What is aboriginal SF?

‘Ab origine’ is a pre-Roman term meaning ‘original inhabitants.’ It means, essentially, someone who’s been in a place since the earliest time. It generally refers to people who lived close to the earth, or whose ancestors did. People travel, people settle; people look at each other and embrace or else fight. People see kin; people see enemies. Push and shove over territory may not be as old as the hills, but it is as old as King Of The Mountain. Aboriginal science fiction deals with alien societies. FINDER’s aliens are all one family, but their coming to understand that isn’t going to come easily.

37 Responses

  1. Katie L. Droscha says:

    A huge fan of Finder

  2. Mahlookma says:

    Welcome back. We’ve missed you.

  3. reptangle says:

    I almost never know what you are talking about, but I enjoy it immensely… and I hope there is spell check on here… ah , good.
    (this is how I write on a Monday evening… after a beer to take the edge off) I am EXTATIC …oops …ECSTATIC that there is a forum or comment-type thing here at last!! I want to meet the other scientists with anteaters on their corsets -or whatever you said- I mean, other Finder fans! We all have something in common! The need to SMELL the characters we love, ( Bram, for example) from the drawings! And get whiplash from the unpredictable story line! Yay!!

  4. Katie L. Droscha says:

    WOW! I am so glad to see this up an running! I checked in last week, and it has come a frickin’ long way. So far, the new website is very nice, not that the old one wasn’t. Anyways, I am happy as a clam that I can get my fix of Finder… it’s just one of those little things that make the hellish work week more worthwhile. A big, “HUZZAH!”, for the new website and keep up the great work!

  5. Oneiros says:

    Been a Finder fan for several years now. Since a comic shop guy introduced me to Finder at about issue eleven or twelve. He had the first ten issues available for me to check out. I was hooked. I love Carla’s hard hitting words and drawings and characters. There is wisdom and humor there. Her work is from her soul, through the workings of a sharp mind and keen hand. This is her Gan Garidan, and her neverending story told to Marcie by Jaeger. This is her Elsewhere, but the “monster” roams free and is the main character, shooting out wisdom, beating up guys, macking on and bedding women, figuring out his destiny and trying to straighten out the “fuckery” that is Anvard. Jaeger is to me a Christ figure, being a wise Finder that does what needs to be done to fix things, and being the scapegoat that being a Sin-eater calls for. And whoever then follows in his footsteps to become a Finder, consciously or not, is likewise Christed. The Finder in me beholds the Finder in Carla Speed McNeil. Blessed be.

    - Chris

  6. Claude Parish says:

    Snail space
    Snail’s pace
    Snails. Pace’.
    Speed by name. Not by nature!
    Keep mopping.
    Big dance this weekend in B’more!

  7. Michael Vain says:

    Glad to see you’re still kickin’ it out. :-) Best wishes to you and yours! Hope you have much success now and in the future.

  8. [...] Dylan Meconis recommends Carla Speed McNeil [...]

  9. richard sheinaus says:

    congratulations, Carla…the Dark Horse news is just great and I have no idea why it took so long for you to get an offer from one of the big publishers.
    Very happy for you (and me as a long-time admirer of your work.)

  10. Carla!

    I just saw that you are going to be at Stumptown this coming weekend… about three hours too far south… :( I doubt that my parenthood (twice over now) will permit me to make it down…

    While I don’t blame you at all for moving Finder to a TPB-only publication schedule (I can hardly keep up with all the good graphic novels coming out so have pretty much stopped buying single issues), I do seriously miss getting the periodic 20-some pages from you, and am not disciplined enough or enough of a web reader to follow the online stuff. But, I am so happy to click onto your site from time to time and see that Finder continues. Can’t wait for the next TPB, and if you end up making a side trip to Seattle, give me a shout.

    Superfan always,
    Brad Chamberlain

  11. Congrats on the Dark Horse deal! I’ll be pre-ordering the giant omnibus, looking forward to reading it all in one sitting. ;)

  12. Congratulations! So we’ve been reading the second of your “Ghost Quartet” graphic novels. Okay. But a question: when (if at all) do you quit serving us up these free pages we’re so grateful for? Do we get to finish reading Torch before a Feb 2012 trade paperback release?

  13. David Bird says:

    Heard about the move to Dark Horse. Congratulations! I’ll be ordering the giant omnibus editions as soon as they can be ordered.

  14. Simone says:

    I’m not sure if this is the most appropriate place to ask this, but since can’t figure out where else…

    I was wondering if you are selling any of the original art from Wasteland #7?

  15. David E Martin says:

    While I was prepping a mass of my comics to sell, I ran across my copy of MYSTERY DATE #1. That one I saved ! Still need to find #2….. A fine issue, a good story, and a very attractive cover. Thanks for creating it !

  16. matthew brandi says:

    Perhaps cheeky to mention it here, but it’s probably of interest to the finder crowd: Nina Paley has made an animation for the Electronic Frontier Foundation:


  17. Bizzy says:

    Lookin forward to seein u in artist’s alley at San Diego this wkend SPEED!

  18. andrewbayly says:

    Great. I really love Finder, I fell in love with Marcie and carried that book around with me for weeks at a time. Obsession? Total!

