Saturday, September 1, 2007


Buenos Noches Lovers One & All...

As if you didn't already know, we here at HML Central are equal opportunity lovers. And we proved it by having a table at the 6th Annual West Hollywood Book Fair this past Sunday. Being unfamiliar territory, we weren't quite sure how passionate the locals would be to our particular kind of love. But I am proud to say compadres...

West Hollywood loved us right back!

Being on location before 8 am was no easy task, but I achieved it with a fully loaded truck, courtesy of our angriest lover (who happens to hail from NORTH of the border), Canadian Bob Bowen. Co-Founder Larry "L-Dogg" Reynosa met us on the spot as we set up and we all waited for our fourth corner to arrive. Senor Albert Calleros made his appearance just shy of 10 am with the passion of 1,000 suns and a desire to sell our comics to match.

Donning our matching Guyabera shirts, displaying our sombrero and setting up the "Pasion Index", we were ready to release our passion for the first time in our home town, el Ciudad de Angelos. And passionate it was. Our customers came in all shapes, sizes and proclivities. There were peaks and valleys throughout the day, but for the most part, we sold an average of ten books an hour. And remember, this was a book fair, not a comic convention.

Our usual antics were in effect, from flirting to playing music to sketching characters, whatever it took to make the sale. Sometimes that included giving away Albert's phone number with a wink and a smile (I'm not gonna say we had to do that alot, but let's just say there are probably 6 excited young ladies and at least 2 excitable men).

Before I continue, I must mention that never before have I seen such confusion and excitement in one man's face (Albert's) as he was making acquaintance with a new male "friend" by means of a two-handed hand hold. No, not a hand shake, this man gingerly grabbed each of Albert's hands and held them as they made introductions and spoke. I believe it was this same new friend that labeled us "the most handsome booth at the book fair".

And it wasn't just the guys who loved us, new friends also came in the form of some erotica novelists who also had a booth at the fair and invited our crew to dinner with them. Our love has no boundaries!

As we all know, the book is a team effort. So once again I must express my thanks:

Bob Bowen, although you have been a Mexican Lover since our revival, this was the first convention you worked with us and you were a humongous help. An extra person to man the table, an extra set of hands to sketch, an extra pair of blue eyes to lure in the customers. Thank you for keeping the anger at bay.

Larry, you have the smile worth a hundred pennies and the heat to warm a hundred planets. It is no wonder why so many men had to have a photo with you at the Fair. You keep it real and I am so glad to be part of the HML Nucleus with you. True Dat. (Double True) Stay Brown Brother.

Albert, if it were socially and culturally acceptable to write love songs about a friend and comic partner, then I would expect you to write one for me. Meanwhile your passion at the fair set the index on fire!

And lastly, thanks to all of you, the contributors, who help make the book possible.

Hot. Mexican. Love. Comics.
Individually, they are just words.
Together, they are a way of life.

Always and forever,

Senor Ira

Sunday, July 8, 2007

International Hot Mexican Love

Even in the hinterlands, the crazed savages know a good thing when they read it. By the way, the tender term "crazed savages" comes from an insensitive friend in the White House who shall remained unnamed.

You can't keep a good thing secret. Let's just hope it doesn't get into the hands of our Commie Chinese brothers...madness and democracy may break out, just as it has in Iraq!!!

Muchos Besos Amigos!

Saturday, July 7, 2007

David Lee Roth rocks HMLC!

Hello Lovers!

The love keeps on flowing and stretched across the Rockies to the south over the holiday weekend. I was in Nashville, TN, visiting with family, and decided to bring a couple of issues of the book along. And it was a good thing I did, because not only are we available in Tennessee now, but I had a star sighting and passed along an issue of our masterpiece.

With the help of fellow lover, John Achenbach (and his Rock N Roll connections), I was able to get this shot of "Diamond" David Lee Roth with some Hot Mexican Love. The encounter was brief but very rewarding. I have no doubt he'll enjoy what as become the Hottest issue of Mexican Love yet.

