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|Sunday, November 1st, 2009|
Things to do in Dallas when you have insomnia
Those of you who live in the Dallas area, guess what? I've signed up to be an extra in a movie called "In the Land of Fireworks" that's shooting here all through November. (No pay, unfortunately -- I'm doing it for the experience. Actors gotta start somewhere.)
The days I'm signed up for are:
There are several other shoots throughout the month, some overnight and some during the day -- those are just the three I signed up for.
They really need more extras -- go to www.inthelandoffireworks.com
to sign up if you're interested and don't mind working for food. And hey - if you sign up for the same shoots as me, maybe we'll run into each other and you can tell me to get back to work on the goddamned comic!
|Friday, June 19th, 2009|
|Monday, June 1st, 2009|
|Tuesday, April 28th, 2009|
I really didn't mean to tease you guys about the nonexistent Monday update. I did draw, but nothing useful is coming out of my pencil yet.
Instead, why don't we plan on a new update Friday? That'll start off the month of May right.
|Thursday, April 23rd, 2009|
Sorry for worrying everyone.
Drawing this weekend.
That is all.
|Monday, March 9th, 2009|
Good news, everybody! I just lost my job, so when I get back from my trip out of town, I'll have LOTS of time to draw!crap.
Good lord, why do you people put up with me?
I was doing so well, updating every day and getting caught up, and then it all fell apart again.
I might as well tell you now that all next week I'm going to be out of town, and my evenings THIS week will be spent getting ready for that trip, so it's unlikely I'll have any more updates before the 23rd. Let's call it a hiatus and get it over with.
|Thursday, February 26th, 2009|
Comic for Feb. 16th is up
The comic for 2/16 went up last night.Comic for February 16
- More satisfactory artwork. I like panel one in particular - it has nice depth (not to mention Khin'draa striking a smokin' hot pose. Ahem.)
- I'm sure all the fathers of daughters out there can relate to the Sequoia's reaction in today's comic, especially if your daughter has ever brought home someone you considered entirely unworthy of her. (For the record, the Sequoia harbors prejudice towards humans, mainly because as leader of the clan and protector of the secret life of sasquatches, he's constantly having to deal with a particularly obnoxious subset of them.)
- Coming up tomorrow: has the plan gone awry?
And now, the
unfortunate news. The reason I've been knocking myself out doing daily updates to clear my backlog was to finish this storyline by March 6th. I've been acting all mysterious about why. Now, however, there's no need for any further mystery, because the whole thing has fallen through.
The reason I had to wrap things up by March 6th is that on March 9th, Scandal Sheet!
was going to launch into a three-week crossover event withcrotalus_atrox
's excellent webcomic Friendly Hostility
. Our comics have long had a sort of connection, albeit a one-way one: The Boston vampires in Scandal Sheet!
are all based partially on characters from Friendly Hostility
and its predecessor, Boy Meets Boy
(except for the leader of the clan, Sandra Chauve-Souris, who is based on crotalus_atrox
herself). We've been on friendly terms for as long as I've been doing my webcomic, and we were both really looking forward to working together.
The plan was for two of crotalus_atrox
's characters, Fox and Derringer, to come work at the Comet
for a short thinking-about-hiring-you internship. We'd agreed that I would plot the crossover, do the writing for my half, and provide summaries of the action for her half that she would flesh out. She told me the drop-dead date by which she'd need those summaries and I said, "NO problem!" Whereupon I got myself into this three-week backlog that I've been working so hard to dig out of. And I missed her drop-dead date. And that was that.crotalus_atrox
is being really cool about the whole thing - she hasn't been mad or accusatory in anyway, just disappointed (although heaven knows she would be justified in being pissed at me, since this is completely my fault). We're still buddies, and after Friendly Hostility
ends this summer and she starts her new comic, maybe we'll try again. I certainly want to.
