When writing a comic, you shouldn’t think of it by the number of words on each page. They are a mixture of art and words.
The artist and writer must work together to fit everything on each page. How many pages are in a comic?
The answer depends on the type of comic that you’re writing. Some comics only have one page.
Other comics, such as the likes you’d find from Marvel and DC, have roughly 24 pages but can go up to 32.
However, if you consider graphic novels, these can go up to 200 pages or more.
However, you could argue that there isn’t a set page count these days, especially if you consider digital publishing.
Let’s go into some more detail about how many pages are in a comic book or a graphic novel and explain why it is the industry standard and if it’s any different from digital publishing.
Comic Book Issues
When you consider the standard issue of a comic book, it would have up to 32 pages in the past.
Even if it’s less than 32 pages, they’ll always have a set number of pages that are a multiple of four.
Today, you can still see this practice continued in major publishers of single-issue comics from DC and Marvel.
The reason this occurs is because of the printing process. Publishers printed each page on a parent sheet containing a page count of 8, 16, or 32.
The page count itself is based on the size of the comic, which made it easier for the printer to then cut and staple them together to produce the book.
The offset printers function with an overall page count of 32, including cover pages.
Therefore, you would be wasting paper if you didn’t have 16 or 32 pages, as you would still spend money on it.
So, to be the most cost-effective for the industry, you would need to have a multiple of 4.
However, each printer has a different offset, but overall they stick to the rule of four.
So for the standard in the industry, it would be best to think of this when you consider traditional publishing and printing.
If you want to break down a comic book issue, it’s best to think of it like this. First, you’ll have a front cover, and after that, a front inner cover.
You can then expect roughly 22 pages of plot, followed by an inner back cover and a back cover.
In between each page, especially for Marvel and DC, you would also find ad pages somewhere in between a few pages.
But if you’re running an independent comic, then you can focus on around 25 pages of plot, but there should still be a 32-page format going on.
Cosmetically, graphic novels and comic books aren’t that different. That’s because they both combine images and text to create the final product.
However, one significant difference between them is the size and presentation.
Usually, a graphic novel has a self-contained story, while a comic book is part of a bigger story that continues weekly or monthly.
Then, there’s the size of the graphic novel. Graphic novels are more prominent and have many more pages than your average comic book issue.
They could have as little as 60 pages and could go beyond 200. However, you may find that they will occasionally appear with different dimensions than a single issue.
Looking at any graphic novel, they typically have larger dimensions and pages.
They will even have a different binding style, often trimming their pages to give them a cleaner look.
However, you will still need to consider the page count when you’re ready to get printed. The rule of four is still accommodated in graphic novels.
Your printer will need to know the number of sheets or pages the book needs. Sheets and pages are not the same, so there is double the amount of sheets as pages.
But if you want a way to consider how many pages your graphic novel needs, it’s best to think of how your reader may approach it.
The number of pages depends on the kind of audience you want to read your book and whether you can fill the pages with your story.
If you want to know the set number of pages for a graphic novel and you’re getting it traditionally published, then it’s better to consult a publisher.
However, the minimum number of pages has to be around 60, with some graphic novels even reaching over 500 pages. But 200 pages is also a solid middle ground.
Does The Page Count Matter?
Ultimately, the page count only matters when you are seeking to get traditionally published.
Getting your comic book published online is easier than ever before, with many websites dedicated to getting independent comics published.
Some of these comics could be released as a single page, so you wouldn’t have to worry about time constraints.
In many cases, a lot of webcomics have also been published through indie and mainstream publishers.
However, one factor that could have an impact on the number of pages is the amount of content on each page.
Beginner comic book writers struggle with fitting too much on a single page to save on the number of pages.
The comic book industry has shifted with the modernization of technology.
While a standard issue of a single-issue comic book contains 32 pages, so long as it’s a multiple of four, it should still be printed successfully.
This is an industry-wide standard, so you can expect Marvel and DC to publish comics in the same way because they use the same materials.
Graphic novels work slightly differently, as they’re designed to be longer and self-contained so that you could have from 64 to 200 pages.
Overall, graphic novels are dependent on the publisher and publishing constraints.
Digital publishing has changed the number of pages depending on the publishing route.