I'm thinking about how it's time I finally do some #Representation work in my storytelling.
I've a lot of complicated, jumbly feelings about writing stories which borrow too much from my life experience. Since forever ago, I've subconsciously and intentionally avoided writing what they call "ownvoices" fiction. I've so many strange stories featuring a varied cast of characters in my roster, but never one set in Malaysia, and never a character who completely shares major parts of my actual identity: Malaysian Chinese, ace, sort of? non-binary, definitely queer, first-gen immigration of Australia, and other biographical fun facts.(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…)
If there was a hill I'd die on, it'd be called Craft. It's something that occupies my thoughts, more than most things. That's evident by the existence of this blog: I'm always writing and thinking about my experiences in the world (as a person, as an artist) and how they feed into my creative practice.
But I hardly ever talk about creative craft as its own thing. There are reasons why. Partly because the soundbyte diet of social media doesn't fit my style of ruminating (I don't make zingers; I go on and on and on...) and partly because if you do try to soundbyte anything that approaches advice, it'll be poorly-received even if it goes viral, because a 280 character limit makes every word sound like a rule of law. Plus the online art environment has shifted dramatically.
And I don't adhere to the popular idea of what craft should be to an Artist or Writer anyway. Not in a Too Cool way. It just so happens.(more…)
I will confess that I've always had the desire to be recognised by an Institution: schools, libraries, museums, universities, you know. Buildings. Bodies. I want my books to be analysed and mined formally, to bridge the gap between the public and institutions, to educate, to inspire joy in learning. I love the world. I love the platonic ideal of academia: to chase a subject wholeheartedly, to share and introduce to outsiders the joy and madness and wonder that comes from seeing something unexpected in a different way, to find interdisciplinary solidarity in fellow nerds. Though I've officially left academia to pursue a career that more aligns with my way of storytelling, of learning and teaching, I'm still a scholar at heart. I want to be a part of this network, because it is where I feel most at home in.
And yet recently I was reminded of the Reason why I left academia, and it's forced me to reconsider my desire to be Institutionally Recognised, if it's even worth it.(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…)
Most Alexander-the-Great-inspired fiction is arguably a fanfic of the man himself. This includes that 2000 year old tradition called the Alexander Romance, which is basically (simplistically) an isekai alternate universe history of the Macedonian hero going on wacky adventures, retold over and over again by writers and artists who admire his achievements. But what happens... when the author of the 21st century Alexander Romance is not herself a fan of Alexander?(more…)
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…)
Reimena Yee is a graphic novelist, artist and flamingo enthusiast.
She creates the webcomics The World in Deeper Inspection, and The Carpet Merchant of Konstantiniyya; the latter of which is the first Malaysian graphic novel to be Eisner-nominated.
Currently writing and drawing a whole bunch of stuff. Is a nerd for all things spooky and historical.
Melbourne / Kuala Lumpur
Who knows ??