Award-winning freelance writer and editor. Sure, their killer products, ubiquitous search engine, and cloud services played a huge role.
Maybe you have a pull list at a local shop. Maybe you support creators via Patreon. Maybe you contribute to Kickstarters to fund print editions of independent graphic novels and anthologies.
Maybe you have alerts set up for when all your favorite webcomics update. Comics can be all those things and more. I came to writing comics myself after a long time of focusing on prose short stories and novels, and I believe that working in different formats is a great way to stretch yourself as a writer.
Here are three ways writing comics can expand your creative toolbox. Comics makes you think about how to structure the passage of time. Of course, you have to structure time in prose fiction, too — you have to decide the duration of your narrative, whether it takes place chronologically or out of chronological sequence, etc.
Whereas when you write comics, each panel represents a moment in time; the time between one panel and the next can be a minute, a decade, a century.
Strategic juxtaposition is your friend. Comics is all about juxtaposition: All these juxtapositions provide narrative opportunities.
You can put two unrelated characters who are both struggling, but in very different ways and settings, literally next to each other on a page, or on facing pages, each in their own panel, and make their poses similar to reinforce what they have in common.
You have to think visually. This may seem like a ridiculously obvious point. That said, certainly there are some writers whose comics scripts leave a lot of visual decisions to the artist.
But I recommend that you err on the side of providing an artist what might seem like too much information. Be clear and thorough in your panel descriptions and image reference. When you make thoughtful, intentional decisions about the visual details of your story, the story will be stronger.
And of course, all these visual decisions are also about representation: The exercise of thinking through who and what is going to be included in your story when you know that the reader will actually be seeing it as a series of images on a page or screen, rather than simply picturing the narrative in their mind, will be helpful for your next story, regardless of format.Award-winning freelance writer and editor.
Drinker of coffee. From what exactly they are, to clear examples, tips for writing them, and how to implement them at your company. Sound good? Let’s get started.
A version of this post first appeared on the Planio Blog. The “as measured by” in Grove’s formula is what makes a goal a.
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