Friday, September 11, 2009

THE EXILE - graphic novel is DONE!



Great news! The artwork for the graphic novel is done (bar little tweaks here and there) and it looks terrific! We don't have a specific pub date for this yet—sometime in 2010—but we do at least have a title. This is called THE EXILE (An OUTLANDER graphic novel).

I took some of the artwork with me to DragonCon last weekend (I did the Decatur Book Festival and DragonCon more or less simultaneously, which made for an interesting time all round), and was very pleased that everyone who saw it raved about it.

In celebration, here are two more sample pages, to show off Hoang's mastery of color and light (and anatomy). One small note: Please don't nab these pictures and go posting them all over the net. I don't own the copyright; that belongs to the artist, Hoang Nguyen, and these are posted here by his kind permission and that of the Ballantine editor. If you'd like to share these with your friends—and I'm all for it [g]—please just send them a link to this page.

92 comments:

  1. Amazing artwork! I just want to dump sand in that wig!!! :)

    Jamie...yum!

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  3. BEAUTIFUL!! Amazing job :)

    I'm a comic reader and (IMMO) It looks really really great (even If I weren't an Outlander fan...)

    Can't wait!

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  4. The artwork is beautiful - the water scene is just gorgeous. Looking at the pages you showed us in Fergus I was very impressed by Hoang Nguyen's talent. I've never been a comic book reader, but this one I plan to savor. *G*

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  5. This is beautiful! I can't wait! Hopefully I'll be back in the states when it comes out, I'm still trying to find my local Borders here. Scotland involves lots and lots of walking, I have discovered, even in the cities. And Jamie is indeed quite delicious-looking. We're all dying here, I think!

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  6. The talented Hoang Nguyen has captured Jamie as I imagined him. Like Maria, this is one graphic novel I will consume whole.

    Thank you so much for providing this opportunity for what is turning out to be a wonderful fall.

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  7. I agree, these are fantastic. Having recently jumped into the world of graphic novels, I am really excited to see how some of my favourite books are translated visually, so thanks for sharing! Tee hee...interesting how Jamie's hair matches his plaid almost exactly, hmmm? I guess he'll always be colour coordinated! ;-D

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  8. The art work is beautiful but one thing I have noticed is that Jamie's eyes are brown instead of blue; I noticed that on previous artwork also.

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  9. The artwork looks fabulous! Can't wait to see the finished product!

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  10. This has been one of the most exciting weeks on your blog! Can't wait!

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  11. These are just great! He is an incredible artist. I can't wait to see it all put together. I love the wee glimpse of Ellen's necklace.

    Thanks for sharing, you are always so generous to your fans Diana.

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  12. These are wonderful! Really glorious work! I am so looking forward to "The Exile."

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  13. *jumps up and down, disconcerting both guys in her household*

    It looks amazing. Goodness.

    I cannot wait!!! :)

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  14. Do u think they look just a tadbit ... chinese ??? or .. east asian ?... In facial features only, that is. The rest, is too cool for words !

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  15. Oooooo! It looks spectacular! I can hardly wait for this one too. Way to go to both of you. I was skeptical at first about the idea of a graphic novel (my son has a couple) but now seeing the quality of the artwork and knowing your wonderful storytelling ability, I'm sold! Another great project to look forward to for next year.

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  16. this is amazing! i can't wait to see the whole book! jamie is verra beautiful! never have i purchased a graphic novel, but i will now! i can't wait!

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  17. Diana:

    It goes without saying that I am excited to add the Graphic Novel to my collection of all things "Gabaldon" but it appears the likenesses of Jamie and Claire have evolved significantly (makes sense) from the early panels or samples shared here or on your website. This, then, piques my curiosity and desire for the GN.

    Hoang's art is beautiful: the colors are rich, textures (love the backgrounds for mood and settings) are subtle.

    Thank you for sharing.

    Midge

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  18. I don't know if you read these comments, but I love your books! You are an amazing writer! I listen to them on CD while I edit at night. It's my comfort at the end of the day. Thank you for sharing your talent!

