The webcomics blog about webcomics

One Of Those Faith In Humanity Days

Where to start, where to start?

  • How about with the elephant¹ in the Bethsda Marriott hotel ballroom, where it was noticed that the famed bricks that represent the Ignatz Awards all went to women. Before any arrested man-children start bawling their delicious, delicious tears that this is everything wrong with feminazis ruing comics and making things nobody wants to read, they would do well to remember:

    1. The Ignatzen are voted on by everybody attending SPX, which attracts a sizable and diverse crowd.
    2. The nominees range from low-circulation minicomics to critically- popularly-acclaimed works that have large print runs and are obtainable in any bookstore in the country.
    3. Nothing about this prevents you from continuing to read your masturbatory power fantasies, so quit acting like this is a zero-sum game².

    Looking back at the nominations, for instance, I failed to notice that of the five of the nominees in the Outstanding Online Comic, none identify explicitly as male³. A quick scan of the other categories show that women made up pretty much 50% of all the nominations (40% here, 60% there, some teams and group efforts make attempts at calculation necessarily inexact; I’ll note that Promising New Talent was 80% ladies).

    Still, there’s a long way to go from a hell of a gender-balanced slate of nominees to it’s Ladies Night in Comictown, and the simplest explanation is that this year, the work that spoke most to the audience happened to be made by women in each case. So congratulations to Emily Carroll, Eleanor Davis, Sophie Goldstein (×2), Jillian Tamaki, Sophia Foster-Dimino (×3), and Lilli Carré.

  • It’s pretty much inarguable that one of the most important tools in the business plan of a web/indy-comics creator (or creator of any sort) is crowdfunding, and that the dominant platform in that space is Kickstarter. So it’s pretty damn encouraging to see that the people that run Kickstarter are in no hurry to run up the valuation, float an IPO, cash out with a dumptruck full of money, and watch from the sidelines as the need to make tech-bubble levels of profit screws over the user base.

    In fact, they’ve just made that worst-case outcome pretty much impossible, and they’ve got the legal structure to enforce it:

    Kickstarter Inc is no more. We’re now Kickstarter PBC — a Public Benefit Corporation. We’re thrilled to share this news, and we’d love to take a minute to tell you exactly what it means.

    Until recently, the idea of a for-profit company pursuing social good at the expense of shareholder value had no clear protection under U.S. corporate law, and certainly no mandate. Companies that believe there are more important goals than maximizing shareholder value have been at odds with the expectation that for-profit companies must exist ultimately for profit above all.

    Benefit Corporations are different. Benefit Corporations are for-profit companies that are obligated to consider the impact of their decisions on society, not only shareholders. Radically, positive impact on society becomes part of a Benefit Corporation’s legally defined goals. [empahsis mine]

    That’s from an email that you probably received if you’ve ever dealt with Kickstarter, or you could read the story at the New York Times if you prefer. If you want to see how Kickstarter is interpreting their positive social impact, you can read their PBC charter here.

    Interestingly, the Kickstarter board is going extra-strong on the public benefit and transparency. The PBC structure requires them to report every other year on how they meet their charter’s goals, but they’ve also defined themselves as a B Corporation; that’s a voluntary designation that requires annual reports on their social goals, as well as some fairly rigorous environmental standards. What it all amounts to is that the people in charge of Kickstarter not only recognize what made it a success, they want to preserve it rather than abandoning it to unchecked capitalist exploitation. Good for them, and good for all of us.

  • And for those of you that like geeky things and leave the house occasionally, Jorge Cham has some news for you:

    It’s #ThePHDMovie2 premiere week! Pass it on! >20 screenings this week including @CERN @DukeU and more:

    Doesn’t look like any of those screenings will be at TopatoCon, but given that it appears that Cham will be conducting a Q&A and signing at CERN in that time frame, I suppose we can forgive him. Just one request for everybody working the LHC, though: if you want to show off for Jorge, please don’t do so by pressing the Big Red Button that says Generate Black Hole, Suck Earth In. Thanks.

