Monday, June 20, 2011

Progress Report: 6/20/2011

I carry on! In spite of what was one of the busiest weeks on record at work (my manager was on vacation, and thus I got to do the work of two maxed-out people), I managed to get some good writing in.

Translating Thunderstruck to prose has really given me an appreciation of how much flexibility the comic form gives you. There are some really cool things that you can do in comics that have no direct analogue in prose. I mean, this comic for example:

Comic 56 from Chapter 3...

I like that one. You get an ominous feel for what Grandma is up to, all done in pictures. Now, I can think of a way to describe those scenes of Grandma's and make it work, but the way they're plopped into the middle of Sharon and Gail's conversation is just not a thing that will fly in a prose context. Then you move on a few strips to something like this:

Comic 59 from Chapter 3...

And that's pretty much a wash. There are literally ten scene jumps on one page. You can make that work in a comic (I thought so, anyway), but in prose it would be a mess. And yes, there are plenty of solutions for getting across the same point. It's just interesting to appreciate how much freedom for certain things that the comic form allows.

Prose, on the other hand, has its own strengths, like I said in my last post. The translation between the two is giving me a new appreciation of both.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Progress Report: 6/6/2011

Let's see, starting off with an "At the Movies" segment...

I would highly recommend X-Men First Class. I went in with moderate expectations and was really impressed by the performances, the treatment of the characters, and the high level of quality of the whole thing. I am pretty sure that someone who has never read an X-Men comic would still enjoy it. It's my favorite big movie of the year so far.

Lousy batch of previews, though. I was never into Green Lantern, so it's kind of hard to get excited about a CG-fest like that. Saw the first trailer for Rise of the Planet of the Apes, and I couldn't swallow the premise. The idea is that a bunch of CG apes gain super intelligence, enough to wield spears and pick locks, and this somehow leads to them taking over the world, I guess. Here's a pro tip for would-be supervillains: if you're going to raise legions to conquer the planet, do not start with a species that is already endangered. You run into a real numbers problem. Also, intelligent enough to wield spears is inadequate. If this was Rise of the Planet of Raccoons Who Build Force Fields and Laser Cannons, that's starting to seem more plausible. And as you can see, I'm setting the bar really low here.

Okay, enough of that. In terms of writing, it was a really good weekend. I got a lot done, so much that I'm taking one of my "must spend" vacation days to work on more today.

What, you want a sample? Oh, very well. Thunderstruck readers will know the characters here:

"It would be natural to assume that Psyche was not the sort of person cut out for surveillance work. Taller than most men, with rare violet eyes that could stop a young man’s heart and a body that any Hollywood starlet would kill to match, she did not fade into a crowd. She moved with tigresses’ blend of grace and vitality, possessing a beauty that could make a poet throw aside his pen in despair. Psyche should have drawn the eye of every man and woman within a thousand yards; her face should have branded itself into the memory of anyone who chanced to look at her.

In fact, the opposite was true. Most people barely noticed she was there.

The eyes of onlookers widened for just a moment as they lit upon her, as if for the briefest of instants the one who saw her recognized what she was. Then the harassed glaze of the modern urbanite dropped back into place, and their eyes slid away to settle on something they could accept and understand. They shifted and moved aside to let her pass without realizing they had seen her, unconsciously withdrawing deeper into their cocoons of self-absorption so they would not have to feel the stirrings of something ancient and primal as they entered her presence.

There were times when she needed to be noticed. She had to make a conscious effort to diminish herself, to become more mundane and acceptable for as long as it took to buy a meal or ask directions. They gawked like moonstruck fauns and stammered their answers at her when she addressed them, then forgot her seconds after she turned and went along her way. The brighter Psyche shone, the more they closed their eyes against her. And so she walked among them, rendered invisible by the corona of her own radiance as she passed.

But Gail Curmen had sensed her."

Back to work...