It's simply not fair to anyone involved that, to this day, if you mention the reading of graphic novels to a random cross-section of people, a large number of them (if not a majority) will simply assume that you've said that you read oversized comic books. End of statement; move on. The discouraging result of this assumption is that, in many cases, the idea of "comic entertainment" couldn't be farther from the intent, and in addition to the story material, to generalize the artwork into something of cartoonish categorization does a huge disservice to some of the incredible artistry, and literary merit, demonstrated in some of these publications.
So how do we dispel these preconceptions? As we always do here on IDO -- by breaking down prejudice by educating the common opinion.