Here’s the official bit.

Thursday, June 1 – Dork Tower was nominated for two prestigious Harvey Awards: Best Cartoonist (John Kovalic) and Special Award For Humor in Comics (John Kovalic).

That out of the way?

Good.

Now…here’s my honest reaction:

HOLY freaking CRUD! This is…odd. Stunning. Weird. I didn’t even know the Harveys were announced today, until some readers e-mailed me congratulations…

I’ve always felt a bit…distanced, shall we say…from the world of comics and comic books. A bit of an outsider. I’ve got a few great friends in the industry, but in general I’ve always been comfortable in my roll as someone I doubted most pros in the field know about or care about.

I can’t remember the last time I sent in anything of mine to the Eisner Awards (my bad – I’m not good with remembering deadlines), and though I’ve dearly wanted to, I’ve never made it to the likes of SPX or MOCCA.

Good grief, I think it’s been three years since I’ve been to San Diego Comicon.

My loss, I know. But my stage fright at cons is about as legendary as an underground, cult sort like myself can hope for. Which is a shame, since there are so many in the comic book world that I admire, and would love to meet.

On the other hand, staying home means I’ve been getting far more work done than I would, prepping for and fighting the fear of cons.

Anyway, it came as a total shock – a bolt from the blue – this sunny, quiet morning to find out that I’d been nominated for TWO Harvey awards. I’ve no idea who nominated me, but…wow. I’m amazed, and very, very humbled.

BEST CARTOONIST
Frank Cho / SHANNA, THE SHE-DEVIL / Marvel Comics
Chris Eliopoulos / FANTASTIC FOUR PRESENTS: FRANKLIN RICHARDS, SON OF A GENIUS / Marvel Comics
John Kovalic / DORK TOWER / Dork Storm Press
Seth / WIMBLEDON GREEN / Drawn and Quarterly
Chris Ware / ACME NOVELTY LIBRARY # 16 / ACME Novelty Library

SPECIAL AWARD FOR HUMOR IN COMICS
Kyle Baker / PLASTIC MAN / DC Comics
James Kolchalka / SUPER F*CKERS / Top Shelf and www.americanelf.com
John Kovalic / DORK TOWER / Dork Storm Press
Marc Sumerak / FANTASTIC FOUR PRESENTS: FRANKLIN RICHARDS, SON OF A GENIUS / Marvel Comics
Zeb Wells / NEW WARRIORS / Marvel Comics

(The bolding of my own name is merely because I still can’t quite believe this. Sort of like pinching myself, to make sure itr’s not a dream…)

Fortunately, I’m a realist: being up against Frank Cho (among others just as amazingly talented) for Best Cartoonist, and being up against the stunningly brilliant Kyle Baker for the Special Award for Humor in Comics means I’m not gonna waste any time working on acceptance speeches. And hey, look: Chris Ware’s there, too! And hey, so’s Chris Eliopoulos! And…

But this is such an honor to be named alongside those sorts of guys.

Double-plus good: my pals Alex Robinson’s up for Best Writer, and Keith Knight is up for Best Syndicated Comic. And PvP’s got a superbly deserved nod for Best Online Comic. Good stuff, all around.

Again, I’ve absolutely no delusions about winning either of my categories. But this news makes me so incredibly happy and humbled, you’ve no idea. Mentioned in the same category as Kyle Baker and Chris Ware? Yeah…I think my day’s been make. Grin. (And I’m a James Kolchalka goob, too!)

If you’d like to vote for your favorite comics folks in the Harveys, and are a comic book professional, you can download the forms HERE.

Here’s the full list:

2006 Harvey Award Nominees

Nominations for the Harvey Awards are selected exclusively by comics creators – those who write, draw, ink, letter, color, design, edit or are otherwise involved in a creative capacity in the comics field. They are the only industry awards both nominated by and selected by the full body of comic book professionals.

