I have fallen off the comic horse quite a few times now and, no doubt, I will be bucked off a few more times yet. I have tried six comics and so far only two are looking like they’ll ever get finished. I have one finished novel, (which no one will ever read as it was written when I was 16 and it it shows) and three unfinished ones. I have god knows how many illustrations which I promise myself everyday that I’ll finish and I’m pretty sure the dishes have been in the sink for a couple of days now.
Life has a way of guiding you off the garden path and finding your way back can be hard. But today I am here to say it is okay to fail. It is okay to walk away from a project that is no longer going anywhere and it is okay to sometimes down tools and take a walk into the desert.
I am 28. And as a comic creator I feel like I am way behind on the game. Before I went to university I drew everyday and I thought I was pretty good. Welp, turns out I wasn’t as good as I thought I was and it was difficult pill to swallow at the time. Being good at art and comics was a core part of identity and here I was, being bucked off the horse at the riding competition.
I went back to comics here and there, even finishing a one shot called, The Day a Bird Followed Me, and that was mainly because if I didn’t finish it I would fail my degree. Talk about motivation. But even then, it felt like a bit of a failure because it was riddled with mistakes and it does not look as good as I would have liked ( I am going to redo it one day!)
It was sometime before I got back on the horse. I drew here and there but the magic was gone. The horse and I stopped communicating. I had nothing to tell and well, I had a career to work on. But something felt wrong. I knew that. The horse knew that.
One day, I passed it standing there looking grey and dejected and boy did it look the way I felt. We were lost without it each other. I thought to myself for a moment, “I am too old to ride. I’ve been out of the game too long.” Then came the other voice in my head saying, “Who the F**k cares?!” So I wander back into the paddock.
At first we were both wobbly, taking our time to carefully step our way through. Now, a year later, we’re both stronger, creatively, and we’re taking stride after stride. The best thing about it though, this time, is that I am no longer alone in the arena.
You’re going to fall off your horse. And maybe you’re going to stay down for some time. But remember that there is no age limit on getting back up and oftentimes, there is an entire community who will keep you steady as you find your feet again.
How many times have you fallen of your horse? Do you have any projects you’ve had to walk away from. Let us know in the comments below! And join us on Sunday evening for our Quackchat at 5:30PM(EST) where we’ll be talking about this topic!
Emma_Clare at 12:00AM, Aug. 3, 2018
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