Andy Waugh: Writer in Residence, Comic Writing

Andy was commissioned as part of our WRITE Festival 2017 programme to produce an 8 to 12 page comic about life in The Word. He spent several days working in the building and launched his finished comic on Saturday 24 June. We got the chance to ask him a few questions after his launch:

What have you spent your time in residency doing?

The first 2-3 days of my 7-day residency were spent approaching users/borrowers at The Word and asking them about themselves, what they were there to do and their thoughts of libraries and The Word. I sat in on several groups and events, including two writers groups, the ukulele group, a FabLab workshop, and a couple of OpenZone activities. The idea was to speak to as wide a variety of people as possible to get an accurate sense of what libraries are used for. For the remaining 4-5 days, I worked in the atrium of The Word, pulling together my notes and sketching out a rough draft of the comic. By the end of the 7 days I had a first draft version of the comic. From then I continued working outside of The Word to refine the script for the comic, then penciled, inked and coloured it. The final printed comic was ready for the launch on Saturday 24 June.

What have you produced?

The end result of the residency has been the production of a 16 page comic strip essay looking at the evolving idea of a library. The Word is used as a case study and its borrowers/users are the inspiration behind the ideas and issues that I address.

What do you think about of the building?

I think the building is fantastic. Light and airy and always full of people with interesting things to say – it has been a pleasure to work in The Word.

You can also get a hard copy of the finished comic by visiting The Word.