Although I’ve drafted several stories, I chose to kick STIMULUS off with The Spacetronaut because this is a comic that I’ve worked on for years. In fact, it’s probably been rattling around in my head in one form or another for almost a decade. I felt that it was in the spirit of this STIMULUS project to finally publish something that had made me feel creatively stagnant for such a long time. Full disclosure: I wrote the first draft of The Spacetronaut shortly after I graduated from college — a time when my career was nonexistent and my amount of self confidence was, well, also nonexistent. At some point during my busy schedule of being unemployed and wallowing in failure, I came up with a story about a miserable asshole drifting through space (you know what they say, “write what you know”).
Of course, as I grew into the perfectly well adjusted adult that I am today, the story has changed a bit. The disturbing themes of existential dread, anxiety and isolation are all still there (as these themes appear in everything I write), but I believe the tone of the story is a little bit lighter. Although the humor in my life was always apparent to me, I’m now able to articulate it more clearly since I’ve outgrown the unproductive and negative cognitive patterns that plagued me when I was younger.
STIMULUS is a series of stories about fighting these negative thoughts. It may seem like a dull narrative, but in fact there is nothing more heroic than battling your own nihilism.