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i meant to talk about some of my own work when i was doing the blog about style in comics.  the fact that it ended up having some rob liefeld in it and ended up being yet another superior-sounding rant is pretty normal for me, though.  if you start me talking about comics and come back in ten minutes, i’ll have invariably got myself to a point where i’m talking about how diluted and unserious everything is in comics.  it’s a character flaw.

i’ve asked myself before if this is because i just don’t like anything, though, and i honestly think that the answer is no.  while on the one hand i think that comics is no different from the other storytelling media in that the great majority of its output is weak, i’ve wrestled with the question of whether i still choose comics every day i draw or whether i’m just making do with what i’m good at to tell my stories.  it’s a scary question for me, but i now know i choose comics.

i’m in the middle of scanning and doing corrections on all the pages of POISON THE CURE part 3 now and so i’m at the fucking computer all the time.  i hate it, but since i’m looking to expand our audience for the book and looking to get a better picture of the comics scene now, i’m checking out other cartoonists on twitter and looking at their work.  it brings a mixed-ass bag of different work, but for the most part it’s a good experience and it reminds me how there are still a good number of people out there who are super-talented and dedicated to what they do.  the real payoff is finding a page or an image from an artist here or there that really takes me somewhere, really makes me feel like i’m in another place, in another story–and makes me want more.  usually though, in internet exposure like this and in thumbing through books in person to check quality, that little moment’s all i get, and the main work is, for the most part, not interesting enough to me.  just being honest here.

i’d like to explain why this is, why i’ll throw down my money for so, so little work in comics.  my disapproval has four dimensions, because to me comics have four creative dimensions.  comics aren’t just a pile of drawings; they aren’t just a pile of words–and they’re not just two piles side-by-side.  whack drawings make me sick, but they’re not the end of the world.  whack writing steams me up (it is a deal breaker in the end, even if it doesn’t keep me from buying something), but good writing with bad art won’t always get a pass.  for something to get me really pumped up, though it’s gotta have art, writing, story and and one more thing.  i differentiate writing from story like this:  the story is just that, the story being told.  it’s the inspiration for the work, the actual plot along which the narrative moves.  you could call it the pitch or the kernel or whatever.  writing, though, is the way in which the story is told, the dialogue and specific things that happen to move the story along–it’s the decisions made by the author to tell the story.

(the fourth thing i’ll get to tomorrow, out of fear that this may drag out a bit . . . )

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