laughing_tree: (Seaworth)
laughing_tree ([personal profile] laughing_tree) wrote in [community profile] scans_daily2017-03-19 11:02 am

Cinema Purgatorio #8 - "And the Blackness Moved"



"I think that anthologies and especially black and white ones are probably vital if we wish to retain – or, God forbid, improve upon – the basic values and standards upon which this entire art-form, let alone this entire industry, are founded. The anthology title is of tremendous value, simply because it will contain a number of strips that vary in length from a half-page to perhaps six or eight pages. The importance of this necessary limitation, to fledgling comic writers and to the writing standards of the field as a whole, cannot be overestimated. For one thing, anthology titles were once the near-universal proving ground for new writers entering the industry, based on the sound commercial logic that if you give somebody a trial shot at writing a four page story and the results are less than riveting then it will be no great disaster and no great loss. And of course someone who has learned their craft through the vehicle of the short story (where you have to establish the characters, world, premise and structure before resolving all of these satisfyingly in a handful of pages) will certainly possess all of the skills and discipline necessary to scale up their narrative into a tautly-written 24-page book, or an ongoing series, or a ‘graphic novel’ as the occasion demands. The same is not true the other way about, however, and writers who have entered the field via a monthly book with a potentially endless continuing story seem to find the short form unimaginably difficult and restrictive. For a lot of comic book writers it seems like the idea of resolving a storyline ever is an anathema, let alone resolving it within eight pages or less. Simply put, while mastering the short anthology story is certainly harder work for the creator, the rewards to the individual concerned and to the field as a whole are immeasurable." -- Alan Moore





captainbellman: It Was A Boojum... (Default)

[personal profile] captainbellman 2017-03-19 09:41 am (UTC)(link)
Jeezus, that's an odd one.
dc2houseofmystery: (Default)

[personal profile] dc2houseofmystery 2017-03-19 10:49 am (UTC)(link)
It's difficult because Moore famously denigrates the form and claims no new ideas or innovation happened after his 80s boom, and then says stuff like this. But personally, because of his problematic output over the last decade or so and because he's The Grumpy Old Man Of Comics, his opinion now holds little weight for me.

[personal profile] tcampbell1000 2017-03-19 12:45 pm (UTC)(link)
People are complex, and we have to recognize that. I grappled a lot with Moore's more questionable statements because I so admired the rest of who he was and what he did.

I do think that while the sentiment is admirable, its focus is pretty narrow. There are plenty of markets for four-page stories-- for many young creators, that's a Tumblr or Imgur post. You might call that not a real "market" because it doesn't pay, but then we get into freemium models and other facts of life for the young cartoonist, facts about which Moore doesn't seem to have thought much.

Acting as a spokesperson for comics is admittedly a pretty thankless and doomed job. No matter how impressive your resume, you're always going to experience only some of the vast universe of experiences it offers. But some of us think we're qualified anyway, and that's when we run into problems.

[personal profile] locuatico 2017-03-19 09:47 pm (UTC)(link)
I think part of the problem is that few creators have as complicated a relationship with the comics industry as Moore. He has a deep love-hate relationship with it with the sole exception of DC, with whom he only has hatred for.