Mar 31 2014

Commissions and Workload

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If my records are correct, I still owe two people commissions from January; I can only apologize, offer an explanation, and let you know my current plans.

In November of 2012, my mother had a stroke while in the hospital for treatment of pneumonia. In the time since then, my sister, my wife, and I have been spending increasing amounts of our time tending to my mother’s health and affairs, first taking care of her at my sister’s home, then transitioning her to an assisted living situation and selling her house. And while my mother’s personality was altered by the stroke and her mobility was noticeably limited, she was until recently doing relatively well.

All of that changed in December, when my mother took a nasty fall and went into the hospital again. Although she initially seemed recovered from that and was fine at Christmas (except for a nasty bruise on her face), she had some bleeding on the brain that we were not aware of at the time. In late January, she fell again, and it was a fall she did not recover from. During the month of February, she was in a rehab center, where she eventually simply stopped eating and would not willingly take care of herself– and the staff of the rehab place would not push her. Laurie, my sister, and I did what we could to mitigate the situation, but Mom’s doctors were frustratingly unhelpful despite my sister’s best efforts and Laurie and I were up to our elbows in settling Mom’s house in order to make sure her assisted living stay would be paid for.

By the time we got Mom back to her home at the assisted living facility, she had lost too much weight, and her body began to shut down. For a few days it seemed like she might perk up, but it was like once she was back in her own room and knew her affairs were settled, her body just let go. She passed away in the early hours of last Tuesday, and her funeral was this past Friday.

I didn’t post about this much while it was going on, for various reasons. First, it seemed to happen so fast, and while we were in the middle of it all there was no way to know what was going to happen. Second, for the past several years, it seems my online persona has been a never-ending series of these situations, starting with my father and going on from there, and I simply didn’t want to subject my readers to any more. (And there’s no denying, my life has been a bumpy ride since 2007 or so. But after a while, even tragedy becomes “normal” if it never relents.) Finally, well, what free time I did have, I wanted to devote to doing productive things. My writing and art have to some extent a shield I’ve used to keep myself focused and running. (“Can’t spend the day screaming at Kaiser Permanente, I’ve got NaNoWriMo to do!”)

But this is why my January commissions in particular got stalled. Since January, my full-time job has pretty much been taking care of my mom or her affairs, and everything else has fallen increasingly by the wayside. I am amazed (and glad) that I’ve managed to actually launch Suburban Jungle and not miss any updates during all this– faltering right out of the starter gate would have been painful for everyone.

Of course, now my mom’s estate has to be settled, but compared to the day-to-day workload of caring for her, that seems a relatively easy task. So now I can turn my attention back to what is supposed to be my day job: writing and comics. So here is my plan:

The first half of April will be spent rebuilding the Suburban Jungle buffer by finishing off the first issue so it can be in print by AnthroCon. During the third week of April or when the first issue is done (whichever comes first) I will turn my exclusive attention to finishing off my outstanding commissions and getting rewards out to my Patreon subscribers. Laurie and I will also be at AwesomeCon in Washington D.C. April 19-20, but purely as attendees, I won’t have a table.

Where things go from there depends on how this plan works out. ;) But as I’ve said before and I will surely say again, I am very grateful for everyone’s patience and wish to assure you that you will get your commissions as soon as I can make it happen. I haven’t forgotten!

-The Gneech

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Mar 13 2014

Find Me at Fur the ‘More!

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As gathered by my better half in The Suburban Jungle Livejournal Community, here’s my schedule at Fur the ‘More, but in a little more detail.

Items in bold indicate that I am a panelist. The rest I simply plan (or hope) to attend.

Friday, March 14, 2014

12 PM Opening Ceremonies: Main Events
1 PM Furry Writing for Landlubbers: Panels 2
2:30 PM Guest of Honor Q&A: Main Events

4:30 PM Furry Feud: Main Events
7:30 PM Dealer’s Reception: Cinnamon Tree Restaurant
8:30 PM Penciling 101: Panels 3

10 PM Selections from Poe: Panels 1

Saturday, March 15, 2014

12 AM Cards Against Humanity: Tabletop Gaming
12 PM Fursuit Parade: Main Events
1 PM Creating a Cast of Characters: Panels 2
2 PM Dance Competition Setup: Main Events
3 PM Fur the ‘More’s Fursuit Dance Competition: Main Events
6:30 PM Guest of Honor Dinner: Cinnamon Tree Restaurant

10 PM Fursuit Friendly Dance: Main Events

Sunday, March 16, 2014

10 AM Furry Writing for Captain Ninja Masters: Panels 2
12 PM Making Mary Sue Walk the Plank
1 PM Working as an Artist (Without Going Insane): Panels 2
2 PM Writing Good Villains: Panels 2
4 PM Art Show Auction: Main Events
5 PM Charity Auction: Main Events
6:30 PM Closing Ceremonies: Main Events
7 PM Feedback Session

At the table I will have “Rough House: Issue Zero” preview comics for $1 each, plus all of the usual books, prints, and on-the-spot sketches. I recommend, if you want art, you grab me early, because with my schedule as it is, I expect to fill up fast.