BEST WRITER
Brian Michael Bendis / NEW AVENGERS / Marvel
ComicsEdBrubaker / CAPTAIN AMERICA / Marvel Comics
Joshua Hale Fialkov / ELK’S RUN / Hoarse and Buggy Productions/Speakeasy Comics
Mike Mignola / BPRD / Dark Horse Comics
Alex Robinson / TRICKED / Top Shelf

BEST ARTIST
Frank Cho / SHANNA, THE SHE-DEVIL / Marvel Comics
David Finch / NEW AVENGERS / Marvel Comics
Eduardo Risso / 100 BULLETS / DC/Vertigo
Noel Tuazon / ELK’S RUN / Hoarse and Buggy Productions/Speakeasy Comics
J.H. Williams III / PROMETHEA / ABC/WildStorm/DC Comics

BEST CARTOONIST
Frank Cho / SHANNA, THE SHE-DEVIL / Marvel Comics
Chris Eliopoulos / FANTASTIC FOUR PRESENTS: FRANKLIN RICHARDS, SON OF A GENIUS / Marvel Comics
John Kovalic / DORK TOWER / Dork Storm Press
Seth / WIMBLEDON GREEN / Drawn and Quarterly
Chris Ware / ACME NOVELTY LIBRARY # 16 / ACME Novelty Library

BEST LETTERER
Chris Eliopoulos / FANTASTIC FOUR PRESENTS: FRANKLIN RICHARDS, SON OF A GENIUS / Marvel Comics
Jason Hanley / ELK’S RUN / Hoarse and Buggy Productions/Speakeasy Comics
Todd Klein / MARVEL 1602: NEW WORLD / Marvel Comics
Richard Starkings / SHANNA, THE SHE-DEVIL / Marvel Comics
Chris Ware / ACME NOVELTY LIBRARY # 16 / ACME Novelty Library

BEST INKER
Charles Burns / BLACK HOLE # 12 / Fantagraphics Books
Scott Hanna / ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN / Marvel Comics
Steve Leialoha / FABLES / DC/Vertigo
Paul Neary / ULTIMATES 2 / Marvel Comics
Tim Townsend / HOUSE OF M / Marvel Comics

BEST COLORIST
Frank D’Armata / NEW AVENGERS / Marvel Comics
Jason Keith / SHANNA, THE SHE-DEVIL / Marvel Comics
Laura Martin / ASTONISHING X-MEN / Marvel Comics
Patricia Mulvihill / 100 BULLETS / DC/Vertigo
Jennifer Rodgers / THE LONE AND LEVEL SANDS / Archaia Studios Press

BEST COVER ARTIST
Frank Cho / SHANNA, THE SHE-DEVIL / Marvel Comics
Steve Epting / CAPTAIN AMERICA / Marvel Comics
James Jean / FABLES / DC/Vertigo
Mike Mignola / HELLBOY: THE ISLAND / Dark Horse
Datsun Tran / ELK’S RUN / Hoarse and Buggy Productions/Speakeasy Comics

BEST NEW TALENT
Joshua Hale Fialkov / ELK’S RUN / Hoarse and Buggy Productions/Speakeasy Comics
David Hine / DAREDEVIL: REDEMPTION / Marvel Comics
R. Kikuo Johnson / NIGHT FISHER / Fantagraphics Books
A. David Lewis / THE LONE AND LEVEL SANDS / Caption Box/Archaia Studios Press
Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa / MARVEL KNIGHTS FOUR / Marvel Comics

BEST NEW SERIES
BAOBAB / Fantagraphics Books
DRAMACON / Tokyopop
MARVEL ADVENTURES: FANTASTIC FOUR / Marvel Comics
THE SURROGATES / Top Shelf
YOUNG AVENGERS / Marvel Comics
X-FACTOR / Marvel Comics

BEST CONTINUING OR LIMITED SERIES
ACME NOVELTY LIBRARY / ACME Novelty Library
CAPTAIN AMERICA / Marvel Comics
ELK’S RUN / Hoarse and Buggy Productions/Speakeasy Comics
RUNAWAYS / Marvel Comics
Y: THE LAST MAN / DC/Vertigo

BEST SYNDICATED STRIP OR PANEL
THE BOONDOCKS / Aaron McGruder – Universal Press Syndicate
THE K CHRONICLES / Keith Knight – Self-syndicated
MAAKIES / Tony Millionaire- Self-syndicated
MUTTS / Patrick McDonnell – King Features Syndicate
THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN / Stan Lee and Larry Leiber – King Features Syndicate

