Sunday, May 30, 2010

An Open Letter

Before I go any further, I need to state openly how sorry I am to have been a burden over the past few months. I hope in some small way, this letter will go towards repairing any rifts that I may have created. I am the type of person that feels the need to talk out my feelings rather than just let them lie. These things need to be said and if you think that they're being said to you, then they probably are.

When I left Savannah I was leaving things behind that I didn't want to face. I didn't want to face the prospect of trying to balance paying at best, half of a seriously high rent, on top of facing down the prospect of not being able to afford my bills. I also didn't like the idea of running into my ex-wife around town. As a city, I loved Savannah, and it was my home for so long, that to this day I still miss it and compare any new place to it. I hate that I left a few really good friends behind, since they were there for me as I prepared for the beginning of probably the worst one year period of my life. If I didn't say it before, I'm saying it now, thank you.

I went from Savannah to Orlando, where I had the most friends, and it seemed like the most promise. Unfortunately, that was not to be the case. It took nearly a month to get any employment at all, and it was only part time and at what was almost minimum wage. I had to replace my car and with help from my parents, was able to go a little way towards keeping me in Orlando. Unfortunately, every time a full time job looked promising, it fell through. Additional part time jobs even fell away. Every month it seemed I was depending more and more on my parents, whose support from three states away could only go so far. I tried very, very hard to make Orlando work, but my credit ran out, my money ran out and my safety net couldn't go any farther. I could have gone another month like this, but without full time employment at a decent salary, I would have to leave Orlando, and after another month of helping to support me, I wouldn't have the money to move, and the next month would be without any assistance, not by ultimatum, but because the money simply wouldn't have been there.

Likewise, it was a hard decision to leave another city. I had fallen in love with Orlando, and had made new friends. My friends there were great, but I didn't burden them with many of the details of my predicament, or what it was doing to me, emotionally. If there had been any way to stay in Orlando, I would have taken it. I find myself moving back to the town I had spent the first part of my adult life to leave behind.

I did make a few mistakes in the month after returning to North Carolina. I rushed into a relationship that I was ill-prepared for. I underestimated the side effects of letting prescriptions lapse. I treated old friends in a manner that was not consistent with what they deserved. For a few weeks, I spent almost every day at the nadir of emotional health. I really worried about where I would be over the course of a few days. There were some bright spots in this part, and that was the start of a new, full-time job. The start was delayed a little by a wait for enough new employees to start a proper training class.

So now I am working full time, preparing to enter a new phase of my job, and getting paid enough to meet some of my obligations. There are still some difficult steps to make, but with some stress off of me, I think I can handle it. Lenoir and I have come to an understanding, because of a good local music scene that presents some nice, cheap entertainment at least once a week. I also recently met someone who looked at Lenoir differently than everyone else I'd known, through new eyes, seeing all the nice, charming efforts to make downtown Lenoir a nice place to live. With the added benefit of free WiFi, downtown Lenoir and I have an understanding, I may not love it, but I can live with it for as long as I need to.

Again, I apologize for making demands on friendship. I was not in my right mind, and not making rational decisions. I was reacting to situations in a way that was not the way I should act, nor would act if I were in my right mind, without all the stresses that I was under. I'm ready to start fresh and move on. I hope you can forgive me so we can move on. If you need me, you know where to find me.

Sorry To Say It

We're gonna have a repeat of last week, with the strip going up sometime on Monday. If there's any explanation, it's that I got ill this week with some type of stomach bug. I'm working on it tonight, and then some more tomorrow. As soon as it's done, I'll get it put up.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Sorry Sorry Sorry Sorry

I completely blanked yesterday and forgot to scan the strip for this week. I'll do it after work, even going to tape a note to my computer.


Sorry it's late. It completely slipped my mind yesterday, stuff came up.

I'm ready to finish this thing.

I'm getting ready to finish Factor of 01. It's not that I'm sick or the story, I'm just getting another story ready to go, within my own head. It's not so much that I've chosen to work on another story, it's more that I've had the story come to me. It really seems like a Zen kind of thing, which would be neat, if I believed in that sort of thing. I create the story instead of waiting for it to create itself. However, I do realize that psychologically, I get ready for a certain story and the time is almost ready for this one.

Yeah, we're talking about Accepting Death. I need the therapy that doing this story will provide. I've become a real piece of work over the course of the past year, and there's a story in there that might help someone. When I did Too Scared To Die, a few people took the time to tell me that the story meant something to them. More importantly, doing the story helped me. The past week has been a really good week, but the experience of the past year has been one that needs to be shared.

