G – Graphic Novel

GOkay, comics have been around a long time. Even shows and movies about comic book characters have been around a long time, though they are proliferating and succeeding today like they’re the new thing. However, the graphic novel – a longer story form than just a comic, but definitely more comic-styled than novel-styled – is a newer sort of medium. There is a strong blurring of the two, really; many graphic novels are set in the comic-book worlds, many comic story-arcs have been turned into graphic novel collections; and many graphic novels today are coming out episodically as comics.

However you want to look at it, and whether I am really just talking about comics, trade paperbacks, collected editions, or graphics novels… together they are a growing, and exciting, force and trend. For someone like me, who is a slow reader, the addition of the visual storytelling, and the reduction of the text down to essentials, lets me get through far more content. For someone even more visual than I am, I could see this being even more of an excellent artform.

There are some great storylines being written in what can either be described as graphic novel or indie comic form coming out today, and you should check some out if they interest you. Horror stories like Locke & Key, space operas like Saga, alternate histories like The Manhattan Projects. And then there’s all of those graphic novels that have been adapted for film – Red300V for VendettaWatchmenKick-Ass, and more.

And there’s part of me, as I enjoy reading these graphic novels so thoroughly, that really thinks that maybe this is the genre and medium I want to write for. That this is how I want to structure and tell my story. At least one. And I have a couple of friends looking over my world and ideas now to consider it.

Because I don’t think this is a fad, and I don’t think graphic novels are going away. A couple of reasons. One is, you now have a bunch of young people who are getting into these and are going to carry this on into adulthood. But that’s always the case with things. The other, however, is that I think that comics and this visual medium have found their perfect delivery method: the tablet. I am on the fence about e-books and e-readers versus their physical counterpart. I am completely sold on digital comics. Whether you use the guided view, that takes you panel-by-panel, or read one page at a time, I think this is the right device for reading comics. My top two activities on my iPad are absolutely blogging, and comics reading. So the future for comics is really only just beginning.

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