Sunday, January 20, 2008

Volume 1. Chapter 1. Line 1.

It strikes me as weird and suspicious that Garrison Keillor sounds a lot like Nick Cave.

Okay, an odd way to start a blog, especially one that's supposed to be dedicated to my writing and my comic, but it's relevant to what I do. I have a comic, as you can see, and I've written one complete novel and several complete short stories that no one wants, and this blog will focus on that, but it will also focus on one of my sources of inspiration: those things that we forget as the world changes.

I love text adventures, old radio dramas, fax machine hoaxes, dirigibles, bulletin board systems, and those old satellite dishes that you'd have to point at the right place in the universe in order to pick up Japanese talk shows or whatever. Mostly because I feel a little bad for them. I feel bad that my friends only know that The Shadow is in reality Lamont Cranston, wealthy young man-about-town, because of a throwaway gag in Family Guy, and I'm sad that we're not still groping to communicate with one-another with faxes and ham radios and hijacked phone lines. I feel this way even though I know we're living in an age of informational and creative richness never before rivaled.

As technology advances--the closest thing we have to an unmitigated good in this horrible and vacillating world, and if you disagree please walk to my house and say so--we not only adopt new technologies and ways of doing things more quickly, we abandon them too. The telegraph had a century to decline into general obsolescence; Betamax had a few years. As we live and change we watch the industrial vulgarities of the last generation become quaint and beautiful--I look at the mills (quote Blake, I dare you) of Easthampton, two towns over, converted into chic restaurants and artists' lofts, and wonder how ugly those scenic Norman castles that inspired so many fantasy writers must have looked going up. And as we change and grow, whole mediums wither and die, and sometimes it's fair and sometimes, well, I miss radio dramas.

So that's what I worry about, and if you're reading this that's what you'll get a lot of: not just my thoughts on writing, drawing, and trying to cobble together a creative career for myself, but my thoughts on how things turned out. When I was young I wondered (as every kid wonders, I guess) "Why am I here, and not someone else in my place?" This blog will occasionally ask something similar: why is...Google Blogger, let's, and not something else? Sometimes these questions will even have answers--why the QWERTY keyboard? More likely, though, there won't be answers, just a vague sense of bewilderment that I hope to turn into a career some day.

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