The webcomics blog about webcomics

Birthdayapalooza

  • Every year, I resolve to remember the cluster of webcomicker birthdays that occurs at the end of May; since I’m already well into the missed the start and try to remember next year, bozo phase, I’ll point out that today is the co-birthday of Raina Telgemeier and Dave Roman, as if they could be any more adorable together. Additionally, it is Becky Dreistadt’s birthday, yesterday was Holly Rowland’s, and about three-four days back was Jeffrey Rowland’s¹.

    So happy [recent, in some cases] births-day, Jeffrey, Holly, Raina, Dave, and Becky! You are all awesome people.

  • Speaking of birthdays, I think I’ve got the upcoming birthdays of my youngest niece and nephew covered; I received over the weekend my copies (one to keep, one to give away) of Evan Dahm’s² Wonderful Wizard of Oz adaptation, and with any luck the next couple of weeks will bring my copies (one to keep, one to give away) of Zach Weinersmith and Boulet’s³ Augie and the Green Knight.

    Here is my question: given those two books, which would you give to the younger sister, and which to the older brother? I’m leaning towards Oz for the older brother (as he’s just about old enough to read it for himself) and Augie for the younger sister (as she’d need either one read to her, and Augie’s such a kick-ass hero and it’s never too early to start that habit in nieces).

    I imagine that they’ll both end up reading (or having read to them) both books, I’m just wondering if anybody out there who’s maybe read the PDF backer copy of Augie or Oz has a definite idea of age ranges. Help me out, peoples, and make a couple of little kid birthdays happier.


Spam of the day:

Shed 25lbs of bellyfat for bikini season,

You really sent this to the wrong person; to get rid of 25 pounds from my abdomen, you’d have to remove at least four major organs.

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¹ Not so weird that such a cluster occurred; at one point in the past, there were three separate people (me being one of them) on my EMS agency with the same birthday; it’s just a matter of time until you get these coincidences and duplications.

Heck, some day I’m going to start a business with another Gary Tyrrell just so we can confuse people that call up the main phone line. Can I speak to Gary Tyrrell? Which one? The one that went to nerd school. Which one? The one that likes beer. Which one? The one that pronounces his last name like “Ferrell”. Which one? The trombone guy? Please hold for Mr Tyrrell.

² Who, by the by, yesterday started rerunning his seminal series Rice Boy with commentary over at Tumblr. Read it again for the first time!

³ Who, by the by, will be having his French-language books released in English, starting next April and continuing for the next half-dozen years or so. Goo news for those of us who can’t get enough Boulet.

To Do This Holiday Weekend

I'm impressed they kept the price point constant despite going to color for the tail end of the book.

I’ve been waiting for my copy of Skin Horse volume 5 for ages now¹, which I should note is not the same thing as being late. Ms Garrity and Mr Wells wisely put plenty of time for fulfillment into their crowdfunding plan, and the book which was due in May 2015² arrived yesterday, on time and as promised. I love that phrase, about as much as I love checking the box on my Kickstarter Backed Projects page that says Got it! By the way, of the 40 projects I’ve backed with delivery dates not in the future, this makes six that are late³, which is a pretty damn good record as far as Kickstarts go.

I’m particularly happy to receive this book because while Skin Horse is one of those comics that I read daily (indeed, I’m grumpy if I don’t get to read it daily for some reason), I get much more out of it in big chunks; receiving the new book means I get to read two full story arcs in one sitting, and given the way the story is resolving at present, volume 5 ends on the record scratch that marks the big reveal at the end of the second act of the overall story. That means that I probably won’t get more than seven or eight books in the full story and that makes me sad — but then again, I was sad when Narbonic ended and now I have faith that whatever Garrity and/or Wells do next (jointly and severally, as the lawyers say), it’ll be well worth my time.

Okay, Monday’s a holiday in the States; I expect I’ll have something to say about the NCS division awards (I don’t get a vote, but I’m very happy to see Danielle Corsetto and Minna Sundberg in their respective categories and am rooting for them), but otherwise you likely won’t miss much if you don’t come back until Tuesday. Have a good weekend, everybody!


Spam of the day:

Hi my name is Olivie and I just wanted to drop you a quick note here instead of calling you.

Feel free to try to call me, but understand two things:

  1. I answer the house phone, which lacks caller ID, with a cheery Ahoy-hoy! which weirds most people out.
  2. I will string out cold-calling telemarketers like yourself as long as possible, figuring that while none of you scamming bastards will ever stop calling (given that you’re already ignoring the Do Not Call list), I can at least cost you money by wasting your time at least as much as you’re wasting mine.

