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Paul Hair is a national security expert and an author. He writes under his own name and as a ghostwriter. Connect with him at http://www.liberateliberty.com/. Contact him at paul@liberateliberty.com.

Friday, May 31, 2013

Bosch Fawstin, The Infidel, and Pigman: Changing Pop Culture

Pigman, © Bosch Fawstin.
** UPDATE: 5/31/2013 **: In case you are having trouble viewing The Daily Show segment, here is a direct link to it: http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/tue-march-1-2011/batman-s-muslim-sidekick **

Bosch Fawstin is the creator of Pigman and the comic book, The Infidel. I started exchanging emails with him a few years back. I have even commissioned some artwork from him (including for my rough draft, work-in-progress story, Mortal Gods).

Bosch is not a leftist. As one might expect, this has made it difficult for him to enter an overwhelmingly leftist pop culture.

But he has made inroads and he has been willing to enter hostile territory. The Daily Show had him as a guest. Watch the video of his appearance and then read his explanation of why he agreed to be on the show. And be sure to pay attention to some of the underhandedness he encountered.

Bosch has succeeded in providing a new voice in pop culture. But I wanted to know how big his impact has been; how his work has been received by those on the right.

I recently emailed him about The Infidel and his other work, and his efforts to gain a wider audience.

“It’s been a hell of a struggle to get any kind of traction with The Infidel/Pigman out in the market,” Bosch said. “On sales, let me just say that if there were more, the next chapter would have been out by now, maybe even all six/maybe seven chapters. But I will say that reader response has been great.”

Pigman, © Bosch Fawstin.

Bosch’s work also regularly appears at David Horowitz’s FrontPage Magazine and he talked about that collaboration. (Note: I have contributed work to FrontPage Magazine.)

Vlad Nolan of Mortal Gods.
Art by Bosch Fawstin. © Paul Hair.
“David Horowitz has been a great supporter, even offered to publish it [The Infidel], and that might happen when it’s done,” Bosch said. “But my plans for that might be asking too much of others, as I always saw The Infidel in the end as a 120+ page hardcover graphic novel wrapped in pigskin leather.

“I may have to do that all myself in a limited run down the line; we’ll see. In the meantime, David has allowed me my own ‘Cartoon Corner’ at FrontPage Magazine.”

Ideology is undoubtedly a large part of why Bosch and his work haven’t gained a wider audience in pop culture. But there also is a fear factor that likely is limiting his reach. At the same time, technology has made it possible for him to overcome some of these boundaries and obstacles, allowing him to publish The Infidel on his own.

“After working on The Infidel for a number of years, trying to get the interest of agents, editors, and publishers, and failing to get the backing of any, for numerous stated reasons (at least from those who seemed to like the work, with Muslim reprisal being the reason cited often) . . . I decided to sell a pdf version of The Infidel #1 directly from me,” Bosch said.

“I would say that in spite of everything, my desire to get this story out into the world is the only reason two chapters are available,” he continued. “And even after I was able to reconnect with a well-regarded agent in comics (who represented my first graphic novel) after my appearance on The Daily Show, his attempt to find a publishing home for it didn’t happen.

“But I will say that THE biggest digital comic book reading app in the world, carrying DC and Marvel Comics, recently invited independent cartoonists to submit their work, and they ended up accepting both chapters, which I’m very happy about (while surprised they did, considering the fear surrounding it).

“I have now positioned the series pretty well to begin to attract an audience. With a high profile project I’ve been tapped to work on, The Infidel/Pigman might finally have a chance to reach an audience that I know is out there, but who has yet to learn that a comic book taking on jihad even exists. We’ll see how it goes from here.”

Parts 1 and 2 of The Infidel are available now in eBook format.

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