You can imagine my surprise when I received a voicemail a few weeks ago from Zetaman, telling me he was at the Superheroes Anonymous 4 awards ceremony in Portland, Oregon and that I had received the conference's Award for Literary and Journalistic Excellence, to applause in the background.
The certificate just arrived in the mail, and here it is:
Endorsed by Zetaman and Civitron
Since I wasn't able to attend the conference in person, I thought I would make a short acceptance speech here on the blog:
Dear Real Life Superheroes, costumed activists,vigilantes,meta-villains, friends who followed a Facebook link because you're bored at work, citizens of Troll City, internet surfers, my fellow citizens of the universe-
Literary and journalistic excellence is something I strive for and think is important. Why? Because it is vanishing. So much "reporting" is done by sitting in front of the computer, copying and pasting other people's work. The concept that the real story is out on the street and needs a thorough understanding is replaced with blog style twitter reporting.
When I decided to write about real-life superheroes I knew that I needed to get out there to meet these people in person and see their worlds as they see them. That has led me to a great adventure traveling to Minneapolis, New Bedford, Vancouver, Seattle, and New York City. I also put forward as much research and communication as I could.
I've spoken with over 150 real life superheroes (and associates) by phone, e-mail, and in person. I've traced people doing something similar to the real life superheroes (early prototypes) as far as the 1970's. I've also read a lot of comic books.
I have experienced a full range of emotion while working on the writing. I have found the story to be everything and anything- inspiring, crazy, uplifting, stupid, brilliant, amazing, alarming, wonderful, and occasionally awful. There are many, many real life superheroes I consider a friend and enjoy talking to. I also enjoy my friendship with villains. I consider myself a neutral party and by doing this I think I can give an honest portrayal. People will take away any number of different conclusions after reading my book depending on their reaction. Some might shrug their shoulders and laugh it off, others may be inspired deeply.
Writing about real life superheroes has been one of the great experiences of my life. The story is endlessly fascinating to me. After reaction to some local media, I see that the public is grossly misinformed about what real life superheroes are and what they do.
I think this book will help change that.
And here is a short tour of author Tea Krulos' office, produced by filmmaker Matthew Miller-