The webcomics blog about webcomics

Places To Examine Your Conscience

Some of these will concern you, some will grab at your sense of empathy, some will intrigue; basically we’re all over the place today.

  • I’m very interested to see what the unintended consequences of a new law in California concerning the sales of autographs/autographed memorabilia will do to the major comics shows. Via the twitterfeed of author Amy Stewart, a new law (presumably intended to keep people from buying fake autographs/tchotchkes for big bucks) will require any signed item (think books and art) costing more than five damn dollars (think: everything) to come with a certificate of authenticity with a seven year retention requirement.

    It might be that people at SDCC next year are forced into the charade of selling books/prints/whatever and making the person who bought it then come back for a separate signature. It may be that the “signed & sketched” price variant is actually illegal. It may mean that California-residing creators can no longer supply pre-signed merch to stores (think Raina Telgemeier and the signed copies that bookstores have of Ghosts … they’ll have to dump stock yesterday or risk sanctions that I don’t know how to determine under California’s Civil Code).

    Okay, the summary of the bill indicates that the person signing things is exempt, but resellers appear not to be. Raina can sign a book without recordkeeping, but any comic shop or bookstore with a signed by the author! sticker on books is potentially screwed. California creators/vendors, your thoughts please.

  • From Fleen Senior French Correspondent Pierre Lebeaupin, a dispatch regarding a Kickstarter that’s burning up the webcomics category in two languages:

    Commit Strip, the strip about the daily life of coders, has launched a Kickstarter for their new book collection, and their first in English, at https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/commitstrip/commitstrip-rise-of-the-coders-a-book-about-the-fu. And about 24 hours in they [had] already blown past twice their (admittedly modest) goal. Note that, much like the Last Man campaign, they have rewards in multiple languages but had to set up a separate page for the French description of the campaign as Kickstarter does not support campaigns in multiple languages.

    That last bit surprises me. I wonder if KS would object if you just had a bunch of text in more than one language, or set up support alternating languages but with identical price points and rewards. Certainly that would be a pain; I wonder what our friends to the bilingual north think about this particular feature lack.

  • We’ve spoken here at Fleen about Something Terrible, and the burden that Dean Trippe has taken upon himself, because the key thing about being Batman is, you don’t want any other people to have to be Batman. Your trauma defined your adulthood, but you can use that to help others not become as I Am The Night as you wound up; for Trippe, it means making himself available¹ to other survivors of childhood sexual abuse and creating his own impromptu Bat-Family, meeting and offering solace to one person at a time.

    But there’s more people out there than you can meet one at a time that need him, so Trippe’s gone the media route. Last Friday saw the launch of the Something Terrible podcast, hosted by Trippe and no doubt finding its own direction for future episodes. Trippe calls it a mission², I call it a most unfortunately necessary public service that I absolutely will not be listening to; I’m not burying my head in the sand, but in order to keep myself where I need to be to help when necessary³, I need to deal with trauma-bearing people individually, in person, as the need arises. I can’t go seeking them out.

    But those on the other side of the equation, who don’t have my luxury of distancing themselves? Who need Batman to avoid becoming Batman? The Something Terrible podcast is going to be a godsend. Here’s hoping you never have to subscribe.


Spam of the day:

Search For Baby Shower Gifts Options

The one part of the patriarchy and general male privilege that I will gleefully engage in is the general pass I get for baby showers. I know that makes me a terrible feminist, but this is the opinion that fire cannot melt out of me. I will die in it at the stake. PS: Benedick rules.

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¹ I suspect, on occasion, to his own detriment. Dean, there’s a reason that they tell you to secure your own mask before helping others — if you aren’t well and whole, you can’t be of assistance to them, no matter how much they need it. Don’t overdo it, please.

² A very Batman-like approach to it, I must say.

³ Occasional reminder: I am an active Emergency Medical Technician.

