REVIEW: Paul Kupperberg’s Illustrated Guide to Writing Comics

Title: Paul Kupperberg’s Illustrated Guide to Writing Comics

Publisher: Charlton Neo Media in association with Buffalo Avenue Books

Creators: Paul Kupperberg (Writer, Executive Editor), Mort Todd (Editor in Chief), Roger McKenzie (Chief Editorial Co-ordinator), Jennifer King (Editor), COMICFIX (Art Direction & Packaging)

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

For aspiring creators, the opportunity to bend the ear of our predecessors is always welcome. We value the experience, the skill, and the history they can teach us. So when one of them takes the time to prepare something that shares their knowledge, that passes it on to the next generation, I’m always thrilled.

When I first opened PAUL KUPPERBERG’S ILLUSTRATED GUIDE TO COMICS, my very first thought was, “Wow. This reminds me of the textbooks I used to have in college.” And it does. It’s dense, clocking in at 128 pages. There’s a lot of text, but that’s to be expected because the man is both a writer as well as a teacher trying to teach us. And there’s a lot to share. But don’t let the size of the book scare you. Paul has it broken down into chapters that walk you along the process of creating a story, from concept to world-building, to plot and everything in-between and after. This is very much exactly the kind of thing I wish I would have had 20 years ago when I was first trying to figure the whole writing comics thing out. But I’m glad I have it now.

Throughout the book, not only are there Paul’s words, but an abundance of art examples from various contributing artists as well showcasing what he’s trying to teach us. And the pages we see from them are all wonderful. As an added bonus, there are blurbs throughout the book from other industry professionals; from editors, to other writers, to artists, colorists, and letterers, all sharing their experiences about what works and what doesn’t as well. The whole thing is immensely useful.

I recommend this book very much as a resource for those wanting to get into creating comics. As I said, it may be a little intimidating given the page count, but it really is worth your time and effort.

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