The website for Comic-Con International carries a full transcription of Michael Chabon’s 2004 Eisner Awards Keynote Address, in which the Pulitzer Prize-winning author strove to impress upon assembled comics industry professionals the need to create accessible comics for kids. Among his suggestions:
Okay, now we get to my one concrete suggestion. If it seems a little obvious, or has already been tried, forgive me. But I can’t help noticing that in the world of children’s literature, an overwhelming preponderance of stories are stories about children. The same is true of films for children: the central characters are nearly always a child, a pair, or a group of children. Comic books, however, even those theoretically aimed at children, are almost always about adults, or teenagers. Doesn’t that strike you as odd? Maybe somebody should try putting out a truly thrilling, honestly observed and remembered, richly imagined, involved and yet narratively straightforward comic book for children, about children.