Mac McCool - Children's Book Illustrations and Graphic Novels

Monday, November 05, 2007

Children's Graphic Novel Day: Thanks So Much!

To all of you who attended the 1st Children's Graphic Novel Day, organized by the SCBWI Tri-Regions Chapters of Southern California, a MAGNIFICIENT THANK YOU! Our speakers shared so much, from Marilyn Scott-Waters's funny intro and survey of the history of comic art, to Bob Singer's ever-so-insightful critiques of all your comics pages (congrats on completing those!), and to our panel of speakers who revealed the potential and complexities of this trade! We even had a surprise last minute guest speaker, Kazu Kibuishi, who showed us his first published copy of his upcoming graphic novel, Amulet. And to all our terrific volunteers and organizers, thank you, thank you, thank you!

If you couldn't make it, I've condensed notes from the roundtable and will post them in a few installments starting today. Our speakers included Douglass Barre, J.H. Everett, Kazu Kibuishi, Tommy Kovac, Michael Payne, and Kelly Sonnack (bios).

Part 1: On Trends in the World of Children's Graphic Novels:
The Harry Potter series proved to adults that children could read longer books, so one of the trends affecting graphic novels is higher page counts (Baby Sitters Club, Amulet, Avalon High). Another continuing trend is the broadening appeal to girls, from Babymouse to Fruit Basket. Books that increase social and playful interactions (with Harry Potter bringing parents and children closer or Captain Underpants with flipbook animations in its pages and other fun activities) connect and engage readers beyond the mere reading experience, with the universe of the story entering the real world of the children.

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