The Introvert Manifesto, Year 1

23 02 2009

One year* since embarking on this experiment, and so far the results are unexpected.

Less than 5 episodes deal directly with the stated theme; how to cope as an introvert in an extrovert world. From a marketing standpoint, that sounds like a disaster. Who is your target audience and why aren’t you speaking to them? But marketing has never been my strong point. I’m the Grover Cleveland of marketing; I’m convinced it’s the problem, not the solution. (I know, that was Reagan’s line, but it’ll be a clammy day in hell when I liken myself to Reagan.) I’m more interested in honesty, not targeting demographics or leveraging mindshares. I’m doing my best to let the strip be what it must be. People are more likely to identify with honest self-expression than with manufactured characterettes, right?

Unless the artist is just regurgitating his own personal semiotic mythology. Why did I have to inject not one, but FOUR niche musicians into Leif’s already obtuse is-it-real-or-fantasy childhood? Oh well. Follow your obsessions, I’m told. If you recognize the Bad Kids, consider it an easter egg. For the rest of you, I’m trying to keep it entertaining regardless.

What’s most surprising to me is how the strip has crawled under my own skin. I’m feeling more introverted than ever. Maybe it’s just the act of examining, the increased awareness of social obstacles making me feel much like my adolescent self, paralyzed by shyness. Disconcerting, but I take it as an indication of the project’s honesty. Nothing is phonier than phony teenagers (Exhibit A: Zits).

Anyway. Thanks for reading it. I’m happy that it’s meaningful for someone else.
*52 strips; one year and two weeks to be precise. I didn’t update the week I was in Singapore, or last week when my hard drive crashed. Apologies to anyone who was waiting around in the dark.




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