Reza Farazmand of “Poorly Drawn Lines” fame has written his first full-length graphic novel. (Author photo courtesy Vivian Sachs)

Reza Farazmand of “Poorly Drawn Lines” fame has written his first full-length graphic novel. (Author photo courtesy Vivian Sachs)

‘Poorly Drawn Lines’ creator Reza Farazmand debuts ‘City Monster’

Friends go on a funny low-stakes mission in new full-length graphic novel

Reza Farazmand, the artist behind popular comic “Poorly Drawn Lines,” felt the world massively shifting in response to coronavirus as he worked on his latest venture.

Though being creative during a pandemic is a tough lift, the eerie feeling of empty streets wound up working its way nicely into Farazmand’s supernatural graphic novel, “City Monster,” released Tuesday. Haight’s Booksmith and The Bindery will host the Marin County native for a virtual, ticketed event on Thursday at 6 p.m.

“It was a very spooky feeling all around with nobody there,” Farazmand said of his Los Angeles neighborhood. “I, personally, definitely felt it’s been harder to write or make things because it’s hard to stay focused with so much going around me. In this case, I had a deadline so I had to get it done.”

“City Monster” marks a couple of firsts for the Marin County native, who used to live in San Francisco. It’s Farazmand’s first graphic novel and also his first longer-form narrative.

“Poorly Drawn Lines” mostly features standalone scenes in which animal characters highlight modern-day absurdities by acting like humans.

In “City Monster,” characters include a Big Foot-esque protagonist; his vampire neighbor Kim, whose weakness is not being able to learn guitar; an angry-looking cat named Pastry; Gabi the witch, who’s rather unskilled at seances; a 6,000-year-old mummy with nothing but “treasure and regrets”; and a stoner ghost of a roommate who’s pretty sure he was someone important but just can’t remember.

“At the end of the day, they’re just like regular people who are friends with each other,” Farazmand said. “A lot of what they do is modeled off what I do with my friends.”

That includes, as Kim put it, a “long meandering walk with no destination” in between solving a mystery with the help of a retiring ghost detective drawn from a one of Farazmand’s favorite “Poorly Drawn Lines” comics. “I just love turning down a new street and seeing something I haven’t seen before,” he added.

The low-stake mission with a hilariously banal twist sets in motion when an unnamed forest monster moves to a city.

Farazmand crafted the city look from living in places like San Francisco, Oakland, New York and Los Angeles, his current residence. And although “City Monster’s” locale is general, Farazmand drew inspiration from San Francisco’s Richmond District for the apartment and area where the main, unnamed monster lives.

“Definitely parts of it were supposed to feel like my old neighborhood,” Farazmand said. “You might notice I used San Francisco buildings as reference.”

Farazmand, who isn’t sure if he’ll do more webcomics on the new characters, will bounce right back to “Poorly Drawn Lines.” He’s been working to adapt it to an animated series, which fans may hear more of in 2021.


City Monster

Written by: Reza Farazmand

Published by: Plume

Pages: 112

Price: $18

Note: Farazmand appears in streamed event at 6 p.m. Nov. 19 presented by The Booksmith. Tickets are $5, or $20, which includes a signed copy of the book.

Literaturesan francisco news

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at

Just Posted

City Administrator Naomi Kelly said Wednesday that the allegations against her husband were “based on the word of a liar.” (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
City Administrator Naomi Kelly takes leave after feds charge husband

High-ranking official under scrutiny over 2016 China trip

Lyft, owner of the Bay Wheels bikeshare program, stands to receive more than $300,000 in a legal settlement with The City. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Supervisors to weigh $330,000 settlement with Lyft over bikeshare dispute

If approved, deal would resolve an 18-month long legal battle over San Francisco’s e-bike market

The J Church train could begin running again later this month on at least part of its surface route. (Mira Laing/Special to S.F. Examiner)
First Muni trains will return to service Dec. 19

Three additional bus routes coming back online in January

Smoking cannabis. (Shutterstock)
Supes ban tobacco smoking in apartments but exempt cannabis

San Francisco banned smoking and vaping of tobacco in apartments Tuesday night,… Continue reading

Dr. Grant Colfax and Mayor London Breed said new restrictions could come this week due to rising COVID-19 cases.<ins> (Examiner screenshot)</ins>
Breed: ‘More restrictive action’ needed to slow spread of COVID-19

San Francisco officials said Tuesday tougher restrictions will soon be imposed to… Continue reading

Most Read