Fleen Podcast Corner: Big Data

So this is probably a first — a podcast review at a webcomics site; but given that the podcast in question is by the webcomickiest of all webcomickers (the inimitable Ryan Estrada), I figure it probably works. Also, I should note that Estrada sent me downloads for all nine episodes (not to mention minisodes, and the reading of the related Machine of Death story, Shiv Sena Riot) so I’ve heard ahead of the three episodes now available for free listening.

Radio drama is something we in the US don’t have a lot of experience with¹, and the first thing you have to worry about is whether or not the voices and characters are different enough to follow easily. Estrada’s come up with a story conceit that lets him take a sprawling cast (more than 70 voice actors) across nine episodes and break them into manageable, discrete units that are pretty easy to follow. Apart from an overly-long, overly-narrated chase scene (which is not the easiest thing to depict in audio only) in episode one², the story zips along nicely.

The conceit is that a virus used by MRAs to spy on women has infected the phones of both teams of thieves and their targets. This works better than you might suspect, since everybody’s got a phone on them all the time, after all. The thieves are after the fabled Seven Keys To The Internet³, but that’s just another conceit for Estrada to tell a series of other stories about things he wants to talk about — criminal gangs in the digital age, Korean gaming police, secret hard drives in photocopiers, the history of magic, the history of abusive patents, venture capital and the tech bubble, put-upon phone center workers (a recurring theme, as this would be Manisha, star of Shiv Sena Riot and Estrada’s earlier Broken Telephone), relay phones for the deaf, and the prominence of Eastern Texas in patent trolling all come under his scrutiny … and as the end credits note each time, these are all real things.

The result is a series of I told you that story so I could tell you this story connections, with each story different in place, tone, subject matter, and (in large part) cast. So far, the best balance of all the competing areas of focus has been episode three, Motivation, featuring a lovely series of musical interludes derived from the verse of 19th Century spiritualist scammers and a lead performance (by Chris Tharp) that equally channeled Jeff Garlin and Penn Jillette.

The only thing that I’d ask for is that the show page link to cast credits on a per-episode basis instead of one big list. It’s a bit confusing trying to tie roles to particular interludes this way. Oh, and Jemaine Clement insists, in the opening titles, on pronouncing Data as dah-tuh instead of the proper day-tah. As another Data once pointed out, One is my name. The other is not. Get it together, Clement! Or, since Estrada’s the director and should know better, get it together, Estrada!

But these are minor quibbles. Big Data is a bunch of different stories on a bunch of weird-but-true side effects of modern life, and a fun journey through What Matters To Ryan. Give ‘er a listen, if only for the creative insults lobbed at Kickstarter supporters at the end of each episode.


Spam of the day:

MOVING SUCKS! LET US HELP YOU.

Got that right, which is why I’m never moving again. Pretty good pitch, though.

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¹ Not for lack of enthusiastic trying, sometimes. Waaaay back in college, I was part of a radio show that tried to put together a single, two hour SF radio drama in conjunction with the return of Comet Halley. It’s a creative endeavour that is very hard not to suck at.

² By episode four, a similar fight scene (also tough to do in audio only) was much briefer, reflecting either tighter scripting, tighter editing, or both. Much appreciated, either way.

³ It’s actually twelve, and full disclosure: one of my friends is actually a keyholder and she would find it hilarious to think that somebody might try to steal her key. She’d also kick their ass.

Fairly Enraging

Okay, so I make it a policy to not read certain comics during the work hours — NSFW means something different to everybody, after all. But a misclick today brought up a blocker when the browser requested Oh Joy, Sex Toy, which is fair enough. Everybody has a right to decide what is displayed in their own environs. But the reason cited — that’s pissing me the hell off and fairly emblematic of so many damn problems we have because America, as a country, is way too hung¹ up about sex. Not blocked for sexual content or situations, not blocked on the basis of explicitness, blocked because sex education is forbidden. This one time, I’ma say Screw you, nanny filter; you suck.

Let’s talk about happier things, any of which should have contributed the header image for today’s post instead of that dumbassery. In fact, let’s have multiple header images because these other items deserve it.

