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Reply mitchellbravo, January 13th, 2015, 9:37 pm

Took me WAY longer to do this than I'd planned. I wanted this scene to be 2 pages but then once I actually sat down with it I couldn't really fit it well in 2 in terms of pacing, so I extended the next page over two instead. I don't know whether I'll get page 2 up tomorrow, but definitely by the weekend it should be up.

See, I had envisioned having this whole scene done by New Year's so I could do a big fruity puity wrap-up weep message like I did last year, right?

Well, let's see what I can write now that it's already awkwardly partway through January.

Things are so different in my life now from where I was this time last year. I started off the year subbing, took over a medical leave position in May/June, came back to regular subbing in September, and then got asked to take on an aide position in late October, where I've been ever since. In December I filled out an application for grad school to get my Masters in teaching, and I just had my interview with the school yesterday and will be hearing back hopefully soon whether I'll be able to start this Spring semester.

I just can't remember a time in my life prior to now where I actually had direction, let alone one that I was actively guiding myself along. I feel like I'm becoming okay with this idea of being an adult and am no longer digging my feet in anymore trying to avoid it, I can embrace it, I can look at my future with relative peace instead of it just being an empty, lightless void.

Back in October and November I was in a pretty bleak, dark place. I stuck it out but god damn, was I ever having a hard time getting myself to do anything. I worry that I'm going to find myself in the same place again any day, but in the meantime I try to just wake up and be grateful when I'm not feeling that way, and get things done when I can.

Over the summer I had the fortune of "internet-meeting" Oly-RRR whose friendship pulled me out of a similar slump I was in going through July/August, and I really can't thank her enough for that. She's provided me with so much amazing feedback and input both in the comments here and in PMs we send back and forth and it really helped me to actually enjoy making comics again.

And I extend that thanks to all of the rest of my readers as well. I check my stats pretty regularly, it makes my day to see that someone is going through large chunks of the archive, if not the whole thing, especially considering how embarassing and dull those first chapters are. I don't know what it is that motivated any of you to read past like, page 30, but I'm fucking glad you did, thanks for wasting time with me.

Those who leave me comments- you're my sweet, wiggly little jelly beans. I get an email any time someone leaves a comment/thicket of comments. I've been doing this shit for like six years now and I still swoon when I get those notifications. Whether it's some in-depth observation or just letting me know a page made you laugh or feel some emotion, I love it. That's my lifeblood. That's the most significant reason I put this on the internet. The fact that I am telling you a story and it moved you enough one way or another that you actually felt compelled to tell me about it is just the most miraculous feeling.

What else, what else. Well, I fell woefully short of my goal of updating at least 70 times in 2014. I didn't even finish chapter 6, as you can see. My goal this year is to update at least 50 times, just because I imagine my hiatus is going to be extra long this time around due to how long the script for chapter seven is shaping up to be, and the pages are going to require more research and detail than any chapter prior (just shit tons of new settings I need to find references for, that kind of thing).

I started off 2014 with 50 fans on Smackjeeves, and now I am floating merrily along at 71. I'm pretty sure at least 40 of the people on the fan list are actually inactive users or faved the comic out of some kind of forum-poster loyalty, or used to read the comic but no longer follow it, but a net increase of 21 fans over a year is really, really cool for a comic that only updates once or twice a month on average.

Through ProjectWonderful ads, this year I made a whopping $3.13, which is enough to buy an entire Prismacolor marker. I know, right? Like, move over, Bill Gates. I hope that this year I earn enough through ads to my ProjectWonderful account that I can theoretically make a withdrawal.

That's all that I can think to say for now. There will definitely be more (less interesting) info to come along with the next two pages, but we'll get there when we get there.

In the meantime, I hope you all had a nice holiday/New Years season and that you are wearing your favorite flower robe.


Reply Squirreltastic-Blue, January 15th, 2015, 1:43 am

Happy New year, Mitchellbravo.

