78. The Inner Super-villain

Asteroid Stu and the Mind-Duel

When we last left our heroes, Norbert the cyberdog revealed to Edzl the tubby Nebboid that the encounter with the bad guys — Captain Krool and the No-Bodies — had all been part of a “sting” operation. Norbert had ingeniously sprayed Krool’s spaceship with his sneeze that had dispersed a million or so nano-bots. The bitty bots immediately infected the ship, disabling it. Quakor, an agent with the Galactic Bureau of Investigation, was supposed to rendezvous with Stu and Norbert and arrest the bad guys, but so far Quakor’s a no-show. Stu steps up and assumes legal authority (or pretends to) and issues an ultimatum: “Come out now, unarmed or we will program your ship to crumble apart like a dessicated doughnut!”

The problem with posting entire comic book pages to this blog is that some of the details get lost. On page 35 there is a miniscule information box with an arrow pointing to a peculiar little asteroid titled “TOURISTS TAKE NOTE: The Teddy-Bear Skull asteroid, an entirely natural phenomenon, is a popular Asteroid Zone landmark.” In case you don’t have your magnifying class handy, at the bottom of the same page, Edzl says in small type, “Nebboid culture has a lot of incredibly stupid customs too!” I’d just hate for you to miss these little decorative touches.

Now you’re all caught up. If you don’t believe me, or even if you do, please feel free to check our previous postings. Be with us next time for the awesome “mind-duel” between Stu and Krool!

Meanwhile, I’ve been working diligently on the next project, “Pause & Reflect Comics” which I intend to design to fit more organically with the Web environment. I’ve been having a ball working on it! But after a hard day’s labor yesterday, I was catching up with my email and got a notice from Kindle Direct Publishing informing me that I had sold exactly zero comics last quarter.

At first, this was a real bummer, like throwing a sopping wet blanket on my efforts. I realized that I hadn’t sold any comics for the past two quarters. When I thought about it, I realized that I’ve never sold a single copy of “Asteroid Stu and the Mind-Duel.”

I self-published the comic on the Lulu self-publishing site years ago and gave copies to friends and relatives as presents. It’s only been recently that I made it available on Amazon.

I often congratulate myself that I’m freed from the pressure of selling my stuff. Sure, it would be nice to make some extra dough with comics. It’s not even the money so much as feeling that people might enjoy the comics. But I am so glad my retirement income makes it possible for me to eat and sleep with a roof over my head.

Making comics is for fun. I don’t even want to put ads on Chimera Spoor. I’ve seen some good blogs that have ad content. No matter how brilliant the content is, the effect is somewhat diminished for me when I see an ad with a disgusting photo saying “The ONE vegetable that leading gut doctors beg you NOT to eat!”

But under the wet blanket, a little voice starts to bark at me, “YOU ARE A FAILURE!”

This is what I call “The Inner Super-Villain.” Ajahn Sucitto, one of the best Dharma teachers on the planet calls it “The Inner Tyrant.” [See “Unseating the Inner Tyrant.“] It’s that old voice that pipes up whenever you do something that doesn’t measure up to what you think you should be like. You know that voice? Parents, teachers, bullies, lots of people even with the best intentions can contribute to the creation of an inner tyrant when you’re a kid, but most of us pick it up and make it much worse. Many of us are harder on ourselves than we are on others. We get some notion that this inner critic helps improve us, but without compassion, it’s just about punishment.

So when I can step back and see that this is just that super-critic super-villain, I can recognize that this is just a response that’s been programmed into my brain. I don’t have to believe it, I can see it for the sham that it is.

It would be nice to make some money selling my comics and it would be nice to get some recognition for my work. But if that’s not happening, beating myself up about is not going to help. Letting this conditioning ruin the fun I’m having making this stuff would be tragic.

Instead, I can see this crabby old habit for what it is and not let it bury me under that blanket. It’s a difficult world and an uncertain one. When we get joy from any of our activities, why not, as another teacher of mine, Gloria Taraniya Ambrosia says, “Really soak in it!”

Asteroid Stu and the Mind-Duel, 54 pages, black and white interior, is available in Kindle and hardcopy formats from Amazon.

Multiverse Comics and Stories, 106 pages, full color, is available from Amazon in Kindle and hardcopy formats.

2 thoughts on “78. The Inner Super-villain

  1. Scott , I can sympathize. As an artist, printmaking and painting representationally, the fine art world has vamoosed to the hills. The very tiny 1% may still be selling and of course all the auction houses are busy but we little people, are reassessing whether to go on or not. Add to the absence of any market activity the normal aches and pains of aging and the going gets tough. But then I think 1) what makes me happy? 2) what would I do instead? 3) And finally3) how can I change things up to reach a broader audience? I’m still “changing “ what I do some but mainly I’m trying to remember how I got here in the first place. All the best, liz


    1. Thank you, Liz! No.s 1 & 2 are good questions to ask. No. 3 just doesn’t have anything like the zing of one and two. I guess I’ll just keep doing it because I love it until I can’t anymore. Everything is a mysterious process including what we call ourselves and art seems like one very good way to celebrate the whole mixed-up mystery. Best to you, too!


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