When I was a kid, I had a really hard time coming up with story ideas. Compared to my sister who seemed to come up with idea after idea effortlessly, I struggled to write up even a basic premise for a comic. I thought that was my shortcoming and that I just wasn’t creative or inspired enough.
It wasn’t until Polterguys came around and I asked myself why I was writing it that I finally started feeling like there was a fire lit under me. I was motivated not just because I thought the idea of a ‘ghost harem’ was cool but because I finally realized what I wanted to say with my work. I was constantly inspired by all these TV shows and books about strong women and I wanted to send back that same message out there. “Look at all these cool women being awesome!”
See creating something WELL takes a lot of time and effort. If you pursue it half-heartedly, it’s very easy to give up halfway. You’ll hit that point in the process where you feel lost, discouraged and overwhelmed, and you’ll definitely need something substantial to carry you through. If you’re not even sure why you make art, it might take you longer to find your way out of the dark. I think having a purpose to your work, like a guiding star, helps re-orient your thoughts and energies back into the project.
If you’re passionate about your work, it also ends up showing in the end result. People want to support artists who bring something good to the table. They also want to feel like they’re getting something that could have only been made by you and your unique vision.
Do you agree? Have you thought about how your creative projects are meaningful to you? If not, what would you like your work to say?
This post is part 3 of my blog post series, How to Run a Successful Kickstarter for your Manga.
If you happen to be in the A2 area this weekend, I’ll be giving a talk on How to Run a Successful Kickstarter for your Manga this Sunday March 3 1PM-3PM at the Fourth Floor of the Ann Arbor Downtown Library. (Also applicable to comics and other projects, really!)
It’s a pretty cool, laid back crowd. Should be fun. Say hello if you’re stopping by!
SIDENOTE: I’ve been totally preparing for this talk all week. And since I’m an anxious public speaker I decided to listen to this book, Nerve: Poise Under Pressure, Serenity Under Stress, and the Brave New Science of Fear and Cool. It’s about how people keep calm under pressure (like public speaking) and it’s just AMAZEBALLS! I had so much fun listening to the audiobook. I highly recommend picking it up if you’re into non-fiction stuff like me.
I’ve been listening to The Accidental Creative podcasts for the past few weeks and really enjoying the productivity tips and strategies Todd Henry shares in his audio posts and interviews with some pretty cool people like Seth Godin. In today’s busy and demanding world, creative people have to be brilliant, prolific and healthy to survive in the long-term but pursuing all three of those feels incredibly difficult!
There’s a ton of great info in his archives and I’m already eager to check out all the other books he recommends, too!
What a year, guys.
Here are just the highlights from 2012:
- created, crowdfunded and published my first book! (and people don’t seem to hate it! ^_~)
- Met Dan Harmon at the Community art gallery show which I participated in
- Started getting more serious freelance work for some reason. (I suspect it’s because of the new site design. Simpler, less intimidating.)
- Got interviewed and reviewed a few times
I’m so so happy I’ve been able to accomplish much of what I’ve set out to do and even though I stopped short of getting the books into physical stores (I ran out of energy from the move to Michigan.) It’s something I’m definitely planning for the second one.
For 2013, I’m stepping it up.
- Pursue art practice more aggressively (Take classes, and undertake regular creative challenges.) I want to level up constantly and create even better work in the immediate future.
- Write and start producing Polterguys Vol. 2 (Here we go again!)
- Blog regularly
- Come up with creative ideas and side projects. (I’m purposely keeping this vague because I already have a few in the burner. I just need time to execute.
I’m pretty excited for this. I hope you are, too?
Wanna share some projects you’re proud to have been a part of last year? What about your goals for this year? Please share them below! I’d love to hear from you.