Spam of the day:

Hello pecker 8-) i need s3x right now i’m not picky!!

“[N]ot picky”? Are … are you negging me? Am I getting the same approach that MRA dipshits think works on women?

¹ Fun fact: elephant society is matriarchal in nature; the females that have lived the breadth of life’s experiences are what holds the culture together. I’m sure this has absolutely nothing to do with anything we’re talking about today.

² One might address a parallel thought towards those that are bitching about Viola Davis’s speech at the Emmys last last night.

³ One, Ariel Ries of Witchy, uses the pronoun they; the others describe themselves in bios using explicitly female pronouns or depict themselves in their comics as women.

On The Cusp Of September

Three things that I want to bring to your attention today. Honestly, no one of them is any less important than another, so let’s just dive in.

  • The Cartoon Art Museum may be closing the doors of its present location in a couple of weeks, but they’re not closing for good. Furthermore, they’re going to engage in their mission of making the cartoon arts available to the widest possible audience until the very last minute. To that end, please note that they have named their cartoonist-in-residence for the (abbreviated) month, and it’s Ben Collison. He’ll be presenting on Thursday, 3 September, from 2:00pm to 5:30pm at CAM on his techniques for making comics with ink and coffee (attention: R Stevens). And now to 12 September, CAM is having a moving sale, with nearly everything in their store’s stock going for 20% – 40% off sticker price. Anybody in San Francisco should drop by 655 Mission Street and browse, or just give them your best regards.
  • This page keeps a weather eye on the New York Times Best Seller List for graphic novels, and notes with approval that the latest iteration of same is still 50% occupied by Raina Telgemeier, but also notes a surprise in the #10 slot. Debuting on the NYTBSL is Gene Luen Yang’s American Born Chinese, which readers of this page may remember was reviewed by Fleen when it debuted nine years ago. It’s unexpected, but that I got to thinking — just as MAUS and Persepolis make reappearances on the list about this time of year every year as school resumes and they become part of the curriculum, it appears that American Born Chinese is becoming part of the canon and being studied.

    Yang’s no stranger to the NYTBSL, but I imagine it’s a great feeling to see his first, most autobiographical work finally recognized. Also, there’s the whole bit where the Times didn’t have a Best Seller List for graphic novels when American Born Chinese was released, as it undoubtedly would have sat on the list for a good long while otherwise. In any event, congrats to Yang for what’s got to be a heartwarming return to the school year, and watch this space for the inevitable news that Secret Coders (due for release in four weeks) has been added to the NYTBSL.

  • This page also keeps an eye on Kickstarter campaigns and the management thereof. I’m pleased to note that on Saturday, the very best writeup of how to plan the financial end of a campaign — the so-called Kickstarter Math — that I’ve ever seen was released to the world. And it’s not for a webcomic, or a comic-comic. Marian Call, singer, songwriter, adventurer, bon vivante, and life partner of the repeatedly-mentioned-on-this-blog Pat Race, has a Kickstart going on right now to release her next album, which is down to the last two days. She’s well over goal and into stretch territory, and a big part of that is the planning that she put into the crowdfunding effort. Go read her post right now if you’ve ever thought about Kickstarting anything, particular the bit about modeling multiple levels of success and running a full set of numbers for each.

    Or possible do that a little later, as it appears that her host is down at the moment, possibly due to the twin loads of people rushing to give her money (she runs a sponsorship program in addition to Kickstarts) and to absorb her wisdom. Oh, and listen to (and buy!) her music, because she’s got a hell of a voice, a great sense of what makes a good song, and can channel everybody from Bowie to the Brothers Chaps.

Spam of the day:

This Test Shows How You’re Going to Die

I already know how I’m going to die. TRUCK.

Too Much Going On Today

Tuesday as busy day? Very odd.

  • We start, as we have done with increasing frequency over the past five months or so, with TopatoCon, on account of they keep announcing stuff. Today it’s fact that ticket sales are now live and the preliminary programing schedule is now up.

