"I can’t do that" is a phrase that is said inside someone’s head every five seconds.*
If you say it enough, or hear it enough, you will believe it. Unfortunately, a lot of times you’re wrong.
It’s easy to be a pessimist.
If you’ve got a pessimist on your back, think about their agenda, think about what they know, what they’ve tried, what they’ve failed trying and what the story is that they tell themselves about life and the world.
Pessimism is a story with the same ending and it always lacks triumph.
Pessimism is also a really boring story and it results in a really boring life. Yes, it is a life with far less failure, less embarrassment, less financial strain, but nothing really interesting happens.
I dealt with a little pessimism along the journey to create the Vampire Mob graphic novel, some of it from a voice in my head telling me I couldn’t.
Adapting a script meant to be shot with cameras into a script destined to be drawn by artists required some brain bending.
Reading Scott McCloud’s books on comics, watching his TED talk, jumping on the net to digital read comics and talking to pals, Corey Blake and Terri Reed, I have a simple understanding of the form. Lots more to learn, just like filmmaking, but it’s taken months just to get to this point.
A lot of the adaptation process is about what’s gotta go. Storylines, dialogue, scenes, absolutely everything is a potential editing target.
"Killing darlings" in screenwriting is quaint compared to the darling serial killing involved in adapting this screenplay into a graphic novel script. There’s darling blood everywhere!
What stays has to have a damn good reason for staying. What’s important? What can I show and not say? How many darlings am I willing to kill? All of which are good questions for any kind of writing.
Bending my brain to see this story on the page, as a series of panels, still images, dialogue as the written word, that took reading comic book scripts and also comparing them with the finished result.
Writing a graphic novel script reminds me a lot of editing video, where you pick the important moments, like a look from an actor that uses no dialogue.
It’s been a fun puzzle to figure out and there’s lots more pieces to play with.
The Vampire Mob graphic novel script is in draft form at the moment. It appears to work, that’s all I’ll say for now.
*This statistic is completely made up.