Sometimes things just seem to pile up against you and seek to suck the joy out of anything you do or hope to do. It can be a bad time physically, emotionally or financially, and struggling to see it through a conquer the darkness seems like an overwhelming task.

Sometimes you can chip away at it and get a handle on things but sometimes you just have to wait it out. Things have a way of turning around if you let them. Little triumphs can be big ones if you put it in perspective to how down you were just a little while ago.

You may need to talk it out with someone. Get another person’s perspective.

Nobody said it was easy or fair. Nobody ever said you have to let those dark times define you.

YOU define you. You deserve the joy.

It will happen. It will get better.

Maybe noone ever told you that, either.

But I will.



I remember going through portfolio review lines at comic book conventions and submitting inking samples to the big companies trying to break into the business. While I have worked on a bunch of independents, I never made it to those lofty heights.

Am I a failure, then? Nope.

I still work in comics as the editor of Sketch Magazine, produce comics for SkyStorm Studio and others and still keep my hand in.

Perhaps I should have pursued it as fervently as I once did instead of branching off the way I did. But then I wouldn’t have had the experiences and friendships I’ve gained over the years.

I’m not done yet.

And that’s the point I’m making: You are not too old to succeed at creating something. You are not to old to succeed in doing something that you enjoy.

You are not too old.

Get it?

Good, Now, go create something awesome.


Tomorrow is a new day so make it count. Remember, though, that today isn’t over. There’s still time for awesomeness.


Next  Saturday is Free Comic Book Day.

Every year on the first Saturday in May, comic book shops across the country (the world?) celebrate comics with Free Comic Book Day.

Where are you going to be hanging out? Looking for someplace to go that day?


I’ll be at Comics2Games in Florence, KY with my buddy Bob Hickey. He’s going to have a special Clay’s Way mini-comic and we’ll have some of our stuff there. Come by and get some comics.

Check out the shops in your area participating as well as the books involved at:


I just found out the other day that a friend passed away last week. I’d known him for years, worked with him and in the past couple of years talked about helping him write a book.

That never came to be. We never made the time to get together, but really, I should have been the one to make the time. It’s what I do, right? Help others create or try to? But no, I feel as though I cheated Mike of his chance to do something…

And now, I can’t. And we’ve missed out on something. Or I suppose it’s more accurate to say that I have. Maybe that’s the guilt part coming into play, the regret of not getting around to another iron in the fire, who knows?

Today is the day, my friends, to take a step forward on something you need to do, to make the effort to eliminate something off your list, to make things happen. For yourself or for someone else.

We’re going to keep losing people in this world, so let’s make it a better place for us all in some way.

Today is the day.


I’m going to collect some of the Comics Mentor posts of advice and encouragement into a book called Get Off Your Heinie and Create! It should be 175 pages for $14.99.

Comment below if you want to be one of the first to know about it.



I know that there are several comic book creators now doing workshops, some at their studios, school, online or  local art supply stores, some at conventions. Some are even recording these on video and uploading them for others to later learn from the lessons. Some are even creating dvds of the sessions.

I think these are great opportunities to learn from those people with wisdom to share with another generation (and more) of creators. We can learn about our industry and learn about the ones who made it.

Do you know of comics going on or coming up? Post the link in the comments. This stuff should be shared!


Did you ever feel as though you have so much going on that you just want to drop it all so that you can breathe?

That you can’t write another word or draw another line?  That your creativity is just gone?

Then if you do something rash like quit or say you’re going to, things start to even out and possibly get back on track. It may not be the same track as before but hey, sometimes a change in scenery is a good thing.

Next time, just stop what you’re doing.

Take a breath.

Take another.

Go do something and get your mind off what’s been invading your mind to twist things into a pretzel.

Come back to it. Unless you can’t. And maybe you can’t right now, but that’s okay.

Those things may still be there but you can handle it.

One thing at a time. Maybe two, if you think you can multi-task.

Me, I like pretzels.



My true comics mentors are Mark Bagley, Todd McFarlane, Marc Sylvestri, and Rob Liefeld. These were the guys who made me dig my claws deeper into the word of comics. They also pushed me to practice drawing every single day. I even had my own line of comics in high school that I eagerly passed around school for free. Without naming names, one of my mentors mentioned has a controversial style and or talent. I clearly understand that. But at the same time this gentleman went all out with his vision, made memorable characters, and made comic artist rock stars in the 90s. That was high school time for me, very formative years. So for him and those other mentioned artists, I am forever thankful. Other mentors that strongly influence me are not comic artist. Those artists are Vincent Van Gogh, Salvador Dali, H R Giger, and Michealangelo.


What’s holding you back from doing the next thing you need to scratch off your List of Things-to-Do? Your schedule? A lack of money? No time? A hangnail?


Okay, the hangnail one doesn’t apply to me but  I have a lot more REASONS why I don’t get the things I need to done…but really, they’re excuses and the general blame can be aimed right at me.

Sometimes we’re afraid of being a failure when part of it may be that we’re afraid of succeeding. If we get it done this time, what’s going to be expected next time..and the next time after that?

What are we really afraid of? A commitment? The commitment isn’t (just) to others, but to ourselves. We owe it to ourselves to be the people we are meant to be.


We can’t give up. With each succeed, we can build a little success muscle to work with to use on those next things.

Every new day is a new chance to get it right, to get something done. Heck, every hour can bring you a new chance to do what you need to do. So, take the chance to use your chances.

One thing at a time. One more thing off the list. One more space freed up for the next thing you may to do…at least a little wiggle room to maneuver through the troubled waters of scheduling.

Go to it.

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