    There are some unfortunate conflicts in the schedule, such as Saturday afternoon when the Let’s Drink About It guys will be talking cocktails (oooh!) at the same time that Christopher Hastings will be leading a workshop on writing sketch comedy. This is tragic, because Hastings is a creative mixer of drinks and would greatly enjoy the LDAI session, but one can’t have everything (I’ll go there on your behalf, Chris, promise).

    It’s also ironic that on Sunday afternoon, there will be discussion with Wes Citti and Tony Wilson about how to Play Nice With Others at the same time that David Malki !, Spike, Kate Leth, and Randy Milholland will be talking about how Internet People are basically dicks who’ve forgotten how to Play Nice With Others.

  • Speaking of small conventions heavy with indie-type creators, SPX have announced the Ignatz Award Nominations for 2015, and there are a couple of names that stand out. Specifically, Jillian Tamaki is all over the damn thing (and deservedly so), with nominations for Outstanding Artist, Outstanding Anthology or Collection (both for SuperMutant Magic Academy), and Outstanding Story (“Sex Coven”, from Frontier #7).

    Other webcomics types include Emily Carroll for Outstanding Artist (Through the Woods), Sophie Goldstein¹ for Outstanding Graphic Novel and Outstanding Comic (both for The Oven), and Box Brown for Outstanding Anthology or Collection (An Entity Observes All Things). The category of Outstanding Online Comic itself has nominees

    Best of luck to all the nominees. The Ignatz Awards will be presented at SPX, 19 September, in Bethesda, Maryland.

  • Speaking of longtime webcomickers who are looking to spend more time making webcomics and less time at the day job (okay, we weren’t, but work with me), David Morgan-Mar (PhD, LEGO®©™etc) is about to join your ranks. Having spent more than a dozen years making more than a dozen comics with literally an infinite number of updates, Morgan-Mar has decided that the drudgery and unrewarding nature of the day job² is less fun that making comics and other creative things, and you can help make it possible:

    News: Hey folks, I have good news! I have talked with my manager and HR department at work, and confirmed that I can reduce my working hours to 9 days per fortnight. That means I could spend one full day every two weeks making more creative stuff!

    But I have a mortgage and bills to pay, and am very risk averse. So I have posted a goal of raising US$750 a month on Patreon to partly offset my resulting loss in income. If I can reach this goal, I will make this move and dedicate a day every fortnight to making more comics, books, podcasts, videos, and other cool stuff. This will include raising the number of new Irregular Webcomic! strips to 4 per week.

    And if I can get to the dream goal of $1500 a month, I can quit my day job one day per week, and Irregular Webcomic! will return to a full 7 new strips per week. Spread the word! And please consider supporting my Patreon. Thank you to all of you

    For reference, Morgan-Mar is presently at just under US$450/month, or 60% of the way to goal. And honestly, if there’s anybody that should be able to be a full-time creative, it’s Morgan-Mar. The dude’s got more ideas per cm³ than anybody else on the planet. I can’t wait to see what he can come up with when he can spend full days on his ideas instead of a stolen hour or two.

  • Kickstarts? Kickstarts! Alina Pete is doing a card game based on the concept of the tarot, sitting about 18.5% of goal as she comes into the back third of the campaign time. This one needs a big bump if it’s gonna get made. On the other end of the spectrum, Ryan Sohmer is looking to make three books of Least I Could Do and is about 35% of the way to goal since launching yesterday. The Fleen Funding Formula (mk II) doesn’t apply to either project due to the low backer counts, where predicted results and actual results diverge violently.
  • I have serious problems with Lenovo these days due to their terrible, terrible decisions re: privacy-invading design decisions in their consumer line of laptops, so they are very lucky that Ryan North is a likable dude with an adorable dog and he’s willing to promote their ThinkPad line4. I am sorry to say that I don’t trust the company you are promoting, but we are still cool, Ryan.

Spam of the day:

Do you have any tips for rookie blog writers? I’d certainly appreciate it.

Footnotes, man. Readers dig footnotes.