Even though the collapse of the crossover takes away the need for me to catch up my backlog, I'm going to do it anyway as a self-imposed penance. I will probably take an extra week or two before ending the storyline, though - now that I don't HAVE to end it by 3/6, I can rejigger the story arc and add some things back in that I'd had to drop for lack of space.
|Wednesday, February 25th, 2009|
Comic for Feb. 13 is up
The comic for Friday, February 13th is up now.Comic for Feb. 13
- Sigh. Well, after all this effort to get caught up, it's looking like my motivation for doing it likely isn't going to happen. (It's completely my fault.) I guess I'm going to go ahead and get caught up anyway, but it kind of took the wind out of my sails a bit.
- I can't lie - visually speaking, I'm not really happy with this one. The throne room is cool-looking, but it's too busy visually when you have several characters in the foreground. The Sequoia in particular doesn't read well in front of those interlocking tree branches. I contemplated separating him from the background with a white outline, but that looked even worse. *sigh* oh well, they can't all be masterpieces.
- I do like the writing on this one, though. I like having one of my characters start saying something and then get interrupted and never finish the thought - it springs from my penchant for eavesdropping on strangers. When I only get to hear the setup and miss the payoff (or, alternatively, hear just the payoff out of context), it always drives me crazy - and I like to drive YOU crazy, dear Scandalistas.
- You know, it's funny - I originally chose "hras'ka" as the big sasquatch insult for "human" solely because it sounds kind of like "Oscar" (which I needed for a Heinlein shout-out back in September), but I really have come to like it as a credibly nasty word. It has a hissing quality that conveys disgust and contempt well - the mouth naturally forms into a sneer when one says it.
|Tuesday, February 24th, 2009|
Sorry I missed last night's catch-update - by the time I was able to sit down and draw, I was so sleepy that I kept dozing off, whereupon my pencil would scrawl across the page. I finally admitted I was in no shape to daraw and went to bed. I'll try to get two done tonight to make up for it.
|Sunday, February 22nd, 2009|
Comics for 2/9 and 2/11 are up.
I should be able to get completely caught up this week if I can keep putting up a comic a day.Comics for 2/9 and 2/11
- Boy, I can't WAIT to see what people have to say about this one.
- If you like panel four, you should have seen it before I erased all the rough-sketch stuff that fell outside the panel border (I always keep drawing past the edges of a panel at the rough-pencil stage to make sure the angles work right). Whoo-ee.
- Coming Monday night: The comic for 2/13, in which our heroes put their insane plan to work.
|Friday, February 20th, 2009|
BONUS comic for 2/7 is up!
The next comic, a SUPER SECRET update for Feb. 7, went up last night. (spoilers in the commentary, so be warned.)Comic for February 7
- I really wanted to stretch what I'd written for 2/6 out into two comics, but there just wasn't room to do it and still finish this storyline by March 6. Then I thought to myself, "I'm updating in arrears anyway, and people have probably figured out by now that a new comic is going up every day until I clear the backlog, so exactly what's stopping me from throwing in an extra comic? If we were keeping to the schedule, people might miss a comic that went up on, say, Saturday, but that objection doesn't apply right now." I'm really glad I did it, even though it means one extra day before I can be caught up; the storyline hits the beats I want instead of having too much shoehorned into one comic.
- Poor Khin'draa in panel one. She's done something drastic to try to save her attempt to throw herself at Foster and she thinks it didn't work. My artwork isn't nuanced enough to really convey it, but she's about five seconds from turning and fleeing the cave.
- I want to say that as nice as it was to get to draw "Ito" again - it's been a while - filling all the little spaces in her hair with gray to show it's dark in the cave was a royal pain. I'm glad Foster did what he did.
