In 2003, I quit my job as a creative director at an animation studio to create comics full-time. Daisy Kutter was the first book I wrote and drew. Flight was the first anthology I ever edited. I worked on both projects concurrently.
For the first two years I lived on savings and freelance work while spending most of my time working on comics. Despite struggling, I loved it. It was the first time I felt in command of my work, and not because I had creative control - that was something I nearly always felt I had - but for once I felt like a true expert at the work I did (I had drawn comics all my life), and that if I continued, it could somehow turn into a full-fledged career. I felt that comics did so much for me as a young reader. And I saw that there were very few books being made that my younger self would have gravitated towards. My ten year-old self was disappointed- with both the small selection of books available- and with me, for worrying more about my career than about fulfilling a need I knew I could fill.
When I sat down to draw Daisy Kutter, and to work on Flight, I remember for the first time feeling like my ten year-old self was proud of me. He could stop pulling my hair and just cheer me on. While I was drawing some of the sequences in Daisy Kutter, I remember actually jumping up and down, getting so excited I would often have to walk away from the table and grin from ear to ear. In those long nights at the drawing table- music playing, crickets chirping- my life finally felt it was back on the road it was meant to travel, and things have progressively gotten better.
I did not make any money drawing Daisy Kutter, nor did I expect to. In the years since the book has gone out of print, I never thought back on the book in a negative light. I loved my experience with the publisher, I loved drawing the book, and I absolutely loved all of the great people I met along the way. Without Daisy there would be no Amulet, and without Amulet I would not still be here today, drawing comics, working on projects that make my ten year-old self (and ten year-olds around the world) jump up and down.
That said, what an awesome feeling to see so many people show up to support this old, out-of-print project, and to watch them share it with new readers who may not have read or seen it. Thank you so much, everyone, for helping to keep this book alive, if only for a very short time.