Disheveled, hair down to my chest, arms with ugly red lines, I glared at everybody inside the jeep. Drunk nearly every weekend, I staggered home, and cried to sleep in the dark, wishing for death. It was truly a dark place I was coming from, in the time that spanned July 1993 and July 1994. I alienated friends and hurt a lot of people. Once I would have said I did it for the girl, but that would not be true. It was all me.
It was a time of the greatest changes in my life. The person I was in June 1993 would never recognize the one who emerged in July the following year. They are nearly two completely different people. In July of 1994, I picked up my pen to write and draw again, after hardly ever drawing anything at all for the past year. I wrote and drew whatever it was that could ever come out from my mind and from my hand. It was Wasted, and it wasn’t pretty.
People have said to me of my experience, you’ll just laugh at all this one day. Well, I don’t find myself laughing, here, 13 years later. I can’t help but feel all that had to happen for me to be in the place I am right now. And whatever that could have been had things been different, I would never exchange that for what I have now.
I created a comic book from July 1994 to July 1996, and I really believe I came out of it wanting to live again. Truly live. That comic book changed my life, and yet it’s the ugliest thing I’ve ever made. I felt it was so ugly that people would hate me for it. I wanted to write down ugly things because I wanted everyone else to feel as ugly as I did. In a way, that was a huge part in what the comic book is about. Making others feel miserable because you felt the same way. It was also selfish, really.
I had a story that just compelled me to do it. My mind wanted to finish it so bad, it left my hand completely behind. The lines I did were done in much haste, trying to catch up to the words that simply had to be put down as soon as it could. I’m not proud of the quality of artwork I made for it, but it’s a piece of work that I’m proud of for many other reasons.
The comic book gave me friends, it gave me confidence, and it gave me freedom.
Alamat Comics compiled the comic book, titled simply WASTED in 1998, and we had our launch at Cybercafe in Robinson’s Galleria in February 13, a date somehow strangely fitting. When no one came with knives and pitchforks to burn me at the stake, it was then I realized just how much, and in what way, it has affected other people.
By 2000, I was so over Wasted. I wanted to put it behind me and create something new. It was something I had created during a dark part of my life and I just wanted to get on with it. I had already met the woman who would be my wife, and I simply could not be happier. But the letters and emails still came, specially from people who were reading Wasted for the first time, and it was for them as fresh and new as the day I had made it. I simply could not put it behind me, and I feel ashamed that I could have ever tried.
After two editions and a serialization in a magazine, I now feel that Wasted has reached all that it can reach in it’s current form. And because I have some plans for Wasted when I finish ELMER, I felt I can now share this story online. If Wasted is ever going to find new readers now, it would be through the Internet. On July 16, 2007, Wasted began to be serialized, one page at a time, at WebComicsNation.com.
If you want to start at the beginning, click on the link below.
If you want to read the page currently uploaded today, go to the site below:
That site will ever carry only ONE strip, and that is the most current one uploaded. The strip changes every day at exactly 1:00pm Philippines Time, and will run daily until the story is finished. By clicking on the strip in this site, you will be brought to WebComicsNation, where the story is being archived, and from there you can navigate to any page you wish to see.
Reading it through WebComicsNation carries an added bonus for long time readers. Each page carries a bit of commentary from me, where I talk about what went on during the creation of nearly each page. I write down what my thoughts were, and what made me decide to do what I did, and other things that has something to do with that particular page, and Wasted as a whole.
Thank you very much to Budjette Tan (who was there with Wasted, helping it along from the very beginning), Jonas Diego, Carlo Vergara, Komiks.ph, Azrael Colladila, and the many others who helped me promote this online edition of Wasted this time around.