Taiwan's top comic prize given to 'Crouching Lion in a Bookstore' – Focus Taiwan News Channel

Taipei, Oct. 28 (CNA) The grand prize in Taiwan’s 12th Golden Comic Awards was awarded to cartoonist Xiaodao’s (小島) work “Crouching Lion in a Bookstore” (獅子藏匿的書屋) at a ceremony in Taipei on Thursday.
The comic book, based on the abstract strategy board game Weiqi, commonly known as Go, was selected out of six comics that won the Comic of the Year award. It showed diverse and multiple styles, according to the Ministry of Culture (MOC), which gives out the awards.
The story is about a former Weiqi champion and manager of a book rental shop who meets a mysterious young man holding a “wish coupon.” The teenager turns out to be a 16-year-old talented Weiqi player. The pair get to know each other in the book rental shop and later encounter a catastrophe they must face together.
In her acceptance speech, Xiaodao said an author has the responsibility to move people with emotions and at the same time encourage other content makers.
“I hope everyone will support Taiwanese comics,” Xiaodao said, urging people to buy books created by Taiwan’s cartoonist, even if they don’t have time to read them right away.
One of the six Comic of the Year winners is a lesbian-themed comic by Yang Shuang-tzu (楊双子).
The Best New Talent award went to “Son of Formosa” (來自清水的孩子) authors Yu Pei-yun (游珮芸) and Chou Chien-hsin (周見信) for their styles and selection of materials, according to the MOC.
Chou, who competed for the awards for the first time, said that the set of comics allowed him to step out of the comfort zone of picture book creation. He said he hoped Taiwanese comics will continue to improve.
The Best Editor award was won by Lin Yi-chun (林怡君) of Locus Publishing Company.
The award highlights how editors explore the market with their own unique vision, leading creators to clarify the core of their work from the beginning of the project to the final completion, according to the MOC.
Meanwhile, comic artist Ren Zheng-hua (任正華) won the Special Contribution Award. She came into prominence in the 1980s and her representative works include “Sea of Devil” (修羅海), “Ren Rou Bao Zi” (人肉包子), “Drawn to Life” (漫漫畫人間), and “Drawn to Life 2.”
Her works are not only entertaining, they are also full of insight into humanity, serving as a model for young generations to learn from, according to the MOC.
The award was accepted on her behalf by Locus Publishing Company Chairman Hao Ming-yi (郝明義).
A total of 226 entries were received for this year’s awards, with 25 making the shortlist, according to the MOC. It cited the jury as stating that the finalists for this year’s awards broke old stereotypes by creating imaginative, creative and eye-catching works.
Taiwan’s comic books used to be a main form of entertainment for people here, but local comics authors/artists were restricted from creating content of their choice during Japanese colonial times and the early years of Kuomintang rule. Later, with the prevalence of television and movies as well as the popularity of Japanese comics, the number of Taiwanese cartoonists dwindled and the local industry nearly faded away.
It was saved with the perseverance of the older generation of Taiwanese cartoonists, who insisted on maintaining the martial arts and other local styles and content. In recent years, a young generation of Taiwanese artists have developed their own flair.
(By Wang Pao-er and William Yen)