The Ghosts tour rolled into Minneapolis last night and I’ve never seen a crowd of 10 to 14 year olds so physically unable to sit still, they were vibrating at the excitement of being in the same room as Raina Telgemeier. The presentation is a tight half-hour of Ghosts read-along (with audience sound effects), inspirations, past books, and how comics are made. The crowd was larger than what’s shown in the photo by at least a third in that room, plus an overflow room down the hall. The folks at UMinn had the signing down to a science, with numbered tickets being called in groups of twenty, and comics-drawing activities for those waiting. A++++, would attend again.

Boulet’s avatar generator is now an app, with an even wider range of features and expressions. Download the Bouletmaton for Android, and I dunno about Apple but if this means for once we get the app first and the iPhone users gotta wait, I’m fine with that.

Ngozi Ukazu does a hella cute, irregularly scheduled webcomic about college hockey that I can only read about twice a year because I have to read the story in chunks. She had a hella blowout Kickstarter for a Year One print edition last spring, and she’s just blown the damn doors off of the Year Two campaign, launching (as of this writing) in the past three hours and already past 1300 backers and 117 damn thousand American dollars cash money, holy crap.

Speaking of Kickstarter, Brandon Bird just put one up for his latest creative project — I have internally referred to each of these as an Art Thing — and it’s a doozy. Bird wants to make a lowrider dedicated to the late Jerry Orbach: half art car, half statement of purpose for a life lived following your muse, wherever that leads. In this case, hopefully, to an impromptu back-alley competition to see whose Jerry Orbach tribute car can bounce the highest.

Who wants serialied fiction? T Kingfisher, the authorial pseudonym of Digger² creator Ursula Vernon had one of those stories that just wouldn’t go away, and so wrote out 90,000 words and has decided that her Patreon support is such that she can release it for free, Tuesdays and Thursdays (with bonus material on Sundays) until it’s complete. It’s a through-the-portal story, but not the kind you read as kids, which starts with a young girl named Summer — not allowed to do anything thanks to her overprotective mother — being surprised by the sight of a house on chicken legs over the back fence.

Baba Yaga is nobody’s kindly fairy godmother, and when she offers Summer her heart’s desire (or to suck the marrow from her bones … could go either way, really) it’s pretty certain that wherever Summer ends up, she’s going to come back different — sadder, wiser perhaps, very possibly scarred inside or out. Summer In Orcus starts today; read the introduction to get where Vernon’s coming from, then dive into Chapter 1 and join me in counting down to Thursday.

Finally, Tillie Walden picked up a couple of Ignatzen over the weekend (Promising New Talent for I Love This Part and Outstanding Artist for The End Of Summer), and the :01 Books twitterfeed (with whom she has a book coming; :01, not the twitterfeed) tells us that she’s about to start a weekly webcomic on top of everything else. Per Broken Frontier, it’s titled On A Sunbeam, it debuts next Wednesday, the 28th, and will run weekly. It’s early to tell where the story is going to go, but I’m getting a rebellious prep school students in space vibe, which is a combination of words that pleases me.


Spam of the day:

From: Andrea Chamberlin
To: Me, that is to say, Gary
Message: Hi George, Just checking the emails is this a good one for you?

Tom

Every single name wrong. Good job, team. Good job. Lotta hustle.

_______________
¹ Heh … he said hung.

² Obligatory reminder: I loves me some Digger.

Mediaday

I was going to call this one Booksday, but it’s not just books dropping today. Ready for the list?

