Jay Tomio has started a new website, mostly (but not only) devoted to comics, called Gestalt Mash, and he very kindly asked me to be a regular contributor. When he first asked, I thought he must have me confused with somebody else, because though I have some good friends who are comics experts, I'm only an occasional reader of them myself. The only comic I read regularly as a kid was G.I. Joe, and I didn't read my first graphic novel until I was well into my 20's. Jay asked if I'd write about Neil Gaiman's Sandman series, writing a short essay for every issue. I told him, with a bit of embarrassment, that I've never read Sandman; indeed, I only know Neil Gaiman's work in prose (and like some of it quite a bit). Jay said that would be the fun -- plenty of comics afficionados have written about Sandman ... but what happens when somebody who doesn't know much about comics does?
Well, the first of my "Sandman Meditations" has now been posted, and you can see for yourself. This is just the beginning of a journey, and who knows what it will all look like in the end. It's intimidating to write from a position of naivety about a work of art that is so beloved by so many people, but it's also a challenge that offers some interesting opportunities, and I hope to explore different ways of writing about the series as I go along.
We're planning on posting a new piece every 7-10 days, which means this endeavor will take at least a year and a half to complete. Let the journey begin...