I saw Austin English at the festival. Austin runs a small press and distributorship called Domino Books. He gave me some money for the sale of some of the Richy Vegas Comics that I sent him last year on consignment. He was really nice, and yesterday he emailed me a blurb that he wrote about my issue # 13 and the run in general. The mini review appeared online in The Comics Journal in their Best Comics of 2017 issue. Here it is:
"I am a big fan of these Richie Vegas comics. They are (I believe) semi-autobiographical and unflinching. Alexander draws his comics in circular images on paper plates. They are a unique way of expressing a life on paper, and while the emotions and situations seen within these pages are strong and sometimes upsetting, they are a valuable example of cartooning's power to get ones self down on paper and patiently wait for a receptive reader to engage. Visually, they offer moments of unexpected and thrilling beauty, as a near perfect image appears among pages of mundane day to day struggle."
I hope he's okay with me pasting it here. I'll write him and ask him, just to make sure.
As far as material success in this or any Arts and Entertainment field goes, I think about where I am now and where my work is most likely to be situated in the next several years, and I have to just redefine success with an emphasis on the more personal goals I've managed to achieve. Namely, my ability to deal with the Unavailable Woman Deals that have consistently reared their ugly heads pretty much since late adolescence right up to the present time.
I've mentioned my struggles with obsession and fixation on unavailable women, and the crash and burn inevitable outcomes that used to be the bane of my existence, particularly in my twenties. That tendency made it very hard to set longterm goals, such as how to pay off my student loans after graduate school, for example. My family had to step in and pay those loans after my initial diagnosis of mental illness that occurred a little more than a year after my graduation from the School of Visual Arts.
So the ability to set long term goals such as the completion of the run of my Richy Vegas memoirs, and to have a reasonable expectation of finishing them at some time during the middle of the next decade, is a very big deal. I just can't control too much whether the market will affirm the worth of what I'm doing in my lifetime, particularly while I'm still enjoying reasonably good health. Therefore, I'm compelled to define my personal ideas of what constitutes success more around my ability to manage and conquer personal demons, rather than what the larger society around me defines as success. After all, ask Kurt Cobain or Marilyn Monroe what real world success did for them in their ability to manage things they probably struggled with every single day of their adult lives.
A couple of weeks ago I posted about how I've come up with a set of standards regarding what I look for in a woman I want to go on a date with. I said the three things I'm looking for are: available, interested, act like they give a shit about taking care of themselves. This standard allows me to consider women that, in the past, I wouldn't have given the time of day to. Hopefully, with time, this standard will allow me to develop better taste in women, because I think that basing one's attraction to someone almost solely on how good they look is an indicator of bad taste in women. I think it also indicates that such a person does not like women in general very much, because the only women that such a person tends to believe have anything to offer them are really attractive women.
Okay, so I have a more forgiving set of standards for what will get a woman at least one date with me. Here's the flip side of that: as long as I consistently make intelligent decisions about the unavailable, often predatory women in my world, I can make whatever decisions I want to make about any other type of woman in my world. This includes women who are available, interested, and act like they give a shit about taking care of themselves. If I don't want to ask such a woman out on even one date, I don't have to. Think about it; just because I've freed myself from feeling as if I owed very attractive, ultimately unavailable women a profound level of devotion-women I hardly ever really knew in most cases- why then, am I obliged to turn around and make it all about any other type? Yet another reason I've banished therapists from my life.