Muchos Besos Amigos,
Senor Ira

Sunday, July 1, 2007

Señor Ira Sounds Off on HMLC 2007

Buenos Noches Lovers,

Let me start by saying, that when I wrote the promo for the Comics Journal stating:
"The passion will be furious surrounding the table at Hot Mexican Love Comics, where the brand-spanking new 2007 EDITION will be released!" I wasn't kidding.

It was a whirlwind of a week, and to answer the question you were all wondering...


Success. Our biggest Con ever. Each day bringing more and more sales. Our numbers were in the hundreds. That's right, the hundreds. (The low hundreds, between 300 - 400, but hundreds nonetheless).

Wednesday afternoon I drove to San Diego solo and met up with our only European contributor and master waffle-baker, Rudi Berden. We unloaded and set-up as fast as we could and were ready just in time for the mobs who started pouring in, just shy of six o'clock. In the rushed three hours of preview night, we sold 14 copies. It doesn't sound like a lot, but that's one copy every 13 minutes. And almost as good as we did all of Friday of the previous year.

Before I continue, let me give extra thanks to Rudi, who at the last minute asked to get time off from work to help out. He was the best helper anyone could ask for. And contrast to my over-the-top, loud sales techniques, used his sweetness and personal flair to speak for his normally quiet disposition to help with sketches and sales. His Hot Mexican passion is undeniable.

Muchos Gracias from all of us mi Amigo.


Thursday was super busy. We had a regular flow of traffic in front of the booth and grabbed plenty of attention. Posters of last 2 issues, a picture of Frida Kahlo, plastic miniature cows, our sombrero, a pi?ata and a bottle of Tequila were all part of the traffic stopping objects that adorned our table. As a result, we were two issues short of our best sales day ever (our best day being this past April). That would change the next day.

Rudi left Thursday evening, just before the two creators of our book arrived. Albert and Larry came down with all the tools to really expand our love and make the passion flow.  An ipod with speakers for Latin music, matching Guayabera shirts, and our latest, most brilliant prop: the "Pasion Index" A large thermometer with movable meter hanging behind the booth to measure the passion of convention goers who stopped by.

Game on.

With three prior conventions under our belt, Albert, Larry and myself continue to finely tune the fun chemistry we share and it's a treat when people tell us how much they enjoyed our company. There are too many anecdotes to tell from the activity around the booth the following days, but our sales kept getting better. Mind you, these all weren't for the 2007 issue. Our 2006 edition is as hot as ever. (The cover alone is a crowd stopper, thanks again to Paul Wee. But it was Rodney Clouden's 2007 cover which somebody commissioned to have drawn in their sketchbook). And completists wanted our classic '96 & '97 issues.

It was a real treat when people would return from one day to the next asking for the issues they didn't buy the previous day. And there were no disappointed customers when I gave them a money back guarantee if the passion in their life did not increase by at least 35% (with a maximum increase of 65%) after purchase. One happy customer thanked me the next day because his purchase helped "seal the deal" the previous night. De Nada.

Friday and Saturday

Friday became our most successful day ever, and I wasn't sure how much better we could do on a regular day. But for Saturday we had a secret weapon. Between the hours of noon and five pm we hired a Latina Booth Babe to walk around, handing out coupons and directing desperate, lonely men to our booth.

That helped a bit, but the Big Gun and huge help turned out to be Contributor/Cover Artist Rodney Clouden himself, who also put on a matching Guayabera and worked the booth with us for a couple of hours. I'd like to also send out gracias and besos to Rodney's girlfriend, Sabrina, for finding and managing our boothbabe and for help behind the booth. Saturday became our biggest sales day ever, moving over 100 issues.


