From screen to page: 11 books that started out as webcomics
This content contains affiliate links. When you purchase through these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Webcomics are part of the joys of social media: in fact, I would go so far as to say that in the wild and sometimes confusing World Wide Web, they are a ray of sunshine that allows us to disconnect from our troubles.
Webcomics that feature everyday struggles really speak to me, and they’ve even become something to share and discuss with friends because they hit the nail on the head and come so close to home.
Of course, if you follow webcomics online, there’s a whole world beyond what we can see on our little Instagram squares, but I tend to seek out and engage with the more lighthearted and fun ones. . Especially because sometimes they have depth – they are good at shedding light on heavy issues, without really denying or overlooking their seriousness. They use humor as a way to cope with life.
In a way, webcomics make me feel like I’m closer to so many other people I don’t even know. They make me feel seen.
In this list, you will find some published books that have their origin in webcomics. They are proof that so many things that start small can truly grow beyond the creator’s best expectations, which is a win for readers!
Sarah’s doodles by Sarah Anderson
Sarah’s Scribbles is Andersen’s semi-autobiographical comic strip, in which she gives us insight into her own life.
Currently, she has released four “Sarah’s Scribbles” collections: Adulthood is a myth, Soft happy hunk, herd catsand Eccentric. She is also the author of fangs and Cryptid Clubtwo other comic series also available in book form.
Much of the womb merchandise you see bouncing around the internet is from these comics.
Yeah, I’m hot in there by Huda Fahmy
Huda writes with wit and humor, even when discussing issues like discrimination and prejudice.
In her autobiographical comics, she recounts her encounters with strangers and with work colleagues. She also shares her relationship with her family, especially her husband and mother.
Phoebe and her unicorn by Dana Simpson
It’s the story of a 9-year-old girl named Phoebe who jumped a rock across a pond and punched a unicorn in the face. She got a wish, so she wished said unicorn to be her best friend. The comics are a diary of the shenanigans they get into. Which is a lot. In the right direction.
Catania comics by Catana Chetwynd
It’s one of my favorite webcomics, mostly because they’re absolutely adorable.
Catana Chetwynd started drawing the comics in 2016, after her boyfriend John suggested she do a comic about their relationship. The loving comics, depicting moments between the couple, seem to have struck a chord with readers, and they have become hugely popular.
magic boy by Le Kao
The illustrations of magic boy are seriously out of this world, and it’s a gift to humanity that it’s now available in print.
The main character, Max, is a trans boy. But when his mother reveals that he is part of a line of Magical Girls and that the fate of the world is now in Max’s hands, things get a little trickier.
Kao is also known for his funny web series, Mondo Mangowhich are also worth knowing.
Please check by Ngozi Ukazu
For Bitty, being a freshman at Samwell University AND playing on the college hockey team certainly prove to be new challenges for him.
For those who love a good sports comic, Please check is a coming-of-age story, and it’s super fun!
The print campaign for this webcomic is still one of the most funded Kickstarter webcomics of all time.
Princess Princess forever by Kay O’Neill
This webcomic was first published on Tumblr as “Princess Princess”, and is now an acclaimed graphic novel.
Princess Amira rescues Princess Sadie from her prison tower, and as they embark on a quest together, they realize that their differences are actually what makes them stronger together.
Among O’Neill’s works is the famous The Tea Dragon Societywhich is also a pearl.
living heroes by Stephanie Williams
This is a fan comic that features several black girls from the Marvel Universe who live together in a 90s sitcom. It’s super fun to read, and the book came about through a project Kickstarter.
Unfortunately, the book is only available for purchase in digital format.
The sad ghost club by Lize Meddings
The sad ghost club is a club for anyone who has ever felt sad and lost.
If you take a look at the comics available online, you’ll find more than just relatable pieces: you’ll find wisdom and ways to deal with the little bumps on this road of life, especially those related to mental health.
I have a weird obsession with ghosts, so this is definitely one of my favorites, and I’m so glad they’re also available in print.
There are two volumes right now, but there’s a new one planned for next year.
One of these days by Maya and Yehuda DeVir
I came across these comics on Facebook, and it’s been really interesting to see how the comic has developed over the years, alongside the real-life relationship between the two writers.
A little like Catania comics mentioned above, this webcomic depicts the daily life of a couple, Maya and Yehuda. Since its debut, they have published 5 volumes. With the birth of their two children, they now also feature them in the stories.
Volwassen Worden is an option by Marloes de Vries
I had to sneak into a comic that is very close to my heart, but unfortunately is not translated into English: Volwassen Worden is an optionwhich translates to becoming an adult is optional.
If you are lucky enough to be able to read Dutch, you will see how the book follows the lines of its title: it talks about those little things that we encounter as adults, with the conclusion that no one really knows what done, and we all learn as we go (and that’s okay).
The good news is: Marloes has a whole IG page almost entirely in English, including his comics. And on his website you can find some very nice travel diaries she wrote and illustrated about Scotland and Cornwall, both in English.
Marloes talks a lot about work-life balance and following your heart, so it’s definitely worth keeping up with her comics and her newsletter.
Of course, the world of webcomics is vast. Reading this article, you will find several well-known webcomics that have become missing books, but this list only contains a selection of some of my favorites.
If you want to know more about (web)comics, we have a whole archive waiting for you.