Stanford students write and produce graphic novel


Stanford University. We’re looking at the way
plots are structured, the way characters have arcs. There are certain
things that are common to all different
kinds of storytelling, whether you’re writing scripts,
whether you’re writing a novel, whether you’re doing
a graphic novel. The Stanford Graphic Novel
Project in two quarters teaches a group of amateurs how
to structure research and draw a graphic novel and then
publishes it at the end. All of the art that you
see, all of the scenes were written by the students. The requirements for the subject
matter of the Stanford Graphic Novel it has to be
grounded in real life, so it has to be nonfiction. And it has to be related
to a social issue. This year we did a book
called American Heathen, which is the life story, more or less,
of a man named Wong Chin Foo. So Wong Chin Foo was a Chinese
immigrant to the United States in the late 19th century. He’s the first person
on record to ever use the term Chinese-American. But it’s essentially
the story of him advocating, in many ways,
for Chinese-American rights at a time when it was
just not thought possible. It’s very cool,
because everyone is kind of coming from
different backgrounds. You have people who are insanely
talented writers or insanely talented artists. And one of the best
parts of this class is this kind of a free
exchange of people who come from different
backgrounds and different skill levels. We were incredibly
fortunate to have students who were really good with
story and really good with illustration. We wanted every artist
to do a little bit of storytelling and
for every writer to do a little bit of art. What makes the
class really unique, of course, is that
it’s a large project and it’s a collaborative,
artistic project. Having that moment of
publication, it’s exciting. But I think it’s also really
beneficial to the students to go through the process
of producing something like this that’s going
to go out in the world and it’s going to be examined. It’s a very emotional
time for all of us who worked so long and hard on it. It’s kind of like
a gifts that you can experience again and again
as you show it to new people. For more, please visit
us at stanford.edu.

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