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¹ The first rule of Webcomickers Having Kids is it puts a crimp the schedules of my entertainment (both free and paid), and thus is to be discouraged. The world, alas, must be peopled, so they get a pass for now.

² Also due this month: Evan Dahm’s Wonderful Wizard of Oz adaptation, for which I have tracking info that indicates it is presently on a truck in my geographical vicinity. I’ma call that one fulfilled on time as well.

³ One of which is moderately late, and I believe affected by West Coast dockworkers strikes; three are about a year overdue, two for reasons out of control of the creators; the last two are more than two years late, one of which I expect to see in the next couple of months and one of which I’ve mentally written off. Oh, and there were some on other platforms, but mostly it’s Kickstarter for me.

Back Into The Swing Of Things

Hey, everybody! ‘Dja miss me? It’s going to take a day or two to get fully back into the swing of things, so today is mostly about me getting caught up on things that happened while I was gone.

  • Going furthest back you may or may not have noticed that Jillian Tamaki did an interview with The AV Club about SuperMutant Magic Academy, This One Summer¹, her episodes of Adventure Time, and more. It’s a great conversation and I recommend it to you if you hadn’t seen it before.
  • Howard Tayler² has been running a fairly massive Kickstart for an RPG to be set in his Schlockiverse for the past month or so; the management of expectations and stretch goal announcements have done well to make the traditional last-week bump in backers and pledges into more of a last fortnight, as well as causing that rarest of things on the Long Tail: an uptick in funding predictions.

    As I write this line, the Planet Mercenary campaign will be wrapping up in about five minutes, somewhere in the vicinity of US$350,000 (or 777% of goal)³. For reference, the Fleen Funding Formula Mark 2 would have predicted a whopping US$206K — US$309K which he’s handily exceeded. Well done, Tayler and partners, and enjoy the massive pile of creative output that you’ll be engaging in for the next year or so.

  • Speaking of Kickstarts, Spike Trotman launched her latest on Friday; as mentioned in the before times, she continues to alternate anthology topics, with a Smut Peddler followed by a specific genre, followed by more porn, and then another genre. It’s Sci Fi’s turn, and New World (specifically dealing with the topic of cultures coming into contact/conflict) is off to a rousing start.

    From launch on Friday to nowish, it’s reached 102% of the US$20,000 goal, meaning we’re now into the Iron Circus Comics Overfunding Bonus Plan: every contributor (or contributor team) just earned a US$50 bonus on top of the page rate they’re already been paid with another US$50 for each additional US$5000 on the campaign. For references, the bonuses paid for Smut Peddler 2012, The Sleep of Reason, and Smut Peddler 2014 were US$650, US$300, and US$1700 (!), respectively.

    In any event, four weeks left to make Spike write as large a check as possible to her incredibly skilled list of contributors; given the FFFmk2 prediction of somewhere between US$55K and US$83K, would be on the order of US$400 to US$650 a pop (which would be in line with the bonuses pad for TSOR and further proving the point that porn is innately more popular than anything else). This is why people want to work on Spike’s books — she pays, then she pays more.

  • Finally, Zubday — that regularly-occurring holiday that happens every Wednesday when there’s a new Jim Zub comic (or two, or more) on the stands — comes early this week. That’s because today is Zubday Prime, aka Zub’s birthday. Early reports are that Zub is spending the day much like any other: planning to take over the world writing and editing and merchandising and designing and generally making comics. In other words, a good day. Happy Zubday, everybody.

Spam of the day:

send 10,000 blog comments Fee just $ 100
send 100,000 blog comments Fee just $ 800
send 200,000 blog comments Fee just $ 1200

Yes, please, let me give you money to make the percentage of my life spent on crap comment pruning even greater than it already is.

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¹ Which — goodness! — is a year old now. Time sure does fly.

² My evil twin, etc.

³ Actual total: 5,312 backers for a total of US$348,641, or 775% of a US$45,000 goal.

Submitted [Almost] Without Comment

I believe that I am well on record that Raina Telgemeier is the most important person working in comics today, and if the industry wants to really grow they should be watching everything she does and emulating it. I thought she’d reached a pinnacle when she had three books on the New York Times Bestseller List, then specifically the top three slots on the list¹.

Pfft, old news.

As her publisher, Scholastic, noted via tweet earlier today, Telgemeier has added the first of the reissued-in-color Baby-Sitters Club books to the list, meaning she now owns the top four positions all by her lonesome².