But it’s not just dead tree releases that you should be paying attention to; for those of you that like to listen to things, I have a pair of podcasts of note:

  • Big Data episode one from Ryan Estrada, et al, drops today, with the start of a story about a plot to steal the internet. What I find most interesting about Big Data is actually the presence of a seemingly minor character: Manisha, as played by Sasha Roopen. Indian call center representative Manisha was the star of Estrada’s This Is How You Die story, Shiv Sena Riot, then she was the (or at least the moral center) of Estrada’s Broken Telephone, and now she’s here. She’s the constant of the Estradaverse, definitively linking the various stories into one continuity. Neat.
  • Can I Pet Your Dog? episode 60, from Maximum Fun also drops today, with special guests Jeph Jacques and his enormous floof of a dog, Shelby (star of webcomics and the floor of Jeph’s house). Every Great Pyrenees I’ve ever met has been a damn cool dog, and Jacques tells you more about Shelby here, but if you want to know about a dog, you don’t read about it — you listen to that dog’s person/people tell stories about the good boy/girl in question. Even if you’re a cat person, you should give Can I Pet Your Dog? a listen because dogs rule.

Spams of the day:

fantastic franchise opportunity

and

your bankruptcy options

I think it’s probably significant that both of these are coming from the same address.

Busy Monday

Where to start? How about here, because it’s always good to see a fresh Paul Southworth comic, and not because of any name-related preferential treatment. Please enjoy the return (after about two years) of Lake Gary.

  • Know what’s got a damn-near universal, gut-level meaning to anybody that grew up in the US and swaths of Canada? Sears. It’s just that place with everything, not too exciting, tools right next to teen clothing because why not? And a place that ubiquitous, that mundane, was inevitably going to attract the attention of the 21 Century’s visual depictor of ubiquity, Brandon Bird.

    He launched his Sears Project three years back, Kickstarting a cross-country trip to visit as many Sears locations as possible, to paint representations of them, to capture the Searsness of modern American life.

    And now comes the next stage of Searsification:

    p.s. do you guys know about my Sears event? http://brandonbird.com/

    On Tuesday, 13 September (already established as the most important release day in webcomics), Bird will be doing the most mundane thing you could do after a trip to chronicle mundanity: he’ll be giving a slide show:

    It’s been three years since I embarked on a dangerous quest to document all the Sears stores in the land and in honor of that anniversary I’m hosting a little event next month. Enjoy a slideshow, Sears-themed refreshments, and Q & A with myself and co-Sears tripper Erin Pearce about just what it was like to live on the road in search of Sears. Get a peek at upcoming Sears art and learn what’s next for the Sears project. (Seating is limited, so if you know for sure you can make it and want to reserve a seat, rsvp to brandonbird [at sign] gmail.com.)

    That’ll be the 13th, 8:00pm, at the Echo Park Film Center in Los Angeles (on Alvarado, right near Sunset Boulevard).

  • I don’t know if you noticed the Kickstarter for an indie videogame about the feral dogs of Moscow’s subways, but it’s now got two links to webcomics. As a result of unlocking achievements, they’ve unlocked a particular real-life dog as a playable character: Reginald Barkley, loyal pooch of Kean Soo. And last night it was announced that you can also play as KC Green’s Question Hound, which seems appropriate given it’s a game that involves both dogs and fire.

    At least, you may be able to, as Russian Subway Dogs is only about 40% of the way to goal with 23 days to go. There’s other dogs to unlock, though, and for a Canadian outfit, developer Spooky Squid Games would be foolish to not try to entice us with Ryan North’s dog, Chompsky AKA The Dog Who Was Stuck In A Hole With Ryan That Time.

    Let me be clear that I don’t know that they want to include Chompsky, or that either North or Chompsky would be willing to be included, but come on — what is a subway but a very fancy hole?

  • Speaking of Green and Question Hound, looks like the long tail is ticking up slightly. In any other campaign, pulling in US$3-6K per day in the final week would be really damn impressive; when you’ve got a first day’s take of US$165K, it kind of gets lost in the vertical scale. Just under four days left to go, maybe ending in the vicinity of US$450K? Neat.

Spam of the day:

My So-Called Life won acclaim for its honest treatment of the issues facing adolescents in the mid-1990’s.

Don’t start. Angela should have gone with Brian Krakow because Jordan Catalano was a dick, and was played by the single most full-of-himself actor in history this side of Shia Labeouf.

Launch Dates

Okay, one of them’s really a pre-announcement of when a hiatus will wrap, but let’s go with it.