See you tomorrow! ^.^

-The Gneech

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Mar 10 2014

Monday Report: Cons, Patreons, and … Something Else-ons

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Last week was pretty darn huge, actually, but I didn’t have time to post about it except in the most cursory way, so let’s write up a full report, shall we?

Rough Housing

The obvious biggie is that Suburban Jungle (Rough Housing) is up and running! We’ve also got a shiny new forum thanks to everyone at Crosstime CafĂ©. The story runs on Mondays and Wednesdays, with a quarterly print release (the first full issue should be at AnthroCon)– and thanks to my Patreon supporters, there will be extra content in the form of an “Ask the Cast” page on the last Friday of every month.

“What Patreon?” You Ask? Funny You Should Mention It!

With a little prodding from Graveyard Greg, Maggie Hogarth, and others, I created a Patreon page, and so far it’s been a huge success, for which I’m very grateful! Someone even took a “Commission on Demand” slot, which I didn’t actually expect anyone would. :) Good thing I put a limit on those!

The Patreon program has already reached two of its goals, the Ask the Cast page and funding a new compy to replace this dying PC. The next one is the biggie– funding another comic project that a pal of mine would like to collaborate on but that I just can’t afford to do unless it’s a paying gig. He’s trying to raise the funds on his end, but I told him that if I got funded, I’d do the comic without charging him.

So we’ll see if it happens! Please consider adding your support if you’d like to see more comics from your ever-lovin’ blue-eyed cartoonist. :)

And, Of Course, FurTheMore!

Come Friday, I will be in Baltimore as one of the Guests of Honor for FurTheMore– SO jazzed! I’ll have “Issue Zero” preview comics c/o the good folks at FurPlanet, I’ll be running panels, it’s gonna be awesome. :)

So, yeah… big week! I’m very pleased.

Oh, and did I mention I drew Rarity? ‘cos I totally drew Rarity. Such a lovely pony! <3

Anyhow, that’s it for now! I need to get back to work. Those pages won’t ink and color themselves! …darn it.

-The Gneech

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Jan 27 2014

Charity and Langley FurTheMore Portrait

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Charity and Langley FurTheMore Portrait by the-gneech on deviantART

The good folks at FurTheMore.org asked me to do an image that could go into the middle of “a dollar bill,” so I figured I’d go ahead and use it as a chance to stealth-promote the new comic. ;) So here are Langley and Charity, as ninja and pirate, respectively, in yet another standoff.

-The Gneech

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Jan 09 2014

Partnering Up with FurPlanet!

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Here’s a cool bit of news on the business end of things! The awesome folk over at FurPlanet have taken on the publication duties for a new edition of No Predation Allowed: Ten Years of The Suburban Jungle! Sayeth Teiran: “[We're] long term fans, and we’re very happy to be able to help keep your comics in circulation.” At that link you can also grab Roar Vol. 3, which contains the Squash and Stretch whodunnit, “Blackbird Singing the Dead of Night.”

As you might imagine, I’m both pleased and deeply honored by this! Thanks, FurPlanet!

The new edition is mostly the same as the first edition, with a few small errors ironed out, particularly in Volume One. I have a small number of first editions left, which I’ll probably be taking to Fur The ‘More in March.

So. Awesome. /)^3^(\

-The Gneech

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Dec 27 2013

GneCoDraMo

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Well, as November’s NaNoWriMo was so successful, I’m going to try it again in January, only instead of writing a 50,000 word book, the goal is to draw a 24-page comic.

Well, sort of.

As you can probably gather from the art posts I’ve been doing, I have an idea for a Suburban Jungle followup comic which I’ve been noodling around with for a little while now. And since the most likely way for me to actually get something done seems to be to set an aggressive deadline, I’ve given myself the goal of debuting the comic at FurTheMore, which is in mid-March. That means I need to have lead time in February for the printing, which in turn means that to reach my goal, I’ve got to draw the comic in January.

That’s… a lot of drawing. O.o

To be honest, I have no idea if I have even a chance of succeeding, but I’m going to try my best. And even if I can’t pull it off, it will at least put me into a good position to have the comic ready to go for AnthroCon at the very least.

If you have a commission in the queue for January, I will be making those a priority and you will still get it within the three-week period. I will be working on one of those later today, in fact.

Wish me luck with Gneech Comics Drawing Month (GneCoDraMo)! ;)

-The Gneech

PS: In case you’re wondering whatever happened to my NaNoWriMo novel, it’s currently simmering on the back burner, along with the next novel in my queue. Both of them should get more attention once this comic is in the tin.

PPS: To answer what appears to be pretty much everybody’s question (“Will Leona/Drezzer/Raggum Da Frog be in the new comic?”), the answer is that it is a whole new cast. Only one of the original SJ characters is scheduled to make a direct appearance at this time, and that’s a few issues in. Everyone from the original comic is still alive and kicking, so it is conceivable that any of them could show up, but that’ll only happen if they have some part to play in the new cast’s story.

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