The imprint is launching! What does this moment mean to you?
A lot of smart, kind, thoughtful, cool people have put a whole lot of time and energy and creativity into working on this amazing project with us—and the launch means that we’ll get to see what our readers think of everything we put into it! That’s the most exciting thing.
Why is “a graphic novel on every bookshelf” an important message?
Graphic novels should be everywhere!
After the Comics Code Authority was put into place in the fifties, the possibilities for comics folded in on themselves, becoming strongly delimited and curtailed. For over half a century, the answer to the question “What can a graphic novel be?” was “This one thing in particular,” instead of “Everything is possible.”
Opening up those possibilities—in this age of visual literacy—means there are new doors to reading for every kid. (Which means there are new doors to reading for everyone, really.)
Where does your passion for graphic novels come from?
My five favorite things about graphic novels are:
- There are words AND pictures together; it’s so good.
- Graphic novels have a wonderful creative community—I haven’t found kinder, more interesting, more thoughtful authors and artists anywhere.
- Librarians, booksellers, teachers, comic book sellers—the industry advocates for graphic novels are all amazing and dedicated and inspired.
- There’s SO MUCH art in the office all the time.
- I love working with a format where we’re challenging people’s preconceptions about what it can do. It means that every day, we have victories along the way!
Can you share what kind of graphic novels readers can find at Random House Graphic? Age ranges? Genres?
Random House Graphic’s motto is “A graphic novel on every bookshelf,” which means books for kids and teens of all ages, in every genre, and about every subject.
Obviously it’ll take us a little time to get there. But we’re putting in the time and the work to make it happen! Reading a combination of words and pictures is amazing (and an important way for everyone to be reading), so Random House Graphic’s goal is to start there, and make all the kinds of books that are possible within that framework.
What makes a great graphic novel in your mind?
A great graphic novel sticks with a reader after they finish the last page. It’s a book that provokes an emotional response—smiles or laughter or frowns or further thought.
And it’s a book that the author is proud of. Which means we, the publisher, are proud of it, too.