Writer's Commentary

Hi, my name's Nate Raymond, known to the Internet as Nate1234. If you're reading this, then you're probably reading or have read Not Quite Terrestrial #1. If you're doing neither, though, I suggest you start reading it now, because this will spoil the story if you don't.

Not Quite Terrestrial #1 was two years in the making. I began it as a super-hero story with my at-the-time girlfriend, Tracie "KatroZ!" Mauk. She drew almost an entire issue when we suddenly realized the story absolutely sucked. I mean, the art was great, but the plot was terrible. Sierra Holt, the main character, just was not designed to be a superhero. So, we redesigned the story from scratch at that point, deciding Sierra shouldn't be a traditional superhero. In fact, she should never even consider herself a superhero anywhere in this entire series.

However, it was about this time that Tracie and I broke up. We were still friends, but neither of us really wanted to work on this project together any more. So, I went out and got a new artist, Dark Claw, aka Jacob Bond. He helped me redesign the characters to be 18 rather than 14 years old (we agreed that it would be best to make them closer to being adult than teenager). However, he didn't get too much farther than this when life caught up with him. He's a great artist, you see, but he doesn't do it for a living, and thus when his real job and other things in life caught up with him, he discovered he didn't have the time to be the artist for this project. Hopefully, in future issues, he'll be able to draw for us, cause he really is great.

So, after going through two artists and it now having been about two years since first conceiving the project, I came up with a solution to my problem: rather than have one artist for NQT, I'll have four artists and divide the issue up amongst them. After all, artists shouldn't have a problem ideally doing four pages a month. Plus, it made it easier to replace artists if they couldn't do future issues.

I had known Amber "{dixey}" Shelton for a couple years as a wonderful fan-artist. I had absolutely loved her Generation X art, and she had done a couple of sketches for me for NQT early on. So, when I asked her if she'd want to draw some pages for it, she jumped at the chance. She's actually been the biggest push to get this thing finished, she deserves a lot of credit and respect.

I then approached Ben "Avatar" Drexler to draw some pages. He told me in advance that he could only do one issue, but I told him that would be fine.

Then came Claire "Tigrr Wildcat" Mulroy. She had been my friend for several years because of her love for Generation X (let's face it, it's a great comic book). I almost didn't have to ask her really. I like typed one sentence and she automatically jumped on. She's really great, if you have a chance to talk to her, I suggest you do, she's really nice.

Glockgal was a late addition. When I first asked her on board, she told me she only had enough time to do the cover because she was going to be drawing another comic book, but she said she could come on board for issue #2. However, when she finished the cover, she told me that the comic had been put off and she had time to draw NQT #1, which is great because, really, she's the closest thing we have to a well-known artist in a group of unknowns.

So, now, onto analyzing each and every page!

I swear, I love this cover. I told Glock I didn't want Sierra using her powers or for there to be any reference to her origin (which won't be revealed until NQT #4 or so). So she presented me with this, which I love! I mean, look at how you have Shawn Collins, the antagonist, on one side while Matt, Sierra's best friend, is right next to her, and then Sierra's standing in the middle. It's just so beautiful.

Page 1
Between Tracie, Dark Claw, and Glockgal, I have seen six versions of this individual page. But, I must admit, I love Glock's the most just because this was the exact way I had wanted it drawn. The rest had a view of Sierra from a side-view. The "Awakening" logo was drawn by Tracie. The notepad is actually a background I used in The Academy.

Page 2
Thanks to Glock, we actually have a design for Sierra's room! And... um... don't really have much else to say about this page, though I will comment that in draft 1 of NQT #1 I have actually had someone call Sierra in this page. Glock drew a Backstreet Boys poster on the wall, but I covered it up with the diary writing.

Page 3
The shot of the clock is there just to establish some time: 7:45 am. No reason why, really, except that in draft 1 she was headed to school. I'm actually not sure why she'd need up so early out of school, since she has no job. Oh well.

Page 4
The first in-story shot of Matt. I think Glock did a great job of conveying what Matt is like without dialog. Look at what he's doing. Scratching his balls (that's all Glockgal, trust me), checking Sierra out. He's what a lot of girls consider the typical guy, which is good since this comic is supposed to be from the perspective of a girl.

