Well, another year down. This was a pretty good year for me. Though I'd like it if I had a job with more of a future and a little bit more money, it was kind of nice working a job where I felt like what I did made a difference, like I was good at what I did and I actually liked going to work. I don't know how long I can keep being assistant manager of a comic-book shop without feeling like I've wasted both my college degree and all my youth on a job with no future, but I'm hoping to hold out at least one more year.
No moves or surprise surgeries or anything like that this year, which was nice. We started in Austin, we stayed in Austin. In fact, the only really major upheaval was a positive one, because this is the year my daughter Katy was born. Everything you hear about "it will change your life" is absolutely 100% true. But not in the way you expect. My routine, dull as it is, remains pretty much the same. Reviews on the off-time, work, weekly gaming with friends, the occasional movie... but every single thing I do now, in the back of my head, I'm doing it as a father. There is not a moment that goes by that Katy isn't in my thoughts, and it's kind of amazing.
The other big moment that sticks out for me in 2003 is San Diego. It was a blast getting to hang out in person with Don again, and for that matter getting to reconnect with all the people that I know in and around comics. There are so many negative things about this industry, and so many people (including me, on some days) are cynical about the whole thing, saying that the industry needs to die for the comics medium to survive... but I can't help but remember how much fun I had at San Diego, and how much of that was down to the community that sprung up in this industry, and I still think the positives outweigh the negatives.
My predictions for 2004? I don't have any, really. I have hopes (I dearly hope someone else is President-elect after November), I have plans (alphabetical archives for The Fourth Rail, even if it kills me to do all the hand-coding), I have guaranteed moments of joy (Katy learning to walk, and *maybe* saying her first word?)... but no predictions.