I have a recurring dream. It goes something like this.
I am in middle school. I’m standing outside. It’s hot. I’m thirsty. A few feet from me is one of those toilet bowl-sized porcelain water fountains (bubbler) with the stainless steel hardware and the knob that looks like the steering wheel on a small tug boat.
I walk up to get a drink, lean in to the fountain and, BLAM, someone pushes the back of my head into that shark-fin chunk of stainless that juts out of the water spigot. My two front teeth collide and break off, a gusher of blood spilling onto my clothes, the fountain and the ground. I stand there, alone. There’s no culprit. It’s only me. I hate that dream.
Another dream. I create my own comic book.
Wait. Did that. Am DOING that.
So I went one step farther.
[Whispers]: I submitted it for an Eisner Award.
AN EISNER AWARD.
Big deal. Frightening deal. Fear of leaning into a water fountain in middle school deal. But, it’s done. I receive an email from the awards coordinator. She told me she received it. And I responded back OH MY GAWD THANK YOU I AM OVER THE MOON KNOWING YOU HAVE MY COMIC BOOK DO YOU SEE RAINBOWS AND UNICORNS I DO WHAT A DAY WHAT A GLORIOUS DAY AND ITS IN YOUR HANDS AND MAY I SEND YOU A LARGE CAKE OR BOUQUET OF FLOWERS?
Actually, I said thank you for the nice note acknowledging its receipt.
And then I may have said, in my best Ben Affleck Batman voice, “SHIT’S ON.”
Now, let me be REALLY, REALLY clear. I would not dare take a space away from a working comic book writer, artist, colorist, letterer or anyone else whose business this is to make comic books. This is an intense hobby for me, a lifelong dream fulfilled. But I wouldn’t want to be some oafish speed bump preventing some working professional’s success. I have way too much respect for what those folks do, the grind and what it takes to just BE in comics.
That said, I sent the entry, VORPAL 2, YOUR SINS BE AS SCARLET, in. Do I think it could compete? Yes. Do I think it’s got a shot to be nominated in its submitted category. As Lloyd said in Dumb and Dumber, “So yer tellin’ me there’s a chance.”
See, that’s the beauty of an awards event like this. If you meet the criteria to enter, then you’ve got as much of a shot as the rest do. Did the work? Check. Did it well? Check? Did it better than others? For someone else to judge. And they will.
Plus, it’s the Eisner Awards, the one’s named for WWII Army Veteran and comics legend Will Eisner. The set of awards by which all the comic books are judged. And, well, why not have the electricity of waiting and wondering in your belly and neck at least once or twice in your life? Who dares, wins.
Again, it’s not nominated for anything. Yet. Will it be? That’s to be determined at the end of April. Still, people are looking at VORPAL 2, YOUR SINS BE AS SCARLET with the scrutiny of Sauron’s eye fixed on Rivendell. As far as judging goes, I know that burden of responsibility from both a judge’s and entrant’s POV, and have much respect for both.
I’ve submitted my entry for the Eisner Awards, the comic industry Oscars. No teeth were harmed in mailing that submission.
And this gives me much joy.