Much of my time has been spent writing this week. The deadline is closing in and the shape of the first book is becoming clearer. But I don’t want the narrative to just pause, I want a distinct shape and pattern to it, so I’ve been working out a bookend for the opening and final pages. Writing on this project involves drawing, the two are synonymous, so I’ve laid out about eight or so pages with narration and dialogue. Six of these will end up in the book. As part of this process, I’ve been tying down the exact chronology of the middle of the comic to make sure I don’t waste time on sequences which will end up in the second volume.
I’ve also been doing a lot of research into the ’79 to ’82 period, watching old news reports and sourcing images. It’s strangely comforting to remind myself that the world’s always been burning, lurching from one terrible, apparently catastrophic, turn of events to another. It’s our perspective that’s shifted, from how we view “Afghan guerillas” (as they were called back then) fighting the Russian military or the way terrorist acts around the world are linked into one global narrative.