How do you make up an episode for Toni & Charlie?
I make up every episode of my Toni & Charlie series myself.
When I start working on a new episode, the first thing I need is a script. In the script, I determine who will say which sentences and where the story takes place (indoors, outside, in the town).
Typically, I conceive Toni & Charlie episodes as one-pagers. So I have to complete my story, before the page is over. This, occasionally, is quite challenging for me: coming to the point is not my forte.
Next, I determine the number of panels and their sizing, making sure my story runs without smoothly and without mental leaps. Furthermore, I try to position the acting figures in each panel – keeping in mind the flow of reading (from left to right) that has to fit the dialogues.
Every now and then, I do serial episodes (Gangsta Sistas being the most recent). When I do, the single episodes can stand for itself and does not require the knowledge of the other episodes.
At this stage, the result is very much like a storyboard for a feature film. On average, I spend about three and a half hours on a new storyboard.
However, the storyboard of episode 65 came to me like a present: unexpectedly and super-fast. One morning, just minutes before waking up, I dreamt about Toni & Charlie. In this dream, Toni said the words „We are in the interstellar waiting room“. At that point, I woke up. I thought to myself „what a strange sentence that was“.
I took a note of the expression immediately. After breakfast and after just two hours, the story was complete, and I was able to start pencilling hwat was to become episode 65.
Why is the episode called „Waiting room of the universe“?
Thanks to my dream. I just changed the „interstellar waiting room“ to „waiting room of the universe“. I found that a bit more suitable for my readership.
Do you really have to wait for a dog as long as Toni & Charlie in their comic?
Briefly: yes. Because of Covid, pets are very much called for here in Germany. If you’re looking for a pedigree breeder, you should reckon to land the breeder’s waiting list for six to eighteen months. That is quite a time span for an adult. But from a kid’s perspective, that feels like having to wait forever.
What else is there to tell?
I am not a fan of science fiction stories. Even so, drawing that episode has brought me a lot of fun. There were many things which I could draw this time and which I usually don’t need to – neither in Toni’s nor in Charlie’s room.
Oh, one last thing: you may wonder about the last word in the last balloon. Either you search on the Internet or you just wait for episode 66. It is a cliff-hanger after all.
But for the moment: please relax and enjoy episode 65.