The WBP Backstory
Last Friday, I sent out the prologue to Whiz!Bam!Pow! backers from that long-ago IndieGoGo campaign. Along with that email came the backstory behind this new version of WBP. Here’s that bit of backstory, to give context for Friday’s release of WBP to everyone.
What the hell has taken so long?
From creative paralysis in the wake of the campaign to life doing what it does best (usually in combination), this project has been simultaneously a blessing and a curse. But, for all the tumultuous upheaval of the past year+, the largest part of the delay has been something awesome:
I was writing a book that is being published (my first book published by a for-really-real publisher!!) by Focal Press this summer, Comics for Film, Games, and Animation: Using Comics to Construct Your Transmedia Storyworld (ComicStoryworld for short, the main title’s a mouthful). It was through writing that book that I matured as a creative (writing a 350-page book covering the past, present, and future of comic storytelling in five months will do that) and found that the story of Whiz!Bam!Pow! as it existed during the campaign (multiple volumes, etc.) wasn’t the story I wanted to tell.
I was paralyzed by it, unable to move forward. The very thought of having to revisit the project as it was during the campaign filled me with fear, anger, and resentment — all directed towards me and my own inability to finish the damn thing.
But then I did something I always do when faced with a problem (other than piss and moan for awhile): I stopped, looked back, and asked,
“What worked before?”
I stripped the project down to its core, free of the narrative tomfoolery created over the past year and a half: the story of a grandfather and his grandson centered around the question, “what would I do if my mom threw out my comics?” I threw out notes, clippings, pontifications about the future of storytelling and how WBP could be a part of it and did what I wanted to do in the first place: tell a damn good story that means something to me.
This serialized novelette is the story I’ve wanted to share with you since 2007 in the medium with which I’ve had a year-long courtship (though one could argue it was ten years and I’m finally putting a ring on it).
A bit of backstory about this new version of Whiz!Bam!Pow! – I didn’t decide to transform the main story of WBP into a prose piece (it was a originally a feature-length screenplay written by myself and my writing partner Paul Klein) until my last week of writing ComicStoryworld (the end of February 2012) when I wrote the behind-the-scenes case study of Whiz!Bam!Pow! for the book. I was stuck on that section, racking my brain over what I would write. Then I asked myself: “what worked before?” Once I wrote in the case study that it was the story of a grandfather and grandson, I was committed and dove back in immediately after sending ComicStoryworld to my publisher. So, technically, this version that’s kicking off next week is only a couple months old — and better than it ever was.
And there you go. Can’t wait to share WBP with all of you on Friday at http://whizbampow.com/category/the-story/