Thinking About Comics [writing, listening, reading, oh my]

by ryankl

I think the main reason I love the internet is because it gave me more spaces and places to think.

I loved the public and school libraries as a kid, I’d wander in, find stuff to touch, touch it all, and then settle on some of the touched to take home. I could buy some books, and secondhand book stores are my constant must see attraction in all new and foreign towns, but I could never buy enough. But I could always borrow things.

I sampled a bunch of new authors because of the freedom of libraries. I looked through all kinds of non-fic reference material because it was there to browse. I like to fill my brain with things, and sometimes I even re-use those things later.

Then came the internet – and I could find so so many things.

 

I set up my Google Reader [rip to this blessed resource] to collect a multitude of sites and blogs and slap them into a readable scroll. I filled my eyes with ideas and hypotheses and I tried to make sense of it all. Free script downloadable pdfs flowed freely, and op-eds about writing swirled into my brain, and in-depth analyses about my favourite works and creators of fiction were caught in my net. It was amazing, I won’t lie.

You can learn a lot by reading something that isn’t something already on your shelves. So the internet became a place where I could comb, for free, through things.

Now, curating this since social media’s empire rose and fell has become a skill, but it’s an important one because there’s good stuff out there, and if you want it you can most definitely find it.

Or you can make it yourself.

I launched a Patreon to fund me making comic book study guides and the campaign is going amazing. I’ve sent out pdf guides for people looking to study all kinds of comics from GHOSTS by Raina Talgemeier to BATMAN: YEAR ONE by David Mazzucchelli and Frank Miller. I’ve also got podcasts on there where I unpack parts of a study guide, or where I just chat about a great comic I’ve read before. It’s fun, and it’s my way of providing a little something extra to the internet for people to dig.

You can head across to support and get all the old study guides, and be ready for the new one:

The comic list above is the Good Stuff, and I’ll also be talking about it in a podcast on there very very soon.

I want a future where people discuss comics, and think about theme, and enjoy their fiction on a deeper level. I hope it helps in any way.

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