I had a small spark of Kickstarter addiction last year. I’ve been able to temper that addiction a bit with the new year, but at least I get to enjoy the first fruits of that limited shopping spree. On the very same day, I received two packages, each one containing a webcomics kickstarter reward.
I had already written about the Widdershins, a comic I had earlier suggested to support. It’s wonderful to see Kate Ashwin’s work in printed form. She’s been a kind person to me and a great artist who’s whimsical whit and stylings have crafted a wonderful world of Widdershins and it’s inhabitants. Johnny Wander, on the other hand, has been a gorgeous diary/journal-esque story of two webcomic artists and their daily life. It’s been a quiet favorite of mine for some time, so having the printed copies of volume 1 and 3 have been a lovely treat to have.
As I read through both of these comics, a sense of nostalgia came over me. It’s been years since I was in the world of webcomics proper. I was a shit writer, attempting to become a webcomics critic of people’s work that spent time (and sometimes money) into this quirky medium. A lot of these comics will never be known-some may just fade into obscurity on the internet. But they still persist, for the love of the medium or just wanting to tell their story.
I found my old bookmarks from my time as a reviewer. Last time I counted, there was close to 300–400 comics listed there. It took me nearly an hour to get through them every day, as I organized all the webcomics by their update frequency. It was a challenge- and I loved it.
But it was a crapshoot. It took too much money, too much time, and the reward was insignificant to my future. At a certain point, I had to give it up. Since then, I haven’t read as many webcomics as I do now. But I still miss it. I miss the enviroment of a truly set of indie comics and their unique artists and writers.
Wait shit I forgot to order Johnny Wander volume 2…. crap.
Support an amazing artist. Kate Ashwin (aka, Komiyan) is an old friend from my times back in the webcomic days (I say that as if it’s a lifetime ago, but in the world of the internet, it really was). She’s a sweetheart with an amazing talent for whimsical fantasy stories that just draw you in. Widdershins is her latest creation, and she’s kickstarting the print version. She’s already 2/3rds of the way there, and I want to see her accomplish this. Support an amazing artist and her creation. It’s worth it, I promise.
I failed to mention an appearance I had in a webomic recently! An old friend of mine, Robin Meyer put me in her web comic, Real Life Fiction. This used to be a regular thing for me- I appeared in a variety of friend’s webcomics in all sorts and forms. I suppose when I get my own personal site completely up and running, one of the pages will have to be appearances I made in comics. (Do check out Real Life Fiction- Robin is insane, but in an amusing, mostly non offensive way). I’m working on a couple of long form blog posts, including one about my thoughts on the Mass Effect movie. I’ve had just a random assortment of things thrown my way as of late, but with some great news (I became full-time at my job! hooray!) I might finally be able to structure my time a bit more effectively to get things like my own site and writing (both screenwriting and blogging) done effectively. Last but not least, I’d like to share a picture I have- my grandmother playing with my new ipad. She’s had two chances to use it so far- the first, she was beside herself laughing at Bebot, and the second, Garage Band. Getting used to the touch interface has been the biggest difficulty for her, but she’s been enjoying it so far.
