Doot Doot Garden: The Blog of Craig Thompson
Doot Doot Garden: The blog of graphic novelist Craig Thompson
nutritionial healing July 29th, 2009

This recent email from my friend Allison was too bizarre and well-worded not to share with the rest of you.
“Today I had a strange experience in a creepy used bookstore. I was walking past the sci-fi/fantasy section,
and from the piles of unsorted books on the floor, a familiar blue color caught my eye.

I jumped for joy at the thought of buying a discounted copy of Blankets, even though this copy was oddly shelved
with fantasy novels and tales of Wiccan overlords. I thought, “what a strange place to put …”
But when I opened the cover, I found the entire book printed upside down and backwards …

… with most of the panels shoved up into the margins, or buried in the gutter.
Even with this defect, the bookseller wanted $18 because it was the only graphic novel he had in the store.

I thought maybe it was a sign to support my current theory that the stars have turned upside down and backwards,
hence the madness of our modern world and the obvious fact that humans are bored and taking it out on one another.

I left the book in the store, but not before I re-shelved it next to Nutritional Healing.
Just as I am doing with the universe, I will return in a week to see if it has righted itself.”

28 Responses to “nutritionial healing”

  1. Amber Says:

    Ha! That’s awesome. I’d totally dig having a messed up copy of Blankets. I’d probably colour panels in. Just because I could.

  2. Poppy Says:

    Hilarious! I used to work in a large book store and it was always fun to find what had been mishelved (purposefully, or not!) where.

  3. Albert Says:

    I know I shelve *my* copy of Blankets next to books about Dragon Lords. Also, when I read “Wiccan overlords” the first time, I thought it said “Wisconsin overlords.”

  4. mollycules Says:

    how wonderfully odd!

  5. jess smart smiley Says:


  6. cory Says:

    hhahaahahaha that is kind of awesome.

  7. John Says:

    Amazing. 😀

  8. afdumin Says:

    Right up above Blankets there’s a shelved copy of 300, so it sems like it’s in the general area one might find it.

  9. stiart Says:

    For an old-school comic book, such a printing error would make it worth more, yes?

  10. Jeff Says:

    Printed upside-down and backwards… and only $18… how could one pass it by?

  11. Rachael Says:

    Whoa. Freaky cool. I totally would have bought it and I already have a copy of Blankets. :-)

  12. Wayne Beamer Says:

    Hey Allison and Craig,

    I remember our Top Shelf days of selling your Blankets by the buckets all over the country fondly. I own a hardcover edition of Blankets printed similarly (inside pages starting behind an upside down back cover). In fact, it may have been the last HC copy we had at SD, and a guy brought it to me asking for a discount.

    No discounts. Then and there, that book was MINE, ALL MINE! And, had I encountered that reversed softcover edition of Blankets, I’d have bought it too, just so my HC would have some company…

    Craig: You’ve gotta come down to Texas when it gets cooler for a visit. I’ve been told the Austin metro area is like Portland, with better weather…

    Yer pal,


  13. bea Says:

    Craig… I name-dropped you in a comic… sorry the surrounding content is aimed at the 1980’s preteen demographic:

  14. rowan Says:

    amber, i coloured in bits of my blankets. :)

  15. rowan Says:

    that last sentence sounds so mystic like a snow angel x

  16. ro Says:

    thanks for sharing the story. i wanted to share this with you – :) enjoy x

  17. rachel Says:

    just showed my mum, and all she said was ‘yes. well, a week is a good amount of time’ ..

  18. alf Says:

    “Wisconsin overlords” = funny. Somebody draw this, please.

  19. Hana O. Says:

    such a great story! I imagined it in comics form upon my second time reading it which made it even funnier

  20. Manda Says:

    Whoa! Is this a used bookstore in Burbank?? Looks very similar.

  21. Nathan Says:

    I saw a customer today at UCLA where I work who looked exactly like you. He even had what looked like a pocket sized spiral sketchbook with him but I didn’t dare ask him if he was THE Craig Thompson. If it was you, sorry for the creepy vibes and my not so subtle attempts to catch a glimpse at the name on your driver’s license.

  22. Frank Hiromi Says:

    Hello Craig! I don’t know if it’s the right place to do this… well, I’d like to say that I loved Blankets. I’m brazilian, so I bought and read the Portuguese edition a few days ago. The story makes me think about me and my brother, and a lot of other thing… It’s a really beautiful comic, and I hope they translate more of your graphic novels.

  23. Annie Says:

    this bookstore looks eerily familiar. i’m guessing the campus smith family in eugene.

  24. Katana Barnett Says:

    I just finished reading Blankets, forty-five minutes ago on the bus. Thank god I had it with me, it was a nightmare in transit.

    Oh my goodness. It was so amazing to read about someone else’s Christian childhood, where you can’t sing but you can draw, where you’re supposed to fit in with God, but don’t, and the guilt buried under heaven. Lovely. I almost cried. On the bus.

    I am going to go draw now….

  25. jenny Says:

    Blankets is so beautifully written that it made me cry. I was raised bilingually – English and Chinese, so I could read a little when I saw the Chinese version of Blankets on your blog. I like the literal translation of the book title, vs. something altered for promotional reasons, as movie titles often are when distributed in foreign countries.

  26. Reed Bond Says:

    So I mustered the courage to write a comment. ^____^

    Ah, that blue cover. It always stands out in every bookstore I go into. Blankets was a tremendous inspiration to me when I first read it, and is still that on every reread.

    I was told that as part of my portfolio class (I’m an illustration student at the Ringling College of Art and Design) that I should contact an artist I admired. I used that assignment as the impetuous for this timid little comment.

    I just wanted to add my voice to the other fanboys and just say, “thank you for writing blankets. I’m so very glad you did, even if some of them were printed upside down.” :)

  27. Jasjyot Singh Hans Says:

    Haha! Funny how these bookstores function! The book is priceless. And its price has doubled up suddenly, which is kind of scary:/

  28. Jeff Says:

    Actually, when I bought a copy of Ghost World from Amazon, the book had the SAME EXACT PROBLEM! Even the color bars were visible! For a moment I thought “Oh, well, I don’t know much about Clowes. Maybe this is intentional?” I did eventually get to exchange it for a better copy.

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