Tears v.2.0 pt 2 (of 3)

This is the second part of the second version of Perpetual Tuesday. It’s not going to be in the book. Take it for what it is, and enjoy. Second verse, same as the first…

The Aspiring Comics Creator as Anti-Hero
He’d done about as much as he could to promote his business using his own skills, but he wasn’t a salesman, and he couldn’t afford to pay for expensive advertisements, even if he could design them himself, which, if they required animation or professional film making, was outside of his area of expertise. He’d tried to get into college for animation, but he’d known fully well that he wasn’t an animator by temperament or inclination; he just wanted to tell stories visually, with video, sound, and as many of the rest of the senses as he could engage by proxy.

For as long as he could remember, he wanted to be a comic book creator. Not just a writer or artist, letterer or colorist, but all of the above. The problem was, all through his teen years, he’d wanted to write superhero comics, but by the time he went to college, he had moved on to wanting to tell stories that didn’t feature spandex-clad heroes and villains. He wanted to tell real stories, but also imaginary stories with more imagination than the average comic series. And he wanted to draw and paint the panels himself.

Basically, he wanted to be the auteur of the comics medium. Most of his storytelling heroes in comics still worked with superheroes, though a few, like Alan Moore, Neil Gaiman and Warren Ellis, had tried other things and wrote about more human protagonists from time to time. And then, of course, there was Art Spiegelman, who wrote Maus and created all of those strange late 70s/early 80s graphic design comic hybrids. There was Chris Ware and the Acme Novelty Library books, and Jason Little with his Bee comics, and… well, actually, he guessed there were a lot of indie comic writer/artists whom he could draw inspiration from, but he also wanted to write adventures in varying genres, and feared his work was too ‘superhero-y’ for the indies. He also aspired to creating something cool and useful, the way Scott McCloud had with his ‘Understanding Comics’ series. He just didn’t think a comic book about graphic design was what people wanted to read.

The conclusion he’d reached, while trying to transform himself from a graphic artist into a graphic novelist, was that the money stank, and the market was so thoroughly saturated with superheroes that most people didn’t get it if your story was based around anything other than muscle-bound warriors in tights. The state of Hollywood made it abundantly clear; America wanted more superhero movies, which was a bizarre proposition. He had seen a handful of movie adaptations of classic comic stories that didn’t feature superheroes, like Red and Wanted, Ghost World and From Hell, The Road To Perdition and Scott Pilgrim, and especially V For Vendetta.

But most people associated comic-to-movie adaptations as featuring The Watchmen, Mystery Men, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, The X-Men, The Avengers, Spiderman, Bat-Man, Superman and the criminally underused Wonder Woman. He didn’t fancy his chances of overturning the trend. He just wanted to tell good stories in different genres and make a respectable living from them. He sometimes thought he should just get it over with and write something that Hollywood would be interested in buying the rights for, so he could afford to set himself up properly, but really, other stronger writers had been trying to do the same thing, and most of them had largely given up.

The only writer who seemed able to consistently write things that Hollywood liked without selling his soul was Neil Gaiman, and he’d become so busy in recent years that even he wasn’t turning out adult material at the rate he used to. He’d mostly been writing children’s fiction, the occasional episode of Doctor Who, and toying around with live performance with his sexy rock star wife, Amanda Palmer. That and a television adaptation of his best novel, American Gods, kept him busy enough that he had only just begun working on what was supposed to be another adult novel. Richard would believe it when he saw it.

And of course, Richard’s biggest hero, Alan Moore, wanted nothing to do with the Hollywood movie machine. But then, he also wanted nothing to do with the American comics industry, either. As a consequence, he was almost completely off the radar, even though he had been making music, magazines and movies as well. Alan happily toiled in relative obscurity, doing only what he wanted, but definitely experiencing the problem of being a famous recluse in the doldrums without enough money to keep bankrolling his creative projects, and no taste for making concessions to the modern comics industry. Even the prospect of making so-called indie titles didn’t appeal to him, it seemed.

© 2013 Lee Edward McIlmoyle
Closure ver.1.0 pt 1 (of 5)
Closure ver.1.0 pt 2 (of 5)
Closure ver.1.0 pt 3 (of 5)
Closure ver.1.0 pt 4 (of 5)
Closure ver.1.0 pt 5 (of 5)

Tears ver.1.0 pt 1 (of 1)

Tears ver.2.0 pt 1 (of 3)
Tears ver.2.0 pt 2 (of 3)
Tears ver.2.0 pt 3 (of 3)

Don't be shy. Tell me what you really think, now.


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