Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Waiting for Wednesday, Issue 38

The Complete Copybook Tales coverGotta be honest here, this is not going to be the easiest Waiting for I've ever written. Actually, it'll likely be quite the opposite. After Monday's depressing little post about my growing cynicism towards comics, it would be pretty hypocritical of me to launch into an overly-excited post about what I'll be rushing off to buy at the shop this week.

So, first, let's clear the air.

I still love comics. But, as things like this tend to go, and as many a broken-hearted teenager has heard at some point, I may not be in love with comics anymore. Comics and I are having a fight, you see. A rather large one, and right now, I'm not sure which one of us is winning.

But I don't think it's me.

What's the genesis of this new-found, falling out of love, you ask? Well, I think it's been building for some time, and there was a moment not too long ago that really got the ball rolling.

Just about a month ago at the Baltimore Comic Con, I had a rather rude conversation with someone I had previously spoken to online about possible employment, and I guess things have been steadily building up since then. I'd talked previously with this person, and I was rather pleased with the way things were shaping up.

Now, I'm by no means naive about the job market out there, and while I honestly did not expect anything to come from the talk, I still could not help feeling snubbed by this person. He was just plain rude, is all I'm saying. But, I shook the encounter off and moved on to the next thing.

Unfortunately, a couple of Not Good Things happened soon after, and I've since landed in a messy situation with a former business associate and a...well, let's call it a non-existent situation with another former business associate.

Both had to do with comics, and more specifically, with my getting into the comics industry. And both took a toll on me, since neither ended the way I would have liked. Actually, as I alluded to the other day, one situation is on-going, and costing me quite a bit of money and even more stress.

Add to all this the fact that I literally have to do a mathematical equation before entering the comics shop on Wednesdays to see what I can afford, and it becomes clear why me and comics are not seeing eye-to-eye at the moment.

Or, maybe it doesn't. Become clear, that is.

Certainly, in my head (and heart) it's pretty clear. And, for those reasons and a few more, I just don't have that same spark that I did in the not-so-distant past when it comes to my four-colored friends. So the Big Question becomes, how do I continue on with Waiting for, and not to mention, this blog where I talk about comics quite a bit?

And my plan to answer these questions was to basically start writing this post, and see if I would figure things out along the way. And I think I kinda did. Maybe. I'm hoping that Waiting for is just the thing I need to help spark that interest and passion I've carried with me since 2003.

As it currently stands, Wednesday is pretty much just another day of the week for me at this point, and that is not a good sign. I don't head over to the LCS until late in the afternoon, as I don't really want to run into any of the shop's regular Wednesday Warriors. Another not good sign. My hanging out time at the shop has widdled down to around 15 minutes or so, and it's become less of an escape and more of a nuisance.

I'd rather be on my computer, applying for jobs.

Maybe it's just circumstances, though, and once I have a steadier (read: not freelance) gig with reliable money, maybe I'll be back to my old self. I do still enjoy writing this feature, and I do still get that happy feeling in my stomach when I'm looking through Diamond's shipping list for the week. So, I figure, that's a good sign.

Now, once I've figured out which books I can buy, I go out and buy them. But, for whatever reason, they sit in a box under my bed and they don't get read. I pick up the same book that's been sitting at the front of the box for nearly three months, and I flip through it and put it back.

I've kept up with a few of my favorite titles, like Goon and Blackest Night and House of Mystery and Hellboy. But it's been a long, long time since I've read a Dark Reign book, and an even longer time since I've read a current Batman book.

What I have read are the books that made me fall in love with comics, and I'd like to share them here, in lieu of a proper Waiting for. As mentioned on Monday, this weekend I sat down with my all-time favorite Batman story, The Long Halloween and Dark Victory, and I read through both volumes.

Sunday night I read Garth Ennis' first Hellblazer arc, "Dangerous Habits."

Monday night I read Neil Gaiman's Death: The Time of Your Life, and Death: The High Cost of Living.

Last night I read the one-and-done, Hellblazer, issue 27, written by Neil Gaiman and illustrated by Dave McKean. Entitled "Hold Me," it is quite possibly the best single issue of a comic book written in the past three decades.

I'm not sure what I'll be reading tonight, but it'll be something that means something to me. I'm thinking it might just be The Copybook Tales, by J. Torres and Tim Levins.

I plan to continue on this way, ignoring the new comics and turning once again to the titles and runs that got me so hooked on this hobby, not long ago. And I know that, at the very end of this new/old comics journey, I'll read the entire collected Goon series, from the very first issue to the very latest issue. I'm planning for this to coincide with Christmas week, as it's somewhat of a tradition for me to read through The Goon once a year, during that (usually) stress free week.

So that's what I'm going to do. I'm going to try and fall back in love with comics.

Wish me luck.


Scott said...

I think the word you want is "whittled".

It sounds like you got a little too close to your subject matter; I've heard it said that you shouldn't mix work with play lest your play become work.

zharth said...

Well, I'm of the opinion that mixing work with play is ideal, so that your work may become play.

I try not to expect too much of my fandoms, because I know that my interest has a tendency to wax and wane naturally - and I let it. If I lose a little interest, I'm confident it'll come back when the time is right. And if it doesn't, it's because I have other things to be interested in.

Of course, if you have work obligations, then that can become a problem. The world is, unfortunately, often not as flexible as the flights of fancy.

AJG said...

Haha...yeah, I def meant "whittled." I knew it didn't look right, and for whatever reason, I simply had a brain freeze.

Going back through a couple of my more recent posts, I've noticed more typos than usual.

I think it's a combination of things for me (when it comes to the whole love/hate thing with comics, not with the recent typos thing).

It's strange, though, I have to admit. I walked into the shop on Wednesday and I wasn't even a little excited to be there.

I really hope that, by reading back through all of my old favorites, I rekindle a little of that excitement.