Are Graphic Novels Ideally Suited to Digital?

In Discussion by Edward Nawotka

by Edward Nawotka

Today’s lead story by Alex de Campi describes the publication of Valentine, a serialized, digital-first graphic novel that is being translated and published simultaneously in 14 languages. It’s an amazing feat, and one that makes sense when one considers the relatively small amount of text on the typical page of a graphic novel.

Valentine for the iPhone

Valentine for the iPhone

At the same time, de Campi also points out that the digital format allows “a true right-to-left reading experience for our Japanese, Hebrew, and (eventually) Arabic readers as well as our native left-to-right.”  What’s more, she writes, “each ‘screen’ is a stand-alone comics panel. There are no ‘pages’ of multiple panels,” which can force the eye to jump around, disrupting the narrative flow.

Reading this description it sounds as if graphic novel or comic book is ideally suited to the digital format, possibly even more so than for books that are all text. Could it be so?

Tell us what you think in the comments below or via Twitter using hashtag #ppdiscuss.

About the Author

Edward Nawotka

A widely published critic and essayist, Edward Nawotka serves as a speaker, educator and consultant for institutions and businesses involved in the global publishing and content industries. He was also editor-in-chief of Publishing Perspectives since the launch of the publication in 2009 until January 2016.