CHARACTER CREATION: GREGORY KENNEDY

Gregory is the friendly and social member of the Young Guardians.  The powers he gained from the Genesis Spell include potent telepathic and telekinetic abilities.  Gregory is the kind of person who respects the privacy of others and only uses his telepathic powers when he has few options, such as interrogating a criminal.  His telekinesis was originally strong enough to lift objects as large as a bus, but in the second volume, they grow to the point in which he could dismantle an object on an atomic level.  Along with Joshua, Gregory tends to pull pranks on Derek, which they sometimes videotape.  In many ways, Gregory is the soul of the team because his integrity and kindness often keep the team together when they would otherwise fall apart.

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WRITING UPDATE: GRAPHIC NOVEL SCRIPT

I have received a chance to have my book converted into a manga graphic novel recently.  As a result, I am currently converting my first book into graphic novel format in preparation for this future project.  There are no guarantees that this arrangement will work, but I am more than eager to give it a shot.  I have never done a graphic novel script before, but this will give me an excellent chance to expand my horizons as a writer.  Wish me luck!  At the same time, I am continuing to work on the upcoming third volume of my series and am reached the climax where the main characters fight the main villain for the first time.  As the series progresses, it will be revealed that the main villain is not a stereotypical villain and a complex character with motives that are both elaborate and simplistic at the same time.

ANIME REVIEW: SWORD ART ONLINE

Based on the Japanese light novels by Reki Kawahara, Sword Art Online portrays an interesting perspective on the concept of virtual reality.  When I first discovered this anime, I did not know what to expect.  However, when I watched it, I was amazed by the amazing animation and special effects as well as the unique characters that move the story along.  In many ways, this anime reminds me of The Matrix Trilogy in that the characters’ minds are transferred into a computer-generated world and that if they die in the computer world, they die for real.  In particular, I had a keen interest in the relationship between Kazuto Kirigaya (Kirito) and Asuna Yuuki (Asuna).  Before watching the anime, I wasn’t a fan of romance stories and never truly understood what romantic love was, but after watching Kirito and Asuna interact with one another throughout the series, I started crying, which is something I do not do very often.  As for villains, Akihiko Kayaba is what I would categorize as a morally ambiguous character, neither good nor bad despite all the blood he had shed.  On the other hand, Sugo Nobuyuki was a completely hateful character who reminded me in many ways of Joffrey “Baratheon” from Game of Thrones and when Kirito defeated him twice, I just had to watch those scenes over and over.  Overall, I would recommend this anime to anyone who is looking for stories that portray characters finding themselves in unexpected situations and emerge from those experiences as changed characters.

WHEN AND WHY DID I BEGIN WRITING?

For as long as I can remember, I have always had stories to tell and I was eager to find a way for these stories to be heard. When I was young, my parents would supply me with whole truck loads of yellow tablets, which I used to draw stories. When I was in sixth grade, I started to tell stories in words instead of pictures and developed the ambition to have my work published. When I write, my autism allows me to visually see the story taking place inside my head as though it were a movie. Then I would write down exactly what is happening in the movie as I imagine it. Also, it gives me a strong memory and allows my brain to store and record vast amounts of information as though it were a computer hard drive. In a way, writing has become a form of meditation and therapy for me. When I write, I am able to channel the emotions I feel about certain topics into words when a character faces a certain situation or when I create a new character. For example, when I created the villain of my first book, I based him on all of the bullies who harassed me when I was young. When the main characters fight him, it was a way for me to express all of the emotions I developed when I was dealing with those individuals.

GENRE: ANIME AND MANGA

I have always loved anime and manga ever since I was a child.  There are three reasons for this.  First, the art style required to create anime and manga is so unique that it always keep a person hooked into how the characters are portrayed.  Second, while traditional storytelling only demonstrates a limited view into the human creativity, anime and manga can go even deeper and show the audience things that a normal person would not normally imagine.  Third, writers and illustrators of anime and manga often think outside of the box and are not limited in their thinking whenever coming up with a story or characters.  I love anime and manga so much that ever since I started writing my series, I always envisioned them to be converted into anime and manga format, preferably in the style of either Bleach, Sword Art Online, or Attack On Titan.

GRAPHIC NOVEL REVIEW: THE DEATH OF SUPERMAN

Written by Dan Jurgens, when I first read this graphic novel, it broke my heart that one of the most beloved superheroes was being critically injured during the fight of his life.  Still, there were numerous cases where Superman was portrayed as all but invincible.  With that in mind, it was satisfactory to see Superman being pushed to his limits as he battles the monster Doomsday.  That way, Superman would have a more human side to him when engaged in extreme combat.  I believe that every superhero has their own ultimate villain that pushes them to their limits.  With Batman, his ultimate villain is Bane while Superman’s is Doomsday.

CONCEPT: TEENAGE SUPERHEROES

For the longest time, I have been fascinated with the idea of teenagers becoming superheroes.  Some incarnations depict young heroes who are immature and prefer to use their powers for fun and mischief instead of fighting villains.  Others show youths who who are rebels without a cause or require the supervision of older superheroes to keep them in line.  While there have been various incarnations of this concept, I decided to develop my own team of teenage superheroes based on the personalities of myself and my best friends.  I wanted to create characters that were not stereotypical teenagers.  Therefore, I imagined how my friends and I would handle certain situations if we were given superhuman abilities.  When the Young Guardians’ powers first manifest, they are frightened, confused, and initially have no idea what their purpose in life was.  However, after one of their own accidentally injures another human being, they conclude that their crusade against evil should be one of redemption.  In addition, they are the first and only superheroes in existence in their world and have no older heroes to watch over them.  So, they are basically left to their own devices when their lives are inexplicably changed.  As for leadership, even though Patrick is often viewed as the leader by the public, the first four members have been friends since elementary school and have always viewed each other as equals.  Also, despite being the oldest of the group, Tinisha was too inexperienced about the modern world and often followed her younger companions’ lead.