So yes, Marissa will be running around in that outfit for a bit.

ADDENDUM: Woo! Nothing like being mentioned on Grrl Power to send our site crashing right into a wall! I just logged into the VPS to allocate some more resources so hopefully things will load a little faster now.

More below!





Okay, so last week was fun. Marissa and her outfit turned out to be well-received, and of course (having seen the artwork in advance) I’d suspected as much so I’d already made a skyscraper Project Wonderful ad for it, which went live the instant the strip went up. Blatant cleavage clickbait and we should totally be ashamed of ourselves, except we’re not. Marissa is a fun character and we’re glad people seem to like her. If you’re new and clicked over because of one of those ads, welcome! We hope you’ll stick around!

Plus, the reader surveys Max had initiated a couple weeks back gave us some valuable information, such as many readers were also fans of a strip called Grrl Power. GP is also a member of the Collective of Heroes and I had been meaning to read it anyway (I’m trying to get through all the members, just to stay abreast of things) but I’d been starting with the strips that had shorter archives first. However, given the number of times GP was mentioned, I jumped over there. Started from the beginning (I’m about three-quarters through ATM) and now I’m a fan as well. So I threw an ad up there too. What I like about the PW ads is they’re a way of giving money to the strip creators while still getting a little something out of it for oneself. It’s not like you’re stealing readers, either – people will generally just read both, if they like both. And although we’ve been outbid a couple of times (I swear, Sandra and Woo must have a massive ad budget) it’s all good, because that means the artist is getting even more money.

One commenter also mentioned Out Of My Element which I also loved and it had a shorter archive, so I’ve been simultaneously reading that one, and got through it last night. Added it to my Comic Rocket list and bought an ad on that site as well. More money for them, and again, if you came from there – stick around! We’ll try to entertain!

And of course there’s always Shotgun Shuffle which I was a fan of already. Since that’s already running some cleavage humor at the moment, I figured the Marissa promos would fit right in.

(Links, etc. over in the “Targets of Opportunity” section down there to the right.)

I also read the blogs under each and every strip (which is why it takes time) and I’ve been amused to see that Max and I are not the only writer-artist team who wage internal wars of dominance. Out Of My Element is done by a husband-wife team and apparently the wife (Alli Perry, who does the drawing) gets just as upset as Max does about her darn husband’s word balloons covering the art. And yet I never hear about such troubles from Shawn Gustafson and Al Fukalek on The Specialists. Maybe the problem increases if you’re related in some way. It wouldn’t surprise me.

I think part of the problem on our end is that Max’s main job as a commercial storyboard artist means he is primarily required to lay out attractive, cinematic staging, using artsy concepts like Golden Rectangles and Three-Point-Perspective, and of course all the dialogue for storyboard scenes is pasted underneath the panels. The idea of leaving a gigantic wad of dead space above the characters just for word balloons is an anathema to him. And it doesn’t help that I often get inspired by the art and decide to put in a lot more words than were originally called for in the script.

But we’re learning. It’s all a process. Hell, I notice that even Dave Barrack, who both writes and draws Grrl Power, seems to get in fights with himself over the matter. So at least we’re in good company.

Ultimately though, it was a heady week, with lots of new traffic. If you didn’t catch it last week, Max has done wallpapers of the Steampunk Marissa pinup, and you can find them in the Wallpapers link at the top of the page.

Thanks again for reading! And please enjoy – we are!

— Bob out