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Why you should edit at every step

Emma_Clare at 12:00AM, July 16, 2021

There are many steps involved in creating comics. From planning to plotting, writing, scripting, sketching, pencils, inks or colour, not to mention everything in between! With so many balls in the air, it’s important to take a step back and make time to review. At each stage, where possible, it’s good to take a bit of time to consider if there is anything that needs changing.

If you’re struggling to write a chapter, go back to your original outline. A useful exercise, I find, is determining if there are areas where things could be cut or shortened. Is there a character that is receiving a lot of screen time that could be better used elsewhere? Are you spending too much time explaining or having your character’s stay in one area? Reviewing your work at this stage can mitigate issues further down the line so take the time to edit early.

When it comes to sketching or thumbnailing, don’t try to make it look perfect. In fact, if you’re struggling to draw a panel, sometimes leaving text in there to explain what will be in the panel can be more useful, as it doesn’t halt your momentum. The idea is to get it all down first, at which point you can go in and begin refining with further sketching/inks. Don’t be afraid of redrawing a panel or scene. Again, the delete button is your friend at times.

Once the inks are done, and the colouring is finished, if you have the time, put your work down. Step away for a night and come back to it with fresh eyes. It’s then that you’re more likely to spot issues that you may have missed. Building in time to review your work as you go along will not only reduce the likelihood of making mistakes it will elevate the work itself.

How often do you review your work? Let us know in the comment section below! And join us on Sunday evening for our Quackchat at 5:30PM(EST)!

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RobertRVeith at 5:33PM, July 17, 2021

I'm the whole staff on my comics, but I'm a different person in each role. The scripter changes things the writer did. The artist changes things the scripter did. The editor sends them both back to the drawing board. I don't post anything online until I have enough pages for a story arc of some kind. There have been times when I'll get a good way into a comic and have to substantially rework it. The Jovian comic ( is the fifth version of the "Pilot episode." In version, I drew the first 30 pages before I decided I needed to pull back and rework it. Because the revision also included a redesign of the ship's interior, none of those panels are actually usable. The great thing about webcomics… and digital anything… is that we can just change something if we decide we don't like it later. It isn't like we had a print run of 10,000 copies recalled for a typo.

PaulEberhardt at 9:24AM, July 16, 2021

Great advice again. Back when I posted regularly, I would try and wait one day after finishing a page before uploading it, because I always found mistakes and such that way. Most of the time, I was to excited to wait and didn't, but I always knew I should have. The fact that webcomics can be edited after posting kind of ruined my self-discipline here - not that I'd want posts to be unchangeable, mind you!

Hapoppo at 6:54AM, July 16, 2021

I've been getting into finishing a page each week and sketching two ahead of time, so when I go to finish a sketched page I'll be able to do it from a fresh perspective. So far I've sketched about 8 pages ahead of time. And the nice thing about doing webcomics versus print, we can edit them even after we've put them out.

bravo1102 at 4:14AM, July 16, 2021

This is why having a buffer is wonderful. You can tweak and edit right up to the last minute. Don't put up twenty pages at once. Spread it out over several weeks and give yourself a chance for some editing.

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