I am through being astonished, and will no longer be surprised at anything Telgemeier manages to pull off.

If I remember a-right, the BSC books are being re-released at six month intervals, which should mean that we’re never more than half a year from something new with Raina’s name on the cover between now and her next original graphic novel in 2017. Could the entire four-book BSC stay on the list along with the other three? To be (inevitably) joined by that next OGN? Could we actually see between five and eight Raina Telgemeier titles hogging the NYTBSL, to the point where — in order to maintain any relevance — it’s repurposed as a list of the best selling paperback graphic novels specifically not by Raina Telgemeier? No bets, my friends, no bets.

Fleen congratulates Telgemeier and reminds an industry that lurches spasmodically from line-wide-crossover-that-changes-everything to line-wide-crossover-that-re-changes-everything: this woman is single-handedly eating your lunch, half of your dinner, and is in the process of repossessing your coffee machine and all the good snacks. Adapt or die.


Reminder: Next week is my internet hiatus. I’ll be back online and posting again on the 18th.

Spam of the day:

Yes! Finally something about Michael Kors.

Weirdly, although I have mentioned His Orangeness several times over Fleen’s history, including once within the past two weeks, this particular spam was left on a post that didn’t mention Kors at all. Feel free to insert a paraphrase of Kirk telling Khan that he keeps … missing … the target.

¹ Since then, the order has been shifting back and forth, but Smile, Drama, and Sisters have been holding strong.

² Rest of the list? Cece Bell (El Deafo), Victoria Jamieson (Roller Girl), G Willow Wilson (the second Ms Marvel collection), and Jillian Tamaki (Supermutant Magic Academy), all aimed squarely at girls. Only two books could be said to be “traditional” comics — the fourth Saga collection and a resurgence of the nearly 30 year old Dark Knight Returns, probably because they just announced Miller would be doing a second sequel. Figure it won’t be off the list in a week.

A Wonderful, Awful Idea

I believe that I mentioned recently that David Morgan-Mar (PhD, LEGO®©™etc and semi-pro Mr Bean impersonator) very kindly offered me my choice of original strips from Planet of Hats and how I chose the ur-“Planet Of” episode of old-school Trek: Patterns Of Force, aka Planet Of The Nazis. Well, my friends, that strip successfully wended its way from distant ‘Straya to deepest New Jersey, and I have learned a few things:

  • Morgan-Mar works at a fairly standard size — the four-row, twelve-panel strip took up two sheets of drawing paper, approximately letter/A4 size.
  • Morgan-Mar does not screw around when it comes to protecting art — the two sheets of art paper were sandwiched in two sheets of plain paper, which in turn were sandwiched in what appears to be the carefully-excised cardstock-and-vinyl covers of a three-ring binder, which package was bound up by five strips of duct tape. The end times could come and that artwork would have survived all the vagaries of Armageddon.
  • I’ll share a visual once the original strip runs so as not to steal Morgan-Mar’s thunder; today’s update at Planet of Hats is Return to Tomorrow, which means Patterns of Force is next. However, Morgan-Mar also announced today that he’s skipping next week as he’ll be on vacation, so it’ll be another week.

All of which leads to one inevitable conclusion: Morgan-Mar will be away next week and I now know his home address. The opportunities for mischief boggle the mind!

I think the best would be if I broke into his house and photographed myself covered in all his LEGO bricks, American Beauty style. The fact that he also knows my home address doesn’t really bother me since the only thing here to photograph himself covered with is one very lazy greyhound.

While I’m making my way Down Under on my errand of chaos, here’s what everybody else in webcomics will be doing:

  • Approximately half of them will be going to TCAF, where the fun at the Toronto Reference Library starts on Saturday, but where comic-related events are already happening around town. The other half of webcomics will be there next year; they have to alternate because the TRL can only contain so many awesome folks at once.
  • Brad Guigar¹, it’s been previously established, will be spending the weekend at his home-town Megan Fox Tits Wolverine show, where he hope that people will not be confused by the proximity of his booth and that of Mr Burt Reynolds. Brad’s prepared a little guide to help you keep them straight.
  • Those few who won’t be at TCAF this year, planning on being at TCAF next year, or trying to tell the difference between one of the sexiest men in American history and Burt Reynolds will be checking out some numbers: there are Kickstarts for Oh Joy Sex Toy and A Softer World to consider², both of which are well on their way to meeting or exceeding the previous (successful) Kickstarts for each creator team, respectively.

