Since I started writing my own novel and studying, and I suppose tracking even further back than that when I discovered books by the likes of Robin Hobb and Mark Anthony that re-ignited my love of fantasy fiction, I have been immersed in almost exclusively reading novels of genre fiction and some classics. The old ‘if you want to write it then you need to read it’ school of thought kicked in and I have been reading my way through shelves of novels for years.
But that’s not to say I had forgotten my love of graphic novels and comics. In fact I’m dying to read the French graphic versions of Hobb’s assassin stories and I’ve never stopped watching cartoons and film adaptations. But somewhere along the way I just lost the urge to read graphic work. Mostly time constraints I suppose and the guilt of knowing that reading graphic novels/comics was for pleasure rather than work.
This is something I hope to remedy. Starting off with Umbrella Academy by Gerard Way, Gabriel Bá et al (artists whose work I greatly admire) I am slowly sinking my teeth back into the world of graphics… and I am enjoying it no end. Suddenly I can’t believe I’ve been missing out on it all this time. It is perhaps a little daunting knowing where to begin and what styles to aim for but the possibilities are, let’s face it, pretty endless.
I certainly have a very visual mind, which I apply to my own writing and much as I think I will always be a writer first and a graphic artist second there is something wonderful about being able to watch a story unfold at the same time as reading it. I hope comics will take more of a place in my life from now on and who knows, I may even branch my reviewing out into this area to remove the guilt factor. The exciting part of it is that there’s a whole world of graphics out there waiting for me to discover it. Any suggestions welcome…