It took me awhile to write the script for Flash Renegade, due to several factors. At the time I was working at a job and also getting another book published. I had to put it aside for many months, until I could actually sit down and write it. After I published my second novel, there were a couple of issues I still faced with writing a graphic novel. Since this was my first time doing a comic of any kind, I needed to do some research.
- How many pages would this graphic novel be?
- How long will this series run?
- What are the costs for such a project?
- What am I going to write about?
- Who’s going to read it? Who is my target audience?
So, I decided to buy a couple of American comic books to study. Now, I’m a huge fan of Japanese manga by the way. I love the stylistic ways it’s done and some of them can be very detailed. Not into a lot of the superhero American comics. I don’t know why, but probably because I couldn’t find any characters that were relatable to me.
I do love Batman, Superman, and Spiderman… but I don’t see a lot of female characters I actually enjoyed reading about. I didn’t even like Wonder Woman that much. Probably the only two I remember from my childhood well is from the X-men cartoon show with Storm and Rogue in the nineties. However, I do love Xena: The Warrior Princess, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and Hercules. And frankly, that’s it.
And yes, I have even watched anime shows too. But for some reason, there are more female writers and artists in anime and manga. American comics, eh…yes there’s female characters, but it’s mostly all male-dominated. It depends on how you look at it. But times are changing for the better…I hope. However, there are a lot of people debating about the whole sexism thing. I won’t dwell into that too much further.
Okay, maybe just a little…
Let’s be clear. There’s sexism everywhere. And until the industry takes a clear stand against it or acknowledges that it does indeed happen, especially the creators themselves, then it’s never going to change. If they wanted to have a healthy discussion on it, they would’ve already done that by now.
But they won’t. They will probably see nothing wrong with scantily clad women kicking ass. How about scantily clad men kicking ass? That would be something. Maybe it’ll change someday. I don’t know.
Perhaps, it’s slowing changing now.
I dunno…I’m not keeping a track of it. Right now, I’m only focused on my own project and getting it done on time. But who knows?
When I was younger, I’d watch and read practically anything––I was technically a sponge. Anything that was cute or funny, I’d pick up and read. As I grew older, I read much darker stories and ones with more substance. Now that I’m an adult, I value my time a little bit more, so I’m not that obsessed with anime nowadays. There are still some shows I love and consider my favorite throughout all time, but I won’t list them all here off the top of my head, because there’s just too many.
So anyway, before I get off topic, I did my research and went on from there.
The script was difficult, because I still hadn’t written it down as of yet. I had writer’s block and it was just dreadful. It lasted for quite some time too––I’m not gonna lie. About six months! Now, at the time, Nicoy was doing some minor character art for me.
This was in the very beginning. We had just started, but it was only one or two characters over a period of a couple of weeks, sometimes months. So we weren’t doing a lot, just fleshing out the basics. It was a sketch she did and another was a clean line-art. Once I saw my character, I won’t say exactly who it was…but in that moment, I suddenly had an amazing idea.
After many months, I started writing the first scene in an email to her. You won’t believe how happy I was. After this scene, that’s when it finally came together. But even then, it took time. Eventually, I started adding more and more.
Then, I noticed things. Certain things in the world that I hadn’t noticed before were being brought forth in to the light. I know it doesn’t make any sense right now. In all my years of reading comics, mangas, and watching shows or movies based off these books…looking back on my script and the story I’ve written…I don’t think I’ve ever read anything like this before.
I’m not saying this to brag or to be cool, because I’m not. In fact, I live a very boring life. I really don’t think anyone’s written a graphic novel like mine. Which is kind of saying something. It’s sad and sort of terrifying, since I don’t know what to expect. How will people react? I have no idea. Trust me, I’ve read controversial comics before, so nothing really shocks me anymore. But I don’t think shock value is what I’m looking for. I’m not here to shock anyone.
I think what I’m trying to say is I wanted a story that hasn’t been done before. Grant it, for writers and artists everything we see and love, we’ll add into our stories. It’ll be a mix of the two. Nothing’s really original anymore as they say. But after doing extensive research, trying to find similar graphic novels, like my own…nothing really stands out in particular.
I have to say, this is probably something you’ll never see again in your lifetime. If ever… and that’s a bit tragic…