Hi, everyone! So I'm a priest now, which is pretty cool. Since my last post I've kept fairly busy although August was a joyful sabbath month. I thought I would do a lot of drawing then but I didn't do as much as expected. I did do a lot of script-writing, though, so the story continues.
In the last month, though, for some reason I've felt super motivated to draw and draw and so I just finished auto-posting a TON of new pages. You guys are set well into May of 2017 - there will be no more breaks for Clergy Conference or for the two week long stint I will have doing a course in Jerusalem in January!
It feels weird to see all those pages ready to post automatically. I've been trying hard to push the story along; in my whole life I've only ever actually written two comics, both of them when I was a pre-teen, and neither was done like this, with a script and a full story arc written out ahead of time, so oddly enough although the stories were not as good the pacing was a lot better. I am still learning a lot about pacing in an image-based medium (the medium in which I have the most skill and training is solely text-based), and there's a steep curve. This first book has already gone on much longer than I expected, and even when you guys are caught up with all the posts I just made the story still has a couple more beats to it. I actually bumped up the beginning of Chapter 4 to break things up better.
So I'm sorry "Surfacing" is taking forever to wrap up!
There will be some serious work done planning the following books to not last so long, although I do want to strike a balance between a tight story with lots of action and the character development and emotional depth that I so enjoy writing and seeing in other works.
In the meantime, I haven't lost my excitement over transcribing the words of the script into images! The script has existed so much longer than the images (in fact, it's been finished for over six months), and now I'm starting lay out the more exciting bits. I can't wait until "Surfacing" is finished!
I will admit that it's likely the second book will look very different from this first one. To keep a sense of consistency (and to track my improvement) I'm going to continue in the same style you see here until we are out of "Surfacing." In "Voices," the second book, I will likely incorporate many of the techniques I've learned to add some depth and light to the images. We'll see how that turns out. If I am happy with the results, I may even publish it on my own as a physical copy just for fun.
I hope that you have enjoyed what you've seen so far, and thank you all for your patience as I learn. This has been a fun but challenging hobby and I really do want to continue.
Holy hell, it's only about two weeks until my ordination to the priesthood! Everyone has been asking me how I feel about it, and I really don't know what to say. I'm not sure I've fully internalized what's happening. This is the culmination of ten years' worth of prayer, discernment, tears, and personal work. I'm so honoured and so...well, apprehensive. But I figure that's okay. It would be much worse if I didn't give it any thought.
I can't believe we're at the third chapter already! I feel like the pacing is a little bit better now, but we're also headed into some pages that are going to be unlike anything I've ever really drawn before. I'm still working out the kinks of portraying what you're about to see, and I'm excited about learning more and where it can go.
Over the last year or so I've actually surprised myself with how much work I've put into this. It's definitely a hobby, and yet I'm proud of dedicating the few precious hours of free time I have to this endeavour. For now, I'm just happy to offer it as it is. It just felt so much better to actually have something to show for all of the notes and characters and development that's been sitting around for half of my life.
I share this with you because I actually managed to finish the "script" to the first book! (My process is to write outlines for each book, follow those up with a script that looks kind of like a teleplay, and then translate that to images). The outlines obviously take far less time than the scripts themselves, and so although I have the basic structure of five books, only one of them actually has a finished script.
I hope you'll stick with me as I continue on this adventure! Thanks for reading so far! I love and welcome all of your comments and subscribes!
How did we get into the second chapter already?! This is bonkers you guys!
I'm still working on pacing and whatnot, but I think we're on a good roll. I've already learned a lot but I'll probably always stay an amateur. I'm pretty okay with that.
As you can imagine, things start to pick up in the second chapter and get more complicated. I really hope you'll stick around for the ride!
I've had so much fun creating this. It's something I've always wanted to do, and now it's happening. Thanks, ComicFury, for hosting!
Wow! It's been so long since that last blog entry!
Since I first started posting this series, I have been ordained to the transitional diaconate. I get to wear a collar and call myself "the Reverend," but there are still about eight months between me and full-fledged priesthood.
So this story has gotten sort of intense! It tends to stay somewhat dramatic over the course of series, but there will be fun and light moments too.
Out of all of the characters, Abby has probably changed the most from the original story I wrote as a teen. For one thing, she used to be called Eve, and she used to be a little blonde-ish white girl, and she didn't have much agency at all. I decided to change her appearance because children who look like Abby are so rarely given agency in Western media, which prefers to portray them as sad waifs with huge eyes who literally stand in weepy silence while soft-spoken bearded white dudes (or incredibly attractive famous women) intone serious and depressing predictions about their futures (unless, of course, you, the white Saviour, sends money - and I myself have been guilty of succumbing to this).
Even though Abby is luckier than most to have been born in a country like Canada, society has already imposed restrictions on her solely based on how she looks, and will continue to do so throughout her life. Wanting to give her agency as her own personality (instead of making her into a Magic Negro - look it up on TVTropes or Wikipedia) affected the story as well.
What I didn't expect was that changing Abby would also necessitate changing Sarah, who also started out as a blonde white girl. I had easily changed her body type earlier, but I felt decidedly icky about portraying her as white and tasked with protecting a child of colour, because it felt unbalanced. Surprisingly enough, changing her appearance was a little harder for me, because I had been drawing her and thinking of her in that particular way for so long. In the end I decided to portray her as she is to reflect the growing societal trend toward "mixed" families and to counter a disturbing trend of erasure in Hollywood of these types of families.
So Abby makes her first choice - and we may not agree with it, because let's face it, she was bullied into it - and thus begins her journey as the Dream Child.
Sooo this is the first time I've ever created a webcomic! That at least is something to be celebrated. My subpar colouring skills don't translate well on my scanner so I'm aware how amateur this looks, but considering it's up here for free I figure y'all can give me a bit of leeway. We'll see what I can do to teach myself more about it in the meantime. This is a hobby and it's one of quite a few that occupy my time.
A bit about me: I'm a recently graduated seminary student hoping to be ordained to the Anglican priesthood. I've been an avid anime and manga fan for twenty years and have been drawing in that style for about that long as well. I have invented and drawn many characters but these are the first to really be allowed out into the world.
A bit about the series: I first conceived of this series in 2000 or 2001. It was very different then and was far more of a standard "magical girl" story, but much of the story arc is still largely intact. As I grew older the characters sort of grew up with me. The first things to change were their fashion choices, and as I started to read more about feminism and encountered the wonderfully inspiring body diversity of comics like Wet Moon, their bodies and their ethnicities began to change as well. Finally, the spiritual angle began to deepen and mature, and I began to explore some of the darker implications of mystical powers and seemingly fixed destinies.
I hope you enjoy it, and I look forward to posting more really soon!