< Piro >
Wednesday - August 22, 2001
I've been in kind of an odd mood lately. I suppose it's because i've been knee-deep in story-mode ever since I got back from Otakon - i've really enjoyed the recent Yuki storyline stuff. Everything in the MT story is clicking into place better than I ever figured it would...
Oh, Before i get accused of placing myself 'in front' of the comic and damaging the 'purity' of comics as an art form again - no one has to read these ramblings. I'm under no delusions that anyone reads them. I write these things for myself, not as some sort of sick grab for attention (in fact, there are times i *really* need to learn to shut up. Some rants generate an extraordinary amount of email ^^;;) Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain. He's nobody, really.
For those interested in listening to me drone on about nonsense, read on. For the rest of you, two things: First, here's the next desktop wallpaper Merekat has put together for your background pleasure. This gives you an idea of the kind of detail she's thrown into this image. For the posters, we're looking at a printing run of around 1000 - We should have everything worked out by the end of the week. :) Secondly, the NekoNekoWai and #megatokyo folks have finished putting together all of the guest strips for your viewing pleasure - go check em out. Thats all 308 of them (those that aren't, we couldn't download or were missing image files). Thanks a bunch, Kai.
Ok, switching to bothersome droning mode. No need to read further unless you are bored.
Largo and I had a lot of mixed feelings last week. Speaking for myself, I'm not used to the kind of attention we got at Otakon. As an architect, you get pretty good at standing up in front of a crowd to present projects, or dealing with militant plan review boards, but this kinda stuff is... different. I really don't know what to think about all the attention we've been getting lately. In high school, college and grad school i was shy and introverted to the point of incapacity (i was a 'nerd' before it was actually hip to be one) I'm in no way used to being the center of attention. I've been getting by by convincing myself everyone was there to see Dom. :P
I've gained a lot of respect for people who are in the spotlight all the time. It's fun, its oddly invigorating, it's exciting, but it's stressful too. 'overwhelming' is a good word for it. I think it's real easy to get wrapped up in the attention, trying to return it as best you can to all the people who want to talk to you. I feel really bad about the various "I tried to find you guys at Otakon, but..." emails, and the guy who wanted to take Largo and I out for a beer (we're still gonna hold you to that, dude :). It's a lot like my email problem - too many people to pay the appropriate amount of attention to. :( I suppose that's why i try to hang out in #megatokyo as much as i do. If people know they can reach me when then feel the need, it removes some of the desperation of getting my attention RIGHT NOW... or at least, that's my hope. :P
I guess that dealing with these problems is just part of doing this. I suppose in some ways i wish MT wasn't so popular - I'm seeing people attach stigmas to it, people telling me i only do this to feed my ego (WHAT ego?), that i gripe about things only to get sympathy and pity, that i bask in the attention, etc, etc etc. People can be pretty mean, really. When i say that i'm just an average joe doing this, and that there's nothing special about it, i mean it. Please stop trying to convince me otherwise. ^^;; What are Largo and I supposed to do? Ignore everyone and be aloof assholes? It's not in our nature. We're doing the best we can, please stop being so hard on us. So we don't get it right all the time, hey, we try.
People joke with me about 'go to your happy place, piro! Sad girls in snow!' (thanks, Ian, Matt - i really need give you two a swift kick the ass for that comic one of these days ^_^) the odd thing is - it's really is kinda true. You bastards saw right thru me. That 'happy place' for me is drawing the comic. It's really odd, but in the middle of all the stress and worry about deadlines, keeping the site up to date, that day job thing, etc, it's amazing how much i actually enjoy the process (hell, if i didn't, there would be no way that MT would have lasted a year). I've got a really good feel for the story now, and i have a real good feel for the characters. In fact, thats the interesting part. Largo and I are giving these characters lives, and they are the kind of lives that we've enjoyed seeing in our favorite anime and manga series. Its a very satisfying feeling to be able to at least approach being able to do that.
so, in short, i guess my 'happy place' is story-mode. I've got a lot of empathy for Yuki and her situation. Even tho i know whats going on, and i know all of the inner thoughts and future events, it doesn't take away the experiential quality of it for me. Maybe thats what is so neat about doing a web manga - the authors/artists get a little of the experience of watching their work with everyone else.
There's more to it, i guess, but that's enough. Sometimes you just don't really feel like putting all of it down into words. Life is complicated, and some would say it's stupid to tell people what you think and feel. It's true, it is dangerous. I was reading something that said that young boys were actually more emotional than their female counterparts. The reason so many boys have the problems they do is because, unlike girls, they are told that they need to keep their feelings to themselves - men don't talk about their feelings. What bullshit. Howabout understanding the REAL reason for it - people can use those feelings against you, you don't want to give anyone any ammunition. It take a lot of balls to be honest about your inner thoughts. There's nothing 'girly' or weak about it. I've come out fine on the other side of the emotional battlefield known as 'growing up', so maybe i've developed my own way of thinking. It's a kind of toughness that serves you well in life.
MT is an organic story - we know the general direction, but the finality of what really happens to the characters doesn't happen till it happens. In many ways i'm as curious as you are to see how things go for all of them. Things change, sometimes, because that's what the story or the situations that develop call for. Sounds a lot like life, actually...
[wanders off to find some coffee humming namida ga yuuki ni kawarutoki~ to himself...]