CHALLENGES OF WRITING…

Scotland Yardie is currently close to completion. We’re on the last part of the editing stage and it will be ready to roll into the shops from October. My publisher is happy and is raving about it. Which is great! I am also happy but at the same time, a liddle bit sad. Why? Well, as a creative… it’s always weird for me when I get to the end of a project.

Like most authors, I have anxieties as a writer. What are they exactly? Well, here is what goes through my mind every time I think of my work… Is it the best I could do? Will the work be received well? Will my peeps like what I do? Will it be kick-ass? Will my peers grudgingly hi-five me for a job well done? *

Writing is such a love/hate process for me. The true test for a writer (in my opinion) is to see whether or not they can compete and beat their past work. My past work includes Skank Magazine – the first Black satirical comic that gave me mainstream coverage. Skank was a crazy time in my life! I got major props from the streets of London to the streets of Manchester. It was big. It was bad. It was unlike anything that was out ‘on road’ at the time. Skank was such a revolution that I am even described on the BBC website as creating ‘some of the first comics by black creators featuring black characters.’

Then there was the Skank sequel, Black Eye… the comic created its own identity by becoming a prominent feature at the ‘Anarchy in the UK’ comic exhibition at the British Library in 2015. My comic strip, ‘Co-Co Nutts’ (drawn by my boy, the Dastardly Danny F) was viewed by over 60,000 visitors!  The exhibition was amazing. Hell, till this day… I still love telling people that my comic work was “rollin’ with the Magna Carta!”

So you can see I have high standards to maintain/high standards to beat! That’s why I challenge myself. That’s why I compete with myself. I want to be the best me. Sometimes it’s hard. Most times it’s hard! I throw everything into what I do until I am mentally and physically exhausted.

I give it my all. If I don’t give it my all, then I am wasting my time and my audience. So when I come to the end of a project, I tend to go through a weird grieving process where I don’t want to let go. But I know I have to, or otherwise no one will see what I do (and also, if I keep it for too long, like most writers… I’d want to scrap it and start again). So I let go… with extreme prejudice!

That said… this time, I am happy for Scotland Yardie to be let go. I am ready for it to be released. I’ve worked hard on this graphic novel, pushing my art/my writing to the extreme. My artist Joseph Samuels has also outdone himself. He has challenged himself to the point where I think I’ve driven this poor man mad with my weird Kubrick type detail (and you thought it was just Alan Moore that did phonebook type comic book scripts?).

Give or take a year, I am sure Joe will forgive me…

Scotland Yardie is coming in October (it can be ordered for pre-order via Amazon). It is a social commentary about urban Britain. Scotland Yardie is also a satirical piece about cultural clashes and police brutality in the UK. It’s a very topical graphic novel and I am very, very proud of it as it is a work that can stand shoulder-to-shoulder with my past work.

Be ready. Be prepared. Shizzle’s about to kick off!!

Peace/Love,

Bobby J-

* Haha! Yeah, us writers are petty, needy and egotistic like that!

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