So with 3 and 1/2 days down, Sunday was gonna be tough. Already exhausted from the energy required to sell, I had less than 4 hours sleep Saturday night (and I wish I could say it was from partying too much). All of us were wiped out and were late to arrive Sunday morning. That's where Rob Goodin came through and opened up the booth for us. At the time, I was a bit delirious from exhaustion but wasn't too worried, expecting the floor to be less crowded, that way I could relax and perhaps walk the floor a bit. I was wrong. Sunday seemed busier than Saturday. The saving grace this time was my girlfriend, the Lady Janice, who came down by train Saturday afternoon, and helped us out behind the booth throughout the day Sunday. Muchos Besos Mi Amore.


As previously mentioned, there are tons of anecdotes from the con. I'm still tired and can't write them all, but here are a couple of highlights:

-(Rejection #1) asking a young couple (16-20 yr range) if they were looking for more passion in their life and getting the honest, offended response of "NO, we're quite happy with our celibacy thank you"

-getting interviewed by two podcasts, a website and a local San Diego TV show

-having people from last year search us out to purchase the new issue

-having people search us out because they read about us in the program

-getting reprimanded by the people who run the convention for displaying alcohol and clogging the aisles. (Our love was so thick, mobs of people swelled around the table, making our neighbors jealous and bitter, so they reported us. They obviously have NO passion)

-having one fan call "Angry Bob" Bowen, in Canada, for some Love advice

-Rejection #2) asking a young latin girl (18?) "Buenos Dias, Senorita, Como Estas?" in a very deep, seductive voice. Her response, with terror in her eyes, she clutched her boyfriend's arm and buried her face in his chest, while he is yelling "What happened? What did he say? etc." en espanol

-GuataMELON: A woman from Guatemala whose breasts were each larger than my head, wearing a very revealing outfit, who Albert managed to keep at the table to embarrass myself and Larry. She was giving us colorful commentary about true Latin love.

-Harry Fagel, a Jewish cop from Vegas, who liked my Jewish themed story and kept announcing (in front of his 10 yr old) his wife had "A great rack"

-Rejection #3) saying to a potential female customer "I thought I had the bluest eyes in the convention...I was wrong." Most women smiled or blushed.

One of them said "Yes, YOU WERE."

A couple more thanks before I wrap up.

-Rob Goodin: Co-founder of the book and friend, whose 2007 submission was shown to most people as an example of the book and led to MANY purchases. If you haven't already, check out his solo work with his Robot Publishing

-Rafael Navarro: part-time contributor and creator of Sonambulo, who inspires, advises and cross-promotes with us.

-Melody Severns and the "Girls Drawin Girls" for cross-promoting.

-Joy Reynosa: Larry's wife, the Joy in his life and she helped us break down the booth at the end of the show.

-Louie Del Carmen: A gentleman, an artist, a friend. A constant professional and a real class act. His blog ( ) always mentions us (check it out) and he cross-promotes with us at the cons.

-Larry Reynosa: I drove you crazy, you kept me up most nights in the hotel, but bought me the coolest fucking drinking glass featuring "Luke Cage - Power Man"
Stay Brown brother.

-Albert Calleros: Creator, Computer Wizard, Mexican, Lover. If you don't know Albert, you should. If you do know him, then you know why he gets special thanks. My Ablutions are now complete. Make it rain.

I didn't take many pictures. Albert and Larry did that and will hopefully post soon. Here are a few though. The first is the three caballeros with our Booth Babe, Nichole.

Next is "Reno 911!" creator and lead actor Thomas Lennon, who bought 2006 & 2007.

Finally we have Dyanna and Joseph, who also bought '06 & '07, just as the show was closing for the year (you can see the Pasion Index behind us, Notice it is as high as you can go, which is why they shut us down on Sunday...Too much Passion).

Yet, they weren't our last sale, that went to some guy on the street on the way to the parking lot who made a comment about the sombrero I was wearing.

Fiesta Amigos!

Con amor,

Senor Ira

P.S. We have already received some fan mail from our appearance at the convention. The Love has spread!