    A final bit of math: what are the odds that Erika Moen & Matthew Nolan could get Emily Horne & Joey Comeau to do one last ASW next year as an OJST guest comic? That would be the very, very best, but I put it at maybe one in seven. Or, for the ultimate guest strip, make sure there’s some LEGO models in the photos, and whatever kind of sexy business is happening in the main field of vision? Over to the side is laughing Brad Guigar, approving of the hijinks all you wacky kids are getting up to. I’ll put that at one in several million, but I can dream, can’t I?


Spam of the day:

Personalised Hollywood Walk Of Fame Star comes already framed.

Unless it comes with an original horned Grinch on the back side, I ain’t interested.

_______________
¹ Rebel, loner, heartbreaker.

² They each funded out in less than a day and meet the criteria for Fleen Funding Formula predictions (>= 200 backers in that first 24 hours), so let’s call it US$84K to US$126K for OJST and US$136K to US$204K for ASW.

It’s Amazing How Fast A Year Can Go By

Because it was more or less a year ago (okay, a year less about 17 days) that Erika Moen and Matthew Nolan launched the Kickstart for the first volume of Oh Joy, Sex Toy, which (above and beyond its financial success) was notable for a couple of reasons:

Which is to say The Hurricane and Matt¹ are good ‘uns, and their success well-earned.

And wouldn’t you know it, it’s time for a new, larger, second volume of OJST, with the campaign over here jsut past the one hour mark (and pushing 15% of goal) as I type this. From the project description, Moen & Nolan are plowing some of the money they made on the last book back into this book, so they’re in the slightly precarious position that if they just make goal, they’ll actually be out a chunk o’ change, so let’s not let that happen. They’re running simple on this campaign, with essentially no stretch goals — simple means you get your Big Book of Happy Educational Smut faster, and they’ve already locked in those higher page rates thanks to last year’s campaign. Plus you’ve got seventeen guest contributors, along with some brand new comics and essays.


Quick side note: Fleen will be going dark next week. There’s a family wedding coming up with lots of events planned and while that will only be a couple of days, it occurred to me that I haven’t been seriously offline in maybe 20 years (certainly not in the nearly 10 years I’ve been writing here) and I’m gonna do it. Oh, sure, I’ve taken time off before in exigent circumstances, but I was reachable; I intend to be as off-grid as I can manage this time around. Emails will pile up, comics will go unread, entire subcultures centered around Twitter shitfights will be born, rise to prominence, and fade away before I come back to you on the 18th. So if you’ve got something going on next week, now would be a good time to let me (that would be gary) know (at this website, known as fleen, which is a dot-com) ’cause come the weekend, I’m going cold turkey for a week.

Maybe. We’ll see how the withdrawal symptoms are.

Spam of the day:

Changing your Facebook status from “In a relationship” to “Single” is a childish involving “sending a message” in the partner since got angry at your sweetheart. Even though this immature act is a lot more often done by girls involving anger from the moment, in order to make a little impact on you, really are millions some men that I’ve noticed attempt that too.

I’m not on Facebook so I have no idea what you’re whining about, but I’m sure it’s super important.

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¹ That sounds sorta like a Saturday morning cartoon, doesn’t it?

One Door Closes, Another Opens

  • So applications for TopatoCon have closed, but they just opened for MICE, which is a show I keep hearing more and more good about. If you think you could arrange to be in Cambridge, MA¹ — across the river from the somewhat better-known Boston² — in the middle of October, this may be something you want to look into.
  • Yeah, I know — you’re waiting until the overeager crowds have quieted down before seeing the new Avengers³, you already binged on Daredevil, and have no idea what to watch that’s comics-themed this weekend. Might I recommend STRIPPED, which has joined Netflix and is now available for convenient in-home streaming?
  • So I got my copy of Cuttings in the mail yesterday, and it is expectedly gorgeous inside, but in and among the anticipated delights are some things that surprised me. One thing, however, surprised me more than anything else — more than the variety of styles and genres that Yuko Ota and Ananth Hirsh can work in, more than the amount of money I want to give them to see some of their as-yet-unrealized stories, more than the fact that when a wrist injury sidelined Ota’s right hand, she started drawing her comics with her left and quickly achieved mastery with it.

    And that thing is that Ota can not only draw better with her non-dominant hand than most people will ever draw period, but that there is a page included where she does gesture drawing with her right and left hands simultaneously. What the hell. You should buy all their stuff because anybody that can do that deserves your money.


