Wednesday, December 18, 2013
For Thursday: Small's Stitches: "Drawing Well Is The Best Revenge"
For Thursday, be sure to read and respond to Small's Stitches (2009), a relatively recent work that shows how well-suited the graphic novel medium is to the genres of memoir and autobiography. Note also how visual the work is, using words very economically. It's a very 'moody' work, much darker than Maus (despite its subject matter!), though similar in its depiction of the family dynamic and one boy's struggle to understand who he is in relation to where he comes from. Stitches also explores family history, and how the past continues to linger into the present, despite the rapid changes of the 20th century.
I've pasted the link to an interview with Small below, where he states, quite interestingly, that "I wrote out almost every scene in Stitches before I drew it. It was the only way I could begin. Only language brings order to the chaos of memory. I have boxes full of manuscript—embarrassingly bad, I’m sure—which helped me grope my way toward a coherent shape for my book." So despite the visual nature of the book, it began as words--he had to write it before he could 'see' it. Read more here: