I don't know how the conversation had come up, it was probably one of those brainless late night conversation on the phone, but my girlfriend had asked me, “Which comic book character am I most like?”
It didn't take me long to select Kitty Pryde of the X-men. Not only physically does she remind me of her, but they share a plucky, sarcasticness coupled with a great intelligence (Kitty Pryde for computers, my girlfriend in science). She then asked me, which comic book character I was most like.

That was tough. Physically I guess I kind of look like Foggy Nelson, a character that is just below sidekick in the comic book ranking system. But I only look like him by default, since in comics there is no 'chubby' characters for the most part, they're either extremely fit, or extremely out of shape. Regardless though, its more important that you relate to a character on a personal level. But I have very little in common with these fantastic characters.

At least that's what I thought, until I was sitting on the toilet reading issue 74 of Amazing Spider-man, as collected in Essential Spider-man volume 4. The comic features the introduction of African American Hobie Brown who I STRONGLY identify with. There is nothing I'm more familiar with then the plight of a African American in the 1960's... Wait that's not right.

Hobie is a professional window washer, something I did for years, but he wants more... which is something I've wanted for years. This comic issue has two pages of dialogue that nearly completely mirror a conversation between me and my girlfriend, between Hobie and his girlfriend.

Hobie, is a cool cat, but where he is in his life just doesn't jive for him. You dig? What Hobie wants to do is be an inventor, where I want to be a writer (comic books in particular), we are both creators. Hobie spends much of his free time inventing, I spend most of my time writing. There are those similarities, but mainly its the discouragement hes experiencing. Cause the white man is keeping us down!

Here is a quick snippet of dialogue from the comic, pretty much word for word what my girlfriend said to me.

“You've got to snap out of it, Hobie! Stop feeling sorry for yourself! I know how clever you are... How great you are at inventing things. But you're still young! It takes time to be discovered, time to reach the goal you're trying for. Okay, so you're just a nowhere window cleaner! Whats to stop you from giving it your all? Why not bring some of your new ideas to the man you work for? What do you have to lose!” - Amazing Spider-Man issue 74, by Stan “the Man” Lee (And yes, true believer, he did give himself that nickname).

After that verbal lashing form his girl Mandy, Hobie sucks in his gut, and fluffs up his cock, like a real man and takes a shot at getting his inventions out there. He decides, whats the harm in trying, and shows off his inventions. Thats something I struggle to do, I have a hard time even telling people that I want to write comics, and an even harder time showing my actual work off to people.

I share that fear Hobie has, no one wants to look like a fool son! So we curl up in a ball, and protect our soft spots so, that no one can judge us. But it gets us nowhere fast! How can I be down about my comic writing career, when I've really hardly tried.

And its not like I don't have some resources, I am in correspondence with published writers, and have minor access to an editor, but I never approach any of them for advice due to a self imposed fear of rejection, or appearing as an annoyance.

When it comes to submitting to publishers that have a open submission policies, I'm apprehensive. I always tell myself that the project I'm working on isn't ready, and that its not the right time for me to be sending out that particular script, just lame excuses. But then I'm put into a self induced funk by my lack of progress! Its frankly pretty whack!

Thats part of the reason of this site, to get me out there. Its a baby step. I'm producing work that can be seen by the public, while allowing me to maintain some kind anonymity. I have on here, my blog, which is as far as ratings are concerned (I can see my sites traffic) the main event. Then their is 'Out of Beat' my gag comic strip which gets a fair bit of attention, and last is 'The Return' which has had a huge raise in ratings since I moved it to Thursday (I don't know why I thought Friday was a good day for it. It sucks for TV, so it sucks for web comics).

But there is a next step, I need to draw more attention to my site, I need to get it even further out there, and raise my traffic up by a dozen or so people. Its something I'm going to need to figure out. All I know is I will not ask for 'Shares', 'comments' or 'Likes', cause to me, if people wanted to do those things, they would. So I guess that's what I need to do, improve the site enough to get those 'shares', 'comments' and 'likes'. Maybe if I view more of Hobies experiences I'll find my answers...

Oh... That honky rejected his ideas for new window washing equipment and Hobie is in a fit of depression. He's worried his girlfriend wont love him anymore and hes running out of money... Groovy! He's going to use his inventions and become a Super hero... Actually Hobie thinks that becoming a super hero will take to long, so he becomes a super villain called the Prowler instead. Its kind of a rapey name, but nowhere near as bad as John Ramita's original name for him, 'the Stalker'. One of his weapons of choice is a knockout gas, I kid you not. He was originally going to be a man named 'Stalker' who wields a chloroform like gas as a weapon.

Hobie's plan is to steal from the Daily Bugle, make a big show of it and get a lot of attention. Then as Hobie Brown, he would return the stolen goods, playing it off as if he retrieved it from the Prowler after defeating him. Hopefully this media attention would give him the chance he needs to promote his inventions... There is very little logic tucked under that afro of his.

At least now I know what to do when the comic writing thing doesn't workout. I'll dawn a costume and become a super hero.

'The Coongar rises' anyone?




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