It all starts here. I mostly write the scripts using cooledit on Linux.
I had the main story ready long before the comic began in 2002.
While the chapter stories are mostly written on-the-fly with the main
story as a guide-line, the main themes and the final outcome were already planned.
The ICCL's story is chopped down into 3 different types of units:
First of all there's part. There are 5 parts in the
story, each having 9 chapters. Each chapter again
have usually from 4 to 20 strips.
Each part has their own objectives. For example, the Part II had
the following main objectives:
- Befriend Simon and Deirdre
- Introduce Jay, Mainman, Magenta and Santa
- Tell about prophecy
- Couple Magenta and Jay
- Pave the way for coupling Simon and Deirdre
Having such a loose script to follow enables me to experiment and
enhance the story while I write it. Let's take a closer look at the
chapter XVII, "That's what friends are for".
This chapter addresses two of the Part II objectives; helping to get
Magenta and Jay together and paving the way for Simon's and Deirdre's
future relationship. At that time, I also had several loose ideas to throw
in, so here's how the chapter looked like in the beginning:
- Give Deirdre a new look, maybe a ponytail or something?
- Xyzzy-shirt for simon
- Magenta and Jay haven't made up yet
- Jay is on a bender
- Simon & Deirdre pay him a visit
- They give him some advice on relationships and encourage him
- Spoof Idols
- Simon still acting clueless, Jay returns the favor
- Magenta & Jay get together
Now I have everything needed to do the last part; writing the
actual strip script. The ready script looks pretty much like this:
** 1 ** (2.15/04) 143
Few uneventful weeks passed...
Deirdre looking at herself in mirror.
Deirdre thinking: "That orange thing that crawled on your head and died?"
Simon watching the TV
Mark: When's the stargåte on?
Simon: Nah, I wanna watch the teletubbies jackass-episode!
I haven't heard from Propellerhead in all that time, which was unusual, but I expected him being a bit .. preoccuppied with Magenta.
Simon: His phone's turned off. He only does that when he's on a bender. I might sound a bit paranoid, but I felt I should check on him.
4: St. peter: I told you he was good.
5: Devil: We'll see.
The first line has the strip number in this chapter, the date code (strip # for this week.week/year)
and the strip's serial #. Next we have the panel layout. (315:310) means there's two
panels next to eachother, one being 315 pixels, the other 310 pixels wide. If there's
no vertical size, I default to 300 pixels. Then there's the panel number and the
Here's the finished strip: