Archive for June, 2008

35 days

Friday, June 27th, 2008

43.jpgSo I was catching up with Justin last week and he asked, quite casually, “So what’s your next deadline for David?”

Ha.

I’m one goal-oriented sucka*, so my brain kind of stalled for a second when I realized I hadn’t set one yet (What? Preposterous! Unconceivable! I’ve been done for almost two months!). While my mind was sputtering (what is it now…? June. Or July? And then, what’s next: August? I mean, there’s like 200 pages, so that’s how many pages per day? Yikes!) my mouth responded with a cool “Uh, September 1st.”

Ha.

One way I make sure I meet my deadlines is to tell people, so I have to burden some self-imposed shame if I don’t make it… so I guess Sept 1st is now official. If I’d thought about it for longer, it might have been October 1st, or maybe even November 1st; but now it’s September 1st, which is sooner. Like, 30 or so days sooner. And I wrote SIX WHOLE LINES this week. Yeeg.

Which brings me to consider the illustration work that is eating all my Writing Time. So, in light of that: I’m taking a month off. Dammit. I will not be taking any new projects in the month of August, so if you want to commission me for something pretty before then, please let me know soon. I’ll be a wild, drawing, burn-me-out-to-blindness machine until July 30th. At that time, I will trade my Wacom for some good ol’ fashioned keys. Illustrator will be turned in for basic Word. And exhaustion will once again be based on the brain and not my eyes because of my ITTY-BITTY-MICROSCOPIC-SPECIMEN OF A COMPUTER SCREEN.

* See also: crazed, obsessed

Stay cool!

Monday, June 16th, 2008

WearPittsburgh’s released two new designs, both created by yours truly.

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Babushka League is my favorite design I’ve done so far. The concept of putting a kerchief on a bowling ball is funny enough; add that to the musings early in its development on “how do we make it more Polish?” and the resulting sausage and pierogies in among the pins… and this was the most fun. I think the final design had to lose the flowers because of printing restrictions, but I’m posting the original here.

…aaand now I’m hungry.

I am Iron Man

Tuesday, June 10th, 2008

monkey.jpgIron Man was all kinds of amazing. I’m not a Robert Downey, Jr. fan, but okay… he totally won me over. No one else could have pulled off a better Tony Stark. I don’t know how they toed the line between believable and corny, but I bought it. Ten!

I got to relive a little of the excitement of Harry Potter. A friend of mine found himself (happily) unemployed and used his new free time to begin reading again. He went from reading “nothing, ever” to “the whole HP series, over a couple weeks.” It’s so nice to geek out over a fantasy series I absolutely adore. Especially when it’s done over pie. As far as I’m concerned, Heaven is spelled P-I-E.

I finally read Philip Pullman’s The Golden Compass, and was totally underwhelmed. Pullman did a nice job constructing the world, and I enjoyed the bit with the armored bears… but I didn’t find the story all that engaging. When it ended, I didn’t feel at all interested in what Lyra was doing next — rather, I was just glad she was going away. I’m not an expert, but that can’t be an effective way to start a trilogy. Also: where was all the controversy? I realize I’m on the wrong side of the fence to be offended, but I didn’t get much of anything in the way of “killing God”… Pullman portrayed the church as one would relate the far-reaching power and somewhat questionable practices from a couple hundred years ago. Calm down, people.

A girlfriend lent me Anne Bishop’s The Black Jewels Trilogy. I will admit Daughter of the Blood was pretty slow going at first; as in, I didn’t get into until page 277 slow, but I did eventually buy into it and the characters and the world. I’ve only read the first book, but unlike Pullman’s His Dark Materials, I’ll be continuing with this series. A warning, however: the whole society is based on sex and the dark, magical, power-hungry society revolving around it — and it’s not always pretty. Sometimes it’s unapologetically graphic. So if you’re faint of heart, maybe try something lighter.

Currently, I’m reading Terry Pratchett’s Wintersmith. Pratchett’s one of my favorite authors EVER. I was fishing through my bookshelf for one of his to lend out (he has his own shelf in my house), and got wrapped up in wanting to read them all over again. Wintersmith is in his Tiffany Aching series, which is decidedly more YA than the other Discworld stuff I’ve read. His imagination is just kickin’. It gets my brain fired up.

Okay. Enough monkeying around. Back to work.

And we’re back…

Wednesday, June 4th, 2008

39.jpgTaking the month of May off of writing was the best thing I could have done. This time two years ago, when I’d finished first installment of The Sum of David on May 1st, I was chomping at the bit to get back into it two weeks later. I enjoyed the full four weeks off this round, taking care of some general life things while my brain recuperated from my writing binge in April.

I feel recovered, and my mind’s inner storyteller is ready to rock again. I’m getting random little jolts of inspiration throughout the day — when I sleep, on the bus, during work, when I’m reading. My brain is sucking up every day observations like a sponge takes water, playing out little daydreams on how I could use them on my characters and then tucking the scenarios away. That means it’s time.

I went to the coffee shop last night feeling nervous. I’ve been excited about getting back down to business since last week, but there are times when you just can’t get it right, despite the best intentions. I was afraid I’d sit down and dig my heels in only to find myself feeling lost and overwhelmed. Fortunately, after the caffeine was flowing and the music got loud, things happened.

There’s certainly no dressing it up, though. This one’s going to be tough. There’s so many little parts and pieces that have to fit together by the end. The first draft was hard, but I’ve got several parts that are missing that need to be filled in, and revelations I made a week ago that have to be put into place. This is by far the most complicated story I’ve tried to wrangle so far.

It also has the potential to be the best piece of fiction I’ve ever created.

I think I’ve got it in me. Time will only tell.

Holy Smokes

Monday, June 2nd, 2008

If you sliiide your gaze to the upper right-hand corner of my site, you’ll see a Portfolio link for my illustrations.

Madness!