¹ Goldstein is also listed as a member of the Jury, but please note two things about the Ignatz rules: the Jury is anonymous, even to the other members, during the nomination process, and while Jury members may not nominate their own work, there is no prohibition from one Juror’s work being nominated for an award by his or her fellow Jurors. I trust that Ms Goldstein recused herself from any decision that would have resulted in her own nominations.

² Working on image-processing for a corporate research arm and helping to set the ISO standards for image definitions. Such boring and unappreciated scut-work! Might as well work retail.

I almost said all of that with a straight face. Next time for sure!

³ That’s a “power of three”, or cubic centimeter, not a footnote.

4 Which line doesn’t seem to have been affected by Lenovo’s terrible, terrible decisions — which is actually even worse, because the ThinkPads are mostly aimed at corporate customers that are best able to detect and mitigate such terrible, terrible decisions. The consumer-grade laptops that Lenovo sold pre-compromised are hitting the demographic least able to defend themselves. Never buying another Lenovo product, but man, Chompsky’s cute.

Multiple Media

There are a couple of offshoots of webcomickry in other realms of expression that caught my eye today, plus the list of SPX exhibitors is live. Let’s go down the list, shall we?

Spam of the day:

In days gone by, should you stood a bankruptcy or even a foreclosure, getting approved with an car finance was like pulling teeth

Days gone by? Are we talking like the pre-lidocaine era?

¹ Oh please, oh please, let ASW recurring character Ryan North be part of this play!

Holy Crap, It’s Supposed To Be A Quiet Week

I mean, it’s SDCC week, people are already traveling to SoCal for the nerd prom, and a billion items have come up in the past couple days. Okay, these are each going to be brief because it’s like seven things.

  • New SDCC offsite events In addition to all the programming mentioned last week, there are things happening outside the convention center. Singer-songwriter Marian Call (cohort of Alaska Roboticist Pat Race and famed portrayer of Top Space Man) will be part of a show called Space Time on 10 July (that’s Friday) at 7:00pm. Know who else will be there? Molly Lewis (aka Ground Control) and Bobak “We Are Go” Ferdowsi.

    Lewis will also be part of BAMF, the Bad Ass Music Festival, held 10-12 July in nearby Ruocco Park, alongside such luminaries as Kirby Krackle, Paul and Storm, and The Doubleclicks.

  • Future plans for The Response Matt Bors follow up on earlier announcements of what’s going on with editorial cartooning at Medium via an announcement at The Response. Short version: It’s a finite project, through the end of July, and more conversations will occur between now and then.
  • The AV Club loves webcomics Scott McCloud’s The Sculptor got cited as one of the best piece of media (not comics, all of media) for the first half of 2015, while John Allison, Noelle Stevenson, Ryan North & Erica Henderson, and Gemma Correll were cited as being part of the best of print for the same timeframe.
  • Kickstarts Magnolia Porter wins the Most Adorable Kickstarter Video, Like, Ever award … oh, yeah, and it’s part of the launch for Monster Pulse’s second print collection, Phantom Limbs. It’s no secret that Monster Pulse is one of my favorite webcomics (just check out today’s update to see why — wow), so I’m urging everybody to back this one because I want my book, dammit.

    And if that weren’t enough, longtime editorial cartoonist Tom Tomorrow announced his Kickstart via Make That Thing, and it’s a doozy. Twenty five years of strips will be constructed into a 1000 page, two-volume hardcover collection, with an estimated mass of nearly 7 kg. Such a huge collection needs a huge goal, and with less than 24 hours elapsed, Mr Tomorrow has exceeded the US$87,000 needed and is closing in on US$100K. And can I say holy crap, somebody took him up on the US$10K reward tier? This one’s gonna be metaphorically and physically huge.

Spam of the day:

Dr.Oz bikini secret

Man, I can’t find even one picture of Dr Oz in a bikini. Laaaaaame.

Good News All Around

Man, before we even get to the fact that it’s Canada Day and wish well to all our friends north of the border¹, there’s so many things to be happy about. I can’t even decide which would be most important, so I’m just going to hit these in chronological order.

