So you’re a comic book writer who spent his time last night out at a party for comic book writers. You got roped into a discussion over tea with the charming Neil Gaiman, tried to avoid the glare from Jason Aaron’s head, made the mistake of asking Chris Sims about his favourite Batman story and was distracted when Ryan Browne was dragged out of the party for attempting to spike the punch. You woke up and checked your e-mail and you have a message there from a major comic company asking when you’re planning on dropping in the pitch for the comics event you foolishly agreed to write and in your panic to come up with some thing, you’ve decided to stop by here. So follow this list, and you’ll be right as rain.
1) Figure out the idea. Event comics are nothing new, and there has been at least one major event every year since 2006. We’ve had good guys fighting each other (Civil War) alternate worlds (House of M, Flashpoint) zombies (Blackest night, Infestation) old gods (Infestation 2) sieges (siege) invasions (secret invasion) good guys turning evil (Shadowland) old gods trying to destroy the world (Fear Itself). So don’t worry if you can come up with some thing new and original. If you’e stuck for ideas, try combing two ideas to see if that works. Maybe zombies have grabbed magic space hammers and are intent on destroying the world? Maybe there is an alternate world where Cthulu and his pals are fighting heroes in a series of Olympic level events. If all else fails, you can simple mash worlds together and pretend you knew what you were doing all along. (Secret Wars, Convergence)
2) There has to be at least one death and one return. Deaths and returns are nothing new in the comic book world. It’s very rare that some one stays dead for any period of time in any comic world and an event is the perfect time to have them return from the dead, because reasons. You don’t have to explain it if you don’t want to, infact you can just say they wanted to come back and leave it at that, I’m looking at you brightest day. But to bring some one back, you need to kill off a character, and so you need to learn the system.
Killing off a character is easy, but there have their own rules to do it. 1 A grade character is worth 2 B grade characters etc. It’s even better if they are a legacy character, some one else who can pick up the mantle if they die, but before they return. Legacy characters can include Captain America and Batman, as they both have had replacements. You can negative points if the person was part of a minority, but you can cancel that out if you bring back/ replace them with another minority.
3) Tie ins are important. Remember, you’re writing the main book so you don’t need to throw every idea in there. You need to leave just enough scraps so that other writers in their books can take your general idea and run with it. You don’t want to put every thing into the main book, because you need to sell those sweet tie ins and if you did put every thing into the main book, then it would be a bloated mess of ideas. You basically tease the readers by giving them some sweet imagery then telling them you need to by book X to see the overall fight. As for the length of the book, 5-6 issues is fine, any more than 8 is excessive.
So there you have it, follow that guide and you should be fine in writing your comic event. Now if you could please pass on my comic to be read by the editors that would be great.