Friday, December 21, 2007

An artful Christmas

Working in comics and with comics artists affords me one cool benefit: every year I get really nice-looking Christmas greetings. Here are two from companies/people I've worked with.

The first is from Arcana. Sylvia can be seen messing with the lights on the left hand side of the picture.

And the second is from NĂºria and Estudio Fenix who always send me the most beautiful images.

I'll be traveling to Boise and then to Portland for Christmas and will be absent from this space for a while. I hope that, no matter what holiday you celebrate (or even if you just see this as an opportunity for a long weekend), that this season finds you well.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

It's a boy!

Melissa and I went to the week 20 ultrasound appointment on Tuesday. Everything checked out normal, The Sprout is doing great. The big news to come out of the check uo was that we learned the gender of our wee one. As the headline indicates, we're gonna have a little boy come April/May.

At every step in this process (pregnancy test, hearing the heaqrt beat for the first time, the first ultrasound, etc) the idea that we're having a baby becomes more and more real. Learning our baby's gender is just the latest instance of that.

I had no inkling of what the baby's gender would be, nor did I have any hopes for one sex or another. But now that we know it's going to be a boy, I do feel a bit of relief. If nothing else, we can just concentrate on coming up with boy names.

Below, proof of the baby's gender:

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

My nephew gets it

On the phone this evening with my sister-in-law, Kathleen. She reports that my nephew, Dillon, had only one item on his Christmas wish list. An action figure from a video game, Kingdom Hearts. Kathleen found said figure on ebay for under ten dollars, but the shipping is over twenty.

Anyway, Kathleen told Dillon that maybe he'd want to put some other items on the list. You know, give Santa a whole range of options. Dillon went away and came back later with exactly one other item on the list: a cookbook.

"You want a cookbook, dude?" she asked.

"If I get it, I'll give it to you," he said.

At which point, Kathleen decided he'd get that action figure no matter what.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Better than, "Copy monkey"

The approaching birth of the Sprout has sort of crystallized my thoughts in some areas while, at the same time, it confuses me about others. I'll be talking about one area where I've achieved some clarity.

The writing. I'm 37 and have achieved only moderate success in the field, but I feel like with the right promotion/encouragement/cajoling I could be a lot more successful. I do not have it in me to do these things myself. Some folks with a baby on the way, and in a similar position, might say that they were going to forget about the writing and concentrate on their career as a way of guaranteeing some kind of stable home-life. But not me, apparently. To that end, I met yesterday with a couple of literary agents to talk about representing my work, and me, too, I suppose. I've known these two ladies for a couple of years now and they're always enthusiastic about anything I've worked on. I've suspected they'd like to rep me, but haven't felt the need to pursue that opportunity as getting work in comics never really seemed to need it. But my last few experiences with story pitches, and the fact that I'd like to get away from writing monthly publications and publishers and to start doing work for larger, more mainstream publishers, have led me to think otherwise.

I told them about a couple of comics projects I'd like to work on, they told me about what a couple of publishers they know are looking for. I also told them about an idea for a non-fiction prose book I've had and they seemed really excited by it. They're going to send me a faux proposal that will help me knock my idea into some kind of shape to show publishers. I'm very excited about this. They also are willing to work with me on a project-by-project basis, which is good since I might potentially work on a number of things with different artists and for different venues. It's possible that they wouldn't be able to help with some of those projects.

So, I'm hoping this step I've taken helps me achieve my goal: the ability of the Sprout to one day answer the question, “What does your father do?” with the answer, “He's a writer.”

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Merry Christmas to me!

Last night was the Fox Blue year-end dinner. We made out pretty well as far as bonuses go. Melissa told me that I should take a certain amount and do with it whatever I wanted. So today I went on line and ordered a crap-ton of books and one CD set from Amazon: Absolute Sandman volume 1 by Neil Gaiman; Thunderbolts by Warren Ellis; Scott Pilgrim volume 4 by Brain O'Malley; and "Orphans" from Tom Waits.

Honestly, if you were thinking about it, no one should get me anything for Christmas 'cause I just took care of it myself.