We actually changed the script quite a bit on this comic, and kind of at the last minute. This happens a lot, and the comics are almost always better for the change, so I'd like to share a little bit about how this process happens for us.

Here's the original script:


 

INT. BRAWN’S, EVENING. SCOTT HAS FINISHED HIS ICE CREAM.

SCOTT

Room for more in the podcast editing business?


COCO

I’ll, uh. Ask my clients?

SCOTT

I appreciate it. You drove right? Am I good for a lift home? I kinda walked a lot today.

COCO

No problem.


INT. CAR OUTSIDE SCOTT AND CID’S HOUSE.

SCOTT

Glad I bumped into you tonight.

COCO

Me too.


INT. CAR. AWKWARD MOMENT.


INT. CAR. COCO GRINNING. SCOTT BLUSHING.


COCO

You think you’re about to kiss me.

SCOTT

Not any more.

COCO

G’night, Scott.


Zach penciled and inked this and gave it to me to letter, and I scratched my head. There's a kind of big problem. Can you see it?


U.S. cars have the driver on the left of the car. Which means the driver needs to be on the right of the panel if we want to see their face. Which means that the script above--which was actually fairly weak anyway, but I'll get to that--requires speech bubbles that cross each-other in really counter-intuitive, hard-to-read ways. In other words, lettering this script to that image would result in a comic that was pretty hard to read, in terms of figuring out which bubble went to which speaker.


And since the script was already weak -- it paints Scott in a light we didn't like, and takes away from the social awkwardness that we think defines his character -- it wasn't a big deal to change it. At all.


Quick excerpt from our meeting on editing this comic script:



Zach: so what is wrong with the last panel?


Bart: RORY IS GETTING A FUCKING RAINBOW COLORED FRIEND FUCK YOU


So we had to rework the panel, and we have, really, one guiding light for doing so: redrawing is way harder than rewriting.


There are two advantages to our specific work-flow. Since I'm the writer AND the letterer, it means that I get to turn lettering into editing, and also into a kind of constrained writing exercise (which I believe squeezes a lot more blood out of the muse). The writing has to make sense over four panels, has to be arrange-able so that it can carve an eye-path for the speaker that takes them through the art in a logical way, and (in this case) has to have Scott, not Coco, speaking first in the very last panel. Oh, and everyone's facial expressions match and I can't change the story in any dramatic way. 


As far as writing exercises go, it was a pretty fun one, and in this case, the results were (I like to think) better.


Anyway, I just thought I'd share a little bit on the writing process on today's comic. Have a great week everyone!