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  19. Hmmmmm.....

    Just noticed that Jamie's eyes are brown. Thought it was shadowing at first.... but, no....!

    Am I being too critical?

    Midge

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  20. Dear Midge (et al)--

    No, feel free to say anything you like; I'm interested to hear what y'all think. The brown eyes are one of those things that gets tweaked in the later phases. [g] (Meaning I did notice them, and will be including it in the detailed commentary on the artwork that I'm working on this week. If you notice anything else, of course do point it out--I _probably_ saw it, but I imagine it's like typos; no matter how many people look at a page, some tiny thing sneaks by.)

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  21. Dear Rashi--

    Well, as you might guess from the name [g], Hoang is Vietnamese-American. The characters' faces flex from page to page, and in a few of them, they do look faintly Asiatic. As I said, there'll be a few tweaks to the artwork prior to publication--just as there's a revision phase to a completed manuscript.

    Even so, the first reaching of The End is an achievement to be celebrated!

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  22. These are great. You certainly picked a good artist. You are right about how he handles light - it's amazing, especially the water pics. I see what you mean about requiring a little more tweaking on the faces, but this really is great - I am very much looking forward to getting a copy! AND getting a copy of Echo in TEN DAYS! :) I have a few more Outlanders to give away in that time - I had better get crackin'! (I am one of your big box o' books distributors!)

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  23. Just incredible. Some of the best graphic novel art I have seen - and I look at a lot since I am (sort of) working in that media myself. Well, it is sort of a hobby. The characters are lovely.

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  24. Love the artwork of Jamie! I do miss his chest hair and it looks like his eyes are brown. Otherwise it is great.

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  25. ooooooooooooooooh i LOVE them, thank you thank you for sharing them :)

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  26. Are those Jamie's mother's fresh water pearls?

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  27. Really beautiful artwork, I can't wait to see the finished project!:) Other than his eyes, I think Jamie looks fabulous. I picture Claire with rounder and softer facial features and a slimmer face shape, but that's just me! It still looks wonderful.

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  28. I love his way with colors. Boy, does Jamie have abs or what? *g* Reminds me of that photo of Ryan Reynolds on EW a few months back.
    http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_sHGRRxGGGdE/SjqhEWjGyGI/AAAAAAAAAA0/0P5LeUFx3tU/s320/Ryan+Reynolds+Entertainment+Weekly.jpg

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  29. These are great. I can't wait to see the entire thing.
    I have been looking for the Novel Red Ant's Head and haven't had any luck at the book store or the library. Where can I find this Novel? Thank you.

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  30. Dear Janessa--

    Well, once I finish _writing_ it, it should be fairly widely available. [g] With luck, I hope to finish it sometime next year, meaning it might be out in 2011.

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  31. Dear Diana,

    It has been great to watch the development of this project. The colors and textures are far away from the comic books, and there are also much small nuances, which will take its time to be perceived.

    Some small notions:
    Hawkins was young and beefy faced (not at all relevant, but < g > ) and Murtaugh's nose looks to change quite a bit.

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  32. I am drooling right now. I cannot wait for this graphic novel! I am itching to pre-order on Amazon :)

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  33. Absolutely amazing. Just one small comment...in the Jamie scene, shouldn't he have some chest hair? He doesn't seem to have any body hair at all.

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  34. Can't wait to put my hands on the graphic novel!
    Jamie...*sigh*.

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  35. Is it possible to get some chest hair? That and the blue eyes and he will be perfect! Can't wait until it comes out.

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  36. Yay!!! I can't wait until it's published!!!!! This will be the first graphic novel I've ever read, and I can't wait!

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  37. Really Excited about putting faces to my favorite characters ..only a tad bit disappointed in the way Claire is potrayed....she looks much older.The first artwork with her in the nurse uniform was so much better!

    Looking forward to final tweaks!

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  38. re:Shakir said...

    i agree, i liked the first claire so much better. her face was so much softer and more what "my" claire looked like when i read the books.