In the end, the Cornstalker forums are completely done. The upgrade itself was relatively short in comparisoin to the preparation and cleanup of the forums. I attempted to prepare myself for this upgrade, but in the end, as well prepared I was, the problems I encounctered were server specific. My original plan was to access the Cornstlker server via ssh- only to find that there was no SSH support to begin with. FTP proved to be worthless- constant timeouts had me banging my head against the table. In the end, a slow http download that took hours was my only choice. I could have skipped the backup, but experience has strengthened m belief in the addage, “Better be safe than sorry”. The cleanup was simple- moving the old foruls to another folder and moving the new forums, creating a search index, so on and so forth were things I prepared for. What’s next? Well, there are new smilies installed on the forums as requested by the administrators. The PHPBBlog on the frontpage is now broken. If I have the time, I may go back and re-write some of the code so I can get working with the PHPBB3 forums. I doubt it, thought. I’ve been working on CS pro bono so far, as a favor. Aside from the last bits of finishing the forums and the removal of PHPBBlog, I do think my work with the Cornstalkers is done for now- any other work will require compensation of some sort. I’m trying to start a side buisness of website design- at some point, i have to stop taking pro bono work. I won’t rule out working with CS per se, but my responsibilites with CS ended when I was removed from my assistant editor position. Don’t get me wrong, I still enjoy and worship these guys and gals for their incredible work (and i still read all of their comics), but I have plans of my own at this point. Projeccts of my own are coming along now. I’ve been looking into grants for one of the projects, but this idea is so grandiose, I would rather get other projects off the ground before I focus on this one. All I have to say for this project would be a TV pilot for a documentary-esque show. I wish I could say more, but alas, my lips are sealed. I’m also taking a look at the Facebook API. While the whole thing is over-hyped (I am of the opinion that the Facebook value is in a bubble, and will pop in due time) , I find great possibilities for the API in terms of creating mashups. I’m doing all of this while learning PHP as well as some MySQL. Applications and coding may be one of the new parts of the Team Mayhem conduit. As for Team Mayhem, there are plans. ohoho yes, there are plans.
I’m sitting in the computer lab of my college, eager (ha) to start my first week of classes. Most of my friends have all but returned to their respective colleges, and i was probably one of the last to start. I’ve been in a flurry, just continuing the classes i need for my general education courses needed to transfer to other schools. I’ve also started to organize myself a bit better now. I’ve realized that my current system of organziation is woefully lax, and as such, have begun to use my palm pilot a bit more now, as before, i used it as a method to play old school SNES and Genesis games on it (wonderful little emulator called LittleJohn, i think), but with the coming of my mac, i’ve started to sync it more often and keep at least a reasonable schedule on it. I’ve also found myself rather happy with the way i’ve been managing my time and my efforts in the variety of projects i have strewn about. iSync does a wonderful job of connecting itself with the Palm HotSync manager on the Mac, and i can be able to keep my address book now on my mac, my palm pilot, and my cell phone, to boot. Simplicity at its best. Two sites that i’ve found that have helped me along the way is Lifehacker, an amazing blog with little tricks to help manage your time and your basic way of life, and Plaxo, a retarded sounding networking site. Both have their ups and downs that are remarkable to me and have helped me try to get stuff organized for now. I’ll be using Plaxo to sync my calendar with google calendars so i can have that running about as i’m on the go. I’ve been considering getting my own personal site with its own domain name just in case i need to get some… hub site of sorts together.
‘s own hub site is an excellent example of one for comics, but i want one that would combine my personal and professional work in one simple site. I was thinking about making it as a WordPress site, but i don’t want to abandon LJ. I guess I’ll have to weigh the pros and cons of everything I have so far and see if having my own separate blog would be a good idea. I was thinking of creating a unified RSS feed for everything i have so far, using Yahoo’s excellent
Yahoo Pipes, which was used to create the unified Cornstalker Collective feed back in the day. What’s coming out of this, you ask? i have no idea. First off is to learn the new template systems for Joomla 1.5 and for the PHPBB3 forums. From what small glimpses i’ve had so far, it looks like the stuff is relatively easy to use and whatnot, so we’ll have to wait and see on how everything goes.
So I made a test forums in order to test the modified code that i did for the Cornstalker Collective Site (it works wonderfully now, thankfully!), but it wasn’t soon enough before… the bots invaded the test forums. This picture is sliiightly old. by maybe a week or so. The good news… new users need mod approval before they can activate their account and post. The bad news… the new users need mod approval before they can activate their account and post, notifying the admins via email. I have 125 emails so far notfying me of new users. 11 so far today. Man, bots are getting agressive.
Well, I finally got down to it, and the Cornstalker website was released thirty minutes before it was officially supposed to. Everything’s gone off without a hitch, save for two bugs that were discovered after the launch – looks like there’s some CSS positioning troubles in Safari and maybe a preloading script issue (even though there is a preloading script in place, it’s not working properly, because there’s been a suggestion to put one IN). The blog is working fine, so I can finally put that Cornstalker project to rest and move on to new ones. Website design related, my next big site will be my own portfolio site. Each Team Mayhem member has their own subdomain for a portfolio-Primo already has his, and that’s working out just fine. I’m the next one due, as i need something to put my own personal shit on. It’ll act as my own mini hub connecting all of my accounts all over the place (deviantArt, this LJ, twitter, etc.) as well as to post my site design, and finally, a list of webcomics cameos i’ve had. I’ve been meaning to post all this time. All my cameos from the first Darken cameo to the Reckless Youth one (I’ve been fond of that one, i dunno why) to my Legostar Galactica appearance (as a 70’s lego, which again, was pure awesome). Roofing on my house starts tomorrow. Before I go to bed tonight, I’ll be moving my computer out of my room and into my living room ,as my part of the house… well, won’t have a roof at all, by the looks of it. My part of the house was added on later on, and as such, has no insulation… and a thin roof. This part of the roof will probably be torn off, and I’ll be out of a room and perhaps a computer for a while, unless i plug it in my living room, which actually sounds like a good idea to me. As for the blog title… well, it just came to me off the top of my head. Don’t mind me.
Webcomics Report site is almost done. I ran it through some tests and its working beautifully. Continuing with a blue motif. All I need to do now is finish the review template and ACTUALLY FINISH A REVIEW. (shock and awe commence). Friday or Monday are my deadlines. Next week, Team Mayhem Productions. EDIT: Here’s a quick little preview of what it’s going to look like. The Ads aren’t finished yet, unfortunately, and i think the logo is going to change again.
Sarcasm is with me. Everyone, rejoice! So yes, updates for everything I’m working by, ordered by project! Cornstalker Working currently on a new blog system that i found, called PHPBB Blog. the name is exactly what it means- it takes a forum, and displays it in a bloglike system (any posts after the initial first post are comments). The final version was released, with a bug or two. i’m working on making the output a bit more purdy than usual and getting it just right (small bugs here and there, which i can hopefully fix). I’m also working on a rough version of the site entirely in CSS, by scratch, which im extremely and utterly proud of. really, i am. Cornstalker Radio **Those who know about it, can know im writing a song or two and the scripts. Spring, hopefully? I gotta talk to the artists involved, and get my own shit together. **Team Mayhem.net **I scrapped the site. completely and utterly. i was using a template, which left a lot for me to desire. i’d rather build it by scratch, so i can be proud of the design and work away at making something completely and utterly cool. I’m still going by ‘s early mockup, but with a little twist to it. Joomla has helped every step of the way to make this perfect for its content. And yes, we’re getting new videos and such to throw on there. and OOH, new music from the awesomely cool Think Alike. There’s a music video planned for one of their songs, as well. **Webcomics Report **After a bit of a mixup, im back at work on the webcomics report, trying to get the site on something of a working status. Yes, its another site designed entirely in Joomla, but this time around, it’s going to be a little different from the usual Joomla shit i do, so bringing those features to work seamlessly with one another has been something of a struggle for me. Plus, i have all of my reviews written down by hand. I need to type them up and edit them. ETA… March, maybe? I hope so. I want to have something of a jump start before applying to my expos again as press. **Unnamed Comic Yes, this is the comic I’m serving as producer and assistant writer to. The artist and writer of Blue Eyed Devil is working on this one, but it’s had some setbacks, as one of the main stars have dropped out, so we’re looking for new comics. If you couldn’t tell, yes, this is a webcomic, and to where we’re hosting it on is still a mystery to us. I’m looking to all of our choices to where we can host it, so as soon as we have a good buffer, we’re launching SOMEWHERE. Yes, SOMEWHERE. I wish i could tell more, but all i can say is that it’s going to be fun, action wise. first big action sequence takes place in an elevator. with a sawed off shotgun. joy for violence. **Blue Eyed Devil **Yes, this comic is going to make a quick return. Gonna pick it up once we get the chance. **Zombie **The project has been greenlight by all of the other Team Mayhem Productions members. I’m writing the pilot and the second epsiodes, in mind for a 15 episode run. So yes, expect me to start blabbing on and on about working with zombies. I pray we can get sneek peeks and trailers done in spring.