It’s official: San Diego-based IDW Publishing is establishing a satellite office in Portland, Ore. — a burgeoning hub of the comic-book industry. The new set-up will serve as a “beachhead for [IDW’s] new phase of development” according to the official announcement, and will be headed by Vice President of Marketing, Dirk Wood.
Wood will serve as Creative Director of Woodworks — a new IDW imprint to be run out of the Portland office. Woodworks’ line of new books will be anchored by a high-end, curated magazine highlighting the most talented and diverse creators in the industry. While the primary focus will be comics, there will be general entertainment and culture features in the mix. More details on the Woodworks line will be announced soon.
“This was born from a conversation that Ted Adams and I had,” said Wood, “We were talking about our similar taste in books, and some of the projects we’d like to see happen. This led to talk about the incredible comics scene that’s taking off in Portland, and how we should be a part of it. Suddenly, we realized that these two thoughts fit each other perfectly. To be able to start this new chapter of the company I love, and expand our reach into the hometown that I love, is an incredible opportunity. I can’t wait to get started.”
Wood will continue to work with IDW in an advisory role relating to trade shows and marketing, particularly the Direct Comic Market.
“Dirk and I are both Oregonians — we even went to the same university in Southern Oregon — and this new line will represent the independent streak that’s part of the DNA of everyone born there,” added Ted Adams, IDW Publisher and CEO. “That independence will include not just the books and magazines we make but also in the way we get them into the hands of readers. As everyone who has met him knows, Dirk is a one-of-a-kind talent and I can’t wait to get started on this new venture with him.”
IDW Publishing’s comics and graphic novels catalog includes top entertainment brands including Transformers, My Little Pony, Star Trek, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Ghostbusters, and classic Disney characters — built around its creator-owned core titles like 30 Days of Night, Locke & Key, Wormwood, Ragnarök, V-Wars, and Archangel by bestselling sci-fi author William Gibson.
In addition to IDW/Woodworks, Portland is home to Dark Horse Comics, America’s largest independent comics publisher; OniPress (Scott Pilgrim); Top Shelf Productions (Lost Girls), and a bustling small press community. Bay Area publisher Image Comics (The Walking Dead) announced in September that it is relocating to Portland by early next year. Comics industry events in town include Rose City Comic-Con, Wizard World Portland, Small Press Expo and the Portland Zine Symposium.