H - Talking about the skills and contributions that we each make to this collaborative process, it's obvious to me what yours are. Your ability to draw scenes in such an interesting and skillful way, and at such speed, still amazes me.
R - It’s okay, Howard. I told you, I’m fine now. I'm not sulking anymore.
H – Oh, good. And, of course, the plus side of cutting those scenes is that you get to draw 70 new pages. That’s seven, zero, Rex. 70.
R - Don’t push it.
H – Well no, I probably shouldn’t. Um....I wonder what my contribution to the graphic novel is?
H – Rex...? I was saying: I wonder what my contributions are? I guess one contribution is that I'm helping you to tell the story in a comprehensible way. Creating a story out of pre-existing artwork certainly has its challenges, but there are also advantages to working within these confines – similar to the way that working within the restrictions of the haiku or sonnet form can shape a poet's ideas. I don’t think we would have come up with this particular plot and set of characters if we hadn’t started in this topsy-turvy fashion, with the art work first.
R - But we'll work differently next time, won’t we?
H – Yes, we will. Definitely. This is a crazy way of working! Next time, we'll create the story first, illustrated with rough sketches -- and only once each spread has passed muster will the pages get pencilled and inked. No cut scenes! What will you have to moan about then?
R - Don’t worry, Howard, I’ll find something.
H - I’m sure you will! Talking about accepting changes, we have to ask our readers to accept a little change too, don’t we?
R - Yes, and I hope they can do it with the same magnanimity and good spirit as myself.
H - Quite. So then, dear readers, we have warned you before that the comic pages posted here are in first draft form. As you read the following pages, one thing you need to know is that the earlier scene where Vali first meets Maggie in the Mundus has changed a little. In the scene we're showing today, she says: “The Tattooed man knew my name.” This wasn’t in the first draft of the previous scene, but will be inserted into the second draft. Rex and I hope you all enjoy the new pages:
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