It's weird seeing these two panels come in from Nicolas:
Nothing that has to do with the quality of the drawings, because they are awesome. It's that graffiti. As I wrote him after seeing it:
Did I ever tell you that the phrase, bad spelling in all, was some real graffiti I saw when I was 13 or so? I started to imagine who Cynthea was and why no one stuck up for her, why they let the slur stand. I wrote a whole graphic novel, the first comic script I ever completed, to answer that. It was a terrible thing about kids with psychic powers and was called Lords of Order. I had realized not long before that I couldn't draw and had just started to write instead, but I was using a plotting style promoted by Mike Baron in a seminar I took at SDCC where the writer sketches out every page instead of typing. So, I was probably 15 or thereabouts when I wrote it.
In college, I turned it into an equally bad screenplay. It was going to be a trilogy, and I wrote the second one as a comic book, too. In a weird way, it was a precursor to my novels in that the basic story of three brothers and the tonal shift from book to book is kind of the same.
So, it's been two decades of waiting to use that weird smear painted on a wall in Canoga Park, CA, in some story or another. Why do certain things stick with us? It's just so random.
Somewhere I am pretty sure I have a notebook where I drew out that wall as reference, mimicking the real graffiti. In the same box is probably the entire drawn version of both Lords of Order comics. The screenplay is easily accessible, I just saw it in my closet. Written on a typewriter. You can tell by the way the letters are physically stamped into the paper. The notebook with the sketch also has early notes for things like I Was Someone Dead and what would become The Everlasting, and maybe even Have You Seen the Horizon Lately?.
But those are embarrassments for another day.
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All text (c) 2009 Jamie S. Rich