I am an animator and author currently funding my newest illustrated novel on Kickstarter at scottwiser.com/cirque, which was written and edited in Penstra. From a young age, I imagined two vivid cartoon series in my head and drew plenty of pictures to share those stories with others. In 1st grade, I discovered theater and starred in The Boy Who Cried Wolf. I then convinced other kids on the playground to act out other stories I wished to tell. For the next twenty years of my life, my dream was to write and perform musical theater. But I also liked to draw and couldn’t see how that fit in. In fact, I had several interests beyond theater that even when I ignored them, they still called my attention.
Until one day, I discovered that animation was a real job. People actually got paid to make animated films. Not understanding how the animation industry works, I decided I wanted to be a director of animated films. I planned to work really hard, become, an animator, and right away I would start pitching projects to the studios and prove that I could someday be a great director. There was only one problem: my first job ended in layoffs and the whole industry turned upside down, leaving me unemployed for 18 months, an 18 month that ended up being one of the most important periods of my life.
During that time, I discovered two animated filmmakers who also wrote and illustrated stories as a means of seeding interest BEFORE the film was greenlit. This was great news because when I enter a library or a bookstore, I sometimes swear I hear heavenly singing. I immediately started writing and illustrating books. I discovered that story structure is my favorite subject to study. Finally, on my 5th passion project (The third was an animated short called “Layers”), I am working with an agent and pitching the newest book to publishers. At the same time, I continue to pitch my former project to studios and investors in hopes to finally develop and direct an animated film.
Cirque De Solitude, my current book on Kickstarter, was written and edited in Penstra!