March 1, 2024

[PRESS RELEASE] Difference Engine Unveils 2024 Catalogue

Illustration for Tiger Girls

1 March 2024, Singapore — Difference Engine is proud to announce its 2024 catalogue which includes five new projects and titles across the adult, young adult, and children’s categories. In line with the independent publisher’s mission of putting Southeast Asian voices on the map, this upcoming slate of projects includes works by creators from Singapore and Indonesia as well as a comics anthology featuring writers and illustrators across the region. 

2024–2025 marks a series of firsts for Difference Engine with its debut webcomic and audio comic accompanying the print release of upcoming titles Tiger Girls and To the Last Gram respectively. Tiger Girls, a young adult fantasy comic written by Felicia Low-Jimenez and illustrated by Claire Low, is the graphic adaptation of Low-Jimenez’s short story first published in Singaporean speculative fiction anthology Fish Eats Lion Redux. Against the backdrop of a tropical Southeast Asian island made fantastical by Low’s manga-inspired art style, a restless young record-keeper, Suling, reckons with the Chinese superstition that casts girls born in her zodiac year, the tiger, as bringers of bad luck. From July 2024 onwards, readers can follow Suling’s ensuing quest to find her place amongst the island’s Water Tiger warriors as Tiger Girls gets released episodically as a free eight-part webcomic. Future fans of the series can also expect the subsequent print edition in 2025 to include never-before-seen bonus content.

Expanding on Difference Engine’s DE Shorts imprint, To the Last Gram is the fourth in this series of short comics that spotlight stories of lived and shared experiences around a range of social issues. Shreya Davies’ lyrical prose provides a gentle touch to the heavy subject of eating disorders in her depiction of Divya’s tumultuous relationship with food and body image. it is underscored by Vanessa Wong’s endearingly off-kilter illustrations which transform typically mundane moments into evocative scenes of modern anxiety. Young adult readers will find familiarity with Divya’s struggles of cultural acceptance, growing up, and fitting in as the narrative traverses between various stages of her life. The October 2024 print release of the comic will be followed by an audio comic adaptation in 2025 – a growing format for graphic narratives that translates the immensely visual medium of comics and its illustrative features into immersive experiences through sound effects, narration, and dialogue.

Illustration for To the Last Gram

Low-Jimenez, also the Co-Founder and Publisher of Difference Engine, shared, “Venturing into the world of web and audio comics is a chance to reach out to a wider audience than ever before. Any opportunity to make comics more accessible is worth the challenge, and we are also interested to see how we can foster new communities and fandoms around our works.”

Illustration for Unbecoming Maya

Young adult readers can also look forward to Andeasyand’s Unbecoming Maya, slated for release in 2026. Following the success of her 2021 DE Short A Drip. A Drop. A Deluge: A Period Tragicomedy, Andeasyand continues her colourful musings on adolescence, friendship, and bodily changes in this coming-of-age story illustrated in her signature whimsical style. Exploring the topic in a full-length comic this time, Unbecoming Maya might be a departure from the short vignette-style format of A Drip. A Drop. A Deluge, but still centres the conversation about menstruation and periods in an even bigger way.

Gula Gulali of The Magical Sweet Gula

Adding to Difference Engine’s children’s titles is Indonesian artist-writer couple Johanes Park and Jessica Leman with The Magical Sweet Gula 2 & 3, the final two instalments of their Magical Sweet Gula trilogy coming out in 2025 and 2026. Gula Gulali returns for more inter-dimensional hijinks across the decadently illustrated worlds of magic and non-magic as she continues to turn more things into dessert with her magi powers.

Rounding off Difference Engine’s forthcoming titles is DELAY: A Comics Anthology, the publisher’s second collection of short comic fiction following SOUND: A Comic Anthology. As part of the anthology, Southeast Asian creators are invited to submit story pitches that interpret the theme of “delay” in unexpected ways. Creators whose pitches are chosen will get a chance to work with a veteran editorial team comprising Malaysian illustrator and educator Charis Loke in a reprisal of her role as co-editor of SOUND, as well as Filipino prose and comics writer Paolo Chikiamco who was previously a contributor to SOUND.

Illustration for DELAY: A Comics Anthology

“It’s the beginning of a milestone year for Difference Engine as we make room for more ambitious projects that push the boundaries of how stories can be told,” added Low-Jimenez. “Especially with our first foray into the US and international markets together with Diamond Book Distributors, it’s an exciting year of growing and learning for us while still staying true to our core of creating space for lesser-known stories.”

Check out Difference Engine’s 2024 Catalogue here.

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For enquiries, contact:

Olivia Djawoto
Marketing and Communications Manager
Difference Engine

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