One of the hardest things about comics that I'm glad to have finally gotten the hang of is writing pitches. It's not elevator-pitch style (don't ask me to do that), but it's concise and has the goldilocks ratio of information needed. (3 pages divided into 6 sections). I'm finally putting the Twitter thread that explains this style of pitching right here on the blog.(more…)
I've been in this webcomics game for... close to 10 years now (if you don't count the 3 years of prep). The second I graduated from secondary school, I jumped right in to launching my first webcomic. Things and mindsets and empires have come and gone since then, including my idea of what success and validation means.(more…)
On the rare occasions I step out of my bubble (or, I don't even need to: sometimes the call is coming from inside the house), I time-travel to the era before the rise of Alan Moore, Neil Gaiman, Art Spiegelman, Marjane Satrapi, etc, and encounter publishing or academic or institutional or creative people who think comics are not a valid art form or even a medium. Despite the fact comics are flourishing in the US, already a core part of literature in Europe and Japan, accessible to a varied audience, and proving itself a strong representational medium for a variety of issues/topics/experiences. But I don't have to reiterate the statistics and official articles and journals to confirm this. It should be as mundanely acceptable a phenomenon as prose books and films in the global cultural consciousness, because it already is a part of said consciousness.(more…)
Last weekend I received feedback from my editor, A, finally completing the second of a two part alpha reading stage- allowing me now the comfort to feel I've reached far along enough that I can start talking about the thing. The writing thing.
I wasn't sure how to document the Writing Stage of Alexander Comic (or my graphic novels in general). It's not as instant, fast or natural as the rest of the graphic novel making process, when it's just me reading or sketching or drawing, and I can just post a screenshot/photo accompanied with a quip. You can't really show much with writing; only the end result. Additionally, I have this superstitious belief that the period of making a story come to life should be treated as sacred, private, personal. Talking too much about the writing while you're supposed to be doing the work is an invitation for a jinx, or at least... it invites said jinx to me.(more…)
This is the second stage following the Onion Method: An Outlining Method for Graphic Novels. You got the onion...now how are you going to present it? This post will talk you through how I craft the art direction of a graphic novel... weaving the thematic and character motivations established earlier in the outline into its final, ultimate mode of language: the visuals.(more…)
I am reading The Penguin Book of Prose Poems, an anthology of... well, prose poems. A nicely-sized paperback made out of stacks of typical cheap FSC paper. But my goodness, the book smells good. Almost vanilla-ish, earthy, subtle. And I think, man I wish comics smelled more like prose paperbacks.
Comics smell like ink: heavy, pungent. Like glue in effect. I'd know – the Carpet Merchant came out as a dense giant sandwich of CMYK; nearly every page is covered from corner to corner. Apparently people enjoy that smell. It's the first thing they would comment on, before they talk about the art or the story. I like watching people plunge their face into my book. It's funny, but sweet.
Unfortunately I don't like that smell very much. It's not my thing. I wish comics smelled more like prose paperbacks. I want vanilla. I want the smell that comes with yellowing pages. I want comics to compliment the atmospheric scent of my studio-bedroom, which is also a library. I want comics to smell like a dusty library. I don't know. I have memories of reading that's incongruous to the materials my books are printed with. My entire history is cheap FSC paper and brittle ancient sweet stock. But comics are a different medium, and until they make ink that smells like prose paperbacks (though if we had a choice, I'd prefer peach or brown sugar), comics will have to smell like comics.
I was talking to a friend in our Group Chat the other day, and he asked if any of us had any recommendations for a system that'd help him organise the research for his food culture graphic novel. It reminded me that the system I used has changed in the past year, and besides, it's time to make an addendum on the How I Do Research for Graphic Novels post. So here it is. An update of sorts.(more…)
FINALLY YESSS THE NEWS IS OUT!
My new middle-grade adventure graphic novel MY AUNT IS A MONSTER is about a POC blind girl writer and her (formerly) World’s Greatest Adventurer aunt with a big secret. :O You may recognise Lady Whimsy from a post awhile ago!
A bit more in the cut.(more…)
This Sunday, June 14 2020, I’m going to be on an online author’s interview to talk about my life as a comics creator. If you’re interested in knowing about my life, my villain origin story and my craft - this is the rare opportunity to ask those questions and hear my voice/accent live.
Registration is required for the event (link): bit.ly/TMC1DL1
The timezone is GMT+8, Malaysia time.
This event is part of the book launch for my upcoming graphic novel with Tintin Pantoja, The Maker’s Club! The full schedule and programming can be found on the Difference Engine website.
Thoughts on the in-progress art direction for my Alexander the Great graphic novel/comic.(more…)
Reimena Yee is a graphic novelist, artist and flamingo enthusiast.
She writes and illustrates quite a few webcomics and graphic novels. When not making books, she lulls away her time with essays on craft, life and experiences in the publishing industry. Some of her thoughts of art and life are rather unstructured and will evolve over time as this blog matures, as they should be.
Currently committed to being Alexander the Great's death doula. Is a nerd for all things spooky and historical.
Melbourne / Kuala Lumpur