I’m trying to figure out whether to write an as-yet-unformed narrative as prose or as the script for a graphic novel.
— Control. Being totally in charge of the world I’m creating.
— Being free to write about things that are hard to draw without fear that I’ll eventually make an artist’s life hell.
— I can’t use silent pages, which can be a great way to create breathing space for a reader and convey moods.
— I can’t use the kind of narrative counterpoint that I love so much in comics, when the pictures convey something different from and perhaps in opposition to the text.
Graphic Novel Pros:
— Collaboration. Getting the insight and talent of another creator.
— A graphic novel script doesn’t take as long to write as a novel.
Graphic Novel Cons:
— The script might not take as long to write, but I still have to wait for the artist to draw it, and the artist almost certainly has other projects competing for their time.
— There are still a lot of readers out there who don’t speak the language of graphic novels, who aren’t confident in their ability to parse panels, or are just disinclined to make the effort.
How am I going to decide? I don’t know.
I can already visualize certain scenes very clearly. But does that mean the scenes will be most effective as comics, or that I simply need to convey them as clearly in prose as I’m seeing them in my head?
Other writers of both comics and prose, how do you decide which format is best for a particular story?