  • In the past few days (call it a month or so on the early end), I’ve received packages full of joy from three separate Kickstarts: Evan Dahm’s lovely illustrated edition of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (now available via TopatoCo), Jon Rosenberg’s long-delayed² Goats book four, and Zach Weinersmith and Boulet’s Augie and the Green Knight, all of which are more beautiful than could have been hoped. Thanks for those, guys!

    For those keeping track at home, this brings my Kickstarter backing record to 49 projects, of which 1 was designated “no reward”, 36 fulfilled, 5 are due for future delivery, 3 are late less than a month (it’s the first, after all), 3 are in the vicinity of a year late (two for what I consider to be good reasons, one I’m mentally writing off) and 1 partially fulfilled three years back for a project that’s gone tits-up. Call it 36/44 success rate, or 81%, which I expect to bump up by the end of the month, and again by end of summer.

  • Meanwhile, yesterday David Willis started dropping hints of a new comic which hinted at the future erosion of his famous buffer. Then he dropped the proverbial other shoe:

    So on May 27, as I was trying to preregister for BotCon through my phone because our damned Time Warner wifi was having outages AGAIN, Maggie got back from the doctor, noted that there was, in fact, an Ultrasound due that visit despite our expectations, and then handed me this little printout, saying, “Here’s a picture of our baby.”

    And after pausing a bit, she pulled out another little printout and said, “And here’s a picture of our other baby.”

    It’s Twins! David and Maggie become at least the third webcomic couple to bring twins to bear³; previous twin-having webcomickers Jon Rosenberg and Ryan Sohmer were at press time reportedly pointing vaguely in Willis’s direction and laughing hysterically that at least they got to practice on single kids before having to learn how to be parents to twins before weeping uncontrollably. I think that means Welcome to our totally fun club!

    We at Fleen congratulate Willis on his impending great fortune, and are calling for predictions as to how far his buffer will slip. We’re taking 85 days in the pool.

  • But the news that will resonate outside our community hit after things wrapped up on the east coast; reports were seen (first in Deadline, later in other corners) that both Kris Straub and Jeff Smith have new Hollywood deals. Straub’s case is perhaps further along, as it was announced that Max Landis will be producing a horror anthology for SyFy, the first season of which will be Candle Cove. Straub has struggled in the past to be recognized as the author of this particularly unsettling piece of fiction, with occasional claims that the short story was in fact true from people who are overly credulous, misremembering their own childhoods, or possibly both.

    Meanwhile, a production firm named a vet of AMC to head up their TV unit, and one of the first projects that’s being examined is an adaptation of Smith’s RASL. A story that mixes art thievery, dimension hopping, Nikola Tesla, and existential horror, RASL is about as different a followup to BONE as could be imagined. It would be a while before we see it hit the screen, but in tapping RASL and Candle Cove for adaptation, it appears that the entertainment complex is showing a willingness to explore wholly original ideas and has an idea of who might be a good source for them.

    Which got me to thinking what webcomics would make a good TV series. Achewood or Wonderella could absolutely rule on [Adult Swim], A Girl and Her Fed could do well on a basic cable channel with experience in showrunning (say, A&E or AMC), and I’m convinced that the Henson Workshop people could do something really good with Monster Pulse. I’m not sure how far we are from effects being able to do justice to any of Overside stories, but Skin Horse maybe could be made to work. Any other ideas? Leave ’em in the comments.

Spam of the day:

cheater detox

I know those words, but can’t figure out they mean together.

¹ AKA future ruthless overlords.

² The campaign for which coincided with, more or less, a high-risk pregnancy and birth of special-needs twins, who have defied every possible odd to be happy, healthy, distressingly clever young men. Well done, Team Babies!

³ It appears having a long-running webcomic must now be added to the contributing factors for having twins, such as being a twin yourself.

Congratulations All Around

This image sums up everything I love about Stevenson's work. Also, buy the book.

So I have a flight to catch, meaning this is going to have to be short; rest assured, each of these stories is worth many more column-inches¹ than I have time to give it right now.