- In fact, let's have a round of applause for Foster. He's come a long way from the ignorant dude who couldn't get past Samantha Hooper's "difference."
|Thursday, February 19th, 2009|
Comic for Feb. 6 is up
The comic for February 6 was uploaded last night, but I didn't get around to forcing the site to update until just now. Mea culpa.Comic for February 6
I'm really slammed here at work, so I don't have time to do any bits of business. Would someone, or several someones, PLEASE do them for me? I'm out on a wire here and I need feedback.
|Wednesday, February 18th, 2009|
Comic for 2/4 is up
I forgot that I'd made a hard-coded link to the 1/30 comic so both would display on the home page, so until 7:30 Central time this morning it was showing above the latest update. It's now been fixed.Comic for February 4
- Once again I am struck by how uneven my artwork is. In my mind, artwork being inconsistent is a greater sin than it being simply ugly. There was a comic that used to run in my local paper called The Quigmans that was just flat-out ugly - but it was consistently ugly. My artwork oscillates between good or even great, and poor - sometimes within the same comic. Take today, for example; I think panels three and four are really good (panel three might even be excellent), but panel two is solid meh.
- In fact, I think it's a real shame that so much of panel three wound up covered with dialogue. Maybe tonight I'll post that panel without the speech balloons so you can all see it.
- The image in panel four is close to one of the images on the first page of character-design sketches I ever did of Khin'draa (in the sketch, Foster didn't look surprised). I've been looking forward to hitting this point in the story.
- If Khin'draa's behavior seems like a sudden turnaround, you have to remember that we don't know how much time passed between when she left Phil in the cell and when she arrived at the Healer infirmary cave. She actually spent quite a while thinking about things before she came to collect Foster. (She is still insisting to me that she didn't plan to do what she did, though.)
- Going up tonight and tomorrow night: the aftermath!
|Tuesday, February 17th, 2009|
Comics for 1/20 and 2/2 are now up
Things got kind of derailed over the weekend, but last night I put up two more comics!Comics for 1/30 and 2/2
- I like the way Khin'draa turned out in the first panel of the 1/30 comic - very dynamic. And now we've seen yet another sasquatch hairstyle (And wouldn't "Sasquatch Hairstyle" be a great name for a Southern Culture on the Skids album?)
- Khin'draa in panel one of the 2/2 comic, however... not so much. I was hurrying and BOY does it show. Panel three rocks my socks, though.
- Tonight the comic for 2/4 will go up. Be strong, Foster! Then tomorrow night, the comic for 2/6 will most likely be another double comic, or at least a six-panel job. Having a March 6th deadline is really making me think hard about how important it is to include certain things; I would actually have preferred to break the 2/6 comic into two separate updates, but I just don't have room in the update schedule.
- Although... considering these are "catch-updates" that are going straight into the archives, I suppose there's really no reason why I couldn't just give part II of the 2/6 comic an official date of 2/7. Hmmmmm.
|Friday, February 13th, 2009|
Hey strredwolf! can you help?
Today's "Scandal Sheet!" comic consists of two images that are supposed to go one above the other, but I'm getting reports from a couple of Scandalistas with high-res monitors that say with enough pixel room, they're displaying side-by-side instead. How can I insert a line-break into the HTML of a finished ComicGenesis page in public_html? Or CAN I? If I can't, can you? Comedy third option?Edited to add:
Never mind, Kelly. I nibbled on it until I came up with a low-tech but stable workaround using a table. The best part is, I can leave that table in place in the template and never think about it again - it won't affect days when there's only a single image, and it will automatically take care of things when I do have to have more than one. Yay me!
DOUBLE comic for 1/28 is up
Last night I finished the comic for Jan. 28, and it turned out to be an eight-panel doozy! (Note:
minor plot spoilers in the bits of business)Ooh, what she said!
- I knew going into drawing this comic that it would be a double, because I wrote out a script for it. What I wasn't prepared for was that it would be this damned wordy even with twice the usual space. I even had to extend a couple of speech bubbles beyond the borders of the frame, which is something I try never to do. Yak yak yak. There's some necessary exposition in there, though, and thank goodness I at least had a character who didn't know any of it so the other one could plausibly tell him while we eavesdrop.
