Rich Koslowski: Writer, Artist, Genius
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Viva La France!

Man it feels good! I have waited over a year and a half to see my graphic novel, The King––or should I say "LE KING"––printed right! As many of you know, my book, The King was released in the summer of 2005 and there were some errors made in that printing. Now, don't get me wrong...the book turned out okay,and the readers still enjoyed it, but overall it was a disappointment as I put so much effort into the book and then it comes back with some pretty serious printing errors. Regardless of the printing errors, though, there were a couple of very nice french fellows who picked up a copy of The King out at Comic-Con and expressed how much they liked the book to me. They then informed me that they were publishers and would like to do a french edition. I was extremely excited. I thanked them for their complimentary words but then pointed out that there were some printing deficencies with the Top Shelf edition they held in their hands. I remember vividly the one gentleman closing his eyes and softly shaking his head saying, "No worries...we will print it right".

One and a half years later and a package arrives at my door. When i opened the box and pulled out this magnificent, hardcover book that said "Le King" on the cover I could hardly believe my eyes! It was huge...and a friggin' hardcover! Then I paged through it. The printing was flawless. The colors popped, the blacks were BLACK! The print job on this version was beautiful...the way the book was supposed to look like when it came out here in 2005. I got more than a bit verklempt! To see my work look so nice...I'm not ashamed to admit that I got choked up. And not only was the quality sweet but they went and made the book BIGGER! It's bigger, thicker and really stands out! A very, very proud moment for me as an artist.

So please accept my most heartfelt thanks everyone at Treize Etrange (the french pubs)! And to all my fans, please check out the french version if you get a chance (i'll be lugging copies around to all the shows). At the very least to see the difference. Check out the french publishers website at: http://13etrange.com

In other news... We have FINALLY finished cutting, bagging, labeling, boxing, sweating, crying, etc. the "Jim's Jerky" comic/jerky combos and will be shipping the 6000 copies out tomorrow to Diamond!!! They will then, in turn, be shiping them worldwide to all the comic shops and into the salivating gullets of comics geekdom! Thank Odin that task is finally done! Three weeks of Jerky is enough. Seriously.

In other, other news... I am a huge music fan. Have been since i rollerskated around the furnace as a 5 year old boy listening to my 45s of Elton John's Crocodile Rock and KC and the Sunshine Band! Hey, the basement "roller rink" seemed HUGE to a 5 year old. Anyways, I'd like to "turn you on" to a group that has been grossly overlooked since its debut back in the early 90s. The band Jellyfish. A little Queen, The Beatles, Beach Boys combined with a heavy dose of pure magic. You really cannot properly describe their music as it is totally unique. Their harmonies are beautiful and flawless, they rock, the lyrics are so inventive and clever they make me, as a writer, jealous and awe-struck, and their complete originality was what made them a sensation for a brief time and also, regrettably led to their demise in a totally unoriginal 90s radio market (this was well before satellite radio was available). They only put out two albums before disbanding due to artistic differences and, I have to believe, a record company that simply did not know how to properly market their extraordinary music. These two albums however, Bellybutton and Spilt Milk, are two of the best albums I've ever heard if not The Best! And this is coming from the biggest Queen fan on the planet, man!

So, when I heard that there was a very limited, 4 disc box set of their music that came out a couple years back I was elated! There was previously unreleased tunes, concert recordings, demos, interviews!...elation!

Then I tried to find a copy. Elation gone. No record stores had one and it was then that I learned it was a very limited release and quickly sold out to the small, but very devoted, base of fans. So I went on ebay, of course. For the past 2 years I have been outbid on that box set (called "Fan Club" btw) and have seen it go for as high as $405! Out of my price range, unfortunately. But I knew one day my ship would come in if I excercised enough patience. Alas, my ship docked last week and I couldn't be any happier. And the docking fee was $199.00. Do I like what I paid for? Was it too much? Well, I've already listened to it about 12 times. It makes me happier than I can describe when I listen to it and sadder than I can express for the "what could have been" factor. Unbelievably sad that these geniuses couldn't make it work. But, on the other hand, happy that they were able to put out 2 perfect albums. Perfect. And now this box set of previously unreleased material. A little more magic after all these years. A merry Christmas for me, indeed, this year thanks to a band that broke up over a decade ago.

Now that's a Christmas miracle. If you need one I highly recommend seeking out some Jellyfish.

Word! r

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