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Lack of RL success is sapping my will to draw
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Ann-Cygnus



Joined: 13 May 2012
Posts: 12

PostPosted: Mon Sep 03, 2012 7:51 pm    Post subject: Lack of RL success is sapping my will to draw Reply with quote

My comic is getting updated very irregularly these days, because of real life issues.


I've been trying to succeed with certain endeavors (career-wise, voluntary wise, etc.) but no matter what I end up with nothing. This then leads me to want to draw... and then feel bad about it, because I'm not making any money whatsoever from drawing or my webcomic (for which I'm allowing myself to make inconsistencies and mistakes). I also have a blog that I had been working hard on for that past two years, but because of the aforementioned RL issue, it doesn't get updated as much as it used to.


So there's my story... thank you for listening. It was good to let that out.
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vaslittlecrow



Joined: 01 Aug 2005
Posts: 754

PostPosted: Tue Sep 04, 2012 1:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Do you need help with you comic in any way? I am a big fan, so I maybe I could help.
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Ann-Cygnus



Joined: 13 May 2012
Posts: 12

PostPosted: Tue Sep 04, 2012 1:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

vaslittlecrow wrote:
Do you need help with you comic in any way? I am a big fan, so I maybe I could help.



You're already helping! ;p The main thing I need help with though, is making sure I actually make it despite life feeling so damn rough of late...

by the by, I sent another pm to you. And while I'm at it, I also want to share some character designs/ideas with you!
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Bill Murphy



Joined: 22 Aug 2012
Posts: 28

PostPosted: Tue Sep 04, 2012 4:29 am    Post subject: Re: Lack of RL success is sapping my will to draw Reply with quote

Real Life issues will never go away. It's a side effect of having a real life.

"This then leads me to want to draw... and then feel bad about it, because I'm not making any money whatsoever from drawing or my webcomic"
If creating art makes you happy, you need to focus on the value in that.

"I also have a blog that I had been working hard on for that past two years, but because of the aforementioned RL issue, it doesn't get updated as much as it used to."
Quality not quantity? If real life takes you away from your blog updates, then make sure that everytime you have a chance to update your blog; you make the best, clearest to the point blog that you can write for your readers.


"So there's my story... thank you for listening. It was good to let that out."
expressing your worries with words is a great way to ease your stress.
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ewomack
Grand prize winner!


Joined: 05 Jun 2007
Posts: 469

PostPosted: Tue Sep 04, 2012 7:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think everyone here can identify... real life always gets in the way of real real life. Everyone should draw or sculpt or paint or make noise with sticks. The winner take all attitude of western culture makes us think that only certain people are wired to create interesting things. Of course, some are lucky to make a living off of it, but I bet no one is making a GREAT living off of a webcomic. These people have had some form of luck that elevated them up to another level of exposure. They're not as uniquely talented as they seem because great comics exist everywhere.

But you're still drawing and haven't given up. That's the important part. When things go sour in my life I have a very hard time keeping up the comic pace, but if I don't I feel even worse, so I muddle through somehow.

Just keep drawing...
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Ed Womack
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sailorptah



Joined: 31 Aug 2005
Posts: 26

PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2012 3:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The way to think about this really depends on whether you see your webcomic as a hobby or something you'd like to do for a living one day...

If it's a work plan: Studies suggest that it takes about 10,000 hours of practice to get good at anything. Therefore, all the time you spend drawing is an irreplaceable investment. Like a position that requires an advanced degree, the only way to get there is to make an investment first.

If it's a hobby: Own it! Feel no shame about having a pastime! If you were casually into gardening, would you let people harass you for not trying to become a professional florist? Should everyone who isn't looking to get scouted for the NBA feel bad about taking some friends down to the corner lot and playing a casual round of basketball? And what about those people who read novels in their free time -- how are *they* going to get any money out of it?

Either way, I hope you can shake out of the guilt and feel good about drawing again ^_^
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vulpeslibertas
Level 1 threat


Joined: 19 Dec 2005
Posts: 2490
Location: Here and there...mostly there. Sometimes kinda in between.

PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2012 3:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I pretty much second everything that's been said here. In addition to that, it may be that you're just trying too much all at once. Pick one or two things and make those the most important things, everything else can slide.

I've got about 5 or 6 major projects I'm working on, but I'm really only doing 2 or 3 things at once. I haven't updated my webcomic in about 2 years. Right now, all I'm really doing is: Job, Project #1, and some random backup project when I get tired of the other two things. It's ok to rotate out every now and then. I just spent a week doing nothing but my random backup project. As a result, I'm a lot more charged up this week for working on Project #1.

