Monday, April 22, 2013

Writing About Comics, Writing About Life

The Longbox Project is a site that asks folks to share memories tied to specific issues in their comic book collections. This technically means "Amazing Spider-Man #258 makes me think of...", but it's just as likely to mean "For 25 years I've carried some low-level guilt around about the time I stole something from my big brother, and I finally have an excuse to confess it."

You don't have to be a writer or a writer-about-comics to take part. It's not a comics criticism site so much as a memory project, and the posts tend to be conversational and honest. I wrote a new one that's up today called I Own This about the fairly traumatic period of my life when I moved from Los Angeles to Vermont to Baltimore in the span of 7 months.

What I said about it on Facebook, and what I wrote down on a legal pad as soon as I'd written the first draft of this piece, is "Sometimes you write something and say it's embarrassing because of how cool it makes you look and you want to seem humble. Sometimes you say it's embarrassing because it reveals the kind of asshole you can be. This is the second kind."

So, it feels very revealing to share this story with my friends and the internet-at-large. Kate and I sat on the couch last night before I officially submitted it so she could read and we could talk about it before I showed it to the world. I'd told Kate parts of the story before, but not the version that's presented there. And there are other parts that aren't in the Longbox version (sorry gang, I was already over the word count, but I'm happy to go on about it in person), and I told Kate those parts too.

I was nervous she'd think less of me. But what she said was, "I don't think learning more could make me think less."

So if you like comics, gossip, cross-country moves, Vermont, or confessionals, go read I Own This on the Longbox Project. I wrote it!

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