTA funds from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, as provided by the Pennsylvania Department of Education's Office of Commonwealth Libraries.

The Pennsylvania Center for the Book (PACFTB) is affiliated with the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress and is sponsored by Barbara I. Dewey, Dean of University Libraries and Scholarly Communications. Additional Penn State Libraries Sponsors include Library Learning Services and Rare Books and Manuscripts.

Administered by the Pennsylvania Center for the Book, an affiliate of the Center for the Book at the Library of Congress, and sponsored by Penn State University Libraries, the Lynd Ward Graphic Novel Prize is presented annually to the best graphic novel, fiction or non-fiction, published in the previous calendar year by a living U.S. citizen or resident. A prize of $2,500, the two volume set of Ward's six novels published by the Library of America, and a suitable commemorative will be presented at a ceremony to be held at Penn State later this year.

This year's winner is Adam Hines for Duncan the Wonder Dog (AdHouse Books)

Judges' Comments:

Adam Hines's Duncan the Wonder Dog opens up new possibilities for comics as a creative medium. The content and form of the book are challenging but always rewarding, and the ranging compositional techniques are ambitious and innovative. This book presents an experience of reading unlike any I have ever encountered in comics. Adam Hines is a creator to watch. S. Smith

Duncan is at once a breath-taking art book, a beautifully rendered comic, and a story of the ethics of human relationships with animals. I was constantly surprised and astounded at each page: the composition, layout, drawings, and writing were so masterfully done. Reading this book makes you feel as though you are part of something important. -J. Rosello

Duncan the Wonder Dog is a visually smart book. The author's understanding of fine art printmaking - intaglio and lithography, is apparent. Adam uses techniques that seamlessly recall these traditional forms of printmaking. Each of the 400 pages is a remarkable pastiche of techniques that are not self-conscious nor gimmicky. The drawing and printing styles are purposeful in conveying the sober content of this narrative. Duncan is not an easy book. It takes time to absorb the work, but it is time in which to savor the nuances of the book on each page. -J. Sanders

A great deal of planning and effort went into the construction of this complicated masterpiece. It has an almost mathematical panel progression and geometric layout. The most engaging aspects of Duncan for me were the individual stories, woven together to build a world that is starkly realistic and personally touching. -J. Meier

The "funny animal" comic with gravitas! Duncan the Wonder Dog is an ambitious (400pages!) first novel by Adam Hines, a young writer/illustrator who through word and image manages to "frac" readers' perceptions to reveal his vision of a universe inhabited and impacted equally by human and animal kind. Hines' rare ability to communicate a complex story through picture, texture, and word advances the possibilities of the graphic novel medium, and hence earned the award spotlight. -J. Zolten

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