Saturday, July 30, 2011

Diary of An Un-Wimpy Kid--The Road to Destiny

This blog is devoted to a new original graphic novel created by David Lasky and Frank Young, entitled OREGON TRAIL: THE ROAD TO DESTINY. This 120-page, black and white graphic novel tells a lively story, based on American history. In the book, you'll meet Rebecca Weston, a smart, observant 11 year-old who chronicles the journey of a lifetime.

Rebecca and her family, based in bustling, grimy Baltimore, leave family, friends and familiar places behind in 1848. They take a life-changing trip along the Oregon Trail to find a new life for themselves in the yet-untamed Pacific Northwest.

Rebecca's father, John, is a newspaper writer. Inspired by his career, Rebecca decides to chronicle her family's trip.  Her narration informs the story throughout.

The Road to Destiny shows the ups and downs of this often-grueling journey. David and I enjoyed creating the character of Rebecca. Her viewpoint gave us a fresh and personable way to tell this story.

Rebecca's use of a diary is historically accurate. Much of the information we have about the experience of the Oregon Trail comes from personal accounts.

We have become so accustomed to the Internet, to PDAs, to the ease at which we can record our thoughts and observations. Many of us have portable telephones which can take digital photographs. On a whim, we can send these images to friends all around the world.

It's food for thought to realize how precious and fleeting these experiences are, and how much harder it was for people to capture them in the 19th century.

We kept this in mind in our characterization of Rebecca. She is most certainly not a wimpy kid...

Wednesday, July 27, 2011


Welcome to the blog for the exciting new graphic novel "Oregon Trail: Road of Destiny," from Sasquatch Books. Here is how our publisher describes it:

Based on extensive research into personal accounts of the Oregon Trail, comic authors David Lasky and Frank Young have created a graphic narrative of one family's epic journey. The main character is an 11-year-old girl whose family is setting course for the west to seek new opportunities and to escape the "overcrowded and filth" of the eastern city where they had been living.
Revealed is all of the planning, equipment, and logistics involved in such a trip. The book features a series of two-page spreads detailing a visual inventory of everything the family has with them — the parts of a covered wagon and a personal annotated map of the trail. Readers get a ground-level feel for what it was like to be part of this storied migration west — not a dry recitation of dates and facts, but an immediately memorable living history.
Frank Young and I will post sample art, sketches, and background info from the book. We hope this not only promotes the book, but also develops into an online resource for students of the Oregon Trail. Check in from time to time and enhance your Oregon Trail experience!

-David Lasky