We've been going to the library every week ever since we got home from our summer trip. I feel like a really good mommy, my posterity's budding young minds growing, expanding, exploring... But my daughter has been irresistibly drawn to the section of graphic novels. What is this strange and unnatural genre doing on the shelves of my neighborhood library? These are picture books. She was supposed to outgrow picture books at least a year ago. Where is the fine literature she is supposed to be delving into, drinking in the pages of beautiful little lines of 10-12 point serifed print? No, I tell her. NO graphic novels. She begs. Alright, ONE graphic novel, but the other book has to be a chapter book. It takes us another 30 minutes to find a chapter book she is actually willing to read. I feel a little less like a good mommy.
But wait a minute. I'm an illustrator. I've got a handful of novel ideas that I don't know if I'll ever write in full because I just haven't got the experience as a writer, or the robust vocabulary it requires. But if I illustrated them... If I made them into graphic novels... I feel like such a traitor! For a long time now, I've frowned at this rising wave of neatly packaged illiteracy-in-the-making, feeling that it's a poor excuse for reading material. And yet, it would be a perfect medium for me to tell my stories.
Graphic novels seem to be a very popular literary form these days, but is it valid? Sound off, please, ship-mates, because I'm feeling confused!
PS If anyone besides Rebecca laughed at the title, welcome to the MST3 club.