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Now I HAD seen this page already, but I didn’t take too close a look at the undead soldiers flanking Zezem the Cruel. They’re pretty cool. By the way, this outfit that Zezem is wearing is what passes for “geared up for war.” I was thinking he’d look more like my idea of a war wizard, you know…wear a shirt or something. (Please don’t take this as anything other than tongue in cheek complaining. I think he looks SWEET.)

As I write this, Hunter Black Volume Two is DONE…or at least the script for it is. I think it ultimately clocked in at exactly four hundred pages, which is a bit excessive. (I have no one to blame for that but myself.) With any luck, Volume Three will be a considerably more streamlined affair. I don’t have as many twists and turns that I want to apply to the story, nor as many characters that need introducing. So we’ll see.

So I’m working on the experimental novel again, and I think I just came up with a spec episode of TV that I want to write. With any luck, I’ll be able to write that before the summer is over. Writing, writing, writing. (Working on the novel sounds way more grandiose than what I did, which was write a page of utter BULLSHIT, dump it and then write about half a page of something that I can charitably say isn’t god-awful…but I wouldn’t say I’m proud of it, either. Baby steps.)

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You know, I actually agonized over that snippet of dialogue in Panel Three. Does it break the tension? Does it reveal character? What do I do if both things are true? What is more important? This is probably saying too much, but it came to having faith in the groundwork we’ve laid over the years with this comic, and faith in the audience that’s been here this long.

Speaking of agonizing writing questions that I have to ask myself, I’m dealing with a dilemma right now. A couple of years ago, I decided to experiment with writing a novel in snippets. I would “free-write” one installment a week until it was done. No hardcore pre-planning, no charts or index cards, just a “stream of consciousness” sort of experience for myself. I was going to do one of these writing sessions once or twice a week. I got about four or five weeks in before I reached a weird conclusion.

The novel that I was reading was going to be much better off as a screenplay, and that revelation brought me to a screeching halt. I wasn’t ready to embark on a screenplay, and anyway, writing a screenplay wasn’t the point…so I stopped. (Yes, I’m a wuss sometimes.)

So I’ve reached a point in my writing career where I want to do MORE, and the story that I began with my attempt at novel writing began calling to me, so I went back and reread what I’d written…and upon reading it, it didn’t feel like a screenplay AT ALL. It feels like prose! But I had those feelings for a reason the first time around, and…

…now I’m torn. Well, maybe torn is the wrong word, because I know what I’m going to do. I’m going back to the original plan and writing the damn novel, and if, when I’m done, it must be a screenplay, then I’ll write that, too.

Anyway, I tell all of you this because if you want to offer your two cents about it, I’m going to offer what I’ve been writing up to our Patrons. (So, you have to offer two DOLLARS, not two cents, because that’s all it costs each month to be a Patron.) Feedback will be welcome there.

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Damn it, I had not seen this page yet!!! I don’t know if Will put it off or what, but this has never been available for me to see before (at least not that I’ve noticed). Will did a nice job of showing you what Zezem has got going on, huh? Now, tell me, what sort of an army do you think that is?

I have to say, I’ve been a more productive writer this past week than I have almost the entire seven months I’ve been a restaurant manager. I don’t know what changed, but I’m super glad it did. I feel alive again. I was worried that the death of Prince would put me into a funk that would keep me off of the keyboard, but if anything, it’s been quite the opposite. I’ve been struck by how much time Prince obviously spent playing music, I mean he played over 20 instruments, and I realize that I have to put in those kinds of hours writing if I ever want to be my own kind of royalty.

Hopefully, I’ll have more cool things to share with you later this week!

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Prince was found dead today. Prince is my favorite musical artist, period, paragraph, the end. I’m a bit of a wreck.

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I love the word, “Horde.” All of my buddies from my 20s, the ones with whom I played A LOT of 2e D&D, and I called ourselves the Horde. Was it a bit…self-aggrandizing, maybe? Almost…conceited? Probably, although we certainly spent much of our time together deflating each other’s egos. I had a GREAT time with those guys, and they’ve certainly influenced a great deal of what goes into this comic.

Anyway, as promised, here are some cool pictures of #Squirrel and me at the Grand Canyon and on the road to Sedona. This place was quite literally breath-taking; once we got to the railing at the edge, we had to sit down to recover our breath. If you’ve never seen anything like it, I don’t think you can fathom how…insignificant you might feel. It’s like looking at a starry sky with no other lights to behold, when you can just barely wrap your head around the immensity of the universe. Obviously, the Grand Canyon is a lot smaller than THE UNIVERSE, but you will still get that same, almost disconcerting, feeling of…diminishment?

The thing is, it’s GOOD to be made to feel small in that way, or at least it was for me.

 

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It is rather important to #Squirrel to let you guys know that she had done A LOT of driving before that picture was taken, which is why she looks as tired as she does. And yes, there was some rejecting of other pictures. I, on the other hand, would like you all to know that I definitely need to consider doing something about those sideburns. (#Squirrel wants me to cut the hair all the way around, but I’m just…not prepared to let it go just yet.)

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