Friday, November 20, 2015

Creating Flexible Serialized Stories: Part One

Part One: Coming up with a dynamic

This is one of the most detailed posts about writing comics that I've made in awhile, but I want to share more of what the process is like. This started out as one blog post about creating episodic stories, but it got so long I realized that it would be better to do this as a series of posts.

Hopefully those who are looking into creating a long running webcomic or any other type of serialized story will find these posts helpful.
For me writing comics goes in two directions.

The first direction is a complete, contained story. For Couture and Wings, I wrote the script from start to finish, like how someone would write a novel. It's all one contained piece. 

For long, continuous comics though, I've found that it's better to be flexible. 

This blog post series covers the steps I take when creating a long comic. All of it is related to the post I wrote about writing scripts, but this is more about the planning that is done before writing a script.

These steps are especially important when creating a long webcomic, because with a webcomic it's difficult to go back and edit the story once it's posted. It's more like making a TV show than a novel. 

For a long story, I like to come up with two main characters with traits that will lead to them getting into many different situations together. 

Example: There are two sisters who live together. The oldest one is social, outgoing and good at making friends. She wishes to have creative talents like her younger sister, but she does not. She tries to do creative stuff sometimes, but it usually ends up being a disaster, and her younger sister has to help her. On the other hand, the younger sister is not social, but she is imaginative. She wishes to be more social sometimes, so her older sister helps her out with that.  

The two characters are different, but they work together. Mascara is written the same way. Two characters with complementary or opposing traits that work together.

The situations that arise from their combined chemistry takes me to part two, which I'll be sharing in my next post.