I can’t recall if it was Eric’s idea or my own, but around the same time we started making our own comics. It was Eric, at any rate, that took it most seriously, and I remember this because he was the first to use blank instead of lined paper, the first to ink over his pencils, first to go through and colour each and every panel by hand.

Around 1993, I’d been doing a comic called The Rubber Bandit and another called Batsquirrel, and Eric was doing a comic called Silver Squadron. I ended up doing a spin-off called Silver Squadron Chronicles, which remains somewhere completely written and mostly drawn. At the time, this was the closest we’d been to working together, until the following year when we created a comic called Mutaman for an Environmental Studies project. We were allowed access to the photocopier in the staff room to make copies for the entire class, and found ourselves in a geeky form of heaven.

In 1995, Eric and I walked to the Reddi-Mart at lunch. While walking, we came up with an idea for a comic that turned into Cireekim: Alien Parasite. The story was poorly conceived but we managed to run it out to three issues. After each issue we would go to the staff room and use the extracurricular Art Club as an excuse to go wild on printing. We sold them to friends and to teachers and anyone that would buy them. And that’s how we became publishers.

We called our company BEAM Comics, which stands for the Best of Eric and Michael. It might have been a naive name though, because the best is yet to come. Yes, I’m ending this on a cliché.

(Incidentally, the fourth and final issue of Cireekim is still unfinished. Eric’s half of the book is all written, drawn, and inked. My segment is mostly done; several pages aren’t completely lettered and inked, but it’s mostly done. I swear.)