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  39. I wasn't looking at his eyes. *g*

    Seriously, congratulations, Diana. I look forward to Echo this month and to the graphic novel in '10.

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  40. I love the look of Jamie. Does anyone else think Claire, in the bottom panel, looks like Celine Dion? I agree with Jen who pictures Claire with rounder and softer facial features and a slimmer face shape. I would add a less sharp nose and chin and slightly larger, fuller mouth. But that's just adding my $.02 to Jen's.

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  41. I really have no idea how difficult it might be to do convincing body hair in this type of artwork. [g] Personally, I'd rather have none than have it look ape-like or gross, but I'll inquire--there are relatively few bare-chested scenes, after all.

    As for Claire...look, guys, there are more than a hundred pages with pictures of her. The page I posted here shows her drowning, hauled up like a wet rat, and bedraggled. Take my word for it, she looks _different_ from one scene to another, just like most folks would if compared drowning vs. combed and styled for their wedding or neatly dressed for an official "sweetheart" portrait. Dinna fash.

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  42. This is a small thing, but Jamie's hands were beautifully drawn! Blunt fingers and all...gorgeous.

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  43. I forgot to add...I love the look captured on Jamie's face as he is looking at his mother's pearls; so much emotion is displayed in his eyes. Amazing.

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  44. Dear Diana~

    You are being so very gracious to tolerate and/or accept our comments on these sample drawings. My hat's off to you.....

    Just wanted to add one more: the way Hoang portrays Jamie's damaged back is beautiful, if heart wrenching. I really have to hand it to him. Tell him thank you.

    Midge

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  45. Thanks for taking the chest hair request into consideration. I agree, if it doesn't translate in that media, then he best left as is and I really have no complaint about that! You just did such a wonderful job of describing Jamie's body that I am hoping we can see it in *almost* all of it's glory.

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  47. Is it just me or does Claire look too 'waif-like'? I mean very young and untouched by the world. Which Claire really isn't. Shouldn't she be looking, I dunno, like she's vexed at being there with BJR and she's just done some naughty things in his 'office'? Does that make sense?

    Here's an anime that a Japanese friend of mine did of me from a photo(I was NOT in a suit or carrying a weapon)-- http://www.jpgbox.com/jpg/5858_500x375.jpg

    I think Claire should have a kind of snarky look about her as well.

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  48. I try not to think about it too much, but I think that this is my most anticipated 'book' ever. I cannot wait!!!

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  50. Dear Diana,
    I'm really interested to learn about the process involved in producing a graphic novel - or at least how you have experienced it. How did Hoang came to learn all the detail about the characters (because there's a lot of it!)? Did he read the first book or did you write up profiles or have a basic story in place including details? For example, Joss Whedon had a script which was then illustrated for the 'Serenity' graphic novels - the difference there is that his characters already existed on the screen so there was no question of what they should look like. I'd love to hear about your experiences...
    Cheers.

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  51. Dear Claire--

    Hoang read the novel, and made a couple of preliminary sketches, on which I gave him feedback. Then we kind of started in. [g] I wrote the script in pieces, much as I do novels, but somewhat more linearly, and he began doing pencil pages from the beginning, giving these to me and the editor for feedback before doing them in color.

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  52. These are amazing. This is the first I've heard of it (computer was down awhile). Can't wait. Jonesing for Echo like everyone else. Thanks Diana for sharing.
    Carol L.
    Lucky4750@aol.com

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  53. The water scene is simply beautiful. Hoang may be the Monet of the GN world [g].

    Jamie! What can I say but 'hubba hubba!'

    BJR looks even meaner than I expected. Scary. Now have to seriously revise my ideas about Frank's appearance.

    And Murtagh. Wow. I thought he was a wee crabbit weasel of a man, but he's almost more gorgeous than Jamie [g].

    Thanks so much for sharing these Diana. The finished work should be amazing.

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  54. What beautiful artwork! I love the colors and that there is so much movement on the pages. My eyes keep finding more to see everytime I look. I'm anxious for more.

