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C10P41 – Loves you so much

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Back from Phoenix Comicon! It was one of the best shows Cory & I have ever done, and we’re hoping that Denver Comic Con this weekend will top that record yet again! Fingers crossed!! If you’re attending DCC, please come visit us at Artist Alley table B7!

In my first draft of this chapter, I had Mizha the Younger (we’ll call her…Teen-zha…because I’m terrible with names) be this sad, truly oblivious, self-destructive character that Mizha had to rescue. However, from the very first attempt that felt wrong. As I dug into the issue and drew on my own experiences of these kinds of feelings, I eventually realized (many drafts later) that the two voices I had with the Fake Dream Eater (to continue our theme of terrible names I’m shorting that to Freater) and Teen-zha were actually the same voice. Just different sides of the coin. In the end, Mizha is caught in cycles of guilt, repressed anger, passive aggressive expressions of that anger, and then guilt again. Freater and Teen-zha simply represented different points in that cycle. When I recognized that, I was able to rework the script into a working state…and then with Cory’s brainstorming help rework it again into the final form you see now.

Funny how first impressions can change once we dig into the reality of a situation, isn’t it?

What first impressions of a story, character, person, situation, etc. have changed over time for you?


Children visit this site. Moderate your language accordingly.

My brother and I tend to meet, and then know, people in different ways. He always meets a person, and sees only their good points, and likes them. Then, as he gets to know them, his is dissapointed by their weak points, and ends up not liking them at all. I, on the other hand, notice all the things I dislike first, and then as I get to know them, find them redeemable.

Do you think Mizha needing to rescue her younger self in your first script is a vestige of your desire to rescue yours? And your need to redeem bad people? I know I have that urge as part of my own self-destructive cycle.

The original script, with Mizha rescuing her younger self, was a sign of the pattern (or “Complex” if we want to get Jungian) not wanting to be seen. It was a distraction tactic. “Oh, no, I couldn’t possibly be part of the problem. I’m just the Innocent Victim here. It’s the obvious Bad Guy that is the true cause. Look over there. Look away. There’s nothing to see here.” The reality of it was, that aspect was not particularly innocent at all, but it survives by making itself look more pathetic and harmless than it is. As long as it gets to play its game, Mizha gets to say to herself, “Well, it wasn’t my fault. I couldn’t have made a difference. I didn’t know any better. I can’t change things now.” As long as Mizha accepts as a given that she is helpless, she’ll never have to take TRUE responsibility or be at fault. She also can’t grow.

And, since this is a part of Mizha, it is therefore a part of me. It’s possible there’s a rescuing aspect in there. The pyramid of Victim/Aggressor/Rescuer suggests that such a dynamic is likely present. Mizha’s Victim role prompts her to become a Rescuer of herself by acting as an Aggressor against Zhiro. She is all three simultaneously.

I love listening to you talk about your characters, psychology, and yourself. I hope that doesn’t come across as creepy or voyeuristic, or as me getting some kind of sick jollies out of your pain, because I don’t.

I think one of the reasons I enjoy listening to these things is it helps me identify these things in myself. I’ve had dreams like this.

I think that it’s really awesome that Mizha instead ends up conquering her inner desire to be weak and helpless and makes the realization that the whole pattern is the enemy, not just the obvious parts of it. I think it’s also really symbolic that the enemy she needs to defeat is not Zhiro or Dream Eater but herself.

I did notice that the cover of this chapter still features the rescue motif; it’s interesting as a glimpse into What Might Have Been.

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