Wednesday, 14 October 2015

The Smallest Notebook

A few years ago I scanned all of Dave Sim's notebooks. He had filled 36 notebooks during the years he created the monthly Cerebus series, covering issues #20 to 300, plus the other side items -- like the Epic stories, posters and prints, convention speeches etc. A total of 3,281 notebook pages detailing his creative process. I never really got the time to study the notebooks when I had them. Just did a quick look, scanned them in and sent them back to Dave as soon as possible. So this regular column is a chance for me to look through those scans and highlight some of the more interesting pages.

Another notebook we haven't yet looked at is notebook #31, which Dave used for the double issue #289/290. It is a small, pocket size notebook, and only four pages in it were scanned:

Notebook #31, front and back covers
Now, if you're curious how we skipped from issue #251 with last week's notebook #30, to issue #289 / 290 with notebook #31, it was partially how Dave sent me the notebooks: in his order with tiny post-it notes with issue #s on them.

As you can expect for a notebook that covered issue 289 / 290, it is all text. The first two pages look like they could be notes of an astronomy student.

Notebook #31, pages 1 & 2
The next two pages are Dave writing on the science notes of the last two pages. We even get a shout out to the 'big round glowing white strange thing': "The stars reflect all of the voids attempts to duplicate the seminal energy".

Notebook #31, pages 3 & 4


Tony Dunlop said...

I'm afraid 289/290 is, along with Cerebus' "Genesis" commentary, the only parts of the saga I've sworn I've read for the last time. Long-winded and deeply silly.

Ethan Burns said...

289/290 is the only part of the genesis commentary I reread, the art's amazing.

Tony again said...

Yes, I'll look at the purty pitchers, I just couldn't bear to read the darn thing one more time…!

AlextheKay said...

Sigh. For me, Dave's "science" is about as compelling as his interpretations of Torah are. I came to that conclusion fairly early on. Quite aside from the distances involved, and the notion that the planets are so well-lined up for Cerebus' ascension, the idea that the asteroid belt is tightly packed was risible in the extreme (those asteroids actually average half a million miles apart). Still, I did enjoy reading through all the religious hypothesizing once...maybe because I was raised in Orthodox Judaism, and Dave's version wasn't really a whole lot sillier than any other I'd seen (g).