Thursday, 20 September 2012

HARDtalk: The Virtual Tour #5

...and were back, for another question from the HARDtalk home team:

You previously expressed your admiration for Jules Feiffer's ability to move from comics into writing plays, books and screenplays.  Is this a possible direction you can see for yourself or are you dedicated to the comics medium?

Six months ago, I would have said I was dedicated to the comics medium. I've noticed since I've been spending 12 hours a day 6 days a week since June doing Kickstarter stuff and now promoting the HIGH SOCIETY AUDIO DIGITAL release that even looking at my favourite artwork, I no longer have any urge to do the work. It used to be, all I had to do was to see a RIP KIRBY strip or a page inked by Al Williamson and I was pawing the turf wanting to get to the drawing board.  And I just don't experience that. NOW, whether that's because I'm doing the Kickstarter thing and I know I can't get back to "The Strange Death of Alex Raymond" for A! WHILE! I'm doing head sketches and Cerebus character drawings and trying to be an interesting interview subject and those things are very far away from my "inner cartoonist"...I have no idea.

But, I have to say I find the thought un-troubling for the first time in my life.  I think I'm in the first stages of resignation, possibly.  I've got only so many years left and it's getting harder to make a living and all that people want me to do is Cerebus.  Which needs to be preserved.  500 pages down, 5,500 to go.  I wonder if I'm not guilty of the thing I see in people generally -- the inability to see how old you actually are and what you need to be doing at that age -- something I always prided myself on. I'm 40, so I'm doing this, but I won't be doing it at 50. I'm 56. 6,000 pages needs to be paid attention to for the rest of my life, however long that is.

There's more of a sense -- since I scuttled glamourpuss, CEREBUS TV and CEREBUS ARCHIVE -- of work is work is work.  I've got PILES of work to do.  I start when I get up in the morning and work until I go to bed at night and I'm not even making a dent.  But, suddenly that seems fine to me. If I die next week or 40 years from now, I imagine that will still be the case.  Much work to do. Unwelcome in society, so I don't have to worry about that -- what are my obligations to my society? I'm perceived as a misogynist.  My only obligation is to stay away from everyone.

I would LIKE to write something like Feiffer's LITTLE MURDERS or HARRY THE RAT WITH WOMEN, but that's very edgy, unwelcome -- amazingly Truthful! --  material which I already have in abundance.  As unwelcome as those works were in the late 60s, early 70s, they would probably get Feiffer expelled from Quality Lit Biz society (again?) if anyone tried reviving them. I get zero response to anything that I do, so I would just be doing it for myself as I did glamourpuss. Why be edgy? Edgy for whom? Edgy about what? How many Cerebus commissions do I have to do to pay the bills?

My politics militate against anyone giving me work in the theatre, movies  or magazines. Google search Dave Sim and "misogynist" is still the third thing on the list. It's 2012, Google search is our modern age version of the Hollywood blacklist except it's not just Hollywood -- it's everywhere anyone types my name into their laptop. Oops. Misogynist. Can't give HIM a job.

I'm sure God will find something for me to do and will keep enough money coming in to pay my bills as long as I'm considered deserving. My only job is to be deserving and to do what He sends my way.
Okay, now we're heading over to BLEEDING COOL for Stefan Offenberg's question:

Dave, everyone always seems to assume the stuff you wrote in CEREBUS many years ago reflects your thinking as it remains today.  I know I can look back at things I wrote years ago and see how they were very much a product of what was going on in my life at the time.  Is that true to some extent for you, too?

Everybody head on over to BLEEDING COOL (scroll down to post #18) for the answer to that question. We'll have more HARDtalk Q&As for you tomorrow at A Moment Of Cerebus.

Already signed up for the HARDtalk Virtual Tour are Bleeding Cool, Millar World, Terminal Drift, Canadian Comics Archive, The Comics Journal, The Beat and Mindless Ones. Add your question for Dave Sim at one of these fine websites before 10 October and if your question is chosen (they'll need to be tough, interesting questions!) you'll receive a personalised, autographed copy of a Cerebus back-issue, with a Cerebus head-sketch by Dave Sim!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

At least Cerebus looks happy. Now I want to read Harry the Rat with Women. Already seen Little Murders