    I disagree with the addition of body hair. Jamie is a 22/23, fair, red haired man. He would not have much body hair. You can almost see his oxter in one scene. That's enough. LOL!

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  55. Diana,

    My heaven's we are in for quite a treat. I'm so impressed with Hoang's work, and how he has captured the essence of these characters that we love so much - even the shape and constitution of Jamie's ears and hands and legs. (And is that a hint of a three cornered scare we see on Jamie's throat?) Just seeing Jack Randall, all dressed in crisp white, made me shudder...literally. I'm sure we all see little nuances that differ from what we've seen in our mind's eye, and I'm sure there will be some minor corrections and editing, but overall - wow! Cannot wait to see these characters come to full-color life. I'm more excited about the release of The Exile than I would be about a full-length motion picture. Congrats to both you and Mr Hoang and thanks again.

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  56. Wow - the graphics look fantastic! I can't wait to get my hands on this next year!

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  57. The artwork does look very Asian...forgive me but there is something very pokemon about it. I'm not saying the man is not a good artist, but I'm disappointed in especially Clare's face.....big face but tiny features....looks weird. I guess I wanted them to look less cartooney. And yeah, where are those blue eyes??? hope a lot more tweeking is yet to come : (

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  58. These images are just SO beautiful, and they don't seem to conflict with my internal imaginings of people's appearances. I can't wait to see the whole shebang! Do you have an idea when this will be released?

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  59. Wonder what the comments will be like if they ever make a movie. We will definitely be going over the actor cast for Jamie with a fine tooth comb. This guy seems to match the description of the young Jamie in the book as close as any I have seen. I think he would be a good candidate for the movie if that ever happens. He doesn't look it but he is twenty-four.
    http://www.blisstree.com/files/45/2008/05/chase-crawford-nc.jpg

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  60. Thank you! I'm looking forward to seeing the finished product...but for now, Lord John will keep me entertained until Echo!

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  61. The pictures are absolutely AMAZING! I am in awe of this artist. I can not WAIT until this comes out! I was able to glance at a page or 2 at the Decatur book festival, but I was near the end of the autograph line and everything was rushed because Diana had to leave for Dragon Con (which now I wish I went to too because she had just a small crowd there as opposed the the MASS amount of people in Decatur!). That and being in awe of meeting Herself, i was pretty speechless and in a daze. Oh I hope this comes out early 2010. An Outlander graphic novel is a wet dream to an artist/Jamie fan like myself!!! :D

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  62. Sorry had to add after I read all the comments:

    I love the style, don't think its 'too Asian' or Claire looks too old or Jamie not hairy enough etc etc. If I could draw as well as this man I would do a back flip! The lighting and the dynamic poses and expressions are to die for. Hoang Nguyen has a new fangirl! His Jamie is the closest anyone has ever gotten to the Jamie in my head (including my own drawings!). I want this graphic novel like, yesterday! :D Bravo you two!

    xoxo
    Dove

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  63. Please insert fan girl squeal here..lol!
    This looks GORGEOUS and I cannot wait!

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  64. Why is Jamie's hair maroon? Has the artist never seen anyone with naturally red hair? Because it don't look like that. Seriously unimpressed.

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  65. LOVE LOVE LOVE. Can't wait for it!

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  66. Just started the Outlander series last month and I am reading Voyager now. I am very impressed with Diana's talent. And a graphic novel, wow. For me, too, a new experience. So I am looking forward to the release. What is The Echo?

    Also, I was thinking Jamie's hair was a variety of reddish, chestnut, roan, red. A unique redhead. Can't wait till the finished version.

    A new fan.

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  67. WOW!! Thanks for posting the amazing artwork. Can't wait until it's finished. I'm going to the Asheville book signing...excited to meet you. =)

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  68. Why Jamie has got brown eyes??? His eyes must be blue!