  • It’s a great time to be Noelle Stevenson! Hot on the heels of the Lumberjanes movie news comes word that Stevenson’s webcomic, Nimona, is to be an animated feature. You can take your pick of stories — I like the one from io9, personally — it appears that toute les bandes dessine&easute;s-web is thrilled for Stevenson, and even more thrilled that more people will get to be exposed to Nimona.
  • It’s anniversary time in webcomicsland — Chris Hallbeck realized t’tother day that it’s been five years since quitting the day job in favor of comicking, and put together a recapof his best office-themed comics. This one’s my favorite. And Howard Tayler² can probably tell you down to the minute exactly when he quit the corporate world to concentrate on Schlock Mercenary, which strip started on this day in 2000, resulting in 5479 consecutive days and 5479 consecutive strips. You make the rest of us look considerably less industrious than we would appear to be otherwise, Howard — congratulations, you unstoppable machine, you.
  • This last piece is less about congrats and more about stop doing whatever you are doing right now and take five minutes to learn something. It’s been fallow times these past two weeks over at The Nib since parent company Medium messed with editorial focus and funding; editor Matt Bors has kept the lights on and run some longer pieces of what I’d call comic strip journalism, and today’s entry by Dale Beran is as good as such comics get.

    It’s a follow-on to his piece on the riots in Baltimore (where he’s a public school teacher) about six weeks ago, on the general topic of how “normal” times in the schools are both a perfect consequence of the situation that prompted the unrest, and a perfect predictor of the next situation. Go and read Warnings and Instructions right now, and the next time somebody tells you how “they” don’t care enough to do well in school, or don’t value education, or need to be willing to work harder to rise above their circumstances, share the link.

Spam of the day:

Hi,i believe t?at ? saww you visited my blg th?s i got here too return the favor?

World of Questionmarks is my new favorite site.

¹ Or, if you don’t live in America, 2.54 many more column-centimeters.

² The best evil twin I could ever ask for.

Gifts Of The Day

Also, new Kate-centric website, suitable for all ages, at

I’m in a good mood today, how about you? It’s actually suspicious how well today’s been going.

  • Oh, it’s a good day in webcomics, for we are at the start of the most festive time of year. I speak, naturally, of the start of Kate Beaton’s latest visit home to Nova Scotia, and the Kate’s Family Comics (aka Kate’s Mom Comics, aka Momics) that result.

    I’ve noticed eight of them arrive so far; if past visits are any indication, we’ll get 12 – 15 a day for a week or so, and Beaton will gather them all together in tall recaps when they’re done. In the meantime, keep an eye on her twitterfeed for little snippets of perfect humo[u]r, where we all get reminded that Kate’s Mom is the best, Kate’s Dad is the best, and Kate’s comics are the best.

    Oh, and the countdown to the release of The Princess and the Pony is on: 30 June, y’all.

  • Alert readers may have noticed that Dante Shepherd managed to put together some appropriate comics in the wake of his second daughter’s birth; he took four days off when said child was imminent, then produced most of a week before wisely declaring a paternity leave. The first of the guest entries is up today, with Rosemary Mosco contributing thoughts (as she is wont to do) on nature, and taking the time to pay homage to Shepherd’s ever-present Red Sox attire. I loved it, and can’t wait to see what other clever people take a whirl at the chalkboard.
  • Explain to me how the hell it’s been a year since BACK debuted. Time is running too damn fast these days.
  • Word came this afternoon that Chris Eliopolous (of Misery Loves Sherman and the lettering of seemingly every Marvel comic of the last two decades) has had a pleasant Monday:

    Cosby and Eliopoulos’ Cow Boy Headed to TV With DreamWorks Animation … via @comicbookdotcom

    Cow Boy (written by Nate Cosby, illustrated by Eliopoulos) released a couple years back and it’s a delight; the deal with DreamWorks makes two big option announcements for BOOM! Studios in as many weeks¹ and once again, I’m hoping that this means a decent paycheck for the creators more than the publisher. In any event, congrats to Eliopoulos and Cosby!

