- Posted by Johanna on August 24, 2010 at 7:44 am
- Category: Comic News
An online friend asked me for some information recently, and it spurred this post. She was seeking recommendations on comics for kids, but she wanted monthly periodicals, which pretty much limited her to superheroes or Archie comics. (Actually, I recommended several of Boom!’s licensed titles, especially The Muppet Show and Toy Story, but her audience had a preference, it seems, for superheroes.) We were bemoaning the lack of information available on DC and Marvel kids’ titles for the library market, when I realized I’d never taken into account the attention span of the younger set when previously talking about how many great kids’ comics are out there.
Some of my all-time favorite comics are graphic novel series for kids, such as Owly or Amelia Rules!, but I’m an adult, and waiting anywhere from six months to two years for a new installment is nothing for me. I’m not sure kids have that much patience. When an original series like Amulet puts out a book every year, are kids still interested? Or does it depend on how old they are?
It would be nice if the publisher could fund the creator long enough for them to get some material under their belt and release every season (three months) or so, but I certainly understand that there’s a lot of potential for bad consequences under that method. Publishers don’t have that kind of money to float in many cases these days, and they want to know that the author’s work has an audience before laying out too much in advance.
Some great series have adopted different strategies to put out more than one book a year. Frankie Pickle, for example, is illustrated text with just a few comic sequences. Lunch Lady has sketchier art (although I shouldn’t assume that a minimal style means less work involved), as do Babymouse and Johnny Boo. Toon Books has gone the opposite direction, with substantial hardcovers that hold up to rereading while waiting for another title in the series. Also, all of their stories stand alone.
Not having any kids around to ask, I turn to my readers. I know many of you share comics with young ones, either professionally (such as in libraries) or personally (children, nieces, nephews). Do they prefer monthly comics to annual? Or do they pick comics based on their content alone?