short story Tag

Short Story 29 – Welcome

“This has been a long trip with few familiar faces. But, there’s nothing like trekking a thousand miles and coming home to your family. Here I was thinking it would be a quiet Sunday all by myself since everyone was out of town; they said. And I had my key still. But when I walked in Grandpa and Grandma, my sisters, my cousin, and the kids were all there, I almost cried! Somebody up there has a sense of humor.”
Here’s my latest short story: Welcome
If you missed the previous short story called Flight check it out here. And if you dig this style, check out this collage of characters done in the same style.

Short story 28 – Flight

“Normally I would tell you to get your hair out of my face! But, agggghhh!” Shouted Tong as Hattie duck, dived, and barreled the dragonfly. Not trying to win, but showing off. There was something peaceful about riding. Our lands seemed to go on forever and I had never seen it from so high up. I want to win but Hattie just wants to have fun.
This is the latest short story! If you missed the last one please check out “Hike” by clicking this link.
Digital drawing
Lightboxing with colored pencils

Short story 27 – Hike

Here is my next short story:

Its worth it. “It was only two hours” mom said. But it felt like forever. The climb made me feeling like all the oxygen was sucked out of the air. We couldn’t get any wifi and there was no one around us for miles. But it was worth it. “Nature’s cool… I like hikes” my little brother said. And when I saw
how happy it made Mom I agreed. It was worth it. Every picture, every moment. Maybe not the energy bars, but everything else.

Why not check out the last one? Short story 26 – First Protest

Short story 26 – First Protest

Saturday morning. Uncle George told us we were wasting our time. “Hardly anyone shows up at them demonstrations!” he said. But I know hella people are gonna show out today. Jeanie never been to a protest before so Judy, my sister, and I are taking her. And we’re gonna enjoy ourselves while doing it. Today might not change politicians minds but I hope Jeanie will see that she isn’t the only one who don’t support another foolish war. I can see the folks gathering up the street now.

Funny I was already planning to draw this short story. But being that the idiot POTUS is trying to declare war on a country that the US government has had its claws in for over half a century its fitting to post it now. Stay woke folks. History repeats itself and we’ve seen this show before.

Here’s the last short story: Haenyeo

Some more close ups….

Short story 25 – Haenyeo

This is a short I’ve been wanting to do for awhile. In fact, I drew this sketch over a year ago and never put the final touches on it until now. For those that don’t know, a Haenyeo is a word for Korean women who dive off the coast of Jeju island. No time for a history lesson but what they do, many could not at the age of 20 or 80.

Did you see the last short story? Its here:
Short story 24-Argue

Short story 24 – Argue

Short story 24
They fought all the time before Mama went away. She took care of them and taught them lessons about loving each other that took a long time for them to understand. In fact it wasn’t until the flu began watching their every move that Donny and Jalil truly understood what brotherhood meant. They would have to agree on more than just the channel for this new technology to work.
On shorts: I started doing these over 8 years ago as a way to practice my writing and illustration. Just barely starting to pick it back up again. Want to see more? Check out:

Short story 23 – Record store

On Sunday Papa and I walked to the record store. I never seen him so happy to go to a store before. He kept whistling and smiling. Then he turned to me and said 
 “When I was a kid, your Grandpa would bring me here. It’s like a library of sounds from all over the world!”. 

This illustration of a father and son walking is special because Amoeba Records in Berkeley was and still is a haven for weird sound lovers like me. I walked there from Berkeley High at lunch weekly looking for new and old hip hop records, samples, drum breaks, and jazz albums. It is a cultural landmark. And although I’ve been to the SF and LA locations, Berkeley is home. Go if you haven’t been recently and see what you can find to pull you away from your screen. Have you been to Amoeba in Berkeley? What’s the last thing you bought there?
It has been almost 4 years since I completed a “short story”. And i’ve worked on so many children’s books and art projects since then which is part of why I paused them. I started working on these to practice my writing and illustration. 
Wanna see more?

Furqan’s First-Mentors

This is a shot of me working on some concept art for Furqan’s First Flat Top

Thank you to all the new folks, family, and friends who just donated. Thanks to Healthy Black Men for blogging the campaign. Stay tuned…. I had a goal of reaching 200 backers over the past week and thanks to you I surpassed it. Not only that, we are currently over 80% of the way there. This week I will be doing my best to create a final push for the campaign to reach 275 backers and get it fully funded ahead of time. If you know any book lovers or people with influence in media out there who might be interested in this project, now is the time to share it with them. Send them the link and let them know there are several posts here explaining my journey and how I came to create this book. 
But for now, please read about some of the mentors I’ve met on my path.

