New Readers Guide

Hi, thanks for coming to my comic site! I know things are a little confusing at first, because of the way that I have the multiple-story archive set up. So let me try to walk you through how things are put together.

First of all, every single story is always accessible directly from the archive page, where you can get to the individual stories, see the overall calendar view, and read the textual recaps of the longer stories where I've made recaps available.

Secondly, you might notice that most of the stories are sub-stories of "Unity." This part is a little confusing too; basically, the original story entitled "Unity" establishes a kind of complicated setting, but the best way to get into it is to just read the stories as you like. (If you want, you can also buy print collections.)

There's a few other weird wrinkles in the archive. Journal comics were originally part of my weblog, but I eventually pulled them into this comic site as well, but some of the early ones especially are about things I was actively blogging about at the time. So, if you don't understand them, don't worry, it's not really worth trying to.

Then there's the navigation stuff. On most comics, you have four buttons: first, previous, next, and current. Well, since this comic site collects multiple stories, the "first" button refers to the first strip in the series you're looking at. There's an additional button to the left of it, which goes back to the story list.

Finally, there are a few different views that you can use to consume different amounts of comic at a time. There's the typical "daily" view, then there's also the less-common "weekly" view, then there's the even-less-common "monthly" view, and finally, there's the "comments" view (which lets you look at the transcript, if available, and any comments on the individual comics, but also treats news posts as part of that stream as well). The date-based views can all be switched to by the handy calendar that's at the top of the date-based pages, and you can always switch between specific views with the links below the navigation bar.

This is confusing and annoying but you'll get the hang of it! And of course the best way to subscribe to new comic posts is via RSS or some other syndication service (such as Comic Rocket).


2017/03/22: Switching to Disqus

A helpful reader emailed me to point out that the comment system was subtly broken, and rather than try to fix a miasma of duct tape and paperclips once again I decided to switch to Disqus.

Currently the legacy comment system isn't visible but don't worry, the comments still exist! I'm working on writing an importer to get the old comments over to the new system. The comments have all been imported. It isn't great but they're there.

Meanwhile, Disqus gives a few advantages. It has pretty decent spam filtering, anyone can upvote/downvote comments, and you can stalk follow fellow commenters on other Disqus-enabled sites! (If you do not want to be followed in this way it is easy enough to disable your public profile on your Disqus settings.) There's also some nice comment reply notification stuff that lets you know about goings-on across whatever sites you use that also use Disqus.

I'm not a huge fan of handing all this data over to third parties, but keep in mind that all the comments were being indexed/stored by Google et al anyway, and Disqus has been around for a while and has shown themselves to be at least reasonably trustworthy as far as pervasive Internet things go. The only thing I really dislike is the requirement to use Javascript and that's kind of unavoidable these days.

Anyway, the other option was to remove comments entirely and I figure that's a last-resort measure.

2017/03/18: So, a funny thing happened on the way to the comic

First I had surgery in late January.

Then that got infected.

Then the antibiotics for the infection knocked out my intestinal flora.

Then the recovery from that left my immune system vulnerable and I got a cold that lasted about a month (although to be fair apparently everyone on the entire left coast has been laid waste by this).

Then the latest Zelda game came out.

So really, it's amazing I've gotten any comics done at all.

2017/02/12: I repeat myself

This comic probably looks a bit familiar — it's what I posted here, 10 years ago to the day. Why not read it from the start?

Or, better yet, buy it in paperback or PDF. Don't worry, I have many many copies left...

Anyway, book 1 was the first time I'd managed to make an entire comic series from beginning to end without losing interest or giving up. I learned a lot about my creative process from it, and got a lot better at managing my attention and plotting. Book 1 was incredibly rough in places and there were a lot of dangling plot hooks that never went anywhere or got resolved in a weird way, but that was part of my ongoing learning experience with not simply making everything up as I went along. Most of my comics since then have been at least somewhat plotted out in advance (but not so closely as to make it impossible to improvise as I go).

I also learned a lot about myself along the way and of course used this as a framework for exploring aspects of my identity. My own gender stuff is always at least in the background (and sometimes the foreground) of these comics, and later on (especially in book 2) I started to explore the dichotomy between my scientific rationality with my latent spirituality. (This is, of course, a much more prominent theme in Lewi, but I digress.) And now in the year 2017 I can say that I'm... still transgender (and my genitals are finally configured correctly, although still a bit sore), and I'm also finally working towards embracing at least the ethnic side of my heritage.

Who knows, maybe in another 10 years I'll have finally started drawing book 3!

(Any day, now...)


  • 955 total comics published (including 83 sketchbook pages, not counting 20 guest arts)