|MICRO-COMICS!. This was a project started by Paul Curtis back in the early 80's. Paul will now explain his philosophy on the Micro-Comics Project.
The Micro-Comics had some interesting differences from standard mini-comics, intended to make them appealing, both from a Creative standpoint and the Marketing angle.
Standard Mini-Comics are printed so that a standard 8.5" x 11" sheet of paper shows 4 pages, and ultimately yields a single 8-page pamphlet. The decline of the old Underground Comix coincided with the rise of the 8-page Mini...but unlike the old UG's, which appeared in a variety of sizes and shapes, the Mini-Comics tend to follow the size and page count rigidly. Most variations from the formula involve page count. Period. It's not a bad format at all, but it doesn't invite much innovation.
Another thing that struck me at the time was that more and more Mini-Comics consisted of either single-panel gags or one-page, four-panel comic strips. Not to hurl rocks at gag panels or comic strips, but I find longer storylines more involving, so I was inclined to develop a format that would inspire multi-page stories.
Unlike Mini-Comics, which are laid out 4-up, Micro-comics are 9-up, with each sheet of paper yielding 18 pages. Also, owing to the unusual layout, every other book is either an 8-pager or a 10-pager with a foldout. And at least one in four books has to be wider than it is, tall. It's possible to make oblong Mini-Comics, but few people bother. I also encouraged creators to write multi-page stories, to make better use of the foldout page. So I like to think that the Micro-Comics were more conducive to innovation than the standard minis.
As for the Marketing angle, the Micro-Comics were intended to be about the same size as a baseball card...actually, they're a bit off-size, but people express an odd delight when they first see a Micro-Comic; it's novel, yet somehow familiar at the same size. They were also intended to be sold in comic shops and take up very little counter space. And, to make sure that people would choose a variety instead of fixating on some specific artist, all Micro-Comics were packaged three in a pack, for the princely sum of one quarter.
And that's the difference. Size and page count. And an editorial attitude toward multi-page stories.
Thanks Paul! Below I have scanned some issues and panels from some of the books, Enjoy! If you want to make a comment to Paul directly. Please visit the link below!
|Micro-Comics Live Journal
Mr Doom by Paul Curtis
SUDS by Brian Pearce
CECIL KUNKLE by Charles Wagner
FIQUETOONS by John Fique
GENESIS by Lance Boucher
SQUATMAN by Jeff Stenberg
STUPID BOY by Matt Feazall