Over the last few years I’ve done a series of panels called “How to Get News Coverage” (organized by Rik Offenberger) at various cons and I often talk about how you must send out press releases, followed by saying how hard it is to get me to open an email with a press release — due to time restraints. But I confess, when I got one entitled “My New Sci-Fi Graphic Novel about student loans” I had to check it out. The GN in question is called The Default Trigger, and it’s by a fellow named Christopher Kosek. As he pointed out in his cover letter, student loan default is a very serious problem for many people In This Economy. In a world where good paying jobs for college grads are still hard to find, many people find themselves “stuck with crippling debt” as they say, and misery follows.
Anyway, in The Default Trigger, a fellow with six figures of student load debt is about to default…until some mysterious men in black show up and offer to pay off all his debt if he’ll just do a two-week job for the government…and remember nothing of what he did.
This is very much a home grown comic and the art is rough but makes effective use of design to get the story across. Darned if I didn’t finish reading the whole thing. So you may too. In his cover letter Kosek writes:
Like so many other college graduates I have more student loan debt that I can even comprehend. I’m not alone, just about everyone I know has the same, and its so frustrating that our elected politicians don’t seem at all worried about this. Naturally, a [redacted] conspiracy seemed like an appropriate spring board and the story grew from there.
I’m making it available as a free/pay what you want model because I believe that the subject of student loan debt is one of the great political issues of my generation and it should be discussed in fiction and comics. I also believe that too many indie comic creators price themselves out of readers in a saturated self-published market. I’m just starting out, and I really just want to grow some readership, meet more collaborators and have my work out there for the world for all to see.
Here’s a few pages to get you going.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.