  • Ryan Estrada has, for the past forever, been hard at work on Big Data. He announced the project on this page back in April, he started a Kickstarter a few days later to determine how much to release, and he’s been heads-down ever since putting the polish on.

    And now we have a premiere date. The internet radio play about the Caper of the Century and the Keys to the Internet will start releasing on Tuesday, 13 September (the same days as a few other things; it’s going to be a great day for those of us of certain sensibilities); Kickstarter backers will get all nine episodes at once, the rest of us will have to persevere through cliffhangers and plot twists.

  • Meanwhile, David Morgan-Mar (PhD, LEGO®©™etc and semi-pro Mr Bean impersonator) reached today the end of his webcomic recaps of Old School Trek episodes, Planet of Hats. Or, more properly, reached it again; he finished up the recaps of Star Trek’s run with Turnabout Intruder (ick) back in January. Then he did the end-of-season recap¹ a week later, and gave us a final splash page at the end of the month.

    Then two months later he started all over again with the mid-70s animated series, the 22 episodes of which are what actually finished today. In case you aren’t old enough to have watch the animated Star Trek on Saturday mornings when you were a kid, it was pretty dire, but on average no worse than the third season of the live action show¹.

    And much like a Peter Jackson trilogy, Morgan-Mar had at least one more ending in store for us: although it will be the new year before it happens, he will be tackling the six movies that feature the original Star Trek cast, so we can look forward to the highs of Wrath of Khan and the lows of the execrable The Final Frontier, so that’s all right.

    As of this writing, it appears that Generations is being classified as a nu-Trek film, but who knows? Drop enough in his Patreon on the condition that he recap Darmok or Yesterday’s Enterprise or The Inner Light and I’d bet he’d come around. Even better, give him enough that he’s obligated to make it through all of TNG and DS9 — I’d love to read his take on In The Pale Moonlight or Far Beyond The Stars or even just highlights of Bashir’s bromances with O’Brien and Garak³.

    The thing is, point your RSS readers — it’s still a thing! — at the feed address and see you all on 4 January 2017. You can spend the time until then reading his first Irregular Webcomic print collection, which is being received by backers as we speak.


Spam of the day:

WE’LL PACK AND MOVE YOUR STUFF FOR YOU!

The hell you will. I’m never moving again.

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¹ Hey, if you’re going to borrow a strip’s format from Shaenon Garrity, you include the season recap pages, because they are insane and great.

² Or most of the first season and a half of Next Generation (basically, everything pre-Borg) for that matter. It remains an indisputable fact that only DS9 hit the ground running and stayed there.

³ Shippers, start your engines.

Fresh From The Mailbag

Some of it’s newer, some a bit less new, with an oddly common occurrence of the letter F.

  • From Fleen Senior French Correspondent Pierre Lebeaupin, a reminder that the folks behind the French take on the venerable insane fight tournament manga series, Last Man, have been working on a prequel animated series. Then funding promises went away, and to finish their work they’re Kickstartering. So this would be a French version of an anime adaptation of an insane fight tournament manga, which sounds awesome on its face before I remind you that Last Man is really good. Campaign page in English, French, and even a little Japanese, so check ‘er out in the next … fourteen days.

    (Also from FSFCPL, word that Boulet has been filling his Instagram with Pokemon shots, starting here; these are the disturbing Pokemon, something that Katuhiro Otomo and Satoshi Kon might dream up after a long night drinking with Cthulhu, the least threatening of which is doing something unspeakable to your cat, the more typical of which needs to be met with giant robots, plural.)

