Twentieth Anniversary Week: How It All Started

It started when I discovered Advanced Dungeons & Dragons Second Edition, thanks to my now-lifelong friend Dave. I discovered Fighters, Paladins, Rangers, but most importantly I discovered Wizards. Most specifically, I discovered you could be several different kinds of Wizard. The classic RPG Wizard specialization schools (Abjuration, Conjuration, Divination, Enchantment, Evocation, Illusion, Necromancy, Transmutation) had a profound effect on me, and I promptly created a Wizard for each school. One of those wizards was named Dominic the Diviner, and another was Rilian the Necromancer.

Fast-forward decades later to a long-running Dungeons & Dragons 3.5 game I was invited to join. For whatever reason, my AD&D 2E cast of wizards came to mind, namely Dominic and Rilian. Wanting to do something besides a classic fireball-throwing spellcaster, I opted to make Dominic the Diviner. I changed his name to Dominic Deegan (the Major Deegan Expressway in New York inspired the new surname) and joined the game. I became so obsessed with the character that I started to draw little comic strips about him. They would become the first strips of the comic strip that launched my 20 year career.

As for the game itself, I got kicked out. I got to be a little “much” and while I was hurt at the time, I understand why they did it. Though I was out of the game, I still had my comics which I had already begun posting online. So I kept posting, and twenty years later I’m still posting comics.

I owe a lot to that AD&D 2E book. If I hadn’t seen the classic specialist Wizard schools I never would have come up with Dominic the Diviner, who would become Dominic Deegan. If I hadn’t been inspired by the magic of fantasy I wouldn’t have attempted to make some of my own.

More to talk about tomorrow.