Well, Black Lollipop is actually much older, but 3 years ago I officially started with showing the pages. And I would’ve forgotten all about this anniversary if I hadn’t it written down in my agenda. Sadly I haven’t prepared anything to celebrate it. Maybe cause I have sorta started over with it with removing the BL site and uploading all pages now to Tapastic.
Now what more can I say about Black Lollipop, aside that this was my first big comic project? Which I sadly had to take a break from cause I got writer’s block and there were other things in life that needed priority. So I thought a new start would be good.
And rereading all the stuff I had written so far. And uhm… That was very much stuff.
Maybe a bit too much. So I took the big decision of removing a HUGE part of the story. And I think I can reveal what that part is now, cause it’ll never get into the story. It was something I had to do with pain in my heart, cause of the amount of work I’ve put in it, but that’s the hard life of a storyteller. Sometimes you have to cut parts you like and worked hard on, to make the story go better.
Now the storyline that will never be….
Jack would fall in love.
With the famous classical music pianist Marjolein van Heren with the nickname Athena. And that’s not all, cause Marjolein also has oculocutaneous albinism and would have visual problems as nystagmus and photophobia and could only see for 10%. She could only see light and the vague countours of people and things.
And the deal was that Jack had trouble with this love cause of his reputation and Marjoleins reputation as his complete opposite. Another part of the story would be about Marjolein, who is treated as unable to do anything cause of her blindness and albinism cause of her overprotective and controlling mother aka manager.
But no matter how much love and work I had put and tried to put in that story and no matter how much I love Marjolein… It sadly didn’t work out. I was struggling with this soooo much. It may sound easy and interesting, but in my head it was just…
So some time ago I took the big and painful decision of cutting Marjoleins story out of Black Lollipop. And it just felt much better. I could breath again. And I come to another discovery of why this story just couldn’t work out.
It was something I think was always there since the beginning, but I hadn’t noticed it or knew there was a word to describe it.
Jack is aromantic.
When Black Lollipop was born and still in its writing phase, I was still living in this heteronormative world, only knowing of the gender male and female and straight, gay and bi were all the sexual orientations I knew. Further into time and I learned there was so much more. I didn’t make the connection yet that Jack was aromantic. It happened not long ago when I read about aromantic again and it just clicked. It fitted Jack perfectly. Deep down I somewhere knew Jack wasn’t a person for romantic relationships, but I had no idea such a thing was possible or that there was a word for it.
Plus I was stuck with the illusion that romance is everything in a story and that I needed to put in it. I was brainwashed by the media with them shoving romance into everything possible.
With this new knowledge, it got me thinking. Romance isn’t everything in a story. I do like romance from time to time, but it can often feel unnessecary, too much, unlogic when done wrong. And I did it so very wrong. And there are so much more relationships which are just as important as romantic relationships. So I decided to put a focus on not only romantic, but also other relationships like in family, friends, platonic relationships. And ended up removing even more parts and scenes. And now after all this new knowledge and cutting parts it feels like this…
How much I will miss the old parts, I see things more clearly now. The huge pile of storylines and scripts I had and honestly was starting to scare me has shrunked down to a small pile I can work with and make me feel excited again. It’s like they say, “Kill your darlings”. Sometimes you just HAVE to cut out parts you love and are proud of to make things clearer again and better. But that doesn’t mean I have completely thrown all those cut-scenes into the garbage. No, I am gonna save them and see if I can put them in another story. But they won’t appear in Black Lollipop anymore.
PS. If anyone’s curious, after finding out the many other romantic and sexual orientations, I decided to take a look at the cast and I came with this:
Jack – Aromantic, greysexual
Lilie – Demiromantic, demisexual
Roman – Heteroromantic, heterosexual
Victoria – Homoromantic, homosexual
Keith – Heteroromantic, asexual