Art Comics and Graphic Novels

H-alt Comics Magazine: A Portuguese Case Study in Speculative Fiction

This speculative fiction anthological prozine, published since 2015, has been doing steady work in promoting national and international speculative fiction authors and their art. The editor Sérgio Santos, opted for the self-publishing strategy to promote and sell the zines online and in several festivals.
The first number of H-Alt can be found at https://issuu.com/h-alt/docs/h-alt-n01-web—

This speculative fiction anthological prozine, published since 2015, has been doing steady work in promoting national and international speculative fiction authors and their art. The editor Sérgio Santos, opted for the self-publishing strategy to promote and sell the zines online and in several festivals. On the official website [01], digital versions of the zines are available, free of charge, for those who want to access and read the stories. If you are interested in any issue, a printed version of the zines is available for purchase at the website and at the Editorial Divergência [“Divergence Editorial”] website as well [02]. Both the official website and Facebook page [03] are part of the editor’s networking strategy. The first has several other items such as a podcast, articles, interviews, pertinent information, links to featured webcomics; the second is used to promote and divulge information about comics and authors.

The H-alt has published a total of thirteen fanzines. In 2015, the first zine was published with 179 pages. In 2016, three issues were published with 197, 188, and 189 pages, respectively. On that same year, Sérgio Santos created an awards event – Prémio Quadradinhos Fantásticos [“Fantastic Comics Prize”] – where prizes in different categories were given to the artists that published their work in the anthology prozine. A second edition was organized the following year. This year, 2020, a third event is already scheduled.

In 2017, Santos started a comics podcast where he interviews Portuguese and Brazilian authors. On that year he published two fanzines: the fifth issue of the H-alt anthology, with 171 pages, and a special edition with students from the Faculdade das Belas Artes de Lisboa [“Lisbon Fine Arts School”], with 81 pages.

Cover of the third volume of H-Alt (https://issuu.com/h-alt/docs/h-alt-n03-issuu)

In 2018, two H-alt fanzines were published: the sixth and seventh issues with 167, and 157 pages, correspondingly. Two special issues were published: the special edition number one (166 pages) and number two (71 pages), both compiling a “best of”, chosen from previous issues. A new editorial project was created this year, the Clube H-alt [“H-alt Club”]. The first issue of this new collection was named Primeiro Degrau [“First Step”] and it was an anthology of Sérgio Santo’s comics (58 pages). Still in 2018, the podcast had tremendous growth and 47 interviews were made available online.

In 2019, H-alt joined the Associação Tentáculo [“Tentacle Association”], an association [04] that conglomerates other projects such as a comics magazine entitled Zona [“Zone”], a publishing house named Imaginauta [05], and an international comics contest: Avenida Marginal [“Marginal Avenue”] [06]. In 2019, the H-alt #8 (158 pages) and the H-alt #9 (164 pages) were published and launched at the most important comics festivals in Portugal, one in the city of Beja, the other in Amadora. For the podcast, a total of 20 interviews were made this year.

In 2020, Sérgio Santos will be publishing issues number 10 and 11, presenting the zines at the most renowned comics festivals in Portugal. A second book, under the H-alt Club umbrella, will also be published. The podcast interviews are now being adapted to video and published on a YouTube channel [07], a better way to know the work of the artists.

The nine main issues of the H-alt anthology prozine have 192 stories, drawn, colored, and lettered by around 170 authors, from several countries: Australia, Argentina, Brazil, Canada, England, France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Portugal, and the U.S.A. This is the only Portuguese publication exclusively dedicated to the speculative fiction genre, being a suitable platform both for newcomers and renowned authors. For those who want to participate send your work to this e-mail address: zine-h-alt@gmail.com.

References:

[01] https://h-alt.weebly.com/revista.html

[02] https://divergencia.pt

[03] http://www.facebook.com/h.alt.bd

[04] https://atentaculo.weebly.com

[05] https://imaginauta.net

[06] http://concursobdavenidamarginal.blogspot.com

[07] http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCvoXVor6cFZcEW5wVwCEMDg

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