Sunday, December 27, 2009

Comics Experience - Writing Classes for Comics!

Last post, I mentioned that Andy Schmidt has a lot to do with Animal Control: Special Creatures Unit finally seeing the light of day. Let me explain why.

For a number of years, Andy has been running a teaching business called Comics Experience. Andy is a former Marvel Comics Editor, a freelance writer, and, currently, is a Senior Editor at IDW Publishing, where he manages the GI Joe and Transformers product lines. He brings his wealth of experience in the industry to classes on comic book writing, art, and coloring. I had been wanting to take Andy's writing class for many years -- and had even attended one of Andy's lectures in person at the San Diego Comic-Con in 2008 -- but the six week course itself was only offered live, in New York City, too far from me in Virginia.

So, in 2009, when Andy announced his first online version of the class, I signed up immediately. The class is taught "live" via WebEx one night a week for two hours, and it was worth every penny. Not only did Andy guide the class through a methodology for creating a script (from a story sentence, to synopsis, to page by page descriptions, to full script) and give his feedback week-by-week, but via a Google Groups discussion forum the members of the class were able to interact, share, and critique each other's work as well. Both the weekly deadlines and the feedback from Andy and the group were invaluable. The class was motivating, inspiring, and just plain fun. And most importantly, it got me writing again.

For the first time, after a number of stops and starts over the years, Animal Control: Special Creatures Unit came together as a cohesive whole. Now, the first 5-page story will be appearing in a print anthology coming in the Spring of 2010. More on that soon.

Bottom line, if you've always dreamed of writing comics, do yourself a favor and take this class.

Oh, and thank you, Andy.

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