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Library Research Guides

Comic Books and Graphic Novels

Provides useful information about comic books and graphic novels as topics of academic research at the University of Michigan.

Minicomics in the AAEL Library

So what are minicomics?

For this collection, we define minicomics as any hand-made and independently-published comics. Minicomics, like zines, are one of the original democratic publishing formats, allowing creators to easily and inexpensively make, reproduce, and distribute their work. They differ from zines in that their content is primarily graphic narrative and cartooning, rather than writing.

Don't let the name fool you, though- minicomics come in all sizes and formats, from postage stamp-sized accordion-folded booklets to miniature scrolls to full newspapers. Materials can also vary from simple photocopied pages to booklets with silkscreened covers, sometimes housed in unusual boxes or containers.

 

Cody Pickrodt: Men With Whom I Share the Same Height       Jerzy Drodzd- Rocketosaurus            

Finding Minicomics in the Collection

To see what minicomics we have in the collection, search for "AAEL : Mini-comics" (with spaces and quotes) in the library's catalog at https://search.lib.umich.edu/catalog.

You can sort the list of minis by date of publication, the date they were added to the catalog, or the author's last name. You can also use the facets on the left-hand side of the page to further group or sort by subject area ("Dinosaurs", "Zombies", "Dreams").

Because of their size, delicacy, and rarity, most of our minicomics are held in storage at the AAEL. If you'd like to view these minis, simply make an appointment via email with one of our librarians: Dave Carter, Jaime Vander Broek or Rebecca Price.

You can also click here to view a listing of the most recently added minis.

Making Minicomics

Do you want to make your own minicomic? Here are some resources to help you get started!

Minicomics and Zine Reference Works

Serial Minicomic Publications

Where to buy minicomics

Minicomics are often bought directly from the artist, but some comic shops, book stores, and online distros also sell and distribute minis.

 

Minicomic-Friendly Conventions

Some comic/cartooning expositions and conventions specifically aim to support small-press and independent artists and cartoonists. These are only a handful, but among the larger and more established of the list.