University of Houston student Zach Martin had been struggling with a literary story for years about a theater family unraveling in the middle of putting on a play. "I could never get the story to work purely as a written piece," he says. So he decided to adapt it to a new genre - that of graphic novel.
Tonight, from 6 to 8 at Alabama Song, 2521 Oakdale Street, several student writers will be celebrating the release of the first edition of Cougar Comics' Tier One, an anthology that's the product of professor Mat Johnson's graphic novel workshop.
Writers could illustrate their own work, or be matched with professional artists as part of this course of study, a joint effort by the university's Creative Writing Program and the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Center for the Arts.
Ted Closson participated in the class twice as a graduate student. "The workshops are an opportunity to make comics work. You write. If you're an artist you may also draw. If you're quick, it can be an opportunity to craft as many as two to three short works or a short comic and the beginnings of something longer. And the workshop is valuable whether you approach the class with a writing or an artistic focus. Mat works to show writers in the class how to think visually and to help artists understand the nature and pacing of a narrative. Even if you already have something of a background working with comics he has an inside perspective on the industry that is really priceless for those trying to see inside a publishing process."More »