From Zadie Smith to Ethan Hawke: Why We Love Graphic Novels
Zadie Smith, writer How did you happen to get involved in graphic novels? As a child, I read a lot of comics, mostly old Disney issues about Donald Duck and his nephews. More “Asterix”, “Tintin” and all that. But the first adult graphic work that had a strong influence on me is the book of Richard Appignanese and Robert Kramb Franz Kafka. She is still one of my favorites. Later, I lived in the same apartment with my son Richard Josh, and he had a huge collection of comics and manga, and I read them all. When I first came to America 18 years ago, I did not live long in Greenpoint, in Brooklyn. Then it was a kind of proto-hipster district. On the corner was a small bookstore specializing in McSweeney’s graphic novels and books. There I found Chris Weir and his series on Jimmy Corrigan: The Smartest Kid on Earth. As soon as I started reading Chris’s story, she immediately captured me. Now one of my most valuable things is the sketch of Corrigan, who says: “Ha ha … hi Zedy …”. I made Chris draw it for me when I met him in London about a year in 2000. Page from the comic “Here” What do you like about them? All. In my opinion, they look like opera or musicals – they use different means of spirit in one space. I can understand how I can write, like Chris Weir, but trying to imagine how I can write and draw at the same time, like Chris, blows my mind. Do you have a favorite book? Too many of them. Stories about Corrigan and all of Weir’s books in general, especially Building Stories. Here is Richard McGuire. All of Charles Burns’s books, especially Big Baby. All books by Dan Close. “Are You My Mother?” (Are You My Mother?) Alison Beckdel. The Hernandez brothers, Linda Barry … they are all classics to me. If we talk about the latest finds, I was completely shocked by the Walter Scott Wendy series, as well as Beverly and Sabrina by Nick Drnaso, which seem to me to be masterpieces. Impressed by “Driving Short Distances” by Joff Winterhart and “Everything Is Flammable” by Gabriel Bell. I still like finding interesting things before they come out in book format, but a middle-aged woman is more difficult to do, because I don’t go to comic book stores so often. However, recently I went to Los Felice and found there The Badebaker’s “The Fade Out” in the old serial form. There are five numbers in total, and there was no fourth, but I still fell in love with this story, even with a hole in the middle. Jimmy Corrigan Chris Weir Comic Book Page Where Do You Buy Them? In Los Angeles, at the Skylight Books store. When I’m in New York, I’m at McNally Jackson or one of the comic book stores located on St. Marks. Do you have any special rituals associated with their reading? I just buy them and start reading while walking down the street. I do this about an hour after the purchase. And I read them with absolutely indescribable pleasure. In a conversation with Mr. Weir, I once joked that he had to spend 10 years writing what I can swallow in 45 minutes. And this is one of those many reasons why I find graphic novel artists so wonderful. They work so hard and hard to give us pleasure, and we get and consume their labors with such ease. Ethan Hawke, actor, writer, director Illustration: Craig Barritt / Getty / Guardian Design Team How did you happen to get involved in graphic novels? I became interested in them as a teenager. He liked to read them on the bus on the way to school. You know, such cool graphic novels used to retell classics like Moby Dick, Macbeth, etc. The combination of works of art and literature indescribably improved my life. This approach shook library dust off stories and revived them for me. What do you like about them? I like to consider drawings. And when it is also intertwined with a successful story … All this somehow reminds me of the acting profession. A kind of interpretation of the text. An attempt to convey the hidden message of the book by your own means. Do you have a favorite book? Essex County by Jeff Lemira. This is “The Catcher in the Rye” of graphic novels. Where do you buy them? My favorite place is Forbidden Planet in New York. He is magical. You feel like a child again, right from the doorstep. In a good sense of the word. Do you have any special rituals associated with their reading? It is important not to read them. They need to be absorbed and absorbed. Examine the image. Find the message hidden in the work of the artist. Don’t just browse the words. In a good graphic novel, words and images dance together – like two stars that break when they hit each other and fall asleep all around with silver and gold. The graphic novel by Ethan Hawke with illustrations by Greg Ruth “Inde: A Story of the Apache Wars” (Indeh: A Story of the Apache Wars).