I recently won a comic competition. Held by artist Katie Houghton-Ward (2000 AD, Heavy Metal), the challenge was to take 50 unrelated panels and write a script incorporating all of them. Out of 40+ entries, I won. Like Nick, I found winning something artistic was inordinately exciting.
I tried to imbue the panels with history and personality – I constructed a backstory for each and all characters that featured. I modelled my dialogue on the nonchalant tone Brian K. Vaughan has perfected in his space-fantasy SAGA (a favourite of Nick and mine) – no matter how outlandish his creatures or situation, they all speak like people we know, which I adore.
The title came early, well before the story – like in songwriting, I find a strong title helps. The Absolute was a result of scanning my bookcase and fixing on Absolute Identity Crisis (similarly, my main character names, Drupada and Sataya, came from a book of Indian Mythology kept close to my desk).
Katie and I are now discussing working on something similar – more as it comes to hand.