ModeratorJuly 1, 2021 at 2:41 am
Hey Everyone. I’m sure if you’ve been on here for the past year, you either have seen me in meetings or have seen me mentioned…somewhere. I am sure you are all wondering why I am posting another introduction after all this time.
Well to be brief, because I am trying to change somethings in my life and socializing is not something I’m very good at. So socializing is at the top of the list. Thanks to the way my brain works, I feel better when I give people the whole picture instead of just a few sentences. Now this could be a blog post on a website I made, but what I want to achieve with this post, I won’t achieve if I do that.
So if you have time, here is my introduction that I should have posted last year, but didn’t because of my issues talking to people and opening up. But in the last year, I have learned alot of things about myself. So I am hoping this can act as an introduction, an apology (to everyone, but mostly to Buddy), and a request for help. Please note, this may be…long.
My name is James McGill. I live outside of Chicago, Illinois and I am…a wannabe content creator. Now please note, when I say content creator, I do not mean an Instagram model (though I do have the body for it), a youtuber, or a podcaster. I want to create my own literary world and make a website that is based completely around it. That means I have stories completed or partially started. I’m going to make graphic designs that you would find in this world. Since I am not very good at drawing, photoshopped pictures I will have created showing this world. As well as photos of people dressed in cosplay that will act as character sketches. Would it be better to just hire an artist…yes. But I put myself through college three times to get the skills I need to do this. So since I’ve gone this far, I’m don’t think I’m going to stop.
Now some might ask why I’m doing this. Which is fair. So here is the story. I hope it helps.
First thing you should know about me- I have ADHD. For all my life, until last year, I thought that just meant my brain couldn’t keep focus. But it turns out its a lot more complicated than that. So in 1995 or 1996, I was on the early internet as it just came out. I found Wizard On-line and there I discovered Buddy Scalera and Simming on AOL. If you want to know what simming is, it was D&D-esque in chat rooms. I came up with an idea to make a simming league where people could play through the year and at the end have a huge crossover style finale each year.
I was 13 or 14. Yes I now know I was thinking too big.
Anyway, it was too big and didn’t really work. But then I started thinking on how I could make it work and it eventually evolved into what I am creating now….nearly 30 years later. So I am creating my own star wars/marvel/dc/whatever universe.
Now I need to tell you what I need help with. This is hard for me as I do not believe I belong here. One of the things I’ve learned in the past year is I suffer from imposter syndrome and emotional dysregulation. If you have ADHD, Imposter syndrome is something you will develop. The reason being is the thousands upon thousands of times teachers tell you to please pay attention. The many times you have said something supremely stupid without meaning to. The times you were punished for things you did that you didn’t know was caused by your ADHD and you couldn’t explain why you did it. Add to that the fact that your control over your emotions is weak to non-existent, one’s mental well being is pretty shaken.
I have been friends with Buddy Scalera for nearly 30 years now and I’ve loved helping him do the comic book school panels. However, when he did the Creators Connections panels, I NOPED the hell out there because I didn’t feel at all comfortable meeting someone under the pretense of creating something. I couldn’t draw, I didn’t have any money to pay them to draw things I could write, and I hadn’t accomplished anything yet. I didn’t belong there because of that. I just wanted to write comics and I didn’t feel that was enough. That was my imposter syndrome. Then my emotional dysregulation made those feelings of uselessness and inadequacy amplified.
So Buddy, for all the times you tried to get me to socialize with creators and I (maybe rudely at times) said no. I apologize. When I did council of the willing, I kept my mouth shut as I felt (and still do) that I really shouldn’t be contributing as I have no real life experience to draw on. Just somethings that I read that I know everyone there knows. Plus, I’m still working in retail while everyone else that I have been friends with have accomplished SOO much. So if I’ve looked uncomfortable during those meetings, that’s why. I don’t feel I belong here. But you guys invited me and haven’t kicked me out yet. So I know that’s my ADHD Symptoms and not reality.
So what I need help with is understanding and patience. I have gotten a hell of alot more confident since I learned more about my ADHD. But just because I know about it, doesn’t mean that it magically goes away. So if I seem closed off, its my ADHD symptoms. It also gives me issues when I am trying to be creative.
Also, I need inspiration. If you know of any writers websites, send them my way. I’m going to post original fiction on my website and I am having the hardest time figuring out a way to design it.
Anyway, that’s all. I also apologize to everyone else if I’ve come off rude at times. I didn’t mean too. People with ADHD also are horrible at understanding themselves apparently. If you’ve gotten to this point, thank you. If I posted this in the wrong spot. I’m sorry.
Thank you for your time and it was nice to meet you.
As always, type ya later,
AdministratorJuly 1, 2021 at 5:47 am
Thanks so much for sharing this valuable insight with us — we all have our superhero origin stories, and this one was no different! It takes a lot of bravery to put yourself out there the way you have and that deserves recognition. Very much like you, I also try to do every aspect of creating a story myself through self education and study. Like you, I’m sure you’ve also ran into some significant obstacles by working alone in a silo, which no doubt brought you to ComicBookSchool’s ‘front door’ so to speak.
I have no doubt that you and I aren’t the only ones attempting to face our weaknesses in socializing with creative peers as well – I think posts like this will resonate with them and hopefully make them feel more welcome and willing to take a ‘risk’ and interact here more. When it comes to impostor syndrome, I think a lot of us face that routinely while we pursue our dreams. Hell, I even get paid to do ‘artwork’ and I still feel like an impostor!
I’m looking forward to reading some of your stories — do you have any up online as of yet? I’d be happy to read some.
Anyway, thanks again for the reintroduction @james-mcgill !
AdministratorJuly 1, 2021 at 6:08 pm
Great reintroduction @james-mcgill – Thanks for taking this long, twisty ride with me over the years.
You have something great inside that big brain of yours. I’m very happy to hear that you are addressing the underlying issues that have prevented you from expressing your ideas the way you want to.
That said, welcome or re-welcome. Go forward together with our community. We are all rooting for you.
ModeratorJuly 6, 2021 at 2:25 am
Thank you for sharing, some people onthe forum may still be surprised to hear that, in it’s ensense, this is what created the 8 page Challenage in the first place. I, too, struggle with several shades of mental illness. These lead to self-doubt, low confidence in my abliities, (especially in the fields I want to pursue) and the catatonic stillness that comes from perfectionism. I went to NYCC in 2019 in order to kick start my creativity which had been stifled, beaten, deflatted, and left in a bluddering mess on the back floor of my mind due several rather rough years in my personal development.
Buddy also mentored me and simply asked me what it would take for me to make something, put pen to paper so to speak. I pinky promised I’d make an 8-page comic (prior to any pandemic knowledge). I went home and made myself a schedule which he edited and helped me to put in motion, and he asked to share it with the community of people that attend his panels and read his newletters, and now look at where we are?
I am glad to say he is holding me to that promise. Although, I still struggling to be ‘ok’ to be ‘enough’ to myself in my passion as an artist. I can say I know I will never fully understand what you have to deal with everyday, but I’m here too struggling and working toward being the creator I want to be. So if you need help, if you need an honest and unbias art critic, or if you just need to chat/vent about life. I’m here for you my friend.
I am glad you can be honest with yourself and others about your journey, it helps people like me to do the same. And I can say I am glad you are still here and still working toward your goals, even with all you have to deal with. Because it wouldn’t be the same without you. 😉
Welcome again. 🙂 can’t wait to see what you post next.
D. Alley, the Redheadeded