One thing that was drummed into my head (by more than one writer or editor) is that when you're writing comics, let the pictures tell the story.
never overwrite and be ruthless about dialogue -- cut it, cut it and cut it to
tell the story through the images as well as the words, but most particularly,
Alan Moore recalled the standards of DC Comics
editor Mort Weisinger in an interview
for the fanzine Zarjaz #3:
"What he said was: if you've got six panels on a page, then the maximum
number of words you should have in each panel is 35. No more. That's the maximum.
35 words per panel.
"Also, if a balloon has more than 20 or 25 words in it, it's
going to look too big. 25 words is the absolute maximum for ballon size.
once you've taken on those two simple rules, laying out comics pages -- it gives
you somewhere to start -- you sort of know 'OK, so six panels, 35 words to a
panel, that means about 210 words per page maximum... [so] if you've got two
panels you'd have 105 each. If you've got nine panels, it's about 23 - 24 words
-- that'll be about the right balance of words and pictures.
"So that is why I
obsessively count all the words [in my scripts], to make sure that I'm not going
to overwhelm the pictures. I've seen some terrible comic writing where the balloons
are huge, cover the entire background..."