Storytelling Specter 7 – Creating Comics


I have wanted to create comics since I started collecting them back in 1987. Yes, I didn’t start COLLECTING until then, I read plenty before that. When I started creating my own heroes, I was jotting down ideas on note cards and creating thinly veiled rip offs of the heroes I liked reading about. I’ve come a long way from there and I have discovered some things about myself along the way.

By no means am I a savant, but I do have some artistic talent. When I was trying to create my own heroes and comics back in the 80s and 90s, I was doing so with the idea that I would be drawing them. As I’ve grown older, I have discovered through personal experience that I will probably not being the one who draws my comics because I don’t think the art style I have is to the level I want to see in a finished product. Basically I’m saying it looks like a 12 year old drawing a story that a 40 year old should be doing. What I can do, though, is write.

I have completed exactly two comic book scripts in my lifetime, neither of them being what I consider something that deserves high praise. The latest one, though, at least comes close to being what I would consider a great comic… I just have to flesh out my descriptions more because otherwise the artist isn’t going to understand what the hell it is I am trying to get across on the page. The story itself isn’t bad at all, just the back end descriptions. This is part of my prose problem, too, is bogging down in details.

As a youth, I’d used the note cards to jot down the list of each issue and made up a cadre of “monthly titles” that would be contained neatly on an index card. So, for instance, my Captain America rip off “American Man” had the American Man title and issue number listed at the top of the index card. The description of the issue would have gone something like this: “American Man is called to investigate a nuclear reactor accident, he is attacked by Toxic (villain mutated in the incident), and discovers that the government who sent him is responsible for the accident.” If that was issue 3, then issue 4 would have the briefest of references to that issue and would contain it’s own description, depending upon what came next.

Trying to write full scripts, though, I’m discovering that I need more of a detailed roadmap to writing the script than the description above. I have considered writing an outline, with each Roman numeral being a page, but I haven’t decided on anything specifically, yet. What I have decided, though, is that I want to write a single “monthly title” fleshing out my universe that has been slowly adapted over the course of many years. My rip offs are either removed from this iteration or are so unrecognizable from before that they are hardly even the same character.

I’ll be talking a lot about this escapade as time advances because I want to write up several scripts and even try my hand at drawing one… if I can “break into the business,” then I’ve got myself decades of stories I can tell ready to go. That’s the one boon to me working on this for so long.

Stay tuned!

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