Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Brains never cooperate

What you see here is the very first concept sketch for the main character of a comic that I will likely NEVER DO. It is awkward and awful, but that isn't uncommon for first tries. Don't judge me harshly over it.

So why am I sharing? Because I can't get this damn thing out of my mind! I know I don't have time for it. I know I don't have the drawing chops for it (yet). I don't really have any idea how to go about writing it. I'm not sure I care enough to bother finding out. BUT MY BRAIN REFUSES TO BACK DOWN FROM A CHALLENGE!

It started as a thought exercise. I looked at a genre I've avoided like the plague ever since I first started crafting stories in my head and asked myself, "Can I pull this off if I tried?" In this case, the genre was... high school slice of life? With teenagers? And relationship drama? Dude, have you checked out Precocious? Not only does it feature only one teen (who is rarest of rare in character appearances) but it's not big on relationship gobbledygook. The kids are too young for that and the parents are all locked into stable, happy relationships. Looking back over allll the stories I've composed in my head over allllll these years... VERY FEW TEENS. Even when I *was* a teen, all my stories involved adults.

I thought this would be a quick exercise, as I drew a complete blank on how I would approach something so foreign to me. Then frigging Alanis Morrissette came on my iTunes playlist with the song "8 Easy Steps." In the past, I had fun matching all the personality flaws listed in the song with characters from a story I've had in my head since I was a teen. This was a fantasy tale, with every main character over 18. But what if... what if I used those long-established characters and turned them into awkward modern high schoolers? It's a plan so stupid that it... worked? I was seeing characters I've known for half my life in an entirely new context, and it was fun figuring out how their fantasy story quirks would translate. Suddenly my mind wanted to ride this wave and see how far it could go.

Of course, there's still the problem of composing a story. Just as my thought exercise into trying to write a superhero story yielded the promising concept of The Utopians, this exercise also gave me just enough mental rope to hang myself. The Utopians is going to stall forever unless I bring in a friend who knows their supers to help me get some basic concepts and pacing down. This idea is also going to languish until I settle on my storytelling angle - and that's not even factoring in the art requirements of this concept being far more than I can currently handle! But my brain is too stubborn to admit defeat.


Stupid brain.

No comments: