Chris Ware is the sole proprietor of the ACME Novelty Library Company. Born in 1967, Ware grew up in Nebraska, where he was first inspired by a local cartoonist who worked for his grandfather's newspaper, the Omaha World-Herald. Ware got his start in comics, however, while attending the University of Texas in Austin. He drew comics every week, and sometimes more frequently, for The Daily Texan, which has the distinction of being the country's largest university newspaper and also saw the first published work of Berkeley (Outland) Breathed and Sam (Eyebeam) Hurt. It was here that Ware began developing such characters as Jimmy Corrigan, the Smartest Kid on Earth and Quimby the Mouse.
In 1987, Ware's work came to the attention of Art Spiegelman (Maus), who was editing RAW at the time and invited him to contribute to the highly-regarded annual anthology. In 1994, Fantagraphics Books co-publisher Kim Thompson offered Ware a regular comics series. Ware accepted, and gave his new comic the omnibus title The ACME Novelty Library. In addition to showcasing Ware's remarkable design skills and cartooning abilities, ACME has been published in a variety of different, unique formats, ranging from a digest-size black-and-white package to 11 x 18 full-color monster.
From 1995 to the present, Ware has utterly dominated the comic medium's major awards, winning dozens of Harvey, Eisner and Ignatz Awards, the comic book industry is most prestigious awards, as well as a prestigious Reuben Award for Excellence. In his brief career, Ware has already carried home more awards than anyone in history, and might be the only cartoonist in the world to have racked up many more awards than he has published comics. In 2000, Pantheon Books collected Ware's Jimmy Corrigan: The Smartest Kid on Earth, and the book has already become the biggest breakthrough literary success the comics world has seen since Spiegelman's Maus. With "Best of the Year" mentions from TIME, The Village Voice Literary Supplement, Entertainment Weekly, and many others, as well as a nomination for the Guardian First Book Award. The book is a new gold standard for the artform's potential to scale the same literary and artistic heights as any medium.