Page 5
When Trace originally drew this page, she altered the story, but in a way I really enjoyed, so when it came time to recreate it I tried hard to keep the story with the same mood as hers. I think Glock did pretty good, actually. I'll have to remember to make Trace's page a picture spotlight, cause it really is amazing. The font used for the captions in this page and the pages onward is called "Witzworx!" by Ron Evry. It can be downloaded at This was also the last page to get finished in this issue.

Page 6
The first page drawn by Avatar. Jean Grey, played by Famke Janssen, in the X-Men is on the screen. I can't even begin to emphasize the importance of this shot on the story of NQT, because in very subtle ways it is referenced it impacts NQT. But I can tell you that one of the important things about it is the fact that it dates NQT #1 at a certain time: most likely, July of 2000. I felt it important to date myself on purpose so that future issues in which we skipped ahead several years would be fine.

Also, in draft one of NQT, Sierra and Matt actually went to a dance, not a movie. However, since Sierra and Matt aren't in school, I didn't think they'd be able to go to a dance as easy, so I decided to make it a movie.

Page 7
I unfortunately had to cut a panel out of this page because of the different paper size he used compared to the other artists. He used photo refrences also, having friends pose for Sierra and Matt. I'll have to see eventually if he could scan those for me to put online.

Page 8
Aaaaaaaaaah, ain't they cute? Oh, and notice in the background several cameos of comic characters, such as Jubilee and Chamber of Generation X and Gambit of The Uncanny X-Men, to name a few.

Page 9
{dixey}'s pages start now. This was the first page to be drawn for this version of NQT #1. More purpose dating is included in this page as we put an X-Men and Pokemon 2000 poster in the background. Oh, and let's all give a round of applause to dix for giving Sierra some fashion because she designed the “date” costumes for Sierra & Matt as well as the thug. .

Page 10
Um... not much to say, really, it is what it is.

Page 11
For this page, told dix to have at least 3 panels of Sierra getting the crap beaten out of her. She gave me 6. The "that..." and "DOES..." were actually done by Tracie in her oringinal pages (in those pages, she did the captions by hand).

Page 12
My favorite page of this entire issue. This was actually the second draft she gave me. I told dix to rent Carrie before drawing this page, cause I wanted her totally possessed-looking. The "IT!" was also drawn by Tracie from her original pages.

Page 13
First page drawn by Tigrr. I acutally had Tigrr add that first panel in after getting page 12 from {dixey} because I wanted to make sure everyone did know Sierra had been floating in the air. I didn't include thought bubbles for Matt's thoughts because I don't believe in them or third-person narration in comic books. Narration comes in the form of diaries, which are tangible. If we were in Sierra's world, we could actually read her diary. As for the "That... DOES... IT!!!" thought in pages 11 and 12, it's actually psychic yelling. If we were there, we'd have actually "heard" it. Cool, huh?

Oh, and as for what thought Sierra picked up off of Matt's mind... pick one of the following. ^_^

Page 14
Perhaps the only page story wise I hate (great art, mind you). It's a tad too fast and, if it were a movie rather than a comic, I'd have had it take a few days for Sierra to realize how to use her powers. But I needed some conclusion in this story, so I let it by. Don't worry, it'll hopefully be the only bad page in any NQT issue.

Page 15
The first page with Shawn Collins and S-409. (though he won't be referred to by name for some time). He's looking at the house and at the agent via satellite (I had Tigrr watch Enemy of the State to understand what I was going for, and I think she pulled it off excellent). I also had trouble making the traditional "electronic voice" bubbles (the type with the pointy edges all around them) so I decided for a different approach: I filled the bubble with static.

Page 16
The first good shot of S-409 (let's face it, the viewers can't tell who either of those two are from that top view). Oh, there's a secret about this particular type of agent of Shawn's (he has many other types other that wear different clothing, such as his guards). I'll have to tell you later on in the series, but I don't want to give away surprises.

I hope you enjoyed this issue. NQT #2 is tentatively scheduled for December, 2000.