Attack of Nature

I was supposed to have a couple of written pieces published by now. Not happening. I’m having a bit of a rough go. I’ll get over it.

They *are* in process, but… wildlife happened. Wildlife and trials. Wildlife, trials, victories, and celebratory whisky. But I’m blaming wildlife.

On Wednesday, a bobcat came sauntering down our driveway. At first I thought it was a stray dog – we get them from time to time – but as I was putting on my shoes to try to corral him… something was off.

Our English Lab weighs 100 pounds and exerts no less than 800 pounds of force when she wants to enthusiastically share a toy with us. This thing was bigger. It’s the 4th bobcat I’ve seen here, and the others were like “oversized house cats”. This thing was freaking huge. I had no idea a bobcat could be that large. Think cougar, but with a bobbed tail, Wolverine – the Marvel character – cheeks, and all the attitude that goes with a predator that doesn’t have to care.

Then, to top it off, our neighbor’s chickens went nuts on Thursday afternoon. That isn’t uncommon. Three minutes later a coyote ran into our yard with a large black chicken in his mouth. That is unusual. We’ve had larger coyotes in the yard but never one with a freshly caught Thanksgiving Dinner. Naturally, our idiotic dogs wanted to challenge him for his fairly-won meal. That didn’t go well for them, although it was only their egos that were injured.

There is something awesome to mention: both Codex & I leveled up with the comics we’ll be publishing next week. Monday’s comic was literally a lark in my brain two weeks ago but after multiple revisions and some drawing magic… well… we did good.

Thursday is even better. I wrote the comic so the words said by the characters involved could help sell the art, but the art needs no selling. It’s fantastic. Codex has never been able to do caricatures all that well. Not this time. I’m really happy with both comics, and trust me: I don’t say that very often.

I’m my own worst critic.

Apologies for not having more for you this week, but it is what it is. I’m hoping to drop a road-trip update (with gas prices and road signs) on Tuesday or Wednesday, but no promises. Enjoy Thanksgiving! And we pray that family stress which everybody on social media is talking about doesn’t interfere too much.

–> Codex & Q

It’s the End of the Year as We Know It

This has always been a difficult time of year for us and 2021 is no different. We could ignore the holidays and keep cranking out story comics. That would be the easy thing. The straightforward thing. The safe thing. The boring thing.

It wouldn’t be the right thing. People need hope, perhaps this year more than ever, and we aim to give it to them.

We’re road-tripping for Thanksgiving, which we suddenly discovered was next week. How did that happen? No idea. We’re off to an exotic foreign country and we don’t have the correct passports. It should be an adventure. Hope we live. We should be able to trade our pure blood for gas, so no worries there.

Codex is busy cranking out Thanksgiving comics that will run next week on Monday and Thursday. She is also starting our annual Christmas card, finishing up a book cover, completing some art for her d-a-y job, and, to top it off, we ran into a big problem with our Arkhaven venture.

Namely, these two comics:

We included them in The Churchians so new readers would know a bit of the backstory for our most important character. Codex threw them together at literally the last minute, taking six existing comics and gluing them together with layout magic and  entertaining exposition.

Much of the art in the first comic was rendered using our original process: drawing on paper, scanning it, cleaning it up, and electronically placing the bubbles and text. It had to be re-inked to make it suitable for Arkhaven. That was cheaper than redoing these from scratch, but it still wasn’t cheap. She spent as much time getting them ready to “factor” into the sequential panel structure Arkhaven wants as it takes her to do two new comics.

We still haven’t broke them out yet. We anticipate some… discussion. Fortunately, we don’t run the first one until December 4.

So… no new comics this week. We were going to have to break up the ongoing story in an awkward fashion to fit the Thanksgiving comics in, anyway. Now, we have Thanksgiving comics, four storyline comics, an extra frame to wrap up the current story arc, then… something (I have to figure it out), and finally Christmas comics to publish between December 20th and the New Year. We aren’t doing our traditional New Year’s comic this year. We have something new.

Story will resume the first week of January, although we might get a bit more the first couple weeks of December.

Meanwhile, I’ve been itching to talk about four-panel comics and why we are trying to do something few have succeeded at. If you are at all interested in making memes, comics, or writing, I hope you’ll find my posts on Wednesday and Friday interesting. Plus, you’ll get to see a bunch of comics from our archive as examples.

Later,

Codex & Q

Bounding Into Comics Reviews… Vegfolk Fables!

You can read the whole thing for yourself here.

The quick breakdown:

Codex, Glyph, and I hammered and hammered on our descriptive text on the Arkhaven site. When we were done, we hammered some more. I think the final version was the 6th or 7th draft. Time well spent: BIC printed it in full.

They re-printed parts of the first two comics, which is very nice because it gives potential readers a feel for our art, style, and humor. My only regret is that we didn’t have a different second comic: Of the first story arc (six comics) #2 is by far the weakest. It is still good, just not as good.

The Dark Herald, the author of the review, talked about how great VeggieTales was – and he (she?) is right – and reviewed the sad ending of Big Idea Entertainment. New episodes are still being produced, but they are shadow of those made by the original creators.

“It’s time for something new. Something for today. That’s where Vegfolk Fables comes in.”

High praise indeed!

Thank you Bounding Into Comics and The Dark Herald for your kind words.

–> Codex & Q

 

The Arkhaven Publishing Escapade

Tempest in a Teardrop is proud to announce The Churchians will be published at Arkhaven, an independent and superversive comics aggregation site. It’s similar to Webtoons, but without the weird, the sick, and the broken that pervades many (most?) online comics in our woke, clownish world. The Churchians is called Vegfolk Fables at Arkhaven. We might officially change the name here at some point, but that’s a different post for a different time.

We’ll be running comics from the very beginning, three days a week: Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. We’re fixing as we go. It’s mostly minor spelling errors, but we get a chance to redo some of my more awkward text bubbles (I’m a much better comic writer than I was 5 years ago when we started), Codex gets a chance to fix the occasional art faux pas, and a name or two need to be tweaked. For example, we refer to ‘Snipe’ but I changed the name to ‘Quill’. Two years after we published the comic we mention him.

You’ve seen Quill. We just haven’t officially identified him yet.

We also get a chance to renumber everything. You’d think after almost 600 comics we’d… have that down. Heh.

The first comic was published today, about 7 hours ago. They use Swiss time, and my fingers don’t spin the right way to work out the math. Let’s not complicate things by tossing in flat earth theory. Just expect them to arrive about 4am Pacific Time, should you wish to read them there.

And you should. You’ll find many other great comics you had no idea existed. The comics are free, but you can show your support if you buy a subscription.

For our current readers: nothing changes. We’ll still be publishing new comics on Mondays and Fridays here.

If you’ve found your way to this post via Arkhaven: Welcome! Should you explore a bit, you might see what we’ll be publishing at Arkhaven over the next weeks, months, and (hopefully) years to come.

–> Codex & Q