Why I Want to Move to Arizona

I currently live in Ohio.

I’ve been in may different parts of Ohio, too. I grew up in the southeast hills by the Ohio River, went to high school in central Ohio, studied art and business in the Northwest, worked in the Northeast, and moved back Southeast. I’ve visited the southwest a few times, but no one wants to live there.

This was my view during the first 14 years of my life.

Cedar Point at Night, before Disaster Transport was torn down to be replaced with Gatekeeper.

Some Bowling Green State University

Ok this is West Virginia, but it’s a ten-minute drive outside of my house, that’s how close to the river I am.

And while I grew up, I visited so many states and cities. New York, Key West, Virginia Beach, New Jersey, Milwaukee, Chicago, Cadillac Ranch, the Navajo Reservation, and so many other places that if I listed them all the blog would be too long.

My crew and I stopped at the bottom of Canyon du Chelley in Arizona to wade in the “river”.
Of all the places I have been to, though, Arizona was what captured me the most. The heat I could tolerate, but most of all it was the beauty of the place and the kindness of so many of the people I met when I was out there.
But the decision to move out there didn’t come immediately. I first worked my last summer at Cedar Point, then moved back to the Southeast and took up several part-time jobs because there was no other work available.
Until I went out on a limb, sent my portfolio, and got my current gig drawing comics for Validation.
It’s all online, so I don’t have to be in Ohio to keep working on the comic.
At the same time, my older sister came up to Ohio to stay for two months while her husband did training for a new Air Force job in Mississippi. Once he was done, they were going to buy a house and get stationed in Phoenix, Arizona, which is precisely what happened.
While Kristen (my big sis) was up here, I bitched a lot about how there’s absolutely no artistic work to be found in Ohio (which is true). And we spoke about the possibility of me coming out to Phoenix once Kristen and her husband were settled.
I immediately went into fangirl mode and accepted the idea because:
  1. I love Arizona, and I missed the scenery and the inspiration of travel. Here in the Southeast portion of Ohio, I felt stuck, especially since this was my childhood home. It was easy to fall back into old patterns I thought I had outgrown.
  2. There’s work in Phoenix. Even if I can’t get an art-related day job right away out there, I can get other work and volunteer at wherever it is I want to work until a position is open, if I so choose. And with a bigger city comes more clients when freelancing (and one client of mine is based out in that direction already), so win-win.
  3. Kristen is willing to help out. She’s willing to let me crash in her guest room until I find a job and a place of my own, and that is so immensely helpful. Because I don’t like the possibility of being homeless.
  4. Los Angeles and other entertainment industry work is half-a-day’s drive away, so if I wanted to try out for companies like Archaia comics or Oni Press, their headquarters are much closer to get to. And if I wanted to move out that direction instead of staying in Phoenix, the option is easier to execute because I’m closer to the action.
However, I needed to talk to the one person that was most important to me (other than immediate members of the family)…Marc the Boyfriend.
That’s when it got trickier.
Marc is in the National Guard, currently stationed in Morgantown, West Virginia. He’s here in town with me because it was more affordable for him to stay close to home than get a place out in the city. 
(Plus the commute isn’t too far: again, right now I can get in my car and drive into West Virginia in ten minutes, because we’re right next door to the state.)
Anyway, if any of you are in the military or have friends or family who are, you know this: the military does not move fast. Their work is a lot like insurance; it’s slow, inefficient, and requires entirely too much paperwork.
Which is why, when Marc put in a request to transfer to Phoenix two months ago, he STILL hasn’t heard from them today.
Kristen (who’s handled enough military paperwork shenanigans to know this) says a typical turn around time on these decisions is 3 months. So hopefully we’ll hear something soon.
But Marc is willing to move out west with me, and is REALLY excited! The only question now is if he is able.
The original plan was to move out to Phoenix between August 24th (my birthday) and September 1st.
Unfortunately, with the broken wrist I won’t be moving anytime soon. My appointment to get the cast off is at the beginning of September.
So we’ll see what happens then.
Thank you for reading and for your support! And thanks for not forgetting to be awesome.

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