Graphic Short Story Prize 2011

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As ever the judges (David Nicholls, Bryan Talbot, Rachel Cooke, Dan Franklin, Paul Gravett and Suzanne Dean) had their work cut out for them picking just one winner and runner-up from the hundreds of original, impressive and standout entries submitted to the 2011 Graphic Short Story Prize. Despite a huge array of subjects there were a surprising number of stories that shared similar themes. One of these was travelling by bus which was an unusually popular subject and also anthropomorphised animals.  Cur by Michael Reilly united both these themes in a highly amusing way – we may never look at dogs the same way again. Animals in the zoo also seemed a common preoccupation and particularly impressive was Carolyn Alexander’s The New Look with its stunning imagery and also William Grill and Alex Du Cross’s evocative The WolfMatilda Tristram’s Present deserves a very special mention for being the one story that had every single judge crying with laughter at its clever and witty dialogue. They were also all equally moved by A. J. Poyiadgi’s evocation of the loneliness of the elderly in his story Teapot Therapy which was also coloured by real tea. But there could only be one winner and runner-up and Ding! By Olu Oke and Michael O’Kelly – another story set on a bus – impressed the judges with its fantastically wry observations and stylised line drawings which earned it second prize. But it was Isabel Greenberg’s highly original and moving Love In a Very Cold Climate, a story about two lovers in the South Pole who are held apart forever by magnetic repulsion, that finally won all the judges over.  



Isabel Greenberg is a London based illustrator and comic artist. Her work has appeared in publications by NoBrow Press and Solipsistic Pop. 

Love in a Very Cold Climate is a story from a graphic novel she is currently working on, called The Encyclopaedia of Early Earth.

Love in a Cold Climate1 Love in a Cold Climate2
Love in a Cold Climate3 Love in a Cold Climate4


DING! By Olu Oke (illustration) and Michael O’Kelly (words)

Born and bred in London, Olu Oke was the quintessential latch key kid.  Her artist training started on various walls in and around the home. These skills were further nurtured at Edinburgh College of Art where techniques such as printmaking, digital illustration and book binding, were added to her pen and ink repertoire

Michael O'Kelly is a writer, film maker and assistant director. Every award he has ever won has been for pieces set on the upper decks of buses, which is beginning to make him worry about his range.

Ding 1 Ding 2
Ding 3 Ding 4

To view 2010's winners please click here

To listen to 2010's winner, Stephen Collins in conversation with Comica Director, Paul Gravett, click here