It's time I gave you an update.
Something happened to me in 2010. Something huge.
January 15th came and suddenly I was 40 years and one day older than my dad had been when he died.
That threw a switch in me. I have pulled the plug on my professional career. Too blunt? Okay, I've put it on indefinite hold. I do teach on the side for the Laguna College of Art and Design with a wonderful gent named Bobby Hernandez. That gives me just enough to keep the engines running.
Why am I doing this?
2013 is the year I begin busting out my own stories. This January I completed a project called the Little Book of Pain. It's an eBook at present, available on iBooks; the Kindle versions will be uploaded as soon as they're ready. My first offering may seem like a strange way to start, all personal and soul-bearing and such, but I owe some of my healing to those who have dared to let me see their pain, and I want to repay that debt the best way I can. Kay Jamison, William Styron, Andrew Solomon, the anonymous voices in "A Music I No Longer Heard" by Leslie Simon and Jan Johnson: they showed me I wasn't alone. It's my hope the Little Book of Pain will have the same effect on someone else. I call it a "Shitstorm Inspirational". I started on this quest in 2010, the year I gained the distinction of being my own dad's elder, and it seemed appropriate that my first book should be about him, and me, and the Little Kid forever caught between us by his suicide in 1976.
There's much yet to be done for the LBP. I've got the Kindle versions to complete and the hard copy of the LBP to finish for the Kickstarter campaign. I don't think I will be done with this story for a very long time. It's taken me thirty years to realize I'm living the damn thing and I can do more than cope. I choose to thrive.
I've worked with others to help them tell their stories for more than 20 years. Now it's my turn. I'm off. I've got enough material to keep me occupied for the rest of my days. I aim to catch your curiosity and hold it tight. My next project is already building a head of steam. The prologue for my tale will appear as part of the Dead Anyway comic anthology. It will mark my first dip into the terror-filled world of comics.
It may not always be a smooth ride, mind you. But I promise you it won't be dull, either.
The Facebook Page for the Little Book of Pain:
I post news relating to my book there, art and such, but I also share things I find inspirational. Videos, animation, links to resources for depression and other mental health issues. There's a lingering sense of shame in our culture around mental illness. We've got to break that down. Depression can be treated. There are people who care and places where you can get help. The LBP page is my soapbox for issues like these.
You can find the eBook here, on iTunes. I apologize to all those with Kindles! I will have the Kindle version up as soon as I am able.
The LBP on iTunes
Lastly, here's the Facebook Page for Dead Anyway, well worth checking out: