Cover image for The art of the graphic memoir : tell your story, change your life / Tom Hart.
The art of the graphic memoir : tell your story, change your life / Tom Hart.
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : St. Martin's Griffin, November 2018.
Physical Description:
175 pages : chiefly color illustrations ; 24 cm.


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
741.59 HAR Book Adult General Collection

On Order



#1 New York Times bestselling author and Eisner-nominated cartoonist Tom Hart has written a poignant and instructive guide for all aspiring graphic memoirists detailing the tenets of artistry and story-telling inherent in the medium. Hart examines what makes a graphic memoir great, and shows you how to do it. With two dozen professional examples and a deep-dive into his own story, Hart encourages readers to hone their signature style in the best way to represent their journeys on the page.

With clear examples and visual aids, The Art of the Graphic Memoir is emotive, creative, and accessible. Whether you're a comics fan, comic book creator, memoirist, biographer or autobiographer, there's something inside for everyone.

Author Notes

TOM HART is a #1 New York Times bestselling author and critically acclaimed Eisner-nominated cartoonist. He is the Executive Director of The Sequential Artists Workshop in Gainesville, Florida. He is the creator of Rosalie Lightning, Daddy Lightning, and the Hutch Owen series of graphic novels and books. The Collected Hutch Owen was nominated for best graphic novel in 2000. He won a Xeric Grant for self-publishing cartoonists.

Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

This how-to from cartoonist Hart (Rosalie Lightning) ably sets its readers on the path to creating graphic memoirs, partly by tracing how the author made his own. Hart offers plenty of examples of other artists' work, accompanied by practical suggestions for beginners. Most affecting, however, are Hart's personal reflections on how the death of his young daughter affected his art practice, as he had to change his typically humorous style-"characters with big noses and big feet"-to approach the subject. He feels the resulting drawings fell short, but still hopes that the "desperation" and "struggle" expressed in them is visible to the reader. Not only does this frankness lend credence to Hart's advice, but it comes across as a quality one might find in an actual memoir, and not just a manual to writing one. If there is one drawback it's, ironically for a book from a visual artist, the crowded and sometimes messy visual style, which juxtaposes Hart's instructional text against large reproductions of graphic memoir panels, themselves filled with ample text. Nonetheless, his sincere investment in the topic shines through on every page, bolstering the case that the process of writing one's memoirs in graphic form is both artistically viable and personally rewarding. Agent: Meg Thompson, Thompson Literary Agency. (Nov.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Library Journal Review

Hart (director, Sequential Arts Workshop, FL; "Hutch Owen" series) shares what he's learned through teaching as well as creating his acclaimed graphic memoir Rosalie Lightning in this guide filled with prompts and practical examples that assist readers in writing, drawing, and telling their stories. Technique and style, both that of the author and other visual artists, are explored in great detail, as is the importance of attention and practice. Readers are challenged to do more than observe and are encouraged to see and study experiences and relationships in new ways. A recommended reading section offers a list of graphic memoirs and drawing books for further research. VERDICT Hart's thoughtful instruction will appeal to aspiring comics and storytellers as well as those looking to strengthen their practice. [Previewed in Jody Osicki's "Graphically Speaking," LJ 6/15/18.]-Faithe Ruiz, Coll. of Central Florida, Ocala © Copyright 2018. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.