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  69. Dear Nancie--

    AN ECHO IN THE BONE is the seventh of the OUTLANDER novels--due out in [counting on fingers...] One Week. Better read faster! [g]

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  70. Diana,

    I am a long-time fan of your work, especially all of the Outlander novels. I have both read and listened to the entire series many, many times and feel imtimately familiar with all of the characters.

    I love these portraits. The artwork is really beautiful, especially the rendering of the water. I thought it was a nice touch that Claire's hair, in the scene where it is dry, seems to be just starting to grow out of a short 20th century haircut, just as it would have been. And Jamie's youth and strength are both clear in that gorgeous body.

    I just wanted to add my voice to the list of praise and congratulations. I am eagerly awaiting the release of Echo next week and this graphic novel next year.

    Thank you so much for everything you, Claire and Jamie have added to my life.

    - Nicole Z

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  71. Hate to say it, but I'm disappointed with the illustrations. Except for the English solder (BJR?), the characters look too much like anime cartoon characters. They seem to be too angular or something.

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  72. WooHoo!! I just got notice from Amazon that my Echo HAS SHIPPED!!! It is only the 21st...so what a treat to have it on the way a day early!!
    Diana, thank you for providing the most wonderful series I have ever read...and I read a lot! You make scenes, people, landscapes, details, come alive like no other!! Your style fits my likings :)
    As for the Graphic novel..WHAT A TREAT!!! I must say, however, that my first impression is that the characters have WAY too much of an Asian influence and Claire looks quite a bit different than how she appears in my minds eye. Their features NEED to be anglo, or it doesn't fit. Also Jaime's hair color needs tweaking. It is his crowing glory, and here it looks like it came off of Raggedy Andy!! Please do not take this as an insult, as the artist has done a tremendous job overall. He does, however, need to try and stick with how YOU have SO BEAUTIFULLY and DILIGENTLY painted Jaime and Claire in all of our brains. No license to alter, I say :)
    Thank you again, Diana, for giving us the gift of your talented writing...and of course..for Jamie and Claire!!!

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  73. Diana,

    Having looked at the pictures several more times since my last comment, it has occurred to me to wonder: I understood the graphic novel would be told from Murtagh's POV. And yet, it is clear which scene Claire is depicted in here, and (at least to the Claire's and therefore the readers' knowledge) Murtagh was not present.

    Does the GN go beyond just being from Murtagh's POV?

    Thanks,
    Nicole Z

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  74. Nicole--

    One of the ways in which a graphic novel differs from a prose novel is the speed and facility with which you can change viewpoints. Since viewpoint is largely visual, you can in fact have _multiple_ viewpoints in even a single panel--which is virtually impossible to do in straight prose (have multiple POV's in even a single scene, let alone a single paragraph).

    Note that all of the novels other than OUTLANDER use multiple viewpoints, though--even though the major part of the novels is told from Claire's point of view.

    The graphic novel _is_ told mostly from Murtagh's point of view, but it does _use_ others.

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  75. Brandi/Christine/et al--

    No, I'm not insulted. [g] All I can say is that a) a graphic novel _is_ a comic book, after all (i.e., rather pointless to expect portraits that match a mind's-eye imagination of real people, surely?), and b) you've seen maybe four pages of (essentially) middle-draft art. When you see the final product in a bookstore, you can flip through and see what you think.

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  76. I agree Diana, the graphic novel format is not for everybody especially those who want to keep their own mind pics of the characters in tact. The artwork is just luminous so far. Beautiful colors. I enjoy seeing the artist's interpretation of the characters.

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  77. Hi Diana, thanks for yet another great read in the series of amazing books, so glad I found the spoiler for the ending, will be only too happy to cry 'happy' tears having enjoyed the series so much & other books you have blessed us with. Will eagerly await the Graphic Novel next year to add to my collection also.
    Cheers, Andi

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  78. It looks fantastic.What a great idea!Just when I thought I had nothing to look forward to and how can I possibly wait for Book 8.

    So yeah.Good.

