The Rose Metal Press Field Guide to Graphic Literature: Artists and Writers on Creating Graphic Narratives, Poetry Comics, and Literary Collage edited by Kelcey Ervick and Tom Hart is the newest in the publisher’s Field Guide series. To say my mind was blown when I first thumbed through this collection would be an understatement. When I settled into reading it and working through the chapters, I intermittently laughed out loud with a kind of incredulous glee that such a book exists.
Scott McCloud’s Understanding Comics is probably the most popularly noted book on the subject of comic study and the tome that allowed many teachers to legitimize the incorporation of comics into academic classrooms. It’s the most oft-cited in this collection of essays, and while mentioned respectfully each time, there is a recognition of the limitation of his work, and in some cases, disagreements or differences of perspective. Each contributor who cites it does so as the starting point for furthering the dialogue in new concepts and theories on the practice of creating and reading contemporary graphic literature – pushing the conversation way outside the traditional comic frame.Continue reading “Book Review :: Field Guide to Graphic Literature”