Tag Archive: adaptation


Boys Don’t Cry, out of our hands

Our first graphic novel, Boys Don’t Cry, now has a life of its own. Last year a student from Edinburgh contacted us to ask about using BDC as the basis for a project, he wanted to produce an animated version of some sort. Being generally agreeable sorts in favour of educational pursuits, we said yes. I hadn’t mentioned it here because I didn’t know if it would work out and didn’t know if he’d want it broadcast in advance (piling on the pressure, perhaps) but I’ve recently found out he has a blog about the project, which you can read here (he does say nice things about us, but that’s not the only reason I’m telling you. Honest). Interesting to see the thought processes behind it all as it progresses, and the enthusiasm. Also quite entertaining to realise I was wrong when I thought he’d partly chosen BDC because of where it was set (apparently the Edinburgh connection didn’t occur to him till later). I will keep you posted on how it all goes.

While we’re observing the BDC-shaped ripples in the wider world, I’ll mention this review that was pointed out to me fairly recently, from April 2013. Gratifying to know that someone has spotted the ‘Hunter has no face’ idea and the link to depression and social expectations/stigma (it may well be that everyone who’s ever read it has spotted these, but I don’t recall anyone mentioning it before. If you have, whether in writing or when meeting one of us, point it out and I’ll happily correct myself here…)

If you haven’t read BDC and have no idea what I’m talking about, you can download the pdf for free by clicking here. In the past you could have bought a printed copy from us but we’ve run out, sorry.

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This week’s Ostragoth get-together was a little bit more exciting than tea and custard creams: we went to see Scott Pilgrim vs the World. I’ve already written a bit about it at my blog, but the general consensus was that it was an entertaining film and we were glad we’d gone. Of course, thoughts of ‘if only we’d written a colourful action-packed graphic novel, preferably in a manga-ish style as that seems to be popular now’ did cross my mind, but would we really want a film adaptation anyway (we’ve all seen the Comic Strip film The Strike, after all)? Since I wrote Boys Don’t Cry originally as a short story, it’s already undergone one visual adaptation. All we need is a suitably moody, atmospheric soundtrack for the full film experience and that, I guess, is where spotify comes in. Maybe I’ll work on that as an extra feature.

Back in the summer of 2004, minding my own business on an Edinburgh street and open to story ideas floating in from the ether as usual, I saw a group of teenage goths. One lad was walking slightly behind the rest, maybe the pavement just wasn’t wide enough, but whatever the reason it sparked a story which wasn’t completed for nearly two years. In the meantime I met Mark Pexton, already an impressive artist with sequential art ambitions. We spent the next couple of years getting better at our respective crafts (and in Mark’s case finding an international audience with book covers, comics, story illustrations and more) and Mark started talking about adapting ‘the goth lad story’ (we still tend to refer to it as gothlad) as a comic when he had the time. It’s now grown into a ‘graphic novella’ called Boys Don’t Cry which we’re preparing for printing.

So what’s this gothlad story all about? It’s dreamy and atmospheric, it’s set in Edinburgh and St Andrews, it has nightmare sequences, grief, loss, and horses. And a teenage goth, naturally. It won’t be everyone’s cup of tea, but I can honestly say that if I hadn’t written it I’d want to buy it, and that’s a good start.