Oct 07 2010

Tropery

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When it comes to being an internet persona, Oscar Wilde’s view that “the only thing worse than being talked about, is not being talked about” is the absolute truth. So if, like me, you are an internet persona, at least in your spare time, it’s good to know where you stand. Periodically, as much to “manage the brand” as to feed my hyper-inflated and fragile ego, I search around for what people are saying about my work.

I’m pleased to discover that The Suburban Jungle has a decent, if not huge, page on TVTropes.org, with an up-to-date link and all.

On the other hand, I’m saddened to find that NeverNever is only mentioned at all as an entry on the “Orphaned Series” page. Which, I must admit, is a fair cop for the most part, but still a poke in the ego.

Brigid and Greg have a nod on what appears to be a draft page called “Will and Grace Are Like Brother and Sister”, which tickles me. :)

The new comic will have plenty of tropes ready-to-go; you can probably guess a few just by looking at the heroes! What can I say, tropes are fun to play with. ;)

-The Gneech

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Sep 30 2010

Hurrah for Networking!

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Well! Pursuant to yesterday’s post about printer costs, some reader and fellow self-publishing types have pointed me at some other printing options that I hadn’t yet found, and they’re looking promising. Assuming one of these works out, that should allow me to do Attack of the War-Cats for somewhere in the $15-$20 range, much more reasonable!

Jury’s still out on No Predation Allowed — I may end up having to do that in multiple volumes in order to keep the price feasible. But that’s one I am particularly anxious to have in full color if possible!

-The Gneech

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Sep 29 2010

Attack of the War-Cats — In Color!

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Well that was fast! In just two nights of work, I have the initial layouts for Attack of the War-Cats complete!

Attack of the War-Cats page layouts

Including the 9 pages that Sue is currently working on with a view towards starting on the web November 1st, and a six-page bonus story (“Thunder’s Last Stand”) drawn by our usual colormiester Richard Wyatt, it comes to a healthy 74 pages in the same double-height format we’re using for the second edition of Childproof the Unicorns.

The big question of AoWC, however, is color. Going with b/w throughout, we’re looking at a retail price somewhere around $12-$15 a book. Color, on the other hand, cranks the retail price up into the $33-$38 range, which is not a bad price for 230+ strips, but definitely tends to push it back a bit from the impulse buyer.

I’m curious to hear how readers feel: if you’re inclined to pick up a copy of Attack of the War-Cats, would full color be worth the higher price to you?

-The Gneech

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Sep 16 2010

Layout Begins!

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Tonight I finished converting the comics for Childproof the Unicorns (Second Edition) and began doing the actual layout, using an inDesign template kindly provided to me by John Lotshaw that he uses for Kevin and Kell books.

My first discovery: apparently my NN strips are (or were) wider and shorter than K&K strips. I’m definitely going to need to tweak this layout. Four strips per page, perhaps?

My second discovery: inDesign appears to be made of stupid. I used to loooooove PageMaker, back when I was a graphic designer! How the mighty have fallen.

My third discovery: I don’t have that font any more. Or that one, or that one. What the heck happened to all of my fonts? And what were they named, again?

Still! Progress! My new goal: start taking pre-orders by November 1st in order to deliver by Christmas. Will I make it? I don’t know yet! Will anybody buy? I don’t know that, either, but I’m hoping…

-The Gneech

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Sep 13 2010

Productive Weekends are Awesome Weekends

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And what a weekend it was! Saturday was spent mostly at InterventionCon, which was small but fierce, as they say. Although the entirety of it could fit into one room at Dragon*Con, it was well run and had a lot of interesting stuff packed into such a small space. I got some cool Photoshop tips from “Hawk” of AppleGeeks and the “revenue streams” panel helped me firm up some ideas for the new comic.

Speaking of the new comic, I finished a logo and general website design for that over the weekend as well; with the writing I got done on it last week, practically all that’s left is actually starting to draw the thing, which will probably start happening later this month, in between working on the various books. Currently it’s well on track for its intended launch in “early 2011.” I don’t know if it’ll be ready by Further Confusion or not, but I can safely say that it will be ready for Confuzzled.

Hey, did I mention that I’m “Guest of Honour” for Confuzzled? Did I mention how blown away by the sheer awesomeness of that I am? Dude. In another country. I win at life! :D

*ahem* Sorry. What was I saying?

Oh yeah, the productive weekend. :) Well, today I had been thinking of going back to InterventionCon, but in the end I decided that it would be a better use of time overall to actually work on the comics. My buddy Sirfox came over and he, Mrs. Gneech, and I grabbed some pizza and generally did the whole “art jam” thing; I sketched up some drafts of a comic adaptation of an Emerald Rose song that I’m hoping to put into Attack of the War-Cats, as well almost-finishing storyboards for a six-page bonus story in same, titled “Thunder’s Last Stand.” (We all know that Colonel Thunder is an amazing hero — but now for the first time we hear the story of how he got that way!)

Oh! I also just got in edits for “Blackbird Singing In the Dead of Night (From the Casebooks of Squash and Stretch, Private Investigators),” which has officially been accepted for the third volume of the ROAR Anthology series.

Last but not least, the weather finally broke. So yeah, it was a good weekend. :) Thanks, world! I’ll see you in the morning.

-The Gneech

PS: Oh, and hey, the Redskins won! How about that last-second ending, eh?

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Aug 29 2010

Status Report — Another Productive Weekend!

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I do so love being productive! I don’t know what it was that broke the creative logjam I’ve been suffering from for the past several months, but it’s made me a much happier Gneech in any case. And I’ve gotten a lot done this weekend!

The strip conversion for Childproof the Unicorns is at almost exactly the 50% mark. It would have been farther along, but some of my decade-plus old files were not readily accessible and I had not only to find the CDs they were on, then use IsoBuster to make the CD readable again, but then discovered they’d been saved as flattened .tifs (for some reason knowable only to 10-years-ago me) and had to have the text typed in again. Fortunately, it only seems to have been a few of them, so it won’t throw a giant spanner in the works.

That’s not all, tho. This weekend I also did up roughs for the cover of Attack of the War-Cats and sent that off to Sue, decided on the title for my new comic, registered some website URLs and did some major character development sketches, and of course did a lot of the prep work for going to Dragon*Con next weekend. I’m all energized now — if it weren’t for the fact that I have to be at work in the a.m., I could happily keep chugging away for at least another couple of hours. But that would mean a Monday of dragging at work, which would in turn leave me totally unproductive tomorrow night, so I have to break it off and go get some sleep for the greater good.

So! Lots of cool stuff. :) I said back in January that 2010 was going to be an exciting year, and tho it’s taken a little longer to get rolling than I expected, it’s still turning out to be true!

-The Gneech

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