Grant Alter - Struggling Comic Writer

Friday, April 28, 2006

Secrets and Confidences

One of the difficult things about this job and is probably true about most creative jobs is that you can't always tell everyone what you're doing. Some things you can talk about.

I can tell you that I am working on a book called "The Hurricane Kids" with Ryan Cody. I can tell you that it's all-ages superhero and that I have had a lot of fun playing with the characters. I can even tell you their names, personalities and so on.

But there are some things I can't talk about. Maybe I don't want to ruin the story for you. Maybe it's not yet time to let certain information out. There are tons of things at any given time that aren't yet for public knowledge. It's tricky though.

You see, I suffer from verbal diarrhea. I am awful at keeping secrets and, when one really must be kept, it eats away at me inside. In my personal life, I have very few secrets and off-limits subjects. I tend to be an open book and, to be honest, I am really not build for secrecy.

I imagine this is good for my marriage. If I were cheating, I am virtually certain I could not keep my mouth shut about it (because of guilt among other reasons).

It's hard to withhold things from friends and aquaintances. Especially when the news is good or the problem is heavy.
But you have to do it. If your book is just a concept, you have to fight the urge to talk about it in public or around people you can't trust implicitly. The rub is that when you come up with something really cool and you're really excited about it, you want nothing more than to talk about it. But to protect yourself, you can't.

Most occupations are largely secret free. Naturally, there are certain confidential aspects of your business that not everyone should know. But those aren't often the type of thing that anyone would want to know anyway.

A writer must keep an inordinant number of secrets and often, the price you pay for slipping could be high. That's why you have to fight that inclination to shout it from the rooftops and instead, leave cryptic, odd posts on your blog.

Secrecy, it's not just for spies anymore.

6 Comments:

  • Hmmm...good to know.

    By Blogger TCSmith, at 8:18 AM  

  • My work made me sign a 5 million dollar confidentiality contract so I haven't had too much trouble keeping my mouth shut about that. But I've found with personal projects that if I talk about them too soon it deflates some of my excitement. And I need that excitement to see me through the whole scripting process. So for me it's a good thing to bottle up my enthusiasm.

    By Blogger Shaun, at 1:53 PM  

  • Yeah...If I could tell you half the stuff we got going on at the Dabel Brothers you'd shit your pants. Well maybe you would.


    Derek

    By Blogger Derek Ruiz, at 9:10 PM  

  • probably not.

    ZIIIING!!

    By Blogger Grant Alter, at 9:18 PM  

  • I think you would

    By Blogger Derek Ruiz, at 8:32 PM  

  • Zing, I said.

    You can't come back when you've been zinged!!

    BEGONE WITH YOU!!!

    By Blogger Grant Alter, at 8:34 PM  

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