Storytelling 101l

Thursday, February 7th, 2008

This page for today’s comic has the distinction of being the last page that I came up with when I finished writing The Sky Kayak.

When I wrote The Upside-Down Me, although I had the basic plot worked out in my head, I started writing it from page 1 and worked straight through to the end. I did end up going back and revising a bunch of pages, but the story was written in more or less a linear fashion. With The Sky Kayak, again I had the plot more or less worked out in my head, but I wrote the story out in different chunks. I started out writing about the first fifteen pages, then skipped over to about the last twenty or so pages, then bounced around and wrote different little jokes and scenes and tried to tie everything together. Today’s page was the last one that I had. I needed a gag or something that was entertaining to go from the scene with the star-maker to the upcoming big cloud and it just took me a long time to think of something that I felt worked.

I don’t know if there’s a specific ‘correct’ method to writing. I’ve heard a lot of people say that they’ll figure out the end and work backward. I definitely try to think that way when I’m plotting a story out so that it has a satisfying ending. Being as this is a free webcomic, I want anyone who reads it to feel like they’ve got their money’s worth. As far as the actual work of writing a story out though, I think a person just has to go with what works best for them.

2 Responses to “Storytelling 101l”

  1. mark heath Says:

    I read and loved the upside down story. And thanks to a prompt from Mark Anderson’s cartoon board, I popped here today to see what’s new. The idea of a naked shadow is funny, and the idea that a shadow doesn’t always have time to find the same clothes is even better. I’ve never thought of that before. Your art knocked my socks off the first time I saw it, and the writing took care of my remaining wardrobe. Great work.

  2. Trade Says:

    Ha! Sounds like you’re sporting the latest in Shadow Wear there, Mark. ;)

    Mr. Anderson’s cartoon board is great, huh?

    Thanks for the nice words, especially about the writing. I’ve always worked really hard on my artwork, but it was something I had an aptitude for. I was always the kid in class who could draw well. But writing was always a mystery to me. Although I always read a lot, I really couldn’t write a complete sentence until a got to college, and if I did before that it was only blind luck not because I understood what I was doing, so I’ve had to work extra hard on that end of things. I really appreciate the props there.