  19. Brian Lee Moore says:

    I enjoyed meeting you at C2E2 in Chicago when I was on leave from Iraq. I’m back in the States now. Really looking forward to Voice. I found a great frame for that page of art I bought from you. Hope you are doing well.

  20. Leona says:

    This is a stupid question, but can anyone tell me how to get to the old stories? I just found this site, and read it all, but people keep commenting referencing things I don’t understand. Am I just completely confused, or is there a lot more story on which I am totally missing out?

  21. Oneiros says:

    Leona, yes, there’s a lot more story. You can purchase the first volume, called “Sin-Eater”, by clicking that picture that says “Buy Me Now!” on the top right part of this page.

  22. Danny Grigg says:


    Will Finder Voice only be published in Softback or will there be a Hardback edition as well?

  23. Mikhail says:

    It was great meeting you at the con (NYC) and seeing your fantastic art in person. Also I had a ball talking art techniques, I wish I would have flirted a little more though :-(
    I’ll do better next time.

  24. Will Sargent says:

    Bought a copy from Comix Experience a week ago. Was bouncy the rest of the day.

  25. Carla, I wanted to tell you how wonderful Voice is, and then I saw the io9 article. So FIRST I get to say how wonderful Voice is: it’s an extraordinary synthesis of the mundane — a girl’s growing up, gets shit for not fitting a (probably imaginary) ideal, finds her own way — and the weirdness of Anvard and the Ascians.

    And THEN I get to say, Congratulations!

  26. Rereading Voice again… noticed the mugger’s outfit. Is he _wearing_ the damned ring next time we (if indeed we) see him? The first thing he asks Rachel later would then be about the mugging and perhaps even inspired by an interview with Lynne. Why is he still breathing with Lynne after him? Did he just toss the book near the crime scene and has Lynne not yet found him? Is he _working_ for Lynne? Lynne has had tough love for Marcie, but … And why were Coward’s people in the elevator if he wasn’t working for Coward? Is he working for Jaeger? And is Snatch a finder or is the arrow tattoo on his arm just Jaeger signing his work?

    Just wondering if yer planning on making these secrets or permanent mysteries? And how much of the whole keeping-the-reader-as-clueless-as-poor-pawn-Rachel thing was special to this book, and how much are you just going in for the lady-or-the-tiger thing as a general policy?

    Good book.

  27. nicholas says:

    hey, just discovered finder via library volume 1, cant put it down- I’m an aspiring graphic novelist heading into my first year of art school, just wanted to let you know that what you achieve in your writing and character development, the way you build such a fantastic plot in such a human and believable way is something I admire greatly. you are my favourite graphic novelist, and you make me want to do great things.

  28. Alexx Kay says:

    My wife is completely blind, but a big fan of comics (I read them to her). She’s also a believer that a prosthetic isn’t really ‘yours’ until you’ve made it so somehow. For instance, when she had to have her prosthetic eyes replaced last year, she got them made to match Delerium, from Neil Gaiman’s “Sandman”.

    A few weeks ago, she got a hearing aid. And she wanted to put a cool symbol on it. But there wasn’t much space, so it had to be something simple and iconic, that would read at that size. I’ve been re-reading her some “Finder” lately, so there was an obvious choice :-)

    Final result can be seen here: http://alexx-kay.livejournal.com/307388.html

  29. [...] it should be a perfect expression of the joyous appeal of aboriginal science fiction, as McNeil has so vividly explained it, but it turns out that it’s harder to stay wide-eyed when the strange territory you’re [...]

  30. Joacim Jonsson says:

    Hi! Didn’t find any e-mail address to you so I’ll write here instead. I just wanted to tell that one of your fans has made an advent calendar with three Finder references (two of them will show on Christmas Eve). Hope you enjoy it!


  31. Well, I’ve been thrilled with Finder since I discovered it last year — and have helped score one review for it:


    I wanted to send an email, but couldn’t find one, so I’m commenting instead… I’ve made a variety of types of art for a long time, but this is the first I’m putting something out publicly – and it’s an album, called Love and the Occupation — and it’s being released for free online, one track every few weeks.

    I’ve decided that I specifically want to offer it up to artists who’ve made an impact on me, which Finder has certainly done. Thanks for doing what you do. And here’s a humble offering in return.

    Love and the Occupation


  32. Trevor says:

    Hey, how much were you influenced by Viriconium, if that’s qualifiable? The sin-eater story therein was ringing alarm bells.

  33. Speed says:

    I had to look it up, so; not very. It sounds like the same sort of magpie world that mine is, though– right up my alley. I’ll check it out, thanks!

  34. [...] also talk about the idea of “Aboriginal Science Fiction” as presented by [...]

  35. Joe says:

    My kid graduated recently. We took pictures. He picked up the Finder LIbrary and liked one thing.

    He’s got a cig in his mouth!

    “Well see he…”

    Very poltically incorrect!

    “…has this nose that…”

    *they look at the book nodding and likeing it*

    “…he smokes because…”

    *lets it go and takes pictures*


  36. [...] Speed McNeil is great, Finder is excellent, and if you haven’t read it do so! Imagine my excitement when I found out she [...]

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