Friday, June 1, 2012

It's Better as a Comic

   Do you ever start with an idea for a project, then half way through the project realized that it would work so much better in a different format? A sewing project that just needs a different fabric, or a sketch drawing that would translate so well as a watercolor? I have a tendency to think of writing topics and, much more frequently than my actions justify, I realize "That would be so much better as a comic."  Take for example, a little conversation Jason and I had yesterday about recent developments in The Windowsill Experiment, Pt. 2:
It's no big deal, but it would've been untranslatable as prose. Blah. 
    A while back Jason planted the seed of a wonderful plot line in my head. It stewed and grew till this last weekend I decided to turn my time alone into a handmade writing retreat. I packed my laptop to The Trident Cafe, a tiny part of me hoping that Amanda Palmer and Neil Gaiman would stop by, and got my butt to work. Three hours later, what I had sucked. Everything sucks in the beginning, but this was really making me unhappy. And I knew exactly why. It just needed to be a comic. 
   Lucky for me, I'm married to a graphic designer who's constantly pursuing the art of the web comic. We've been talking about doing a collaboration for some time, and even made a couple attempts, but they hadn't gotten very far. Yet something about this idea gripped me and I was determined to see it through. 
   My biggest problem was that I had no idea how to write a comic. Que game-show-loser-music. Try to Google "How to write a web comic." The results are a lot of bad writing about nothing. I have to thank Jason again for being such a comic buff; he directed me to a guide by the writer for The Zombie Hunters, which, though still sparse on the topic of writing itself, was the most comprehensive guide I was able to find.
   So armed with a nickle's worth of knowledge on a writing format, I decided to go for it. I swallowed a big gulp and just started writing. And this time it work! It shocked me how much easier everything fit on the page. I got the whole first scene written. I started a collaborative storyboard with Jason on and he began the first sketches of characters. So hopefully soon, we'll be seeing the first panels of a web comic by Heather Louise and Jason.
   I'm kind of excited. 

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