Hey critter fans,
Sorry to run a filler strip today. But we’ve all had those times where life or travel or work or interruptions get in the way of what we planned to accomplish. Wouldn’t it be nice if you could have filler strips for the world outside of webcomics? A chance to put a placeholder down and catch a breather? I could get behind that. So let’s say this strip is actually a nuanced meta commentary on the need to press pause sometimes given the fast-paced nature of our hyper-connected world. Yes. Let’s go with that.
If you do want to look at and read some other fun, exciting stuff on the Internet today, however, I will not disappoint! My friend Keir Briscoe, photographer and adventurer par excellence, has been off on world travels for the past couple months. He’s making the trip with an unusual paper companion and he’s got a knack for meeting really fun people. Fortunately for the rest of us, Keir has been posting thoughts and lots of awesome images from his journey. Share his experience from the comfort of your own laptop at his photo site, his travel blog, or though the #roadtripnick hashtag on Facebook.
I always keep a notebook. I’ve had this red one for ages. It was assigned as my notebook for creative writing, and my first entry was in August 2011. I drabbled my way through the pages over the years. No really, years. I’d put together a few words of random dialogue and see where they’d lead me. I’d imagine a nugget of story and play out a scene. The ideas would emerge, some of them pretty good ones, but they’d inevitably fizzle out. The first half of the notebook is disjointed. Scattered. Unfinished.
Then, in May 2015, I had the wild idea to make a webcomic.
So many pages!
The entire second half of this notebook is filled with prep work for Dog and Bird. Character development, long-term plots points, drafts, jokes, re-written jokes, re-re-written jokes. Far from fizzling, I felt like I always had thoughts on where the project might go or how to make it better. Even when I was stuck, the work still felt so satisfying.
I’m a writer first and foremost, so finishing off this notebook is an exciting milestone. It’s the first artifact I have of Dog and Bird’s beginning. I’ve re-read all of the notes and drafts a few times since beginning work on the project, and each time I do, I get excited about it all over again.
Some early drafting of strip #6.
Thanks for being with me for these 50-odd strips and the many hundred pages of behind-the-scenes work that helped make them happen. Here’s to lots more comics and many, many more notebooks.
(P.S. – If any of the hundred-some folks who found this via Reddit have stuck around, hello! Welcome to the party. I hope you like puns!)