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Ira Toots APE '07 HORN

Greetings Lovers One and All,

We have returned from San Francisco with smiles on our faces and love in our 
hearts (as always). As for APE-Con 2007...


On Friday, the Lady Janice (my Latin Senorita), L-Dogg Reynosa (Co-Founder
of the book) and myself braved the inclimate weather and drove up to attend
our second APE-Con. Having some knowledge of what to expect this time around
we were better prepared. Arriving late afternoon, we enjoyed the city on
Friday Night and got a good nights rest, praying to Santa Maria and the
almighty Goat that the book would be well received over the weekend.

Saturday morning we made it over to the Concourse Exhibition Center and set
up as Albert (Co-founder and the true Mexican heart of HMLC) arrived (he
took a 7am flight). Once again it was a blast. Displaying posters of the
covers of both the 2006 and 2007 editions, our table was covered with our
signature sombrero, all three editions of the book, PLUS the 2007 sketchbook
we whipped together special for APE. We came in charged and truly shared the
love with all who passed by. It is always fun to make a sale, and sketch for
our new friends/fans. But what was even BETTER were the people who
remembered us from last year and sought us out for another dose of our
homespun printed amor.

We definitely had the flavor of fiesta at our booth. Everytime we sold a
copy of the book, we hit play on our ipod (connected to speakers) and "The
Mexican Hat Dance" would play as we would clap and celebrate sharing the
love. Despite annoying some of our neighbors (as usual), we created interest
at the table drawing over even more customers.

I must admit, we did not move as many copies of the sketchbook as we had
hoped, but we definitely helped generate the buzz for the upcoming 2007 edition!

APE has now become a favorite among the nucleus of HMLC, and you will have
to attend next year to see why. But for a hint of this year, go to Larry Reynosa's site.

For those of you who don't know Larry, let me give a brief
intro: Larry Reynosa was an Editor at Malibu Comics in the early 90's. It
was there he met Albert Calleros and a Love like no other blossomed. It was
from this forbidden bond that the concept of HOT MEXICAN LOVE COMICS was
born. Both true Mexicans with passion for comics. As time passed, Albert had
left the comics field to enter animation, leaving Larry behind as Malibu Comics
went belly up. Unemployed and rejected, Larry took a job with the
city and continued to collect comics, but not create them.

Larry did help publish the first issue in 1996 (along with Albert and Rob Goodin), but
my knowledge of his history for the next ten years of his life
is limited. Flash forward to 2006, I had taken over the reigns of HMLC as

Editor-In-Chief and pubisher and begin work on the 2007 edition, Albert
recommends getting back to the roots of HMLC and we bring Larry back into
the fold. For more details on Larry, Albert, Rob and the history of the
book, you'll have to ask them.

As for San Diego in July, I have already mentioned that we secured a table
in the small press area. I do hope that you can all attend and perhaps help
out at the booth for short stints to meet our fans and do some sketches for
them. Albert, Larry and myself could use the help when things get busy.

We are now only days away from getting the order number from Diamond Distributors.

Everyone keep your fingers crossed for big numbers. The more
issues we sell, the more exposure we have. Plus the contributors can
hopefuly get some kick back and a better release party. And if you are
curious about what people truly think of our masterpiece, you can always
check out our websites for links and updates. Otherwise, here is an
AUTHENTIC fan letter which I just received today! (Yes, this is the real
deal. I was floored how they even quoted from my submission!)


Thank you Ira, Albert and everyone else who I met at APE 2007. Just finished
your Hot Mexican Love Comics 2006. The guy sitting next to me on the plane
was pretending to read his boring Wall Street Journal but I know what he
wished he were reading instead.

Best $5 investment that I've come across in a long time.

Much continued success you amigos.

Also, thank for the sketches. They wore off a bit which only makes them that
more authentic.

"GROWL is an anagram of the acronym." You guys a smart way.

Ever onward,


So there's your update. Let's all keep the love flowing.


Senor Ira

Editor-In-Chief HMLC07

Monday, January 1, 2007