Monday, February 11, 2008

Odd Ends

I've been busy lately--very, very busy--and likely to remain that way for a while, which explains my dearth of blogging but does not ease the guilt gnawing at my soul. I appreciate the loyalty of everyone who checks in once in a while. I'll try to make it worth your while soon. Meanwhile, here are some Internetty things I've come across that I've found interesting:

1. Successful science fiction writer John Scalzi posted 10 tips titled "Unasked for Advice for New Writers About Money." Although aimed at aspiring, inexperienced, or struggling writers, I found much wisdom there for any sort of self-employed freelancer type (which I've been for about nine years, completely independent of cartooning). Scalzi's aim is to wipe the romantic stardust from wanna-be eyes and tell some hard truths: Treat it like a business. Don't quit your day job. Don't undervalue your work. Your income is half what you think it is (there's no automatic paycheck deduction to help pay those quarterly taxes). And my favorite, marry someone with a real job. I have little argument with any of it, although the comments raise some interesting counter-examples and objections.

2. Comic book writer Steve Gerber, creator of Howard the Duck, died today at age 60 after a long fight with pulmonary fibrosis. Mark Evanier broke the news and wrote a nice obit in his blog. I liked Mr. Gerber's work, which was intelligent and witty, but mention him here mostly because he wrote a blog himself. In it he discussed current comic book projects but also his illness, and his archived posts describing successive set-backs with a mix of hope, frustration, courage and fear reminded me very much of my mother's. It's good to remember once in a while.

3. Something lighter? Drawn is "the illustration and cartooning blog" that always gives me a dozen new ideas and two dozen talented people to be jealous of, while io9 is a new blog that delivers news about science fiction and speculative tech in a breezy format that consistently scores one or two hits a day with me. And every month or two I find time to listen to the JCB Song. I can't help being a sentimental dope; having kids'll do that to you.

4. Something lighter still? There's no going wrong with a Monty Python Video Wall.

More and better later. Thanks.


Sherwood Harrington said...

I can certainly sympathize with the being too busy to blog circumstance -- but thank you for giving us some interesting material to keep us happy until you return.

And thanks for not just posting some silly picture of your cat instead, like somebody here tends to do. Not naming names or anything; just sayin'.

l said...

It's kind of creepy. I read that writing tips piece and almost heard Nat's voice coming out of the screen, giving someone a long lecture. But then again, maybe all computer-savvy, sci-fi guys sound the same.

m.e. said...

love the monty python wall!!

sherwood is angling for a cat bite!