As I have mentioned before, the original idea for the story Cali & Ko came from a dream. I wrote down a few notes about it, but it was incredibly vivid to me at the time and now it’s hard to distinguish what happened in the dream and what I imagined after. And further,it developed into a project though, the original was lost, and I couldn’t tell you a lot about it, but I really don’t mind-I’m so incredibly happy with that it became.
The idea to make the project was also somewhat chance-I threw it out as an idea to Celina because it combined our interests. I am generally a writer, she is generally an artist, and more than that, we originally started talking and became friends because of a popular web comic, Homestuck. Something about the project just felt right to me, from the moment I pitched it to her, and I suppose she felt the same way. From then, we brainstormed and fleshed it out. We loved the idea of making a story about kids with superpowers, especially when they are conflicting with parts of them, and so we combined that with the elements the conflict and the person who later became Yukiko’s powers that I could remember from my dream.
The summer was an off season, and I don’t think either of us focused on it too much during it, but when we came back and started working on it for credit as an IDS the flame was completely reignited. For that whole year, it consumed my idle thoughts, and even now it is still there. I was ecstatic to share my ideas, even if I was also nervous, and I was thrilled whenever I saw Celina’s sketches, turning the characters we created into reality.
It wasn’t even close to being all daydreams and word documents, though, and there was a lot of research we put into the project. The IDS may have been classed for me as English and writing, but a lot of my effort went into researching marketing, law and social issues. We wanted to focus on diversity because its an issue that’s dear to us, which meant that we had to work carefully to ensure we weren’t worsening the problem. Beyond the value to the project, carefully learning about harmful stereotypes and tropes, sensitivity, and things about ensuring your creative rights are things that will likely have more weight in the rest of my life than the writing process did.
For anyone who wants to create a comic, whether they are doing it by themselves or with others, I would absolutely encourage them to, even if they know it will never be finished. Seeing ideas that only existed in your head formed into words and pictures is more rewarding than I can possibly explain, and I’m so incredibly grateful to everyone who helped me along the way, especially Celina.
You can read the prologue, and look at the other related pieces we posted here.