- And now we have a little more insight into Khin'draa and her decision to wait chastely for an on-the-lam sasquatch who almost certainly would never return. I strive always to make my female characters strong women who aren't there just to look sexy or kick their feet and scream so the big strong men can make everything right; they make mistakes, and they can be jealous or foolish (just like the male characters), but I try to do my best not to let them be "dumb ol' girls." How well I succeed, I leave to your judgement.
- Whew! Making an eight-panel comic is a bit more work than my usual four-panel job. I was up past one a.m. finishing this one! Haven't done THAT in a while. I know I told you folks to expect some seriously half-assed artwork while I'm clearing the backlog, and I could have used the same art for probably four or five of the panels and saved myself some time, but when it came time to put pencil to paper, I just couldn't. You guys deserve better.
- Speaking of awesome readers who deserve better, I want to take a moment to thank a couple of Scandalistas who've made donations recently: thank you VERY much to Scandalistas Molly R., Martha W., and especially Walter F. You guys are the best, and I don't deserve such generous readers.
|Thursday, February 12th, 2009|
Comic for 1/26 is up
The comic for Monday, Jan. 26 is now up.hell hath no Fury like a sasquatch scorned
- The strip-a-day streak continues unbroken, although I almost didn't get it done: I left the USB thumb drive that contains my story notes at work, and I had to remind myself what was supposed to happen. Plus, there was a parent meeting at my son's school, and said son is sick and needs cosseting as only a teenager could, and yadda yadda family stuff yadda. One may see the results of the resulting dash to completion in the muddy artwork in panel one.</li>
- I'm trying not to obsess over the artwork right now - clearing the backlog is more important than fussing with hand positions and suchlike - but I find myself returning again and again to look at panel three. It's not bad - far from it, if I do say so myself - but my character design for Khin'draa features a certain sturdiness, and she looks too delicate and feminine in panel three - she's like a furry Marcia Brady. With fangs.
- Depending on how the dialog shakes out, tonight's update (the comic for Jan. 28) will probably be six panels and maybe even eight. We'll see. (I'm inclined to go ahead and make it eight panels... if I ever decide there's enough interest for a print edition of "Scandal Sheet!", six-panel comics would be problematic. Admittedly, worrying about this is a bit like making sure I have a tuxedo for the 2112 Oscars.)
|Wednesday, February 11th, 2009|
Another catch-update went up last night - who knows, by the time I get caught up I might be used to updating every day and just keep right on doing it!Comic for Jan. 23
- Don't worry, the sequoia will not always be just a silhouette on a throne hewn from the living rock - you will get to meet him. I'm looking forward to it, actually.
- For the record, Rahn'dii told Khin'draa about what happened in the Sequoia's throne room - that's how she can tell Max and Foster about something that happened when she wasn't there.
- Someone pointed out that Phil's appearance has changed since his first appearance in the beginning of 2003. WHAT an understatement. I never did any kind of concept sketches for him, so I didn't have a reference to look at other than the previous times he appeared in the strip (which I was usually too lazy to go and look at). Since Phil is an important character but an occasional one, the result was that he would look pretty consistent from strip to strip within a given storyline, but his design would vary wildly from one storyline to the next. He seems to have steadied down now, although I still can't make up my mind whether to give him a pot belly or not.
|Tuesday, February 10th, 2009|
Comic for 1/21 is now up
Comic for 1/21 went up last night. I WILL do this.I'd be shaking his hand
- Now we go into flashback mode for a little bit, to see what happened to Phil when he was summoned before the Sequoia three in-comic weeks ago. I confess I'm curious myself.
- If I can just keep up with once-a-day updates, I'll be caught up well before my March 6th deadline. Wish me luck, because failure is not an option.
- My wife reads "Scandal Sheet!" at work when she gets bored; she commented on Max's new look recently and observed, "You're turning him into you, bit by bit, aren't you?" The answer is, naturally, "of course not." Max has always BEEN me, albeit a younger, more fun me. I have to admit, I do like the hair on him; I'll probably let him go back to shaving his head, though, if only because it's easier to draw.
- I miss Ito.