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Planning A Comic – Discovering My Purpose

*Please disregard the trivia within the artwork. Some content will not be canon to the official material.

In my last post, I mentioned my “revival” of my online presence. But I felt like I didn’t quite clearly define my plans going forward. While I did express my intentions, I left what was to come a little vague.

So let me start with how The Mannamong came to be.

I feel it’s important to note the fact that I’ve kept working this story since I was 12 years old, to help others understand the time and dedication and maybe inspire others to not give up on their dreams.
I don’t remember exactly when and how the idea came to me, but I know it was around the very early years of my middle school life. I had always liked playing pretend stories with my friends, narrating events with toys (most of the time, it was Legos) when not playing video games.

They were almost always about popular TV/Movie characters at the time. But this idea I had of a little girl encountering a mystical creature and befriending it led to a series of different scenarios and adventures plaguing the daydreaming mind. Pretty soon, I started to write these ideas down and decided I wanted to create this for real. It was from that point on I knew I wanted to turn this story into my IP somehow. At the time, though, I still wasn’t sure how to express it and in which medium it would be.

Early drawing and story when I was in middle school.

Discovering my purpose

Since I like drawing more than writing, I did doodles like every young aspiring artist. And I knew I wanted The Mannamong to have visuals as its the foundation. So writing a novel was immediately off the table. The three principal ideals were to make it a video game, a comic, or an animated television show. At first, I wanted it to be a video game since I naively believed I could program one easily. I did partake in courses on video game design that my mother signed me up for, but I quickly learned it wasn’t as easy as I thought. Nor did I have the patience for it.

First storyboards of The Mannamong Series

With that clearing my vision, I decided I wanted it animated. Like that’s any easier, huh? Although I still do dream of having my work animated, I knew I couldn’t do it all by myself. So my only option left was to do comics. It seemed like the single viable approach I alone could do. And it helped that I did like to draw characters from my favorite show, movie, and games. I remember one time I made trading cards of said characters for fun with my friends. And everyone that ever saw my art did like it; my peers, teachers, and parents.

Over the years, as I trudged along throughout middle and high school, I kept my doodles, notes, and crude storyboards to myself as I continually tried to polish and hone my skills to make the story more concise. I did not use all of my ideas. Some stayed, some got renewed, and some new in favor of the old ideas. A lot of revision happened over the years. Today, it’s a different product compared to how I initially started back, but that’s another story for a different time.

The point is, The Mannamong gave me a goal. It gave me a desire to go to a college that could give me the skills to turn this project into a professional IP and meet the right people to help make it come true. I was still reworking my ideas so much I must’ve rewritten the story more than ten times. But my passion kept encouraging me subconsciously because I wanted to do it. If that desire were ever so fleeting, I wouldn’t be writing all of this.

And the best part of this journey is more story ideas emerged. Now even if my magnum-opus fails me, I’ll have other ideas I’ll like to have come to fruition. But I know it won’t fail me, and neither will the other cool stories I want to share with you all. These years gave me a lot of creative content and peace of mind.
I’m well aware of how difficult this journey is. Heck, I know I’m not the only visionary in the world. So what makes me different? Well, I struggle and continue to struggle sometimes emotionally about my perseverance. But it’s all I’ve got to make my life feel meaningful and fun. And it really wouldn’t be a journey if it was smooth sailing, now would it? I try my best to look at everything through a story mindset. And I’ve been enamored with storytelling ever since I wanted to create my fictional work.
And here we are now. Two years out of school, two issues already out and a full volume on the way. That’s my beginning.

Let’s see where it goes.

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Michael Adam Lengyel
Michael Adam Lengyel

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