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  79. Dear Diana,
    Need to tell you, just love your work, I have all of Outlander series and Lord John series in hardcover and they have a special place in our home where I can see them and besides reading them, that gives me pleasure too, silly he?!
    Have never bought a graphic novel before, well one for my friend ones, but that's besides the point....
    But I will run out to buy "The Exile", it looks awesome and it will make a nice addition to the rest of the series.
    Also glad to hear that your going to publish a second companion to go with the first.
    Anything regarding these "friends" is welcome indeed!

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  80. The graphic novel looks like it's going to be amazing!
    I can't wait! I've never read a graphic novel before so it should be exciting. The art work is gorgeous. Mesmerizing really. It will be great to get more on Jamie and Claire from when they first met.

    Echo was great too! Hope the 8th comes out soon....bet u get tired of hearing that.

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  81. Just read Outlander and half way through Dragonfly in Amber...LOVE THEM!

    Yes, art needs a bit of tweaking. Coming from a realism artist I think Jaime's bod is rockin! However his eyes obviously need to be blue and his hair should be streaks of: cinnamon, copper, gold, and blonde...I believe Diana clearly mentioned that a few times. Chest hair in the artwork is omittable in my book too!

    Claire should be much hotter, and has really curly hair.

    Not to say that the artist didn't do a wonderful rendition. I'm looking forward to finishing the series, and this book will be icing on the cake!

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  82. I am probably way too young to be reading this book-hey I'll be sixteen in May! But i must admit to having read all of the books in the series twice. I think, being an artist myself, people pay way too much attention to the tiny details in the work. Even if Jamie had seven arms in the picture, it would be the beauty of a collaborative work! I will enjoy this book in any form, and can I say "Thank you Diana for bringing this story into existence!!"

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  83. From: Maria GWN

    Hello Diana,

    I have just finished reading AN ECHO IN THE BONE. I thought this was going to be the last in the series? (Read that somewhere...but may have been an error/rumour).

    Anyways, lots of cliff hangers in the book's ending. So, my question is:
    Is there another novel in the works and, if so, when do you think it will be ready?

    I started reading your books about 20 years ago. With so much time passed, some of the details from the earlier books were vague memories and eventually gave up reading the books, but still purchased the newer releases. Over the last year, I started re-reading the whole series again to have everyting fit together.
    So, I'm hoping that you have something coming soon...while my memory is fresh:-)

    Thank you
    Maria GWN

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  84. So ya, I know it is hard to believe, but im a dude and I absolutely love the Outlander novels. It is my favorite series of all time. Just like to thank Diana for making a graphic novel out of it.( I've been reading "One Piece" manga so I had looked at the artwork from right to left at first, feaked me out, haha.)Just wondering how "graphic" this graphic novel will be. Not trying to be gross or anything but I dont think you should chicken out on not including a few of the more intimate scenes. btw, there is no such thing as a scotsmen without body hair! haha, good work keep it up.
    P.S. here is a picture of my water polo coach. It is a crappy picture but he looks EXACTLY like jamie. You cant see it but he is 6-4 with slanted blue eyes. He is even left handed. just needs red hair.

    http://graphics.fansonly.com/photos/schools/ucla/sports/m-wpolo/auto_headshot/585414.jpeg

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  85. I was wondering if this would be the only Outlander graphic novel, or if there are plans to to any more.

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  86. Love 'em :) Beautiful artistry, however Jamie's hair is too... red. It's not the bronze and golden combos Claire always describes. I'm a little dsappointed in that, but other than his hair, Jamie is perfect.

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  87. I loved it; its a great story.We knew Murtagh loved Ellen because of the bracelets, but it was a lovely thread in this story.
    Im a bit disappointed by the drawings , however; there is plate 5, which is really splendid, and then there are drawings where Claire and Jamie simply look goofy. Jamie is more or less recognizable throughout; Claire, no.I dont think the artist grasped her.Its not a question of blue eyes and gold eyes,though there is that, its because her features are not consistent. She could be anyone;its as if the artist was in a hurry to finish and just splashed the page with
    monochromatic figures...

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