-a brief thought of self doubt creeps in-
Clearly, the reason I'm here is to promote myself as a writer, a comic book writer specifically. The only reason I joined twitter or attempt to update a blog is to try and create some kind of professional presence and show some of the things I've written.
Apparently, Valiant Comics is mailing me a 1 in 100 variant cover edition of Archer & Armstrong #1. I won this by participating in a twitter based campaign where I send in a picture of myself, at my store, buying comics on Wednesday. I've also found myself having fun taking part in Valiant's fan art Friday contest, though my lack of artistic skill has kept me from winning that one yet. It was while I was thinking up the next thing I could try to enter in the fan art competition that I had the thought that maybe acting like a fanboy, takes away from trying to look like a professional.
It only takes listening to a few comic creator podcasts to realise that some of the people who read the least amount of comics, are the people that make them. It makes sense that writing or drawing a book professionally is going to be pretty time consuming, and that most of the excitement you can dig up is going to be focused on your own work, so can you be a writer and still be a fanboy? Valiant's relaunch has really grabbed my attention, I never read any of their old books, but I've now opened up a pull list at my store of only their current four titles. I'm hooked, I'm a fan, but can I send geeky Valiant tweets and draw little Valiant doodles while still hoping for a Valiant job?
Right now, I realise, I don't pay my bills by writing comic books, I suppose that might effect the way I look at this at the moment, but that's what I have to go with, me. It turns out "me" just wants to have fun, whatever that happens to mean at the time. I just want to take in what interests me and allow myself to get excited about stuff in a non-cool, non-professional way. I want a comic with a talking cover and contests that get me into my store on Wednesday, and I'm sorry that more companies aren't doing stuff like this. I would love to put a Valiant sticker on the back of my car, and I know that if I did, and I sent a picture to Valiant, they'd send me a comic to say "thanks". That's just awesome!
I guess the point is: The doubt creeped into my brain as I was drawing an exploding Bloodshot for the upcoming fan art Friday, it made me stop and think what I might look like to other people. Then I realised that I'm having a lot of fun with Valiant comics right now, and in the beginning, that was the only thing that I cared about in my comics, fun. The fun that made me want to write comics in the first place.
Maybe being a professional is being a fanboy.
****AFTER WRITING THIS****
Between me finishing this piece and actually posting it, the Friday Fan Art contest I entered has happened.
I didn't win, but interestingly, two participants in the fun were Shadowman artist Patrick Zircher and X-O Manowar writer Robert Venditti.
This was my piece: