Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Two-Day

Hi guys!

Boy, that took a good little bit, but here we are. Nonplayer 2 is on stands today (print version here, digital version here). I feel like I've crested the second of a series of increasingly taller peaks -- there's the peak of #3 poking up out of the mist in the distance, but before I start hiking back down and prepping for the next climb, I'm going to enjoy the view for a second.

I have now drawn two comics! So nice to be able to speak about them in plural. Almost sixty pages. I know that's not a huge accomplishment by professional comic standards, but it was really challenging for me, and I'm happy that I've been able to keep going.

Of course, now that there's a second book out there, I'm getting lots of questions from people who may not have followed this journey from the beginning, so here's an FAQ:

Q: Wait. FOUR YEARS?

A: Yes. This comic took four years to make.

Q: How can I take you seriously when your book takes so long to make?

A: I should not be taken seriously. I have a family and a day job, and I make this book solely between the hours of 3 and 6 AM on weekdays. The book is not, nor has it ever been, financially self-sustaining. I do it because I enjoy doing it.

Q: Uh. Surely you've got the next five issues ready to go, though? There's no way you want me to wait that long for #3!?!

A: I am only now laying out #3. It will not come out quickly. I hope very much that it takes less time than #2, but I have learned to make no promises.

Q: But I heard you got a movie deal after the first issue came out. Aren't you rich now?

A: Nonplayer was optioned by Warner Bros. in 2012. That option paid for repairs to the roof of our house. We ate out more often that year, too. The option has since lapsed. I am not rich. Should renewed Hollywood interest result in some substantial influx of money, that money will be spent finishing Nonplayer #3 much more quickly.

Q: Why don't you just do a Kickstarter for #3?

A: I have not been able to make the math work out. I would need an amount of money similar to what I make in video games, and that amount is probably not achievable through Kickstarter. If I were in this position before getting married and having a child, I would definitely have gone this route and slept on somebody's couch for a year. Alas, I have responsibilities. If anybody has other ideas for funding the book, I am all ears.

Q: The only reason I was into Nonplayer was that I thought Dana was cool. I see that she barely shows up in the second issue. What gives?

A: Dana will continue to be the protagonist, and she will be all over issue 3. Issue 2 sets in motion a lot of machinery that will make more sense when read in the context of the finished collection. This book is all about Dana.

Q: Oh, then I have no further questions, and I support your book wholeheartedly! Where can I buy awesome Nonplayer merchandise?

A: You can find issues of Nonplayer #1 and #2, as well as posters big and small, at the Nonplayer Store. International shipping has been recently fixed, so everybody should be happy forever. If you have questions about shipping stuff, you can contact me directly through the contact link at the store.

Q: Will you be doing any signings?

A: Yes. I will be bringing myself, my comics, and my posters to the following events:

Comics Dungeon, Seattle: Wednesday, June 3 from 4pm to 6pm
Arcane Comics, Seattle: Friday, June 5 from 6pm to 9pm
Destiny City Comics, Tacoma: Sunday, June 7 from 2pm to 4pm
Third Eye Comics, Annapolis: Saturday, June 13 from 11am to 1pm
HeroesCon, Charlotte: Friday, June 19 - Sunday, June 21

Thanks for all of your support, guys. I haven't been going about this the normal way, and I know that there's some controversy because of that. It means a lot that you've been so enthusiastic about the book. You are the reason that I haven't yet surrendered to common sense.

Also, I encourage you to start working on your own projects, regardless of their justifiability! We've got a thing called the Holy Order of Viking Draftspeople (#HOVD on Twitter), where we all cheer for one another in the wee hours of the morning. I would love to see more folks suffering with us!

Okay. Sling that backpack, swig from the canteen, and back down the mountain we go. See you at the next peak.



13 comments:

  1. just finished the 2nd issue, and it was awesome; the wait well worth! if it would take u another 4 years to finish issue three, it would be ok with me. I rather wait 4 years for a great and very very nicely done issue, than to get an issue for fast consumption on a monthly base.

    keep on rolling ;)

    ps i'm a big TinTin fan and was happy to see his space rocket in the background.

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  2. OK yeah I enjoyed #2 but you say you are only now laying out #3 - the whole series should be layed out before you even started page 1 of #1. This is why its taking 4 years an issue and you are having to restart and throw out 6 or 7 pages of issue 2. Dude, before you even start out on 3 thumbnail the whole series, when you happy with the thumbnails scan them and work over those. youll have the whole thing finished by this time next year.

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  3. If you don't trust me listen to Dave Gibbons here http://www.thickets.net/toren/2009/03/02/thumbnails-and-other-comic-schemes-by-dave-gibbons/

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    1. Tbf, Dave Gibbons was working on a detailed script from Alan Moore, in which every panel was described by someone and then Gibbons interpreted that. Nate is writing it himself, and teaching himself how to write comics as he goes. Should he write the entire script first, then do layouts, then start drawing each page? Maybe. But maybe he doesn't visualize it in script form. Maybe he'll need to change things as he learns and grows during the process. It's an interesting suggestion, but not a straight comparison.

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    2. Oh totes I agree.
      I tend to scribble 3 thumbnails on lined note book pages adding captions and dialogue ideas at the edges as a writing process. Each to their own in that regard. Its a recipe for delay and reworkings to plunge in with the basic framework established though i feel

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  4. F***g bastards...lets buy it and have some fun =) Here in Europe there are some many artists that took more than 6ys to finish a GN and theres a line for it. DropDead and go on...haters gonna hate at the end =) =).

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  5. Betty you can't compare one artist (and his/her working process) with another artist. What works for Dave Gibbon not necessary must work for ALL other artist. People are different.
    Plus Nate Simpson's' art is far more detailed than Dave's; I'm not saying it's better or worst; but the extra details in Nate's work does need its extra time.

    I wonder what you Betty will come up with in the next 4 years.

    And to quote one more artist to the end: Neil Gaiman reply to one of his fans who complained about George RR Martin slow writting process of the Ice & Fire book series: 'George RR Martin [and any other artist] is not your bitch'.

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    1. Stefan, as an artist myself, I can and often do compare one artists process with another. I too wonder what I will come up with in the next 4 years although a glance around my studio gives me a fair idea of what the next 4 months has in store!

      I expect and desire no one to be my bitch. Seems to me Martin has long considered his audience his bitches . . .

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  7. I check back here every once in a while. Glad to see you whackin' away at a personal project! One of my personal projects is to plan a personal project. Keep up the good work!

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  8. really inspiring to read your perseverance and journey in getting your second issue out, enjoyed it on so many levels, art work , worlds you've created and story you've constructed, been well worth the wait :)

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