  • From Andrew Farago at the Cartoon Art Museum, news of the last CAM public program: Cartooning Boot Camp at the American Bookbinders Museum, 35 Clementina Street in San Francisco. The free (!) program runs both Thursday the 18th (5:30pm – 8:00pm) and Saturday the 20th 11:00am – 3:00pm), offering a showing of the work done by aspiring cartoonists, ages 10 – 16, this summer. The first event is part of the Third Thursdays series for arts institutions in the Yerba Buena Alliance, and sponsors are providing refreshments at both.
  • Want to check out the work of an absolute master? Kate Feirtag at the Society of Illustrators wants you to know that they’re putting on major retrospective of Ralph Steadman, chronicler of the great and the low, the everyday and the bat-country insane over his storied 50 year career. The show runs 6 September to 22 October, with an opening reception on Friday, 9 September at 6:30pm (suggested donation: US$15, beer provided plus cash bar) with a variety of events during the six week run. It all happens at the SoI building, 128 East 63rd in Manhattan.
  • It’s time for the monthly TopatoCo Drink ‘n’ Draw, with deets at the Facebook page (okay, that one was a stretch). The special guest this month is Danielle Corsetto, who will meet you at Eastworks from 7:00pm – 10:00pm (it’s probably gonna rain, so bring your umbrella) for food, fun, fdrinking, and fdrawing.

Spam of the day:

Do not worry, all your efforts will be rewarded.

That’s reassuring, except for the part where the bulk of this message is in Russian and I’m pretty sure I now owe their mafia a favor.

At Last, Friday

Several brief items for you today, as I am observing the first really nice day in forever and that’s pulling on me more than webcomics at the moment. You know how it is.

  • KC Green seems to finally be hitting the long tail portion of the This Is Fine plush campagin but I’ll note that so far today even though new support is but a trickle of the past two days, it’s still more than US$18K and 500 people. I wonder if we’ll see a bump from outside his usual audience when tomorrow’s New York Times — which has an arts section story about Green, This Is Fine, This Is Not Fine, and the plush — hits widely.
  • Speaking of Green¹, he was the first to point me to another Kickstarter, that for the first print collection of The Meek by Der-shing Helmer. Three chapters of the longrunning (abeit with sometimes lengthy interruptions) adventure quest, with fancy upgrades to the book and bonus material on deck (Helmer’s working with Taneka Stotts — who’s done a number of successful projects — on the production end). Given the sometimes sporadic update schedule on The Meek, a book is probably the best way for new readers to get on board, so get to pledgin’.
  • Latest news on the TV adaptation of Kris Straub’s Candle Cove: Deadline Hollywood reports that SyFy will premiere the series on Tuesday, 27 September. Set your TiVo now for maximum scares.

Spam of the day:

Looking for HOT

Great, more fake Russian dating site spam.

Laptops Deals? Check out the Latest Deals & Special Offers

… nevermind. Alhtough they are using the same picture as the Russian dating site spam was using.

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¹ Fans of The Meek now believe me to be in full Dad Joke mode. They’re not wrong.

Can’t Blame Morgan-Mar For Today

Again with the weeds, and tonight’s EMS duty night, so no chance of getting ahead. It’s almost like work takes up the whole day!

Items of note:

  • Benign Kingdom does the most beautiful art books in webcomics, and they are inexplicably at 70% funded with 7 days to go on the latest iteration of their art. Compare to earlier efforts, ranging from 121% to 937% of goal and ask yourself if you want this to be the project that fails. There’s loads of unproven creators biting off more than they can chew (or have the IP right for) to make up the approximately 50% of projects that fail. Let’s not see people who can actually fulfill wither on the vine.
  • Speaking of B9, one of the contributors this time around is Meredith Gran, and this is your periodic reminder that she continues to kill it on Octopus Pie, particularly with the quiet moments of self-revelation. This is one is so good, says so much in so few words (and fills in loads of characterization between the cracks of the last half-decade of story without ever resorting to exposition) that killing it seems too mild. Gran is laying waste to entire civilizations and salting the earth for all times lest enemies rise up to challenge her eternal rule.
  • Dante Shepherd¹ continues to spend that grant money in productive ways to teach large, complicated engineering ideas. See, I was an electrical engineer² in college, so what I know about chemists is that their building always had beakers that smelled funny, and what I know about the chemical engineers (such as Shepherd) is their building always had 500 liter tanks that smelled funny.

