This week we did something special, we did a two-part interview with Andrew Rowland of XP Comics. For this second part, we take on a few subjects. We talk about if Christians should be in the Comic Book Industry and how to break out into the Comic Industry. See Part one of this interview by clicking [here]
If you’d like to know more about XP Comics and Melchizedek: King of Justice check out the links below.
Should Christians be in the comic book industry?
We came to the general consensus that the answer is Yes… yes, we should. This is a great industry with a massive amount of influence across the generations. Sure at times, it has more impact than others, but it’s still a driving force in culture. The question becomes, however, is how should the be involved.
In our interview, Andrew pointed out that one problem with “Christian Comics” is that the art of the story is often sacrificed for the sake of expressing Jesus in a safe, sanitary way. Not that we shouldn’t point people to Jesus, but the way some comics and Christian fiction is written, things become cheesy and are off-putting to those who need the gospel rather than drawing them to the saviour. Andrew even pointed out that in some Christian Comics also make their main characters out to be almost better than Jesus himself.
Yes, we should keep the audience in mind when writing comics, but if your goal is to reach the lost who are more mature, then you should write stories on their level. That doesn’t mean adding vulgarities, but that does mean adding complexity. In the interview, Andrew pointed us back to authors such as CS Lewis and JR Tolkien who told terrific stories with deep Christian themes and allegory. Andrew believes that Christians in the Christian Comic industry and in the Secular Comic Industry to make a return to that world storytelling.
How Breakout in the Comic Industry
The short answer is that it’s not easy. It requires a lot of putting your stuff “out there” on a regular basis. People trying to break out into the industry are often reminded to do a few things.
- Keep drawing. Draw continually. The more you draw, the better you become, the better you become, the more likely you’ll be picked up.
- Go to conventions and politely ask the artist in the industry to look at samples of your work and to give you honest critiques. Don’t argue with them. Don’t defend why you did certain things. “Well I did that because…” should never come out of your mouth.
- Lastly, don’t give up. Don’t give up on your dreams.