Perspective and strategic thinking: Learning to catch luck as it flies by, due partly to living 4 years as an expat in France in the bosom of the semi-socialist French safety net.
Out on the Wire: the Storytelling Secrets of the New Masters of Radio, my comics documentary on the narrative ideas and techniques of the new generation of top audio producers hit the bookstores last Tuesday. And I’m making a few stops for book events in the USA in September. I hope you’ll come see me; I’d be thrilled to get a chance to sign your books for you.
I’m just gonna come right out with it: I am a poser.
I’m a cartoonist who didn’t go to art school.
I teach, but I have no teaching credentials.
I wrote two books about how radio producers make stories, but I’ve never* made a radio story.
I write articles that have no basis in research whatsoever.
I’m not punk enough.
My French sucks.
In addition to the usual festival craziness, this year’s event will be particularly exciting for me, as it will mark the first time I’ve originated a book in French, with a French publisher, thus achieving a goal I set for myself the very first time I went to FIBD, back in 1998 (although then I said I wanted to do it in 5 years). True fact. Ask Tom Devlin.
Whether you’re ordinarily a foodie or not, if you’re coming from abroad to France, you expect to eat well even if your primary purpose in coming is comics. But it’s all too easy to end up eating mediocre bistro food (i.e. chewy steak with ungreat frites) or kebabs the whole time. None of which really gives you the flavor of where you really are, which is, in this case, southwest France. So let’s start with the basics.
This moment of vast cultural freakout about how awesome podcasts are (hello, Serial!) feels super-strange to me. I mean, good-strange, like, hey, maybe I’m not crazy for drawing a 200-page comic about how they make this stuff! Here’s a list of some of my top listens while making Out on the Wire: the Storytelling Secrets of the New Masters of Radio.
Friends, it gives me a lot of pleasure to announce that the first moment I put my hands on a copy of Trish Trash: Rollergirl sur Mars (vol. 1 of 3), I was standing outside a comics museum, watching a roller derby demo. Thomas Ragon, my editor, had put a lot of pressure on the Dargaud studio to get the book printed two months before the official release date, so I could be standing there on the chais Magelis, wiping a light drizzle off the fresh, offset-printing-ink smelling pages.