Sunday, January 18, 2015

Speakeasies, Bootlegging and Stock Cars, baby.

Well, how-do, Strangers?

Welcome back to the best place on the interwebs to get the lowdown on Saturday the book. Think of it like a Speakeasy for book updates. Just say the password ("snootfull") to the ugly guy through the slot in the door and, after the briefest of patdowns to make sure you're not a copper, packing, or bringing in any outside food or drink, you'll be let right in. Just like TSA or Thanksgiving with Howard Hughes. 

This book is taking an extra long time to distill, I know. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that, once you've finally had a taste, you'll consider the wait worthwhile (and not immediately go blind from drinking a poisonous bootleg gin of a graphic novel). I think you'll find it a complex and full-bodied illustrated book, with subtle undertones of sarcasm, notes of cultural references, hints of humor, and very nutty. Also maybe oaky, 'cause it sounds classy to say "oaky".

If it's any consolation, I'm pretty much just waiting with you. Yeah, I'm doing stuff. I'm  not just sitting on my hands. Fer one, I'm still editing:


To This:


Probably only about four or five pages left whats needs editing. On top of the editing, I'm also searching for agents and publishers. To date, I've contacted 20 different individuals (and still had only two responses).  Again, it's a slow, frustrating process. I'm not worried, though. Even if I never find anyone who's interested in publishing it, I'm not worried.

See, I've tried for decades to put all the ingredients of my fevered imagination into something I would be proud of and proud to share with other people. There were a lot of failed attempts. Some of them even exploded in my face. But Saturday is the one. It was the most fun I've ever had drawing. And I'm definitely excited to share it with you.

I'm not sure if this is the case, but here's the impression I get: The publishing world is busy, crazy, and constantly shifting around. But it's also a bit insular. And it mostly distributes only the brands of liquor it has developed through it's own processes. I'm some guy who's been laboring at the copper stills of my imagination in the backwoods for years and I'm asking them to sell something I know is good. But I'm just not sure they'll go for it. It might just be too unfamiliar. Too unconventional.

Again, maybe that's the case and maybe it ain't. But if it is, I have no problem carefully pouring the big batch into portions for individual consumption, putting those into my souped up bootlegging vehicle, and driving them over the state line to get them to you. Of course, that route is WAY tougher. It means I'll have to pony up the dough for printing (substantial), distribution, and promotion. But I'm still not afraid of that. But for now, I'm going to give the traditional route a little more time.

In the meantime, here's a song by Jim Croce called "Rapid Roy":

("They say that he learned to race the stock car by runnin' shine outta Alabam,
   oh, the demolition derby and the figure eight is easy money in the bank
   compared to running from the man in Oklahoma City with a 500 gallon tank")


Sunday, January 4, 2015

All American Rejections

Hello there!

Welcome to the post-holiday update of "Saturday" the book. If you're anything like me, you're currently sitting in the glazed over, half-lidded malaise induced by a powerful combination of holiday foods, beverages and cold medicines and desperately trying to remember how to do your job before Monday rolls around.

There's bound to be an arm's length list of obligations that was growing like mold in an unwashed lunchbox while we all tried to enjoy each others' company on a brief respite from employment. So why not add one more? Here's something to read. You're welcome.

Fortunately, there isn't a whole lot to share in order to bring you up to speed. Unfortunately, that doesn't necessarily mean I'm going to employ brevity to do so.  As far as the drawing of "Saturday" goes, I'm still working on edits.

Oh, look: Here are some now:

The editing process is picking up speed. After some initial heaving and straining, it's moving at a decent clip. Any day now it will get ahead of me, roll out of control down a steep embankment, and tear through some unsuspecting hamlet of unedited panels.

The search for an agent and publisher is going at a decidedly slower pace, however. Good news, though! I've received two, count 'em, TWO responses from agencies! They were both rejections, but they felt like victories to me. It means that my query letters are actually being received and (theoretically) read by someone instead of going out into the ether and dying like the sad pleas of a lonely kid talking into a tin-can and string phone with no one at the other end.

If it seems like a disheartening process, it is. If you think I'm even the slightest bit discouraged by it, I ain't. I often tell people it takes a healthy amount of stubborn and stupid to be a freelance illustrator. Well, the stubborn/stupid multi-tool I use for freelance illustration can also be employed in the search for an agent and publisher. It's like a Swiss Army knife. Along with the stubborn knife and the stupid screw driver, it also has a set of unrealistic hopes tweezers, an overly-optimistic toothpick that I lost years ago, and a bottle opener. I plan to use every single tool during this search. Particularly the bottle opener.

So fear not.