However, I will not formally start it until I finish Factor of 01. I am not going to overload myself. I now have a full-time job and an effort to have a social life, I'm gonna make the effort to not throw too many balls in the air to juggle.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Hey, Come See Me In the Park!

I have plans to be at the Caldwell Arts Council's Festival In the Park on Saturday, May 22. My plan is to have a book of my work to browse through and to be drawing Jet-Pack Jenny comics all day. That is, unless the weather decides not to cooperate. More on that later, if it proves to be a factor.

UPDATE: The rain location is the Mulberry Rec Center.

In the meantime, you might also spot me at Futs on Main Street in Lenoir Wednesday night when I'll be taking in the music of Will Willis and Patrick Crouch, while drawing a little. It's a routine for me, and you should come just to listen to the music. You should come to Futs on Wednesday nights if you can, to take in some great music. There was a great crowd last week, and there's even a little cafe in the back if you'd like a little bite to eat. I go there to take in the music, primarily. Drawing is just something else I do while listening, trying to stay out of the way, but I'll talk if you come up and say hi.

Thursday is Draw Muhammad Day.

Taken from

I've yet to decide if I'm doing anything for Thursday or not.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

I Never Said WHEN on Monday

Sorry, but the new strip will be up late on Monday. I still need to scan and do some assembling in Photoshop before it's ready to post, and the clock has just run out on me today.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Character Flaws?

I just went back and re-read this, as I'm prone to do. It's from last October (and has been since changed to private status) and it still applies, so I'm re-posting it now.
Is it bleak and dark? Yes, at times. Now, for a spiritual person, this is the time that they fall back on their faith. However, I am not a spiritual person. True believers that do not understand the atheist mindset would say that someone in a hypothetical situation like mine as having no reason to continue. So why do I just not end the suffering now? After all, it’ll probably be bad for some time. However, I know that this is all the life I get. It’s more precious to me than it was when I was clinging to faith. I will not throw it away in the hope of something less painful waiting after death. I have this one life and when it’s done, there’s nothing left. I will not throw it away.
For the record, I have been an utter a**hole during my life, especially to my ex-wife. I have many character flaws and much of my life has been a continuous effort to repair them. However, I have always been devoted to my friends and willing to drop everything if they needed me. Whenever someone has called me in tears, I've been willing to spend hours on the phone with them. If they told me that they needed someone with them, I would be there. If you're one of my friends, I want you to know that, because I don't think I've said it often enough.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

No New Strip This Week

Sorry, there's not going to be a new strip up this week. I got sick early in the week and obligations have kept me from getting work done on the comic at all this weekend. I'm going to make a concerted effort to finish the next strip early in the week.
Sorry, I'm gonna try not to let it happen again.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Status Update

Looking back at the posts, I realize that I've been absent for the past couple of weeks. I figured that I should do a blog post just to say what I've been up to.

This week, I started a new job, where I'll be working for a large company that works for another, much larger company. My long time practice of not talking about my job while online prevents me from saying more than that. It's not great pay, especially for the first couple of months, but it is a full-time job, something I couldn't find in Florida. Hopefully this will help get me back on my feet, along with a major decision that I'm not going to discuss publicly for a while. I'll let some friends know privately, but it's yet another major change.

Comics-wise I'm trying to find a new routine that works with my new schedule and hopefully, get ahead on Factor of 01. I figure I'm somewhere between 1/2 to 2/3 of the way through. Once I get it done, I'll determine what to do next. No firm plans yet, but Accepting Death, the Mall's revision, a revised Virginia Dare, a Cybergirl story, and the Crimson Queen of Titan are all on the docket. Trust me, I will only tackle one at a time. Depending on the next project that I choose, I'll determine my path to publishing the story. Once Factor of 01 is finished, it will be collected into one volume.

Socially, I'm trying to make new friends in North Carolina, but finding that most of my social outlets are a little bit of a drive away in Gastonia and Charlotte. To remedy this in the future, I plan on moving out of Lenoir and somewhere just South of Hickory after I get back on my feet. I'll miss the free WiFi, but the savings on gas should make up for it in the long run. Until then, Lenoir does have a local music outlet in Futs & Co. which is good to go and draw while I take in some live music. Friday night, a really good rock band named Jester's Dulcet showed up at the open mic. Will Willis is a regular there and is really good. If you're ever in the vicinity of Lenoir, take in some local music.

So, how are you doing?