Remember why you liked comics in the first place?
Our Comics Empower Project continues!
This time, James tells his story:
COMICS EDUCATED ME.
I have always felt ahead of my time, finding myself passionate about things which have not yet gone mainstream or been accepted by society at large. Even my comic book, James Bong, the first issue of which I wrote a decade ago, is just now finding interest due to the legalization movement.
Comics were no different. So when most people were going around saying “comics are for kids” and “comics are just silly picture books”, I was getting an education from them.
I remember reading all the big words, words I wasn’t seeing in my 3rd books, and immediately looking them up or saying “Mom, what does nefarious mean?”
Even if I sometimes had to sneak them in under my shirt, titles like Hellblazer and Vigilante taught me about mature issues nobody would talk to me about.
I learned not to judge a book by its cover. My memory grew strong, memorizing the issue numbers when things happened to my favorite characters. Comics made me care enough to want to know and be engaged. I even started reading the Wall Street Journal at 11 years old because of Marvel’s IPO.
Most of all, I am a storyteller, and comics taught me how to tell stories.
I started story-telling first as a filmmaker, introducing James Bong in a film, but when I was writing the screen play, I realized the effects comics mythology had on me, and realized the mythology I was creating for the character had to be told in a comic book.
I am proud to say it is because of that education that I can now call myself a comic bookwriter. Even as I write new issues of James Bong, I am learning, and it is making me a better film director too. It’s like directing a film with no limits! Picking the moments for maximum impact, communicating feelings and moods to the reader within the panels and choosing efficient dialogue makes me a more precise visual story teller.
But most empowering is the process. Working with a co-writer, the talented Bianca Mina, watching Marek Dubienskis pencils develop, Primus Dickersons coloring pop, and finally adding Kay Cowlings inventive lettering, teaches me about how each persons individual creative vision and talent come together forming a cohesive whole where the story comes to life, and how that story would not be complete without each of them. I feel truly blessed by this team and the comic books we read and create.
James Longshore is the creator of the James Bong character and the James Bong comic “Rebel Without A Light” in the pages of Weed World Magazine, as well as writer/director/star of the original web series “James Bong: The Origin, Or How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love The J.O.I.N.T.” available for streaming.
His other works include the sketch comedy network “WFCT: The Thinking Mans Show For The Idiot” He currently runs an Acting Academy in Bucharest, Romania and is developing projects for the international market with Vigilante Films.
Follow James Bong on Twitter: @jamesbongmovie and James Longshore @expatriateactor facebook: facebook.com/JamesBong4204eva
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