I am first and foremost a storyteller. Always. As a child, I was inspired by the rebroadcasting of radio programs from the medium’s golden age to create my own shows. Hours at a time were spent recording audio adventures utilizing comic books as my scripts, affecting different voices, and orchestrating background music with an extensive collection of vintage vinyl records.
Consequently, I took to acting, soon discovering that my whole body was a tool that could be used to tell a story, from facial expressions to posture to how my character walked. Voice and characterization were my strong suits, sometimes leading me to take on multiple roles in a handful of stage productions.
These experiences helped to further my understanding of storytelling. I applied what I had learned as an actor toward writing screenplays, teaching myself the craft by reading movie scripts and texts on the subject. Shortly thereafter, I segued from acting to modeling for a comic book illustrator bringing with me my experiences as a stage performer.
It was at this point that I realized that my skills as an actor and writer could be combined on the illustrated page. I joined The Studio’s comics writing and property development workshop, finding late night solitude that afforded me the opportunity to act out the dialogue I’d written.
To this day I will still recite dialogue to ensure it sounds authentic. With “Angry Man!”, the need was to be cartoony and over-the-top, so I would affect the goofiest voices that I could to compliment each character’s persona. Needless to say it caused much gossip and speculation amongst my neighbors.
Comics are a visual medium. As writers, we need to convey emotion, personality, psychology and all characteristics that can be seen clearly or at least hinted at with words.
Whereas screenwriting entails the constant flow of movement, a comic book panel represents a snapshot of a moment in time. And that moment must have a life of its own, yet remain connected like every step in a Storyteller’s Journey.
Upward and Onward,
A. D. Marzan