Matt Kindt - had a banner fucking year. Took the helm on Frankenstein Agent of S.H.A.D.E. and launched his own wild, original and wildly original monthly Mind MGMT (whose first issue is getting a re-print, kids! - the first trade won't be out till April). This one oughtta put him at the top of anybody's list of top complete package talent working in comics today.
Chris La Tray - Had fiction appear in Blood & Tacos, All Due Respect and Needle as well as rocking the all-American heavy metal sounds of thunder outta Missoula, Montana.
Tim Lane - Continues to produce his weekly strip Belligerent Piano as well as providing historical Americana and illustrations for The Believer, The New York Times, The Nation, Riverfront Times, Seattle Weekly and on and on and... In 2013 I'm particularly looking forward to more Happy Hour in America and a collaborative effort with Anthony Bourdain, but most of all I'm looking forward to that bright, sunshiny day when we get another Fantagraphics book of collected Lane stories. Some. Day. Soon?
The Knuckle Sammich website with advice from a badass and badass recipes to boot. His great graphic designs graced Plots With Guns, Hard Labour and Noir at the Bar Vol. 2 (and his story Shoot-Out at the KY Corral opened that book 'cause you gotta have a grabber of an opening line for them books and "Where do you keep the buttplugs." fits all of this editor's criteria).
Jason Makansi - When he's not writing non-fiction books on energy or playing some behind the scenes supporting role at Blank Slate Press (which he co-founded), Makansi writes fiction, and I'm wishing that The Moment Before would hurry the hell up and finish itself so's I could have a crack at it.
Matthew McBride - 2012 winds down with a proper paperback publication of Frank Sinatra in a Blender from New Pulp Press and news of an eventual audio book from Blackstone - now that's gonna be a great listen, I'd bet my paycheck. He also made Scott Montgomery's list of Top 5 Debut Authors at the Mystery People blog. You wanna hear Matt read his fucking excellent short story The Tar Hole? Yeah you do. Find it in the archives at Booked after you listen to this interview.
Jon McGoran - Preparing to leave behind D.H. Dublin? Dunno, but McGoran is going ahead and publishing under his very own name, and Drift (coming in spring 2013) sounds like a corker.
Cortright McMeel - while finishing up his second novel Cagefighter, Cort has kept a secret identity or two as well as publishing and contributing to Noir Nation and Bare Knuckles Press. But to hell with all that noise, Cort's one of the proud pappys of N@B-Denver (along with Jon Bassoff and Benjamin Whitmer). Man, do I need to get out to one of those events.
Kyle Minor - While impatiently awaiting Kyle's second collection Praying Drunk from Sarabande (in 2014 - WTF?!?) you have your opportunity graciously extended to catch up with his first book In the Devil's Territory before everyfuckingbody in the whole entire universe claims they were way into Minor before he was the undisputed shit in American letters. Give a listen to an excerpt from his story The Truth & All Its Ugly right here.
Aaron Michael Morales - Continued bringing the Southwest to the Midwest with New Mexican Drive By in N@B2 and his job molding young minds at Indiana State University. Oh, young, mold-able, fresh, nubile minds... yum.