The webcomics blog about webcomics


Okay, it’s been a while since my daily drive-by of Graphic Smash showed any new updates to anything I had a habit of reading there, but habits, y’know? Today’s page is a bit unexpected, particularly considering the date shown. Odd. Reached for comment, Joey Manley said:

I’m sad to see it go, but it was time. It hadn’t been an active publication in years. Note that Modern Tales and serializer also went down at the same time, and Girlamatic will be doing so. Webcomics continues to thrive as a medium, but the age of the collective (especially the subscription-based collective) is behind us. For my part, E-Line is moving on to a new, very ambitious comics projects. It’s the end of an era but not the end of the world.

Longtime readers may recall previous reports of Manley’s ideas for projects with E-Line stretching back a number of years, but not much in the past — yeesh — four years or so. At this point it may be that anybody making plans for ambitious comics-related projects whose company name doesn’t rhyme with -opatoco is going to have to run hell of fast to catch up to the current leaders. However, in line with blog policy, we at Fleen remain cautiously optimistic that we’ll see some of Manley’s ideas produce something interesting in the near- to medium-term.

Where you get those ideas, of course, is a matter of some divergent theories. One school of thought holds that ideas are retrieved from perverse depths with arcane, disturbing tools¹. Others believe ideas are plentiful on the ground and ripe for the taking. Ryan Estrada has long been part of the latter camp, but he’s got a new twist.

In brief, he’s taken a script that he’s decided that he won’t ever have time to properly develop and shared it with the world, just to see what others might do with it. Ahuizotl, as it’s called, is released under a Creative Commons license that requires nothing but attribution; if you turn it into a million dollars, you just won the metaphorical lottery. Even more exciting:

If this works out, and someone makes something cool with it, maybe I’ll release more!

Let’s clarify that: making use of free ideas is what’s going to prompt Estrada to release more free ideas. I can think of nothing more exciting than others jumping in on this concept and turning Estrada’s initial offering into the ideas equivalent of a take-a-penny-leave-a-penny dish at the cash register of the webcomics Kwik-E-Mart.

¹ In case you can’t see what Maura’s saying that so disturbs Library Anne, it is:

Let’s just say Vaseline, a frozen kielbasa and some cold medication are involved.

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