BEST ANTHOLOGY
FLIGHT, VOL. 2 / Image Comics
MARVEL HOLIDAY SPECIAL 2005 / Marvel Comics
MARVEL MONSTERS: WHERE MONSTERS DWELL / Marvel Comics
MOME / Fantagraphics Books
PROJECT SUPERIOR / AdHouse
SOLO / DC Comics

BEST GRAPHIC ALBUM – ORIGINAL
COMBAT ZONE / Marvel Comics
THE LONE AND LEVEL SANDS / Caption Box
NIGHT FISHER / Fantagraphics Books
TRICKED / Top Shelf
WIMBLEDON GREEN / Drawn and Quarterly

BEST GRAPHIC ALBUM – PREVIOUSLY PUBLISHED
BLACK HOLE / Pantheon Books
DAISY KUTTER / Viper Comics
LATE BLOOMER / Fantagraphics Books
RUNAWAYS, VOLUME 1 HARDCOVER / Marvel Comics
STOKER’S DRACULA / Marvel Comics

BEST SINGLE ISSUE OR STORY
ACME NOVELTY LIBRARY # 16 / ACME Novelty Library
CAPTAIN AMERICA # 7 / Marvel Comics
ELK’S RUN # 3 / Hoarse and Buggy Productions/Speakeasy Comics
HOUSE OF M # 8 / Marvel Comics
LOVE AND ROCKETS, VOLUME 2, # 15 / Fantagraphics Books

BEST DOMESTIC REPRINT PROJECT
FANTASTIC FOUR OMNIBUS / Marvel Comics
MARVEL MASTERWORKS: GOLDEN AGE ALL-WINNERS, VOLUME 1 / Marvel Comics
LITTLE NEMO IN SLUMBERLAND: SO MANY SPLENDID SUNDAYS / Sunday Press Books
COMPLETE PEANUTS / Fantagraphics Books
WALT AND SKEEZIX / Drawn and Quarterly

BEST AMERICAN EDITION OF FOREIGN MATERIAL
BAOBAB # 1 / Fantagraphics Books
BLAME! / Tokyopop
BUDDHA / Vertical Books
EPILEPTIC / Pantheon Books
PUSH MAN AND OTHER STORIES / Drawn and Quarterly

BEST ONLINE COMICS WORK
ACHEWOOD / Chris Onstad / www.achewood.com
AMERICAN ELF / James Kochalka / www.americanelf.com
PENNY ARCADE / Jerry Holkins and Mike Krahulik / www.penny-arcade.com
PERRY BIBLE FELLOWSHIP / Nicholas Gurewitch / www.thepbf.com
PVP / Scott Kurtz / www.pvponline.com

SPECIAL AWARD FOR HUMOR IN COMICS
Kyle Baker / PLASTIC MAN / DC Comics
James Kolchalka / SUPER F*CKERS / Top Shelf and www.americanelf.com
John Kovalic / DORK TOWER / Dork Storm Press
Marc Sumerak / FANTASTIC FOUR PRESENTS: FRANKLIN RICHARDS, SON OF A GENIUS / Marvel Comics
Zeb Wells / NEW WARRIORS / Marvel Comics

SPECIAL AWARD FOR EXCELLENCE IN PRESENTATION
WATCHMEN: THE ABSOLUTE EDITION / DC Comics
ACME NOVELTY LIBRARY / Pantheon Books
EARTH X HARDCOVER / Marvel Comics
FANTASTIC FOUR OMNIBUS / Marvel Comics
LITTLE NEMO IN SLUMBERLAND: SO MANY SPLENDID SUNDAYS / Sunday Press Books

BEST BIOGRAPHICAL, HISTORICAL OR JOURNALISTIC PRESENTATION
ALTER EGO / TwoMorrows
COMIC BOOK ARTIST / Top Shelf
COMICS JOURNAL / Fantagraphics Books
MARVEL SPOTLIGHT / Marvel Comics
WIZARD / Wizard Entertainment

John

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