    So basically I am ignorant of what went on in those enormous arrays of pipes in the high-bay lab and now I know a bit more, thanks to him and Matt Lubchansky. Also cookies are involved somehow?

  • Speaking of [web]comics making their way through the development cycle of Hollywood, I see that Kazu Kibuishi’s Amulet has taken one more step towards realization with the news that the executive producer of the current Star Trek TV efforts is taking over the scripting. Also I see that the reports are that Amulet was to star Will Smith’s kids, but now it’s not … did we know that? I’m not sure we knew that.
  • Let us finish, as is often the case, in the northern reaches of Webcomickia, which is to say, Canada. Ryan North has shared the news that his and Erica Henderson’s Squirrel Girl has new merch in the wild, and also the less-happy news Howard The Duck (written by fellow Torontonian Chip Zdarsky, drawn by Joe Quinones) will be coming to an end soon. It’s a shame, and I hope it doesn’t presage more cancellations of comics that are actually, you know, fun.

    At least we have some more good news from Canada, as it seems Blind Ferret is hiring. Supremo Ryan Sohmer is vocal about the often-dismal pay scales in comics, so you can bet the salary on this one doesn’t fall in the category of crap job you take to build up experience while eating ramen.


Spam of the day:

A sure-fire way to get richer …

Make regular deposits into an index fund that you leave the hell alone for 20-30 years? Oh, sorry, I see — fake gold futures from a crazy person that believes the Federal Reserve is illegal and that random punctuation in your name means you don’t have to pay taxes. Silly me.

_______________
¹ Professor, bon vivant, man about town.

² AKA the best kind of engineer. Shepherd would probably dispute that, but I think we can agree that at least we aren’t civil engineers, ew.

Explain To Me How This Works

Irregular Webcomic creator David Morgan-Mar (PhD, LEGO®©™etc) had lunch with me on Saturday (a leisurely Belgian meal with some rather nice beer, and a long discussion of sport, American vs Australian politics¹, and radio astronomy), then immediately he headed to the airport and:

Straight off 24 hours of economy class flying, across 10 time zones, and do I go to sleep?
No, I draw comics!

Meanwhile I went home on a local train and decided it was too hot to mow the lawn. That, in turn, put me so far behind on things that needed doing over the weekend that just a tiny amount of friction in work today has put me solidly in the weeds, timewise. Lesson here: do not compare yourself to Australians, productivity-wise or any other wise; they are hardened in the crucible of a continent that wants to kill them and will beat you every time.

So if I’m to get anything written for you today, it needs must be brief:

Kris Straub’s Candle Cove — perhaps the ur-creepypasta — is, as we know, heading to TV as the first season of the Channel Zero anthology series. We also know that stories of this webcomic or that getting developed, or optioned, or whatever, frequently come to naught but a check (hopefully substantial) to the creator for the right to try to make something.

And sometimes they actually happen:

.@SyFy has cast Paul Schneider and Fiona Shaw in new horror anthology series #ChannelZero http://bit.ly/28IvZSX @nickantosca @Uptomyknees

Casting means that contracts exist, means that money is actually being spent, that it is almost certainly less risky to move forward and make a thing than to cut and run. Per the attached story at Variety, we can expect to see Candle Cove this fall — call it four to six months from now, hopefully in a suitably scarifying fashion. And that’s some pretty good news for a Monday, even one where I’m behind.


Spam of the day:

Finally! Natural Way to Destroy Sinus, Mucus, Throat, and Cough Problems

While I have some of those problems, they are well controlled by this spray medicine I received from an actual doctor. Kindly keep your Roto-Rooterish body horror-inducing devices that they don’t want you to have.

_______________
¹ I was aware that Australia is in election mode right now, and being a parliamentary country, will have the entire thing wrapped up quickly. I was not aware that the present government are such dicks that after the election they may provoke another legislative crisis which could cause them to have a second entire national election before we are done with our current campaign and hopefully see the back of what Charlie Pierce so aptly refers to as a vulgar talking yam.