After blogging about it for nearly two and a half years, I've finally gotten an article on metaphor in comics and comic book novels accepted for publication in a peer-reviewed academic journal. The article, which looks at Jonathan Lethem's Fortress of Solitude, Rick Moody's The Ice Storm, and Michael Chabon's The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay, argues that the visual representation of comics offers writers a means of bypassing the symbolic order of language and potentially erasing the divisions of signifier and signified that preoccupied so much critical theory in the twentieth century.
The article went through two rejections and multiple rounds of revision, putting all previous estimations of dinosaur time to shame. It always was neither fish nor fowl--too invested in linguistics and psychoanalytic criticism for some pop-culture journals, too invested in comics for some journals of lit-crit. It was also too damn long and it needed some major work before it was ready for publication. Thanks to some patient editors, it's finally one step closer.
And I'm still not done riding this hobby horse. In the last round of revisions I cut the material on Morrison and Moore, confident that I'll come back to them later in the future book. My first draft was really an introductory chapter trying to pass itself off as an article; I think I'll let it breathe back into a chapter again. The next ones should be a lot more fun to write...
So hopefully one day you'll read me announcing that the book on Lethem, Cantor, Moody, Chabon, Moore, Morrison, DeLillo, Auster, Karasik, Mazzuchelli, and hell, for all I know David B. is done. (No guesses when; I've learned my lesson.) And it all started here. My thanks to everyone who responded and offered feedback on those early posts, or just quietly put up with them and didn't say anything when I started going off about hypostasis again. Couldn't have done it without you.