The story is finished. Here are the next steps I plan:
Produce an additional 10 or so pages of character art/random illustrations in a finished state.
Make the damn book out of the storyboard pages, with the extra pages slotted in.
Have a printer’s proof made thereof.
Let it lie for at least one month.
Run a Kickstarter to fund editing and production.
If the Kickstarter funds, make a comic book!
I think I’m gonna spend a couple months playing with vidya. Running a Kickstarter in December is unwise because everyone’s broke with the Christmas spending. Running a Kickstarter in January is unwise because everyone is still broke with the Christmas spending. But February? February is fine. February is more than fine. People are starting to get their tax returns in.
We are inching ever forward. The climax is storyboarded, all that remains is the denoument. The storyboard may well be finished this week. Not sure how it’ll go after that. Probably I’ll do a print proof using the storyboard art just and, say, 10 pages of original drawings just to give room for any extra I have to add in the second draft. This way we’ll see how bad my margin error is. Then take a month or two off from this project to let it settle before working on revisions.
I continue to tinker around the edges with my Piqha RPG. If it works out well, frankly it makes more sense for me to tell future Hat Trick stories as mini RPGs. But at this precise moment it’s more me feeling an unmet need to write a little code. I think I may duplicate last year, though, and turn December into an attempt to get the prototype of the RPG up and running. We’ll see.
Well, crap. I’ve been doing something wrong this whole time, and now that I’m 80 pages in, it’s gonna be a beast to fix.
My template is set up so that the panels bump right into the gutter.
There should be a sliver of a margin between the gutter and the panel border unless I’m intentionally running a panel into the gutter (which I do, from time to time).
I think I’m going to do a test print of the storyboard as is, so we’ll see how much of a problem it is before I set out to fix it, but… bro.
That said, 10 pages storyboarded this week, bringing the total to 81 penciled and 83 paneled and lettered.
That’s a full week of storyboarding. I am done making promises I’m constitutionally unlikely to keep, though. I will be pushing forward on Hat Trick next week, and I will be tinkering around with my piqha RPG, but we will see what actually happens.
Lost all of last week. My tent was well suited to my working at a slow but steady rate, but now winter is making overtures.
By the weekend I had settled on converting the basement into an art dungeon. And then I injured my knee, rendering large quantities of stair-climbing inadvisable.
My knee is just about good enough now that I can start building my art dungeon tomorrow. However, I also have a lot of busywork to catch up on unrelated to my comic, so my objective for this week is to catch up on responsibilities, and maybe, hopefully get a page or two done. My ultimate objective is to handle all my potential excuses so that I have no excuses remaining next week.
The right-hand page seems like a good one for ad purposes.
This week I kept a steady pace. No sudden jumps forward, and the only missed day was yesterday, due to an early morning medical appointment, which is the first time I’ve skipped a day for totally legitimate reasons. Here’s what my storyboard folder looks like:
I strongly suspect that I can make my panels and text a lot smaller. Fit more story into less space. I’m not going to do it for this book because it’s better to finish than to risk stalling out by starting over.
Ideally, I would have made a small book of 20-30 pages at this scale, printed it, and then made the judgement call. But that’s not the way it worked out this time. I’m making a big-ass comic book instead. God help me.
This week, from Monday through Friday, I completed 10 pages and paneled/lettered 2 more. Here’s the tail end of that. If you want to see all the pages, you can drop $2 at SubscribeStar or just wait for the book to come out.
That’s an average of one two-page spread a day, although the average is off because I had a birthday to celebrate this week. I’d like to kick that up, but I’m happy to be hitting what I feel is a bare minimum.
Specifically, I’ve gotten in the habit of finishing each session by paneling and lettering a two-page spread ahead. This is a low effort, ‘finishing touch’, and it allows me to begin the next day with pictures (the fun part), and a strong sense of momentum already in place. I’ve heard of authors writing a chapter a day, but each day it’s the second half of today’s chapter, and the first half of tomorrow’s, just to make sure they remain motivated to write tomorrow. And Hat Trick did stall out at a chapter break, so I think I’m going to continue using this trick.
October is coming. I had hoped to have the storyboard done by October so I could run a crowdfund to produce the comic. But it looks like I won’t be.
Anyway, I need to go rescue my chickens from my kids.