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Introduction to Graphic Novels

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Rebecca Crocker

on 18 April 2016

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Transcript of Introduction to Graphic Novels

What is a
Graphic Novel?
Elements / Vocabulary of a Graphic Novel
Graphic Novels
Major Types of Graphic Novels
Like traditional novels there are endless ways to categorize different graphic novels. There are as many genres and sub-genres as in traditional fiction and non-fiction. The following are only a few of the most predominant categories.

: The Japanese word for "comic" but in the US is used to describe Japanese style comics.
Manga is read from top to bottom and right to left as this is the traditional Japanese reading pattern
. Though, technically, Manga refers to Japanese comics, many think Manga refers to a style rather than the country of origin.

Superhero Story
: Superhero graphic novels have taken the most popular form of comics and turned what were once brief episodic adventures into epic sagas.

Personal Narratives ("Perzines")
: are autobiographical stories written from the author's personal experiences, opinions, and observations.

: are similar to perzines in that they are written from the author's personal experience, but the author is generally using their own experience to touch upon a greater social issue.

Graphic novels are a
-- like oil, watercolor, crayon, chalk -- not a
(fiction or nonfiction)
How is a graphic novel different than or similar to a comic book?
What vocabulary is associated with graphic novels?
What is a graphic novel?
How does one read a graphic novel?
A graphic novel page consists of a variety of elements
- squares or rectangles that contain a single scene
- space between panels
Dialog balloons
- contain communication between/among characters
Thought balloons
- contain a character’s thoughts
Pointers / tails
- directional to show to whom the words belong to
- contain information about a scene or character
Sound effects
- visual sound clues (Wonk! Pow! Kaboom!)
Motion lines
- lines to show an object or person is in motion
How to Read a
Graphic Novel Page
Graphic novels are read
left to right
, just like traditional texts
Graphic novels present a story line from start to finish and are usually "stand-alone" stories with complex plots
A graphic novel uses
to present information: typically the pictures are arranged in
sequential panels
, while the words are presented in
thought balloons
, or
caption /narration boxes
Graphic novels can be fiction, nonfiction, history, fantasy, romance, among many others.
graphic novels are not
collections of comic strips or comic books
illustrated and watered down versions of a more complex text
generally shorter, printed on lower quality paper, held together with staples and contain just part of a story -- a reader must get the continuing issue(s) to discover what happens in the plot of a comic book
comic books
the basics
How are Graphic Novels
like Comic Books?
Graphic novels are similar to comic books because they use sequential art to tell a story
Examples of Elements
How to Read

Dialogue balloons are
read left to right
top to bottom
as is appropriate.
Pay attention to the pictures as well as the words
Sometimes it can get a little more complicated,
but the basic left to right rule still applies to panels and dialogue or thought balloons
Pay attention to what the pictures "say" that words cannot accurately capture
Full transcript