Spam of the day:

Have you ever thought about creating an ebook or guest authoring on other sites? I have a blog based upon on the same topics you discuss and would love to have you share some stories/information.

You’ve linked to eyelash enhancers, and as I am widely reputed to have the best eyelashes in all of webcomics pseudojournalism, I don’t see why I should lend you any of my hard-won credibility on the eyelash front.

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¹ Our Fair City; requiscat in pace, Tommy.

² Don’t worry about the show not being in Boston — it’s not a big college town.

³ Alternately: you couldn’t get a sitter.

Horizons Embroadened

Sometimes you just can get enough of a story, and then you need to stretch out a little.

  • For example, take the single greatest premise ever devised for a comic: a teen who can turn into a boat. Teen Boat! has been around in one form or another for years; I remember seeing the banner at one of the first SPX iterations I attended, which must’ve been ten years ago. Since those early days, the creators of Teen Boat!¹ have gone on to create — jointly and severally — a whole mess o’ rightlylauded comics, web- and otherwise, including a Teen Boat! graphic novel, and the previously-noted forthcoming sequel, Teen Boat! The Race For Boatlantis.

    It is the latter of these that concerns us today.

    Because Teen Boat! creators John Green and Dave Roman have decided that the best way to drum up interest in Boatlantis — indeed, the best way to get everybody aboard the Teen Boat! juggernaut — is to give the story away. Taking a page from previous the graphic novel is done let’s serialize online until it’s time to sell it projects as Lucky Penny, Friends With Boys, Nothing Can Possibly Go Wrong, Sailor Twain (the list goes on and on), Boatlantis is about to launch as a free webcomic to churn up the waters of Teen Boat! interest. Per the press release:

    Teen Boat! The Race for Boatlantis launches with the first four pages on May 1st, and will update with a new page every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, up until the release of the print edition. Select chapters of the first Teen Boat! book are also readable online at TeenBoatComics.com

    In conclusion: get onboard or get out of the way. Teen Boat! rules.

  • Or, if you have more hooks than you know what to do with (some of which haven’t even occurred to you), you can take a leap of faith and throw open your story’s universe for others to play in. You have to be supremely self-confident in the skills of those that you invite into the sandbox though — no matter how much you describe these as side stories in the world of or here’s what happened elsewhere while canon was going on, it’s going to cause changes in your setting, which may strengthen or weaken your main narrative.

    Which is why every time Dave Kellett drops in a stray page of world-building like this or this into Drive, it makes me wonder if I’ll live long enough to hear all the stories he’s got in his head about this future Second Spanish Empire.

    Probably not, but while I’m waiting for him to get to what the heck life was like in the 3000 year old Grasskan Empire, why ring travel is banned in Nuevo Chile, and how exactly the [presumed secret police branch that Orla apparently belongs to, we always knew something was up with her)] Jinyiwei can save Nosh², it appears that I can content myself with a metric buttload of other stories.

    That teaser doesn’t tell us if these other artists are dreaming up their own stories, or just illustrating what Kellett wrote, but in either event it’s a brave and exciting thing to invite in collaborators. Now, when does this happen and how much money do I have to pay for it? Acceptable answers include Last week and Not more than class money³.


Spam of the day:

Cardiovascular disease prospects will now be to spotlight needs that bring back attendees to state that more about themselves, their potential customers important subjects or even an individual’s situations when (their stories).

Or, you know, cut back on the saturated fats, get some aerobic exercise. That works, too.

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¹ Much like Steve Holt!, Teen Boat! must always feature an exclamation.

² Two things: 1. God dammit Dave, you better not be messing with me; losing Nosh broke my heart. 2. If you do that thing where you jump to another storyline for like five months and leave us on this cliffhanger I swear I’m coming to LA with a baseball bat for a chat with your knees. Don’t screw with me, cartoon boy.

³ Six hundo.

Let’s Minimize The Potential For Further Losses


Mostly about books, today. Mostly.

  • I have a correction to make; yesterday I made mention of the new Girl Genius Kickstarter campaign, which I said had launched overnight. From looking at the Kicktraq data, it appears that it actually launched ten days prior, and the Foglios were unusually quiet about it; the soft launch ended when they messaged backers of prior Kickstarter campaigns, and what I thought was a hundred grand of progress in a day was actually the result of a week and a half. The soft launch also produced the weirdest funding trendline I’ve ever seen, along with a multi-peak daily data graph. Regardless, they’re well over goal, have maxed out the stretch goals, and there’s a mention of new ones coming soon.

    Soft launches, man. Confusing.

