Audience vs the Story?

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siguyva
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Re: Audience vs the Story?

Post by siguyva »

Incredibly true. I've just recently come to the point where I am mature enough to cut out upcoming strips that I spent hours on because I finally decided they weren't integral to what's going on, despite the fact that I was so proud of how they came out. Each time turned out to be a great decision.
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Re: Audience vs the Story?

Post by Bustertheclown »

McDuffies wrote:
Yeahduff wrote:To a certain extent, sure, but fact is sometimes we don't know what's best for our work. Not that you should put it up to committee of course.
Or as Faulkner would say, kill your favourite children. Not that I neccessarily agree with that, but there are numerous works that would have been better if author was strong enough to kill his favourite child.
I guess I get around this by hating all of my children.
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Re: Audience vs the Story?

Post by Yeahduff »

Was thinking about Annie Dillard. Sometimes you have to destroy the load-bearing walls.
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Re: Audience vs the Story?

Post by [geoduck] »

My strip is so weird to begin with, I tend to let it roam where it will. If a few people want to come along with me, cool.

Although, that said, in recent months, I have been making an effort to actually move the plot along a little faster.
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Re: Audience vs the Story?

Post by Ti-Phil »

I'm just glad when I receive some comments from time to time. Most of the times, it was positive, so yay.
But I mostly continue to draw the story cause I want to know the ending.
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Re: Audience vs the Story?

Post by McDuffies »

siguyva wrote:Incredibly true. I've just recently come to the point where I am mature enough to cut out upcoming strips that I spent hours on because I finally decided they weren't integral to what's going on, despite the fact that I was so proud of how they came out. Each time turned out to be a great decision.
Yeah, like I said, I think it's true up to a point. Many times, what we thing are the greatest ideas about our work, turn out not to fit in the whole work, just stick out and ruin the whole, or seem very stupid in hindsight. Then again, sometimes cutting out everything that might potentially stick out, creates a work that is awfully bland and flat; that saying may be interpreted as trying to avoid any risk, which creates works that are so conventional to the point of being pointless.

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Re: Audience vs the Story?

Post by VeryCuddlyCornpone »

McDuffies wrote:
siguyva wrote:Incredibly true. I've just recently come to the point where I am mature enough to cut out upcoming strips that I spent hours on because I finally decided they weren't integral to what's going on, despite the fact that I was so proud of how they came out. Each time turned out to be a great decision.
Yeah, like I said, I think it's true up to a point. Many times, what we thing are the greatest ideas about our work, turn out not to fit in the whole work, just stick out and ruin the whole, or seem very stupid in hindsight. Then again, sometimes cutting out everything that might potentially stick out, creates a work that is awfully bland and flat; that saying may be interpreted as trying to avoid any risk, which creates works that are so conventional to the point of being pointless.
There have been so many plots that I was so excited about that in reality would not work or would be too clunky in my story, and I am glad to have reached a stage like siguyva where I am able to say "Well, that's cool, but doesn't need to be said." I used to not be able to do that, I used to cling to my ideas like I'd never be able to have another one. I've found though that a lot of times when I have to drop a plot point, it makes me think harder and I eventually come up with something much better than I would have if I had just stopped at the first thing to come to mind.
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Re: Audience vs the Story?

Post by RobboAKAscooby »

McDuffies wrote:Many times, what we thing are the greatest ideas about our work, turn out not to fit in the whole work, just stick out and ruin the whole, or seem very stupid in hindsight.
That's the worst thing about writing a story, you have an idea where you're going but something always changes along the way (sometimes as little a joke can change the story) and when it's an updating comic it's much harder to go back and change earlier parts to fit (unless your DC/Marvel then retcon when you feel like it).

Working on my novels I can always go rewrite and fix things - not to mention things that flow well in a 350+ page book don't work as well in a daily comic.
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Re: Audience vs the Story?

Post by McDuffies »

I throw ideas away mercilessly. Sometimes I have a basic idea, develop a comic around it, then realise that the basic idea was kinda stupid and rework the entire thing not to include it. Results are pleasing because they're not as focused as most of my stuff.

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Re: Audience vs the Story?

Post by VinnieD »

Conversely I never throw an idea away. If I can't use it now, I save it for later. As such, expect no giant robots to appear in any of my current comics, but man am I saving up ideas for later.

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Re: Audience vs the Story?

Post by robotthepirate »

peterabnny wrote:Normally I do comedy with my comic. If the mood suits, me, tho, I'll go political. One such political cartoon that I did ( http://crittersonline.org/cartoons/april2010.gif ) so infuriated a friend of mine that he actually ended our friendship over it! But the way I look at it, you wouldn't be a good political cartoonist if you didn't piss at least somebody off. :)
That got a laugh from me anyway. Had to work it out first (American political humour from a British perspective is a little tricky).

peterabnny wrote:
Yeahduff wrote:To a certain extent, sure, but fact is sometimes we don't know what's best for our work. Not that you should put it up to committee of course.

I'm the worst judge of my own work. That's why I'm so glad I have my wife. She makes an awesome sounding board and laugh-o-meter. Stuff that I think is great and would go over well she'll say it falls flat and vice versa. Damnedest thing she turns out to be right 9.9 times out of ten!
Wives are very useful judges indeed. Many peoples many wives that is, not my many wives. I have just the one. She gets to see all of my comics before they go out and she's quite happy to tell me when it makes absolutely no sense what's going on. :D

I'd say that what you do with you comic is up to you but you have to bare both your audience and your story in mind if you want to keep the former. If the comic is mainly lone-standing humour comics then it will come to a shock to readers if you suddenly plunge headlong into a story, especially if its an intense subject. Likewise if you had a comic that was story driven your readers would start getting annoyed if you spent months telling jokes without advancing the plot in the slightest.
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Re: Audience vs the Story?

