That very first story…

Did you know I used to draw a webcomic? And it was mostly awful. But the concept remains and is actually the new novel that I’m plotting out now. Anyway, you can see one of my really different long ago frankly crap illustrations of the main character.


(Disclaimer, I drew this on the 887 bus route on the way to ECU one day, which, as anyone knows, does not lend itself to smooth lines).

Jess by Ravenari


Well, anyway, it’s come up because the webcomic originally started as my ‘first ever novel’ when I was 12 years old. Then about 150 pages was irrevocably lost during a move to Alexander Heights and I only had the first three chapters left in hard copy. Gutted, I left it alone and moved onto other things (namely: highschool). One day though, I looked back and realised I still liked the basics of the story. And, shockingly, I looked back only to realise I’d been writing a main character who had PTSD and alexithymia before I knew I had PTSD or alexithymia. It was – and still is – like my 12 year old self had a snapshot of the kind of person I’d be at the age of 18, and wrote a character about that in a science fiction world on another planet.


That was…incredibly disturbing, and it still is. Reading back on it now, I find myself thinking; ‘how did I know?’ Of course, some things aren’t the same. I’m not, for example, a gun-toting mercenary strategist who inherits a major spy syndicate.


Anyway, then I wrote it out as a NaNoWriMo novel. And then I drew it as a 24 page webcomic. And then I shelved it again, and finally I’ve come back to it and I think this time I’m ready to write it ‘for real.’ It might only ever be ‘for myself,’ but I’m certainly ready to write it for real.


In the meantime, I made a salmon macaroni pasta salad (with wholegrain mustard and celery and other things) this weekend, which was a hit (i.e. there’s none left). Tomorrow night I’m making a spaghetti with roasted garlic, onions, tomatoes, mushrooms and cabanossi. I was going to make that the other night but changed my mind. This paragraph is in tribute to Putu, who probably doesn’t have much access to cabanossi pasta right now (but I could go some umeboshi onigiri if you want to swap!)


Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day, but I don’t actually celebrate it. Is that bad? I prefer spontaneous romance over ‘scheduled commercial romance.’ And while I know I could still turn it into a lovely, sweet day… I’d just prefer not to do so on that day. Do you celebrate Valentine’s Day? Do you do anything special for yourself when you’re single?

2 thoughts on “That very first story…

  1. Thrilled to hear about your writing 🙂 It makes complete sense to me that you would invest yourself into your character, especially at that age. (I did the same thing, but I have nothing to show for it, because I tossed that writing in the bin.) I think it wouldn’t matter whether or not you knew the name of PTSD, since it’s our actual feelings/experience of reality that count. My two cents.

    I don’t celebrate Valentine’s day, incidentally. I usually feel pretty depressed when the time comes… I just get reminded of how short-lived all of my romances are. That said, sometimes I do get lucky and a good friend will agree to be my “Valentine” – at least in name.

  2. Cheers for the shout out! I had a very mayonnaise-y pasta dish for tea the other night… not sure if that counts.

    You had a web comic?!?! you’re going to start it again? you’re a machine missy…


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