  • Speaking of Kickstarts, I am surprised to see that The Best Book has moved from a small but respectable 6% funded day-after-launch (15 April, as discussed here) to a not very encouraging 15% funded a week in. Guys. A Paul Southworth-illustrated kids book about the joys of reading is in danger of not funding and I feel this is partially my fault for not hyping it sufficiently.

    Consider it hyped, and consider this a call to action — the youngest readers (slash-listeners, since this is pitched at the real young’uns) will not discover a love of books on their own; they must be taught and trained and raised right and if this book doesn’t succeed, every single one of you will be contributing to the future decline of reading. Get backing, get talking.

  • From the That’s A Relief department: Ursula Vernon and her travel companions have returned from their sojourn in Africa, with magnificent animals seen, adventure embedded firmly in brains for eventual sharing, and the Life List just a wee bit longer¹. What struck me about Vernon’s first writeup of the experience (apart from the fact that the well known Weirdness Field that surrounds her did not result in her being named Queen of the Were-aardvarks or some such) is a discussion she had with her guide about the hegemony of language:

    “There is no word,” he explained. “Not in Setswana. We say water bird, but then we use the English, kingfisher.”

    “Oh,” I said again. “There isn’t a word. Okay.”

    He frowned down at the paper. “Ah … there is a book. In eighteen-hundred, a man went all around Botswana and collected all the Setswana words. If you look in that book, there may be a word. But we do not know the word now. It is …” He trailed off, waving the tip of the pen in that I-am-trying-to-think-of-a-word motion (which may not be completely universal, but seems to hold up pretty well between Botswana and here.)

    “Lost?” I suggested after a minute.

    “Lost. Yes. There was a word, I think. It is lost.” He handed me back the paper.

    I felt a pang of guilt, as if my native language was a dog that had bitten his. English sheds words constantly, of course, but usually not to replace them with someone else’s. And Setswana is a language with many, many native speakers — Wikipedia says over five million — and on no one’s list of endangered languages. Many of the parks were named in Setswana, and he’d told us both the common Setswana names of animals and sometimes the word in the regional dialect. But here I’d stumbled onto a word that had simply slipped away and been replaced by English.

    If that bit of sic transit gloria mundi is too much to contemplate, Vernon’s latest middle-grades book — Castle Hangnail — is out today, and thus you may cheer yourself up with a copy of that.

  • Finally, happy birthday to two of the most original, relentlessly cheerful gentlemen in webcomics or any other endeavour: Chris Yates and Frank Gibson were both born this day, and that makes this a Good Day.

Spam of the day:

if you decide on the wrong people or company to help you out in loan mod, you happen to be putting your loan along with your you will find greater danger.

Why yes complete stranger with a partial command of the language of international finance, I would very much like to trust you with a high-value loan modification. In other news, deposed Nigerian princes like me.

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¹ And by wee bit, I mean 154 new birds.

They Want What In How Many Days?

Answer: seven days of class material in five days. One may understand that I’ll be somewhat … brief this week.

  • New TopatoCon announcement du jour: Dante Shepherd, imitator of raptors¹, wielder of mallets, teacher of the young, record-holder for chalk concentration in the blood of an alive human. Be sure to shout Woo, Yankees! when you see him.
  • New Kickstarter for Girl Genius went up in the wee hours, already sitting at 155% of its US$60,000 goal and less than US$250 from its last stretch goal. Good thing too, as it’s only running for eleven days. Of perhaps equal interest is the fact that while this is the 14th (!) volume of Agatha Heterodyne’s adventures, Pr & Pr Foglio have created a story break to serve as a jumping-on point and renumbered back down to one — the better to not scare off new readers, presumably. We’ll see over the next few years if that worked in their favor but whatever — I cleared space on my bookshelves for up to 25 Girl Genius collections years ago.
  • It appears that the indications we had on Friday that the contact form isn’t working have been borne out — Steve Troop dropped into the comments to let us know that he also had a no-result experience. It’s on my list of things to do, but for the meantime I’ll put a note on the contact page. Thanks for letting me know.

Spam of the day:

Woman of Alien [emphasis original]

I’m not sure what this one is getting at? Are they trying to sell me alien women? Or do the aliens — perhaps from Mars? — need women? Help me out here.

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¹ Now we need to have a Science And YOU! presentation at TopatoCon, where Shepherd can share the stage with Randall Munroe, who has a well-known fear of raptors; put Munroe on a treadmill with Shepherd hissing behind him, we can power the entire venue.

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