Writing VULTURES

Art by Alejandro González

This project could potentially be a graphic novel, but I wanted to try writing this thing as a book/script for the sake of simplicity. This is my second original story written just by myself. As you guys know writing is hard AF so bear with me as I keep adding words to the story.

If money and time allow, I’ll work with Alejandro Gonzalez to include more art from the one that I already have. Alejandro is a good friend and one of the most talented artists I know.

The Vultures left to right:
CALIFORNIA (healer) | SAVANNAH (sniper) | JOHN CROW (spy) | BLACK (leader)
FOREST (demolitions) | KING (brute force) | ANDES (transporter).

Synopsis

Spring City, the near future. Seven formerly army soldiers who have fought a never-ending war of drug lords and terrorist have gathered together to take down the most unexpected enemy they ever encounter: A WITCH.

For years it's been known that witchcraft is essential for some organized crime organizations. They are winning the fight and neither the government nor counter-guerrilla groups have been able to stop them.

What these soldiers are about to unravel could change the course of history.

Inspiration

I remember when the two most powerful drug cartels in Colombia were torn apart. The country entertainment industry started pitching the idea of telling stories about this drug lords through telenovelas, tv series, and films. Some people were delighted about them; others were disgusted by the fact that media was trying to squeeze every single penny from events that caused a lot of people to suffer.

This theme is so popular that even Netflix launched a series called NARCOS which portraits the life and death of these drug lords from the perspective of those who captured them.

What I noticed is that some people (especially people outside of Latin America) tend to admire their stories and even dare to call its protagonists heroes, but I’ll share with you this video from what I would say is one of the best sources of news about what is happening in Colombia right now, which explains exactly how I feel:

English subtitles are available by enabling CC.

Growing up in Colombia wasn’t easy. I have to give credit to my parents since they did the impossible for me as a kid to not be aware of the violence these narcs brought to where we lived. Medellín in the ’80s was this od place where a bomb could explode anytime anywhere, or a gunfight between the police and gang members could suddenly happen.

I do have to say that I made it easy for mom and dad. As a kid, I was considered socially awkward, but in my defense, I was just a shy person; and through this day still am. I preferred stayed at home playing some Nintendo games or reading comic books rather than going outside. As you get older you start hearing some creepy stories from family members and friends and then you get to an age where you realize how fucked up things were back then.

My uncle told me about the time he survived 3 bomb explosions where he was always riding a bus. He never forgets the sound effect this kind of event triggers, and how as the sound wave moves, blasts everything on its path.

I have a friend whose mother was a victim of these bombs. There are no words I can write in this article that does justice on how to describe the pain my friend express when he remembers this tragedy.

It is because of the entertainment industry that many people think of these characters as rebels with a cause instead of criminals or terrorists. They are being portraited as Robin Hood instead of the Sheriff of Nottingham, but I do acknowledge the appeal, the attraction certain villains have, let me explain:

The Joker is the property of DC Comics and Warner Bros.

Who doesn’t love The Joker? He is one of the main reasons Batman is fun. He is the protagonist of one of the best comic book films ever made (The Dark Knight). The movie that is going to be released this year looks stunning and if you read the YouTube comments of that teaser you will notice the bond people have with this character. But let me tell you something…

You wouldn’t want to cross paths with The Joker, ever.

The same goes for drug lords, and yes, Vultures will have references to a theme that has brought pain to the country I come from, but I will portrait them for what they really are, someone you should be scared of, someone you will hide your kids from, just like my parents did.

I also got inspired by some productions made by talent from Colombia. The film El Páramo directed by Jaime Osorio Marquez is one of them:

There’s also a book called La Bruja from Germán Castro Caycedo which depicts a true story of a “witch” who played a major role between politics, cocaine, and demons. Scary stuff.

The story I want to tell is a work of fiction. Its characters, its locations are all made up; but there are an obvious connection and inspiration from where I came from and the stories that for many years I had been told.