Blog Review — Friends with Boys (Faith Erin Hicks)

Friends with Boys coverFaith Erin Hicks offers a blog in archive (the last post was published in February of 2012) focused on the development of her webcomic-turned-graphic-novel, Friends with Boys. Posts cover topics such as the places and experiences that inspired the story, advice about the writing/illustrating process, and the realities of life as a cartoonist (e.g. marketing, working with writers, pitching a graphic novel). Hicks's writing is personal and engaging, and her comment threads were active, with visitors interacting not only with the material and its author–Hicks responded to a number of the comments, and a couple of posts reference earlier comment-thread discussions–but even occasionally with one another. The blog feels genuinely interactive.

Though understandable (the project on which the blog is based was completed early in 2012), the lack of recent posts from Hicks is disappointing, increasingly so as I've discovered the quality of the existing content. Still, the current setup does have some distinct benefits. As a closed system, the entire blog can be read in an afternoon, and favourite posts can be easily found in the archive list. At the same time, readers experience Hicks's personable nature and willingness to engage with her readers — a tendency that shows up, too, in her much more up-to-date Twitter presence. While not an ongoing resource, then, Hicks's Friends with Boys blog is certainly one worth recommending to anyone interested in the “how” of webcomic/graphic novel creation.

P.S. You can also check out Hicks’s other artwork on her Deviant Art page!

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