Producing a twice weekly comic requires a significant amount of dedication and commitment. Having an organized approach really helps to keep the creative chaos to a minimum. So any tool that helps to provide an organizational foundation for creative work becomes an important ally. In producing BugPudding, I have found a non-traditional use for a creative writing software application called Scrivener . Scrivener is a powerful organizational tool for writers. It’s main usage is as a central point of management for writing long complex documents such as a novel or screenplay. But I use it as a tool to collect and organize all the aspects of creating my comic.
BugPudding as a comic consists of long story arcs that are subdivided into chapters which are further subdivided into individual comic strips. In general, I begin by determining the theme and major plot points of the story. Then I determine logical chapter break points. My normal approach is to have four chapters. I typically try to have somewhere between 12 and 16 comic strips per chapter. So the average BugPudding story is spread out over approximately 30 weeks.
I can view the story organization as a cork board or as an outline.
As you can see above, I have two major sections for a story. The first section is for notes and ideas and actual scripts for each comic. The second section is for copies of the finished comic strips themselves.
This organization in a single location facilitates my work and makes it easy to refer back to previous scripts or strips.
Below is a view of a typical script. It is usually at the script writing level of story planning where I work out the details of the humor for that strip, the gags. The storytelling aspect of the strip comes from the plot points that were subdivided previously into strips.
All the finished strips can be viewed in context of their order of publication on a cork board.
And it is easy to refer back to any finished strip for quick reference when working on later strips.
The logical question you might ask is whether or not all this organization is absolutely necessary? And my answer is “not really” but it sure makes my life easier. I hope you enjoyed this behind the scenes view of how BugPudding is created.