SailorPtah, nice to see you around this neighborhood. I was just looking in on your comic the other night for the first time in ages.
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sailorptah



Joined: 31 Aug 2005
Posts: 26

PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 10:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks, vulpeslibertas! This seems like a good laid-back place to get some of the webcomic discussion I've been missing ^_^

Rotating tasks is a good idea. I know I get my best work done when I'm procrastinating on something else. It's that warm fuzzy feeling of "sure, I didn't make any progress on that big school project...but look how far ahead I am in the comic's queue!"
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jorgea



Joined: 08 Sep 2012
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Sat Sep 08, 2012 2:45 am    Post subject: Life Issues Reply with quote

I hope you get things back on track in your life
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Bill Murphy



Joined: 22 Aug 2012
Posts: 28

PostPosted: Sat Sep 08, 2012 4:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Many professional webcomics have studios away from their home so that when they are at work, "real life" doesn't step in and pull them away from making their deadlines.
Perhaps find a place where you can work in peace where people won't be disturbing you. A library or a coffe shop (off peak hours) for example.
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vulpeslibertas
Level 1 threat


Joined: 19 Dec 2005
Posts: 2490
Location: Here and there...mostly there. Sometimes kinda in between.

PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 3:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

sailorptah wrote:
This seems like a good laid-back place to get some of the webcomic discussion I've been missing ^_^
It used to be much more active 3-4 years ago, but I've always liked the environment here, and it's always been a good place for discussion of the deeper issues affecting webcomic writers.

Bill Murphy wrote:
Perhaps find a place where you can work in peace where people won't be disturbing you. A library or a coffe shop (off peak hours) for example.
Or even just a corner closet that's "The Comic Only Spot"
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Bill Murphy



Joined: 22 Aug 2012
Posts: 28

PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 3:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

vulpeslibertas wrote:


Bill Murphy wrote:
Perhaps find a place where you can work in peace where people won't be disturbing you. A library or a coffe shop (off peak hours) for example.
Or even just a corner closet that's "The Comic Only Spot"


My office is a closet. Laughing
http://www.casuallyemployed.com/how-its-made/
And trust me. When they know where to find you, they will... Confused
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Justinfh



Joined: 30 Sep 2012
Posts: 87

PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2012 3:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I will never make any money off my Web comic. Not a single penny. Mainly because I can't draw worth a shit. However, I still enjoy what I do. So when I create a new comic strip for a website, it usually puts me in a good mood. Doing creative things gives me a natural high.
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ttallan
Postpostpostpostpost!


Joined: 28 Feb 2008
Posts: 1128
Location: Ontario

PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2012 5:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I find that I can only listen to so much of the treat your webcomic like a job if you ever want to become successful! advice. Partly because it's stressful, and partly because it implies that if you do treat your webcomic like a job then success automatically follows. Uh, no.

Early on, I was much happier treating my comic as a hobby. Like any hobby I really enjoy, I spent a lot of time on it. I had goals and schedules to keep, but I didn't make them too strenuous and I didn't worry if I wasn't making money. Six years later (not counting my pre-webcomic comic work) I'm finally starting to earn something off this. Not lots, but something. In another few years, as my audience slowly builds and I have more books to offer, I expect to be doing even better. I enjoy doing this with my free time. If it was all about the money, I'd have quit long ago in frustration. Instead, I'm pleased with the progress I've made.

Unless you are already a professional artist and already have experience with marketing your art, I believe that you have to come at this kind of career slowly, without money as a goal (don't quit your day job, as they say). You have to do it because you love it, and for no other reason. Because so very few people make money at this. If you start gaining an audience, then by all means pursue it-- start selling prints, start putting together POD books to sell, whatever. Build from there.

If your goal is to make money in art, there are far more reliable ways to do it than webcomics! Commercial art. Animation. Anything.

Meanwhile, keep drawing/writing for as long as you enjoy it. If your family complains, tell them there are far worse hobbies you could be spending your time and money on. Do you know how much it costs if you're a golfer? Those club fees are ridiculous, and that's not even counting the equipment. And how much would you be spending if you happened to be a race car enthusiast? And for that matter, do you know how many years most published writers spent working on their first novel? Seriously. Webcomics is a great hobby. Don't let anyone tell you that you have to stop just because you're not shaping up to be the next Penny Arcade. (Or else tell all those weekend golfers they have to stop playing when they don't make the cut for the US Open.)

Huh... I didn't mean for this to end up so ranty! But I've seen too many money-greedy wanna-be comic creators show up, make a lot of noise, and then vanish into the woodwork over the years. Enjoy being creative! Smile
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Clint Wolf



Joined: 15 Apr 2010
Posts: 298

PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2012 6:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Late to this conversation, but I just wanted to support Tara's post here. I've only been at this in any concerted sense for three years compared to her nearly two decade jaunt, but I've still seen my share of webcomic creators burning out. It's often not even a matter of money... they did love their story and wanted to tell it, but ended up feeling like it was too much to juggle and, as a result, the joy was leaching out of the process. And without the joy, what did they have left?

Some folks can handle dealing with life and still produce a comic on a constant basis, but it's not for everyone. Dave Sim forced himself to produce a page a day, every day, because that was his standard for being a professional. Within a few years, Dave Sim had an exhaustion breakdown, not to mention succumbing to permanent semi-insanity with his views on men vs. women. I can't help but think it might have been better for him if he had given himself the option of slowing down.

Keep your health, and keep your happiness, and if you can find the balance there with sharing your creativity with the world, so much the better.
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