The webcomics blog about webcomics

Looks Like It’s Booksday At Fleen

Item the First
I got an email request for my mailing address about a week and a half ago; throwing caution to the wind (it’s not that I mind the occasional flaming bag of poop in the mailbox, but I hate it when they come postage due), I supplied it. As a result, many thanks to Chris Hallbeck, who gifted me with a copy of The Book of Biff #3: Fresh Toast, which is notable for two things:

  1. Eyebrows! I’m in stark disagreement with Brad Guigar here, who finds them distracting; I’m impressed by how expressive those unholy antennae are on Biff. But since you want to see Biff with the eyebrows gone — check it, Brad.
  2. Dittos! Okay, a bunch of you are too young to remember the ditto, which was an earlier form of paper reproduction much used by schools in my youth. The pages used a wet transfer system with a fluid that was heavy on alcohols and volatile chemicals with a distinctive smell.

    If you got one of those faintly purple sheets and it was still damp, you’d sniff it for the lamest, most low-rent high in all of history. The inks used in TBOB#3:FT must have been formulated in an old ditto spirit distillery, ’cause they brought back memories of pop quizzes, #2 pencils, and filmstrips.

So it’s fair to say that TBOB#3:FT had a significant, visceral impact on me, right from the opening pages. I can’t guarantee that your copy will flash you back to a bored and misspent youth, but it’s worth a shot.

Item the Second
The lads at Unshelved have revealed the winners of the 2008 Pimp My Bookcart contest, and the top winners (out of … it looks like nearly 100 entries) are really amazing.

That foodcart looks just like the real thing (although hopefully it lacks the taxi exhaust, caked-on grease, and unkillable mutant strains of pathogens resulting from untold generations of evolution). The fire engine looks better equipped to handle structure fires than some real apparatus I’ve been around. And the Dr Suess model down the page is both delightfully loopy, complete with a cute ‘n’ cheerful librarian driving it¹.

Item the Third
Zuda got a great deal of attention from me in the time between announcement and launch; my views on the service are pretty well-known, and I haven’t spent many brain cycles on it since then (mostly because the viewer is a nightmare of bad interface design, memory bloat, and severely lack the ability to play nice with my browser of choice).

However, I’ve heard nothing but good about several of the stories that have come out of Zuda, and now some of them are getting the dead-tree treatment. Look for High Moon and Bayou to hit the stores in 2009, and let’s hope that they’re such big sellers that the 1% royalty the creators get actually adds up to real money.

¹ Purchasers of this model are advised that they must supply their own cute ‘n’ cheerful librarian.

Hmm… maybe I can use these flashback inducing vapors in some sort of new marketing strategy. :)

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