The State of Everything Eviscerati

Submitted by C B Wright on

Figured I should bring everyone up to speed on everything that's been going on. I know the site looks placid and easygoing on the outside, but behind the scenes things are a frenzied mass of activity.

So here's an update on all the content:

Drupal 6 to 7 Conversion

This has been postponed once again. I did figure out what I needed to do to cross the last mile, and I've managed to reconfigure the live site to make that easier going forward... but there's too much other stuff going on right now.

Help Desk

I've started updating again, and I managed an entire week this time! It's strange: although Help Desk doesn't really take a lot of time to put together1 I'm also notoriously inconsistent with updating it. Usually it's because if I find myself working too hard to come up with a punchline I'll just walk away from it and try it the next day. Ten or twelve years ago it was pretty easy to come up with an off the cuff "damn you evil technology" gag but now when I do that I wind up searching through my archives, afraid I've already used it. When I have topical storylines it's pretty to come up with fresh mockery since every travesty committed by the computer industry, despite feeling hauntingly familiar, is unique in its own special way.2

Kernel Panic

I actually have a complete storyline planned for Kernel Panic. Seriously. I think it's kind of funny, too. So far I haven't been able to muster the will to take the idea and give it form, but I'm working up to it.

Old Skool Webcomic

I only update this when I think of something suitably weird. I haven't thought of anything suitably weird lately. Still in standby mode.

PCtown

PCtown is the most frustrating project ever because I have an entire storyline realized, I have actual scripts for the next five or six comics, but I haven't yet mustered the will to draw them. I'm not an artist, and to get what you see in the comics I've done so far what I had to do was search for images that I could use as references and painstakingly use bits and pieces of them to create a composite vector drawing.3 I find it brain-breaking work. But I still do intend to continue it. I know it's been... years... but I am officially not abandoning this.

The Points Between

Chapter 22 marked the end of Part 1 of this story. I immediately took a few weeks off, though now that I think of it I didn't actually tell anyone that.4 For those of you wondering if I'm going to continue the story, yes I am, and soon. But apparently I really needed some time away. The last few chapters were excruciatingly painful to write, a little distance will do me good.

Super Special Secret Project

In the last few months I came up with an idea for something I thought was unique and I wanted to see what would happen if I tried it. I'm not quite ready to talk about it yet because I'm still tying up some loose ends but it should be ready to go in the next week or two. I'll tell you more about it then.

As with most of my ideas it's ill-advised, nothing good can come from it, and it'll probably all end in tears.5

  • 1. it's freaking clipart! You arrange the pictures, add the words, and boom! Comic.
  • 2. A snowflake of failure and shame.
  • 3. I didn't trace them, I just had them up on screen sort of the way real artists might use a live model in a studio.
  • 4. Oops.
  • 5. So it's terribly exciting and I can't wait to show you all.

Comments

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FTFY

s/I'm not an artist/I'm an incredibly creative person, but am still early in my development and need more practice/

The longer version

Just to add to what I wrote above, please don't sell yourself short.

Every olympic runner starts as a helpless lump of flesh that can't muster the strength and stamina to roll over. Every great artist goes through the equivalent of a period of unintelligible scribbles with crayon on lined paper (or walls). Every programmer or system administrator can tell you horror stories about when they did exactly the wrong thing. Every great orator starts with shrieks and cries and eventually moves through coos and mimicking.

For what you're trying to do, you can make your progress by simply committing to spend a few minutes a day. Get a package of mechanical pencils and a ream of printer paper and just commit to yourself to draw one thing on some sort of steady schedule. If you want, you can even share them on the site along with information about how frequently you've committed to do it. Then, on schedule, draw one thing.

At first it can be anything. Geometric shapes, simple solids, or wisps of clouds. Draw from material some days, and from your imagination on others. Choose items based on how ambitious you feel that day and how much of a challenge you feel prepared for. It's even okay if you draw the same simple thing a dozen days in a row just to keep the habit.

Once you have the habit in place, you can look back over what you've done and see how you have progressed. Especially getting started, you'll find that you make rather quick progress, and then at some point you'll see your work leveling out. At that point, you can decide whether to seek new techniques or just continue the practice to maintain the skill you have so far.

Materials needed:
- a natural or artificial limb capable of grasping a mechanical pencil
- mechanical pencils
- mechanical pencil lead
- printer paper
- a scanner (optional, but recommended)
- sheet protectors (optional, but recommended)
- a few minutes a day
- enough desire to commit the previous materials
- an audience (optional, I can't speak to recommendation on this one)

Keep 'em coming

Looking forward to the next of all your comics. It's tremendously exciting to hear that more PCtown may yet see the light of day. (I have heard the draw-something-anything-every-day plan as being very effective, but...mechanical pencils? We hates them, we does.)

I was fortunate enough to not start Pay Me Bug! till you were almost done it. I'm (with difficulty) waiting to start TPB - I just can't cope with alternating reading and waiting. I would never have made a contemporary Dickens fan.