- Posted by Johanna on February 18, 2008 at 3:37 pm
- Category: LinkBlogging
At the Newsarama blog, as part of his series talking to online critics, Chris Mautner interviews Katherine Dacey, who covers manga at PopCultureShock. (Are they still run by Midtown Comics? This is apropos of nothing, just curious.)
Anyway, I was stunned to see myself mentioned in the following context:
Chris: What do you look for as far as good or bad points? This is a very generalized question, but do you have any rules of thumb?
Katherine: Well, I don’t have the art training that some people do. I haven’t spent nearly as much time thinking about how comics are put together from an art point of view, so that tends to be less of an emphasis in my reviews than it is in some people’s reviews. If you look at someone like Johanna Draper Carlson, she’s really meticulous in talking about the art. If I had to say there was a weakness to my reviews, it’s that I sometimes don’t address the art. I only do it in a couple of sentences.
Part of that grows out of the fact that there can be a sameness about a lot of the shonen and shojo manga that’s licensed by the big American publishers. My feeling is that if the artwork is distinctive, either really bad or really good, then I will spend some time talking about it. But if it reminds me of the last 15 books that I reviewed, I probably won’t spend a lot of time talking about the artwork.
Talking about art is frequently something I have to remind myself to do, so I was very surprised to see myself cited as an example in this area. It’s a nice reminder that how you see your work might differ from how others see it, so it’s good to do reality checks every so often. I actually think about it the same way she does in that second paragraph, that it’s easier to spend time talking about art if it stands out in either direction.
And I’m so with her when she recommends David Welsh as a good model to follow in reviewing!