Post by Yeahduff »

robotthepirate wrote:(American political humour from a British perspective is a little tricky).
Oh, I've seen the vague bullshit your country passes off as political cartooning, I'm not taking any attitude from your likes.
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Re: Audience vs the Story?

Post by robotthepirate »

Yeahduff wrote:
robotthepirate wrote:(American political humour from a British perspective is a little tricky).
Oh, I've seen the vague bullshit your country passes off as political cartooning, I'm not taking any attitude from your likes.
Yeah, I don't get most of our political humour either. I just presume everything is sarcastic and the joke'll be there somewhere.
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Re: Audience vs the Story?

Post by Yeahduff »

Probably a product of a national dryness combined with almost a millennium of history to sort out. The layers upon layers of symbolism and sarcasm that go on in the average panel is daunting.
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Re: Audience vs the Story?

Post by siguyva »

Yeahduff wrote:Probably a product of a national dryness combined with almost a millennium of history to sort out. The layers upon layers of symbolism and sarcasm that go on in the average panel is daunting.
Mmm, layers upon layers of sarcasm.
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Re: Audience vs the Story?

Post by mikemacdee »

We had a competition last year at Yoyogames.com where people threw an indie game together using the theme of "discovery" however they liked. One guy made a brilliant and beautiful stealth game where you played a mouse creeping around, dodging booby traps and killing gun-toting rats with a combat knife while avoiding detection Abe's Oddysee style. The whole game was like that, getting progressively harder until the very last level....where you fought your assassination target in a bossfight. He jumped around the room attacking you Dragonball Z style. It was a total bullshit 180 flip. Can you imagine if you got all the way to the end of Halo and the last level was a tetris clone?

Anyway it's the same thing with comics: no matter what plot arc you do, if it's consistent with the comic's overall theme and style, stick with it even if the audience complains, I says. Remember when Dick Tracy went to the moon and met aliens? Chester Gould ate flak for it, and he basically deserved it.

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Re: Audience vs the Story?

Post by McDuffies »

The real victim of that story was the moon princess.

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Re: Audience vs the Story?

Post by Risky »

McDuffies wrote:The real victim of that story was the moon princess.
Well, she is the one who got blown up, so that seems a fair argument. One could argue that Honeymoon also had it pretty rough, since she witnessed the murder of her mother as a baby. And was named Honeymoon.

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Re: Audience vs the Story?

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siguyva wrote:Incredibly true. I've just recently come to the point where I am mature enough to cut out upcoming strips that I spent hours on because I finally decided they weren't integral to what's going on, despite the fact that I was so proud of how they came out. Each time turned out to be a great decision.

I dunno. If I've spent most of the day working on a strip only for it to fall flat when it's nearing completion, I'm more inclined to try and fix it and save it, rather than let all that effort go for nothing. To keep from getting into that position, I'll do a thumbnail sketch of the whole cartoon and run it by my wife and see what she thinks. Once it passes her muster I'll put it into production. If it falls flat after that, nearly every single time it's because of something in the last panel. So, I'll go work and see if I can turn the ship around. I think it's a hell of a lot of work to do that kind of 11th hour patch work, but I'd rather try and turn the gag/story around that way rather than scrap the whole thing and start over - especially if I have a deadline staring me in the face and I simply don't have time to start all over again.

Ti-Phil wrote:I'm just glad when I receive some comments from time to time. Most of the times, it was positive, so yay.
Hell, with me, I'd be happy to get ANYTHING - even if it's a simple "YOU SUCK!" There's one friend and fan of mine who gives me regular feedback, but baring that most of the time I feel like I'm working in a complete vaccuum. :(
"I've come to accept a lot of what's wrong with this world, and there's not much I can do about it." - Johnny "Rotten" Lydon

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Re: Audience vs the Story?

Post by peterabnny »

robotthepirate wrote: That got a laugh from me anyway. Had to work it out first (American political humour from a British perspective is a little tricky).
Thank you very much! :D
Wives are very useful judges indeed. Many peoples many wives that is, not my many wives. I have just the one. She gets to see all of my comics before they go out and she's quite happy to tell me when it makes absolutely no sense what's going on. :D
I know - I've come to depend on that honesty, too.

But you know the greatest irony of it all? At this point, with all the other things that I have going on that are competing for my precious little free time, getting up the gumption to draw is getting harder and harder for me, and the fact that I get no feedback from anyone about my comic and I seem to be going nowhere with it only compounds the problem. And yet, even as that's going on, because of my wife I feel that the stuff I'm currently putting out is my best-drawn and best-written ever, and I still look for new outlets to show it on. It's like I a crazy unstoppable force/immovable object dichotomy inside. I tear myself apart, but yet I keep going. I honestly think I'm in an abusive relationship with my artwork...
I'd say that what you do with you comic is up to you but you have to bare both your audience and your story in mind if you want to keep the former. If the comic is mainly lone-standing humour comics then it will come to a shock to readers if you suddenly plunge headlong into a story, especially if its an intense subject. Likewise if you had a comic that was story driven your readers would start getting annoyed if you spent months telling jokes without advancing the plot in the slightest.
And for that, I always make it a point to leave clues for the reader as to whether I'm doing an indie or a serial vis a vis strip titles.
"I've come to accept a lot of what's wrong with this world, and there's not much I can do about it." - Johnny "Rotten" Lydon

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