I was gonna do it. I wasn’t gonna do it.
Late last summer, I read about a talent search the comic book company Top Cow was running. What interested me was they were accepting entries from unpublished writers as well as artists. So I uploaded the rules. Seemed OK. All I had to do was choose from a plethora of characters from the Top Cow universe.
I eventually decided on the futuristic world of the green-haired assassin Aphrodite IX. I picked up several issues featuring the character. I came up with a couple of possible story ideas.
Then I got cold feet.
I closed the comic script file and dillydallied on other writing projects. All the while, I’d get some idea spark, jot it down in the file, then forget about it.
This went on for several months. I eventually resigned to the fact I wasn’t going to enter the contest.
But the character kept nagging at me to write a story. All right, I told myself. I’ll give it a try.
Four days before the deadline in March, I fired up the laptop and got to typing. I came up with a quick outline for the story, typed Page One, Panel One, gulped, and dove right into the tale.
It was done within a couple of days. I read through it to make sure it didn’t have any glaring plot holes, then nervously sent it off to contest land.
Sadly, I did not win. Otherwise, I would have written a blog post that simply read, “OH MY GOD I WON THE CONTEST!1!!1!” It would have been cool to have my name printed on the cover of a comic book saying that I wrote this story, but alas, it wasn’t my time.
Am I burning with rage that I didn’t win? Absolutely not. I’ve got more than 30 rejections from my short story submissions. This is part of the process. I have to tell myself the story wasn’t right for the editors at that particular time. Otherwise, it’ll eat you alive and you may not get back to writing, which is what I should be doing anyway. Trying to get better.
And hey, I entered the contest, so that’s half the battle. The other half: I finished a comic book script.
Should Top Cow do another talent contest, I may give it another shot. Unless I get published elsewhere before that time. Which could happen. Maybe.
The story itself, “Lessons Learned,” was born from Aphrodite IX: The Hidden Files. That comic sports a lengthy timeline of the Aphrodite project. I noticed there was a wide gap from the time the character is put in stasis to when she is awakened in the first issue. I thought, I wonder what one does while in stasis.
The answer is in the script, found below the fold.