ZAP! POW! BAM! From Comics, Come Readers

Nancy Silberkleit, co-CEO at Archie Comic Publications, Inc. and “Ambassador of Literacy” for Mamaroneck, gave a presentation to children, tweens, teens, and their parents at the Rye Free Reading Room last month.

Archie
Published March 15, 2013 5:00 AM
3 min read

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ArchieNancy Silberkleit, co-CEO at Archie Comic Publications, Inc. and “Ambassador of Literacy” for Mamaroneck, gave a presentation to children, tweens, teens, and their parents at the Rye Free Reading Room last month.

By Melanie Cane

 

ArchieNancy Silberkleit, co-CEO at Archie Comic Publications, Inc. and “Ambassador of Literacy” for Mamaroneck, gave a presentation to children, tweens, teens, and their parents at the Rye Free Reading Room last month.

 

Silberkleit, reluctantly, and with no experience or prior interest in her husband’s business, assumed the top job three years ago, after her husband unexpectedly passed away. Her late husband’s father co-founded Archie Comics 75 years ago.

 

In her former life, Silberkleit was an art teacher, whose passion was helping children think outside the paint-box. She quickly discovered that comic books, now referred to as graphic novels, were the perfect platform to bring her passion for fostering creativity in children as well as promoting literacy and confronting social issues, such as bullying and childhood obesity.

 

At the library event, she used a storyboard format (Archie and friends) to explain to the audience about the various steps and professionals involved in producing a graphic novel. Within this overarching theme (no pun intended), Silberkleit discussed everything from intellectual property to onomatopoeia in an interactive, dynamic, and fundamental way. Even the youngest kids in the audience got it and were excited to participate.

 

Creating a graphic novel takes about three months, according to Silberkleit. An editor has an idea and contacts a writer. Once the writer works out the wording, the illustrator takes over. Then comes the inker, whose job is to get the lines ready for the letters and color. Next, the letterer does the letters and, finally, the colorist brings it all to life.

 

Once all these professionals finish their work, the proofreader does his job, the production people put it together, and then it goes to the printer. Finally, the distributors do their thing. The whole process is so interesting and complex that Silberkleit put together a documentary on the printing of a comic book.

 

She’s already made her own mark at Archie Comics, creating a new division, Comic Book Fairs, to help children become better and more avid readers. Silberkleit sums up her message this way: “Comic books + Children =Reading Knowledge, confidence, and creativity.”

 

She encourages everyone to follow their passion. She has, creating a graphic novel of her own, entitled “Rise Above,” which deals with the topic of bullying. 

 

Silberkleit is a living, breathing poster woman for her message: “Never let anyone define who they want you to be; become active in your own life.” She stepped out of the classroom into the boardroom and quickly found a way to step back into the classroom to promote her education platform.

 

For more information and a link to the documentary, go to www.comicbookfairs.com.

 

 

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