Comic Talk, Tips and Tricks

Comic or novel? Advice?
Bimbo_Zombie at 8:37PM, April 21, 2010
posts: 62
joined: 12-15-2006
I have had the sudden realisation that there is something wrong with my comic.

I have been writing and re-writing this story for at least 10 years. I started it as a novel, then it became a webcomic. It has no fan base at all and I have never gone beyond the second chapter. I have come to the conclusion that I could take it back to a novel.

The story as a novel:
- I will actually be able to go beyond the second chapter after 10 years of writing it.
- I will actually get a fanbase. I don't see it reaching its target audience at all as a webcomic.
- I will actually get the story out, unlike my comic that I shit out one page every year or so.
- I have always wanted to be a writer and I find this story will do really well as a novel.
- I draw the characters a lot and am not sure how that will work in a novel.
- Just writing the story doesn't seem to be enough to express it in the way I want. I would like to use a lot of imagery and pictures to tell the story.

The story as a comic:
- Once again, I have never gone beyond the second chapter
- As soon as I get to the first page of the second chapter I have to reboot the entire comic and start over as the entire story has completely changed.
- The thumbnails are completely different from my script. The concept images are completely different from the thumbnails. And the final images are completely different from the concepts.
- It has been under hiatus many times. All hiatuses lasting a few months to two years.
- I design costumes and even what the character looks like as I am drawing them into the comic. For most of the characters I cannot see their clothing. Usually all I see is a hair colour and a gender. Sometimes I can hardly see the character at all, just their relationships within the story.
- A gigantic complex story needs gigantic complex artwork. I still draw like a 13 year old and do not think my artwork is good enough for the story. I don't see the back grounds, settings, places or any small details. I only see the characters. Sometimes I will see them on a patch of grass but anything else that is behind them is non existent.
- I have discovered that the artwork of each page is shittier than that of the previous page.
- The whole process of making one page is almost painful.
- I chose to make it in comic form as I felt it was the only way I could express the comic.
- This comic is the main reason I took up art and started my art classes at tech.
- I think I can tell a lot more of the story in pictures, not just writing. I would like to use metaphors and symbols and numbers and references to things. Sometimes I would have whole pages with no dialogue and just use the pictures to tell the story. This is physically impossible with a novel.

So how exactly should I write this story? What should I do with it? Does anyone have advice for me?
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:22AM
skoolmunkee at 12:45AM, April 22, 2010
posts: 7,058
joined: 1-2-2006
It sounds like you are having a horrible time trying to make it a webcomic and are not enjoying it at all. If you want to write a novel, write a novel. It's quite hard to get readers of a novel on the internet, but it's been known to happen and I'm pretty sure there are some writing sites out there where you can post chapters and such. Think of it this way, it's also difficult to get readers of a webcomic you hate making so much that you don't make it. :]
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:43PM
Ryuthehedgewolf at 3:36AM, April 22, 2010
posts: 1,340
joined: 9-2-2007
Well, there's always getting an artist.

But usually, unless you actually know the artist, they won't do it for free.
But if your passion is novels, do it as a novel. Feel free!
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:16PM
Bimbo_Zombie at 3:59AM, April 22, 2010
posts: 62
joined: 12-15-2006
I wouldn't trust another artist with this. I think I should do it myself.
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:22AM
alwinbot at 12:28PM, April 22, 2010
posts: 884
joined: 1-12-2010
And I was just about to offer my help.
Read this comic. It is the greatest journal comic ever written and drawn. Trust me.
last edited on July 14, 2011 10:50AM
weirdcrimetheater at 5:05PM, June 10, 2010
posts: 6
joined: 5-27-2010
I think you've already convinced yourself that a novel is the way to go. It certainly sounds like you would enjoy yourself more that way, so that's what I would do.



last edited on July 14, 2011 4:48PM
arteestx at 9:42PM, June 10, 2010
posts: 285
joined: 6-1-2007
- As soon as I get to the first page of the second chapter I have to reboot the entire comic and start over as the entire story has completely changed.
To me, this one comment you had stood out for me as a problem. If you're changing the entire story by the second chapter, then you didn't really have a story to begin with. I think you need to write out the entire story, just brainstorm the whole thing out from beginning to end. When I do a story, I draw rough sketches of the entire comic (150-200 pages in some cases) from start to finish, just so I can get the basic idea down on paper. I have also written a story from start to finish as pure text, outlined everything that was going to happen from the opening scene to the final act.

And the idea is not to get everything right the first time, it's to get the ideas down on paper, to brainstorm the entire story from beginning to end. I always reserve the right to change my mind later on, and when I've gotten to the end of the story I realized I needed to add a few things to the beginning to make it coherent. And whatever rough drafts I come up with initially, I always think about improving the images later on when I actually start drawing for real. But I get the entire story completed before I start drawing the first page.

I think you really need to do that before you can figure out whether you can do this as a novel or webcomic. As others have said, if you don't enjoy doing the webcomic, it's going to be extremely difficult to finish. But I truly think you need to have a complete story fleshed out first.

Xolta is not intended for anyone under 18 years old.
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:02AM

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