Thursday, March 3, 2016

The Working Writer's Guide to Comics and Graphic Novels by Nick Macari

book cover
The Working Writer's Guide to Comics and Graphic Novels
by Nick Macari

ISBN-13: 978-0692577103
Paperback: 90 pages
Publisher: Panel by Panel
Released: Dec. 21, 2015

Source: Review copy from the author.

Book Description, Modified from Amazon:
A writing guide for the comic writer. This is the book I needed when I first started writing comics twenty years ago. Everything you need to know to take your existing story and outline to a completed, professional-level comic script. It covers the ten major rules to comic script writing and the four core considerations of every comic panel. It provides an easy to read, in-depth look at script format, process and story mechanics.

Whether you're an aspiring comic writer or a seasoned professional, the tips and techniques revealed in this book will hone your storytelling.

From page 12, "This guide is aimed at the working writer with a solid grasp of story structure, basic writing comprehension and a comprehensive outline in hand....While I may speak generally of premise, plot and structure throughout this guide, the intention isn't to walk you through the process of discovering or creating your story, but rather to help you apply your existing story to the comic medium."

My Review:
The Working Writer's Guide to Comics and Graphic Novels is a guide to taking an existing story and making it into a professional-level comic script. The author assumes you already know how to write and have a story but don't know how to tell the story in the unique format of graphic novels and comics.

He covered the basic rules of the comic/graphic format and explained how to write your story in script format. He talked about avoiding mundane panels and writing visually in your script. He discussed beats, pacing, tension, dialogue, and characters. He listed things to have and to avoid and provided three pages of question and answers. He finished by taking part of an existing story idea through all of the steps of story to script.

The author was concise, and I found the whole book easy to understand. The black and white illustrations provided clear examples of what he was pointing out. I think this book would be a good resource for writers who want to work in the comic or graphic novel format.

If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.

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