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Writing: it's not just for breakfast anymore

Freewriting Re: Writing

There's a well-known (in certain circles ...) doodle by Bill Watterson wherein he shares his writing process, which pretty much consists of staring blankly into space, waiting for inspiration. I imagine this holds true for a lot of cartoonists – it does for me, at least. Which makes writing about Writing a bit of a challenge, as I can't give a simple set of directions and send you on your merry way. I think the most I can manage is some random observations, which I'll try to tie together as best I can.

Seeking Solace at the Symmetry Shop (An Appreciation of Ben Katchor)

Julius Knipl, Real Estate Photographer: The Beauty Supply District
Pantheon Books, 2000

The Jew of New York
Pantheon Books, 1998

The central joke in "The Beauty Supply District" is neatly summed up by this gem from Carol Lay‘s old Frequently Asked Questions page:

Q: Where do you get your ideas?
A: I buy them in enormous rolls from Hammacher Schlemmer.

The Beauty Supply District—another picturesque corner of Ben Katchor's New York-like city—is a little warren of shops where art and design ideas are sold over the counter. Towering geniuses of the art world make furtive visits to punch up their paintings, atonal compositions, and what have you. Commercial manufacturers stride in with less trepidation, aiming to put a new gloss on their line of olive products.

Advice for Writers: Write What You Know (Because Learning Something New Would be TERRIBLE.)

“Write What You Know” is probably the most common advice writers receive, so much so that it is accepted wisdom; and yet this is quite possibly the worst advice ever given to a writer.  Here is what I understand this advice to mean: writers should be lazy and ignorant, and we should never, ever challenge ourselves to try to understand people who aren’t ourselves.

Advice for Writers: Write Every Day. Or Don’t. Either Way, Really.

One of the standard bits of advice that gets trotted out for writers, whether in writing workshops, or seminars, or just at author Q&As, in response to the inevitable “what advice would you give a young writer” question is this: write very day.  Set aside a particular block of time each day, during which you will write.  Even if you have no ideas, you will write.  Even if every sentence you type is worse than the last, you will write.  Treat it like it’s your job, because it is, and if you give into letting yourself off the hook because you don’t have an idea one day, you will inevitably do the same the next, and the day after that, and so on, ad infinitum.

Updates from the World O' Webcomics

Thanks to our current sponsors: the webcomic Please Rewind, and the Learn to Draw the Human Figure video series.  More sponsorships available - CHEAP! 

The June issue continues here at ComixTalk: an Interview with the creator of SPQR Blues -- Carol "Klio" Burrell; an interview with Faith Erin Hicks who just won the Joe Shuster award for Canada's Favorite Comic Book Creator, an interview with Dylan Meconis, the creator of Family Man; and Dr. Haus reviews Gun Baby.

Digital Strips blogs about the release of Jerry Stephens' new webcomic management system - BitArtist.  If anyone gets a chance to test this out please let us know what you think of it.

Howard Tayler's podcast Writing Excuses covers plot twists.

Jim Zub has written a story for  the Pop Gun 2 anthology with artwork by Chris Stevens.  It looks awesome!

Could it be?  Is Caleb coming back to webcomics?

Funny -- Webcomic Warrior Action Figures!

Lots of superhero movie casting rumors at Blog@Newsarama including this interesting bit that Robert Downey Jr. is in negotiations to star in DreamWorks/Universal’s Cowboys & Aliens, based on the Platinum Studios graphic novel by by Fred Van Lente and Andrew Foley, from an idea by Scott Mitchell Rosenberg.



Evan Dham has finished his webcomic novel Rice Boy.


Rob Clough does short reviews of a whole bunch of webcomics over at Sequart.

Mr Myth talks up Chainmail Bikini and Darths and Droids.


Neil Gaiman points out some trademarks issues and links to recent comics-related issues.


Microsoft has Steve Niles, Dr. Revolt; Kime Buzzelli; and Gary Panter working on a graphic novel for the Zune called The Lost Ones.  Wow... I guess Microsoft tries a lot of things but turning the Zune into a comics reader is surpising to me. (h/t Journalista!)


Jason Boog collects links to advice on how to promote your writing which seems pretty applicable to comics.

Shannon Wheeler (Too Much Coffee Man) also throws out some self-promotion ideas he's considering.

The Approach to Making Single panel comics vs Multi-panel comics

I've had some time to hash out some of the differences when it comes to writing for single panel vs. multi-panel comics, since I've made the switch to a multi-panel format with PC Weenies.

Writing for both is vastly different and I explore how I approach both formats. Thoughts and comments appreciated.

Writing wrongs

Go man the Outpost!I've heard it said that every piece of advice you'll ever be given on how to write will be wrong.

With that in mind, the latest article in the Outpost area of the Broken Voice Comics website gives you some wrong advice of my own.

Software For Writing Comics

Talented scribe o' comics Matt Shepherd looks at screenwriting software and finds it lacking for writing comics. Does anyone have any suggestions on if there is a program that takes care of Matt's needs?

Office Supplies - The Comic

Currently promoting my comic - Office Supplies -

Office Supplies(c) is a comic strip centered around everyday items used in the office and their personal take on life!