Spam of the day:

Buy Flagyl Online

Why the hell would I do that? Flagyl makes everything taste like pennies forever and if you aren’t careful taking it, it messes up your gut bacteria and you end up with C. diff which means months of crapping uncontrollably. A’course, this is black market flagyl, which means it’ll probably not be real and have other charming (side-)effects. Have fun with that.

¹ Cow Boy publisher Archaia was bought by BOOM! a while back.

Retirements, Returns, And Launches

It’s been odd, the past half-week or so: The Nib has been quiet, with no comics more recent than three or four days, a sad echo of what was the best congregator of editorial comics, story comics, confessional comics, comics journalism, and just plain comics¹ that we’ve seen come down the pike for a good long time. And they paid. We knew the end was coming, but it’s still disturbing to see the final week’s entries getting older. There was a new comic from (once and possibly still) site editor Matt Bors today, but it wasn’t his usual editorial work, more a randomized snark.

In a way, it’s a perfect companion to the new focus that Nib overlords at Medium want — more social, less contextual, more likely to be shared and digested in a quick bite than require some time and thought. Said overlords changed their minds about what they wanted from The Nib once, maybe they’ll change them again — or at least decide to take a hands-off approach to Bors’s editorial vision. Maybe he can get the band back together. Maybe it wasn’t just a fleeting moment that we’ll never have again. At least they went out with sharp elbows and some of their best work even as the lights were being turned off.

Happier notes:

  • If ever somebody doesn’t get why Oh Joy, Sex Toy [Not Safe If Your Work Is Insufficiently Awesome] is wonderful, show them today’s strip. I don’t know if I’m more in love with Erika’s description of the doodad² or the illustration of the pokébattle³ at the end, which she has seen to provide a mostly SFW version of at her twitterfeed. I don’t need a device that tracks how I’m doing my Kegel exercises, but thanks to this comic, I kind of want one.
  • Speaking of things I didn’t realize I wanted: of all the webcomickers that have drifted away from my daily attention, probably none has been so neglected as Marc Ellerby, creator of the long-wrapped Ellerbisms. I don’t know what it is — I like Ellerby’s work a whole lot, but if I don’t actively pay attention to him, he just slips off my radar for embarrassingly long intervals. The upside to this is I sometimes find in my absence, he’s completed entire works of comics that I get to enjoy all at once.

    Or maybe I’m lucky enough to catch a retweet of an announcement, such as this morning when Ellerby let us know that Gumroad has pay what you want pricing for Ellerbisms and Chloe Noonan. Ellerby’s Gumroad store is here and there I learn — holy crap! — that Ellerby is also illustrating for the Ricky & Morty comic book (makes sense — his style is right up the R&M alley). So go give him some attention and — more importantly — money.

  • I am behind on the news that Lumberjanes is being made into a movie; I could claim that I wanted to wait a couple of days to see if there would be any women assigned to the early creative effort, like pairing up with (or replacing) the screenwriter, but nothing since the news broke last week. That’s not really it, though — I saw the news last week and inexplicably didn’t write about it. Anyway. Lumberjanes is great, and if somebody on the inside can confirm something that I’ve been wondering about since the news hit — do Noelle Stevenson, Grace Ellis, and Shannon Watters get paid as a result of the rights sale, or just BOOM!? — then all will be well (assuming I get the answer I want, namely, yes, the ladies are cashing big checks of screw this! money).

Spam of the day:
No quote, but a story. I got an email from a PR firm (bad start) that obviously just sent out a blast to every blog it could find regardless of relevance (gettin’ worse), asking me to consider covering the story of a 72 year old opera singer who is recording her first album and has only eight days left on her Kickstarter to reach funding. But the thing that tells me that this PR flack that I’m not going to name is very bad at her job is the fact that she didn’t include a goddamn link to the goddamn Kickstarter.

¹ Man, I’m gonna miss having Gemma Correll delivered straight to my brain.

² A FitBit for your ClitBits.

³ Of course it’s Squirtle. I see what you did there, Erika.

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.

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.