Special Edition Podcast

Make Comics #3 – Long Stories or Short Stories

Show Notes

Josh Flanagan is back with Andy Schmidt to bring you a weekly dose of advice on breaking into and making comics!

This week, they discuss how long you should go! Should you start making short stories, or go for the long epic tale that’s been festering in your brain for as long as you can remember. What’s the best way to start? We’ve got our take on the long and the short of it, when it comes to comics.

Running Time: 00:13:31

Andy is the founder of the online comic book school Comics Experience, as well as a former editor at Marvel Comics and IDW Publishing. Josh Flanagan has been working on iFanboy.com, talking, reviewing, and thinking about comics for over a decade, as well as writing and creating some of his own.

If you’re interested in going further, you can check out Comics Experience, where they offer live, online courses in writing, drawing, coloring, and lettering comics, as well as a workshop community, where creators can interact with and get feedback from other creators.


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  1. Nothing will give you a deeper appreciation of those who create comics month after month than trying to create your own comic.

    Lots of useful nuggets in this one – best one yet!

  2. pretty good show full of fun tips and it kinda hit home for me.

    About a yr ago I saw Mignola’s first 8 pg hellboy story and thought that would be a smart way to do things. Writing a short 8 pg’er is friggin hard! yes i wrote too many panels. yes i wrote too many balloons, yes i tried to fit in too much plot. It was a mess. It wasn’t until l started doing layout sketches that i really saw that. I wrote a few other short “scenes” to get to know my characters better and those formed the basis of my first story that i’m working on now.

    Now i’m working on a one shot first issue…solid focus on showcasing the main characters and central ideas of the “world” and bigger story that i will try to pitch. I’m drawing, writing and lettering myself, so i’ve revamped the art direction of the entire thing 3 times since first experimenting around. At this point i’d say i’m 80% done with it. Been working on this one story idea for about 1.5 yrs on and off (a few months of breaks in there too) so yeah….its a learning process.

    i’m learning how much work there is involved with making a comic. It definitely is eye opening….hope i’m getting better at it.

  3. nice, i was going to write a long graphic novel at first but now i’m going to concentrate on the short stories first so that my story telling is more polished. These podcast are awesome. thanks again

  4. 8 panels is not too many. 9 is not too many, 9 panels become ‘the grid’ and if you’re not using that as a basline or an idea of pacing in comics, then it’s time to consider it. It’s perfect for horror or comedy where you have 3, 3 panel strips ontop of each other, allowing each ‘strip’ to be a moment it’s own.

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