12 study guides
10 podcast episodes
Plenty of process/teaching/thinking posts about comics, and how to analyse them, and sometimes how to teach them.
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.
I gotta admit – I’m loving running this Patreon.
The primary goal is to make Comic Book Study Guides – a purpose that already excites me, 100%, but then it’s also becoming a place where I can dump more process thoughts and other educational malarkey involving comics.
The plan, right now, is to run one season, 12 months of Study Guides, and then we can take things from there. So, with our first month closed, I wanted to reflect on what’s on offer.
2 x Comic Book Study Guides
I released a guide for ETERNAL [by me, Eric Zawadzki, Dee Cunniffe, and Dan Hill], and one for GHOSTS [by Raina Telgemeier – so one is adult shieldmaidens and ghosts, and the other is all ages friendly and a tale of growing up and accepting death…and also ghosts.
1 x Podcast Study Episode
I recorded and released a podcast episode where I unpack some aspects of the guide for ETERNAL, and generally open up some deeper thoughts about the book’s theme.
Comic Script Library Access
I give out a link to a folder full of scripts, pitches, and other insanity I’ve cooked up over the years [some my best ever work, some insane sophomore stuff].
3 x Process Notes
I’ve written about Shaun Tan’s THE ARRIVAL and it’s gorgeous pacing, I’ve given out a free lesson around Frank Quitely’s TED Talk using a Google Form, and I’ve written about how Frank Miller scripted DAREDEVIL: BORN AGAIN and how that translated to David Mazzuchelli’s art.
2 x One Page Script Commissions
Oh, yeah, I had a blast typing up two single page script commissions – about two wildly different things – and sending them off in the mail.
All of these things are work, they take time, but I like the way they sit in my head. Analysing comics is professional development for a comic writer, and it’s just fun for a guy like me. I’d rather do this than scroll Facebook again, or write an extra 500 words into my newsletter [yeah, the newsletter will probably take the odd slide because of this, I’d rather give deeper process cuts here than on the newsletter for now, sorry].
If you haven’t checked out my Patreon yet, here it is!
And if you aren’t going to back it, I’d love to know what’s holding you back, and how I can help remove that barrier. I think pledging $5 a month is no small ask, but for that you get 2 Study Guides, 1 podcast ep, and access to whatever and however many process notes and posts I end up putting up there.
Okay, I’m now officially in the business of making Comic Book Study Guides
I want to see comics taught in more classes, I want people thinking more deeply about what they read. I want to guide people to bigger questions and themes, but ultimately I want them seeking these things out and finding them without me.
These Comic Book Study Guides are documents that offer up guides for discussion and rich analysis, as well as some specific tasks students/readers can complete.
Support at the basic tier and you get two guides a month for $1.50 each.
I’ll also create one podcast episode a month unpacking one of those Study Guides and what’s in it, so that could also be a decent teaching/thinking resource.
I’ll open up my Comic Script PDF Library to backers, and I’m also offering a One Page Script Commission where I’ll type/print a one page script and mail it to you, so this is for those who really want to support and give me something to chew on.
But if you just want the guides, well, they’re affordable for a reason – hook in. I’m just making these for one year, a full season, and come what may after that.
If you support, or share the link, or do anything that sends good waves to me, and good education about comics into the world, then I greatly appreciate it.