Often we neglect to offer the proper credit and awareness to writers of comics. It’s easy to get distracted by beautiful art and forget that the lifeblood of the journey you’re on, flows from speech bubble to caption. There’s a fair amount of noodling and obsessing that goes on through the keyboard, just as much and sometimes more than that with the stylus and tablet. We all poured our blood, sweat, tears and God knows what other bodily fluids into this labor of love. Now we get to take a look at the man behind the curtain, tugging his lever, blowing plumes of smoke and flaming, really, just flaming a lot.. like a lot of flaming going on here.. and commanding our attention with his hand-crafted mechanisms of doom.
Josh Breidbart has worked his butt off to nail down some seriously awesome writing for Division. We love him truly and deeply. He wrote about his experience on his own blog and we’re going to share it here. Enjoy!
Hey everyone. Division writer Josh Breidbart, here to talk about the writing process and how Division came into being from my perspective. This is part 1: The Test.
So, when I first met Tom, the comic was called “Bloody Show”. I believe it had to do with how much blood and violence Tom wanted in it (he’s a sick man). Tom handed me a novelized draft of the first few chapters of his story, saying he was looking for a way to hone it into a comic. He told me he imagined Frank Miller meets Neil Gaiman with extra ass-kickage. A stylized noir. It was cool, it had vision and it had passion. I wanted in. If Tom didn’t offer me the job that fateful night I threw up 4 bottles of sake, I probably would have begged him myself (you know… after the hangover subsided).
So, when I begin, I have this awful habit of starting a script and throwing it in the garbage. Why? Because I’m a hack. Seriously though, it’s because I suck at outlining. A lot of people outline heavily so they know where the characters and the story is going. “Not me!” said the fool! Personally, my outlines are light because I like to find the characters in the writing. And usually, by the time I do, the story doesn’t reflect who they are, or their journey anymore. So I start over. The process works fine for me, as I love writing, but I’m sure is beyond frustrating to any partners I’m with (ie: The Tom and Mel of the group).
So, instead of taking the hard way, I tried something different. I wanted to make sure I understood Tom’s vision. Before launching into the first five issues, I did a “Test Script”. Not because it was requested, but because it gave me the chance to get to know Tom’s world and write it more accurately. It’s a fun tool, writing a secret history to the world that the audience never sees, because it adds a layer of depth for the writer (which then carries into the script). Normally, this wouldn’t be posted, and would just be something for me and Tom and Mel to talk about. But I wanted to give you all a first hand look at my first foray into the world of Division and how I saw it.
PLEASE NOTE: This is non-canon.
I had a lot of fun writing this. Maybe one day we’ll do this as a bonus mini-chapter (Tom’s gonna kill me for promising this). But this was great to prep me for the world and keep me from wasting time on any faulty drafts. Next time, I’ll share my experience on the first draft of Division that I wrote all five issues of…
And how I ended up throwing it in the trash anyway.
You can get some more helpings of Joshy goodness on his site http://joshbreidbart.com/
He also mentioned that he would be on hand for 1 day at New York Comic Con to sign the debut issue # 1 copies of Division with us. So, yeah.. that’s pretty awesome! All 3 hancocks on your issue # 1
Now we leave you with one last little tidbit to enjoy since we were on the subject of the value of non-visual story and aesthetic tools. We’ve been working on a Division mood and inspiration playlist. We listen while we’re making the artwork and feel that these tracks really capture the characters and mood of the world of Division. Hope you guys dig it!
And here’s a nice image to pair with these tunes. This is a sample showing Division HQ in the big city.