First up at Word Con 2 last week, was Robyn Doreian in conversation with Simon McKeown. Writing for illustrative text has been a subject of ups and downs for me. I don’t read graphic novels or comics so I really had to work hard at finding aspects that I could relate to and work with.
Simon’s comics have a strong Victorian thread as they centre on the grand old hotels of Bendigo. The second in his projected series of ten, ‘The True History of the Whipstick Sound’, obviously features many musical references. One double page spread shows album covers of fictional bands. It is this sort of extra layer of information that I really enjoy and thanks to Simon’s prompting I went back to scour a reference book I own – “1000 Record Covers” by Michael Ochs (see links here and here).
It made me consider my own relationship with music, which I will admit is not overly deep. I do remember a second hand record store that was on Burke Road in Camberwell. Records were displayed in liberated milk crates alphabetically but not by style. Personally I thought this was a genius approach as I became exposed to things I made never have previously come across. There was a turntable with a pair of headphones controlled by the grumpy staff – just like in the movies. For a middle suburban teenage girl, it was all very exotic. I uncovered The Damned there.
And for those who are curious, below is a mock up of the front cover and one internal page of the comic I’ve been working on.
The story centres on a woman with taste synaethesia and her journey in life. You can read the prologue here