Thanks so much to everyone that’s supported the Kickstarter so far! We managed to break 10% funded yesterday, so we’re making good progress, but we’ve got a long way to go still! If you haven’t had the chance to take a look, please do so! If you’ve enjoyed the comic and the work I’ve shared with you, please help me make this book a reality. Every bit helps, whether that’s in the form of a pledge, or sharing the campaign with a friend. Thank you!
There was a bit of a kerfuffle in Purgatory (ie – recess at the school I help at) today. Kids were rough-housing in that way where it’s really fun and just a game and then suddenly a line gets crossed for one person and abruptly it’s frightening and painful for somebody. And none of the kids realized it until they’d already hurt one of their friends. Fortunately it wasn’t too bad, but I sat the pack of them down and we talked about how important it is to be aware of each other. To pay attention to where boundaries are. And to be there for your friends when those boundaries get crossed. “We failed your friend today,” I said to a set of very somber second graders, “You did, I did. We weren’t paying close enough attention. He needed somebody to step up, and none of us did. We need to do better next time.”
That’s a message I hope they take with them. Sometimes that line is so fine, it’s hard to tell where it is. And sometimes even when people recognize it, they don’t have the courage to step up. Or maybe, more accurately, the practice. I think the concept of courage is detrimental in a lot of ways. We talk about bravery like it’s some sort of innate talent. Some people have it, some people don’t. Except, that’s no more true for being brave than it is for being good at art, or sports, or math. Sure, maybe some people have a larger innate recklessness, or determination, or stubbornness which makes them more inclined towards doing things that people call “brave,” than others, but I think in the end it’s practice that makes perfect. I was talking with Josh of the Points of Interest Podcast about how having a purpose at a con can change how you view it. As far as conventions go, if I’m just an attendee, I’m exceptionally uncomfortable. I feel lost and threatened in the crowd. However, put me behind a booth and I adore conventions. It’s my safe zone. It’s where I can practice being brave. And the more conventions I’ve gone to with a booth, the more comfortable I’ve gotten going beyond the booth. Doing panels, going to dinner with other artists, or just visiting other artist tables. The bravery to do those things didn’t just appear naturally. It developed over time with regular practice in a safe place.
What scares you, and how can you create a safe place to practice being brave?