Prior to this past year, I had either written and drawn all my comics, or drawn comics while working from a script. For the work both written and drawn by me, most were mini comics, or short (2-12 page) stories for anthologies. I had never really given much thought to separating writing and drawing, but a number of opportunities presented themselves...like writing a one-page story for Mike Allred's Madman: 20th Anniversary MONSTER! Actually, he asked both Joe and me, so we worked together (awwww). In this post, I'm going to outline the process that I used to write the script. I'll be doing this with future posts as well, since I've recently written some other comics-y things.
BRAINSTORMING...or IN WHICH MARIS AND JOE TALK ABOUT NERDY THINGS OVER COFFEE
This might be my favorite part. Joe and I spent many walks and coffees discussing what may happen in the story. We do this for each other's respective projects as well; sometimes it's good to just talk stuff out.
FIGURING IT OUT...or IN WHICH I MAKE ILLEGIBLE MARKINGS WITH A WRITING UTENSIL ON A FIBROUS SURFACE
I should mention that I wrote a brief synopsis to send to Mike before we started laying out the panels. Also, I re-read o bunch of Madmen comics to get my head in the story. Research = fun! (Especially when it involves reading comics!)
THE ROUGH PANEL LAYOUT...or IN WHICH I MAKE ILLEGIBLE MARKINGS WITH A WRITING UTENSIL ON A FIBROUS SURFACE (part 2)
I guess this would be the second draft (but who's counting); scrapping things that don't fit, and tweaking the dialogue and settings to make sure it flows.
THE SCRIPT!! or LOOK, MA! I'M USING A COMPOOTER!!
Yup. Looking a bit more...professional? I really like using a pen and paper (stubborn and old-fashioned, I know), but typing it out is nice. I can make those final edits, and even scribble on the script some more. After looking at the final script, Joe combined a few panels/lines of dialogue. When you look at his layout sketch, you can see how ridiculously dense it is (sorry, Joe):
If you'd like to see more about Joe's process (including some very silly reference photos), they can be found here and here and here.
Mike Allred's Madman: 20th Anniversary MONSTER is out now! I'll be posting more about my writing process for other projects, as well as my pencilling/inking/coloring process. Until then...bye bye!