So, you're a teacher? Right on! I'm working my way there currently.

I just wanted to say that your backgrounds often blow me away. Looking at the effort and quality you put into them makes me feel like my small studio team and I are just a bunch of jokers! And I mean that in the best was possible.

Reply Oly-RRR, January 15th, 2015, 8:47 am

D'awww. Best thing to wake up to! X) An update and the heart-warming year wrap-up!

It was so weird clicking on the link and realising the end of chapter 5 was a year ago. I mean I remembered the wrap-up post and the art of those pages closer to new pages but still, it makes one realise, woah, what a year it has been. A pretty good one! :D

I AM OBVIOUSLY ALSO SO GLAD WE'VE "INTERNET-MET"! :D I dunno if I would be enjoying making comics that much otherwise either - I mean I am still trudging to updating more than once a month but I can actually see myself doing it more and not just doodling and complaining how I should get to the comic. :D

I think the first panel turned out great! :D It sort of "lets you into" the rest of the page nicely. And I like the green tint, this is pretty much how damp-but-not-actually-rainy-yet days feel to me!

Saaay, Eddie, when you want photos of your car, do you want them to be nuuudes? :D Or simply suggestive? This is where all those wall calendars with barenaked chicks hugging Harleys came from! ...I'm sorry I shouldn't make fun of the man's tragedy. 8(

Reply mitchellbravo, January 18th, 2015, 7:55 pm

@Squirreltastic-Blue: And Happy New Year to you, too, my favoritest squirrel!

That's awesome! What area of expertise, if I may ask?

And aww, thanks! I really appreciate that :') Backgrounds have always been a struggle for me, no matter how I try to dress them up as something more fun or interesting and hide the cauliflower in the mashed potatoes if you will, they always feel like an exhausting chore I dread getting to. So it's really encouraging to hear that my efforts do pay off when I bother to go through with them :D

@Oly-RRR: I KNOW RIGHT??? It feels weird looking back on this chapter because I feel at once like it's been going way longer than it has, and yet my brain also keeps tricking me into thinking I began it in August because that's when it takes place :o Shit, if I had been able to put out this many pages just since August... *fans self, faints*

Ahahahaha I feel the same way!!! It's like you encourage me either way, whether I'm telling myself "Get the page done so you can show Oly" or "Fuck this stupid page, I need to write to Oly about it" XD

Thank you! I'm glad the way it turned out, myself, and thank you for kinda helping me bat around ideas even if it was mostly me drunkenly whinging at you and you being reassuring XP The green tint was fun, all of it is done with marker and I feel like it makes me able to "smell" the interior XP And yes me too! Like right after a thunderstorm...

LOL. GOING TO MAKE EDDIE'S SEXY CAR CALENDAR NOW. (Ponders at the logistics of a Sports Illustrated style pinups where the girls are all washing the car but wearing chronologically correct woolen bathing suits and swim caps :D )

Reply Oly-RRR, January 19th, 2015, 9:15 am

@mitchellbravo: Haha, same! In my case right now it's more "fuck this page" but really I'm sooo close and I have a feeling things might go better once it's done. Though as predicted you'll be done with the whole scene by the time I'm done with the page. XD ...er, it has weird bubbles? <:D

Yeah, I notice sometimes we need to discuss stuff just to realise we actually know the decision! I'm glad I could help even if it was like "yeah, yeah, you could do this- or yeaaah, you could do that as well.." XD

THOSE PINUPS NEED TO HAPPEN. Though Cecilia's robe is already pinup-appropriate, I mean she can ~sexily unwrap herself out of it~ ...oh no, writing my cops and weird people starts to rub off, doesn't it? Now I imagine Cecilia starting to undo the robe and then STARING DISAPPROVINGLY. 8I I'm sure she would be able to somehow keep both Philip and Troy and Robbo in control, probably more effectively than Murray and no, undoing the robe wouldn't be involved. >_>

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