Friday, February 08, 2002

Have you ever done anything that seems stupid, but you can't help doing it because your heart just won't allow you not to do it? It's happened to me many times. In many ways it's why I draw comics today. It's done me good most of the time, and yet sometimes it's put me in harm's way. But what can I do? My heart has always been stronger than my mind. And I seriously doubt that I am where I am today if it were otherwise. To Amploy, I'm sorry, but I can't change what I am.

Today I found myself thinking about the last 10 years a lot. For some reason it just went by so blindingly fast that it just felt like a blink. February 1992 I was in the thick of practicing drawing comics, spending hours and hours at my table just trying to figure out how to do it. A Conan painting of mine just came out at the fan art section of Wizard Magazine. We still did not have a phone in the house. I only knew it came out when Oliver Pulumbarit called me long distance on our neighbor's phone. Portia Laxamana was still my girlfriend and I was still writing her at least 3 times a week. I remember that time well. I remember it like it was yesterday.

Earlier today I was rummaging through my box of letters again, and I gotta say it's a big box because I've kept all the letters I have so far received. Sometimes I'd open some of them and read them again. I read this letter by Cecile Katigbak, a girl whom I met because of Star Trek (and is now married to Wasted director Noel Lim), letters by this guy named Derek Scott McNair who called the offices of Wizard and asked for my address, letters from mini comics creators in the US Morgan Parducci and Carrie McNinch, letters from old classmates Susan Chumacera, Salie Salvador, Jenie Aesquivel, Apol Leynes, Ana Pabello, Rosette Balderama, Evie Calayag, good friends in comics Karen Kunawicz, Budjette Tan, Aris Lim, Mark Gatela and just so many many more.

All of a sudden I'm 34. I'm the oldest in my generation of comic book artists which include Gilbert Monsanto, Arnold Arre, Leinil Yu, Roy Allan Martinez, Edgar Tadeo, etc. I've been working in comics for the last 8 years. It seems I've done a lot, but I personally don't think so and I feel I still have a lot yet to do, so many stories I still want to write and draw. I fully intend to do all of them, if I don't die first that is.

Speaking of Star Trek, I just saw "The Cage", the original version. For those not familiar with Star Trek, "The Cage" was the very first Star Trek pilot which was made in the mid 60's. It had a different cast. Jeffrey Hunter played Captain Christopher Pike, Majel Barret played "Number One", and Leonard Nimoy played Spock, a smiling Vulcan. NBC executives thought that this pilot was "too cerebral" and felt that the stupid masses will be too dumb to appreciate it so they asked for a 2nd pilot with lots more action and less philosophizing. They also asked to fire the entire cast and hire a new one. The 2nd pilot, entitled "Where No Man Has Gone Before" featured William Shatner as the now familiar Captain Kirk, De Forrest Kelley as Leonard "Bones" McCoy, and Leonard Nimoy as emotionless Vulcan named Spock. "The Cage" was then cut up, and re edited into "The Menagerie". The original version of "The Cage" has been rarely seen and being a Star Trek fan, I just can't bear not to see it.

William Shatner has just opened his official site, expectedly enough, I immediately wrote Mr. Shatner a fan letter and a Jane Singer replied to my email. This is the message:

Dear Gerry,

Thank you for your kind letter to William Shatner. He very much appreciates your interest in him and his career and is glad that you enjoyed his books and especially "Star Trek V" which is very close to his heart.

You might be interested in knowing that Mr. Shatner has signed another 3-book deal with Simon & Schuster for more "Star Trek" novels which will take up where Star Trek: Preserver left off. The first book is due out this fall. Meanwhile, he has written a book on the science of "Star Trek" called I'm Working on That which should hit bookstores (in the US) in late summer.

If you'd like to keep apprised of Mr. Shatner's activities, visit his official website at As you may know, right now the website is in the process of being upgraded, but it will offer a host of interesting features when it launches on February 20th. Meanwhile, Mr. Shatner's calendar of appearances is posted online and it will be updated on a regular basis, so keep checking back.

Information on joining Mr. Shatner's official fan club, Shatner & Friends International, is also posted online at

Thanks for writing.

I thought it was kind of cool.

Anyway, a new Star Trek movie is now being shot and I got news for you Trek fans. DATA DIES!! Now I've spoiled it all for you. HA! HA! HA!!!!