Heres the kickstarter link:

I made short stories to get here- Furqan’s First

I once heard Will Smith tell a story about rebuilding a wall his dad tore down. I remember him making a metaphor out of the wall. It was about gradual steps that build something much bigger. Instead of seeing the wall as a huge task he saw it in pieces. He learned to lay the bricks that form a wall and that simple focused act soon rebuilt the wall.

Four or five years ago I was doing my best to track down an editor/ director of a major bi-lingual publisher (shout out to Adriana!). I finally got a chance to meet with her in Manhattan and was so excited to “get published” that I was blind to a minor detail. I was not ready yet and neither was my work. I wanted her to give me a key to a door I was not yet ready to walk through. When she told me I needed to work on my stuff then and again later on I was crushed. I met with other artists in the field like Kadir Nelson who kind of said the same thing. And you know what? They were right. I wanted a short cut. I wanted it all without having done any work. I thought it was easy and that they should just give me a magic doorway to success. But it does not work that way. To really mentor someone or see the potential in a young artist, you have to see what they can do right?

After I picked my ego up off the floor I reassessed what I was trying to accomplish and what I was doing. I was trying too hard to please. I wanted to tell the story that others wanted to hear. I was looking for approval from other people to do my thing. And I was too much of an amateur at storytelling to communicate my ideas clearly. I needed to study. I decided that I would practice and post up my practice so that it would make me accountable to myself and others started to take notice. I began a series of very short blog posts on various drawing skills or subjects. One of them, and perhaps one of the most important outside of drawing characters was my series of short stories. Every month and a half I would sketch, draw, or paint one image or more as an example page from a children’s book. Some of them came out awful. Sometimes I didn’t know where I was going with them. And sometimes they were dope.

The first one I did was unintentional. It was a gift for my son. It was a portrait of him in a fantastical realm where Aztlan and Africa met. When creating these shorts I let myself have the freedom to use any medium I wanted to. I went with any topic I felt attracted to. I did it exactly the way I wanted to. I studied master artists in animation, film, concept art, comics, and children’s books. I began to try new techniques that I had either left in the past or had never tried before. And you know what happened? I started to build a portfolio of odd, weird, and sometimes magical illustration work that showed growth, dedication, fumbles, and sometimes even a bit of storytelling. This new series began to liberate me in a way that I had never felt before.
Furqan’s First Flat Top came from this place of searching and finding. I’m so glad that the editor, Kadir, and so many other mentors gave me encouraging but stern feedback. It toughened me, and made me more determined. I came up with many ideas on my own, which I want to turn into stories and Furqan is the first one. I have a long way to go and a lot to learn, but I feel more confident than ever about what I do. I’m happy to work with like-minded people who actually see and appreciate what I do. And I am quite comfortable doing it without any outside direction or advice; except that which I invite. And let me tell you, it feels pretty good. Folks don’t have to respond. They don’t have to say anything and often do not, but I love it when people get it. That is something I’m rather proud of. And that is why I bring you this short story turned full-fledged children’s book today. Thank you again for responding with support. Look for more stories from me. Stay tuned, more words to come.

Yo!! In case you’ve been meditating on a mountain somewhere and have not heard, I launched a campaign to fund my first children’s book called “Furqan’s First Flat Top”. Please go check it out, support, and pass it on. W only have 20 more days to make it happen. 

Furqan’s First Flat-Top Campaign launch


This is it. I’m finally doing it. I’m launching a Kickstarter campaign for my first ever self-published children’s / picture book called Furqan’s First Flat Top. Over the next 30 days I will not only be doing a major push for this campaign on all the social networks, but I’ll be doing a series of posts related to the campaign talking about my mentors and influences in the field, how and why I went back to school, my short stories series, libraries, and more. For those of you who have been with me on this artistic journey for months, days, or years already, from Oakland to LA, Texas to New York, France to London, Mexico to Chile, Canada, India, Philippines and South Africa: you understand where I’m coming from. But for those who have never seen my work before, I need to break it down for them and I need your to help spread the word wherever you think it will resonate clearly. That can be in traditional newspapers, radio shows, cable access, artsy blogs, podcasts, bookstores, emails, re-tweets, re-blogs, however you want to help.

Thank you, Muchas Gracias, and Kamsamnida in advance. With this story I am manifesting many years of practice and dreams. It is the beginning of much more storytelling to come.

Most of the necessary information is on the campaign page but if you need to get some specific information from me, a press kit, images, links, please contact me directly at

Visit the Kickstarter page, give if you are in the position to, and let’s get Furqan’s First Flat Top onto bookshelves here in the states and abroad.