Coming out of Cold Sleep

It’s been a while hasn’t it?… I say to what is likely an empty room…

Aliens-ColdSleep

‘Sleep’ is honestly far from the truth given how busy things have been in my absence from internet updates; work, relationships and life generally have all been exhausting, moving at turbo pace as I cling on for dear life. However, I’m gradually coming back online and I figured some kind of explanation was in order on the off-chance anyone is still left reading this derelict URL.

I’ll get it out of the way. ‘Branch’, my cyberpunk epic and the original focus of this blog is caput. Abandoned. Left for dead. It still makes me wince to say it outright, but the decision to pull the plug was made a long time ago and while saddening to me it was definitely the right call.

There were many reasons; the fact my heart was no longer in it, the longing to return to traditional methods, my awful update schedule, my slapdash promotion, the increasingly awkward connection to my bygone Masters degree. In the end I think I can summarise it most simply as trying to build a galleon before I’d figured out how to build a boat.

The script I wrote for Branch is one I’m still quietly proud of, but realising it on a reasonable timescale as intended was a challenge I was not up to and perhaps, may never be. It was this crushing revelation and the ensuing embarrassment that drove me off the web and back into my bedroom to go looking for my confidence. I was furious with myself for releasing it in an unfinished state, with the conclusion unlikely to be delivered before my prospective audience died of boredom.

What I can say now in retrospect is that the project wasn’t an entirely fruitless exercise. The product of my efforts may never have fully materialised but the lessons learned were extremely valuable. Painful as it was it allowed me to feel the boundaries of my skills and more importantly where my strengths lie.

Branch is not my first big failure – as I have numerous other abandoned comics to my name – but I want to make sure it is my last for some time. I can apologise all I want for all the false starts people have wasted time on (seriously guys, sorry) but I think it’s more important to take action which will provide the results I’ve been failing to provide.

As some of you may notice – silent room – ahem, as may be apparent from my older posts I’ve repurposed this blog for general comic output and stripped everything back to be nice and simple. Being straight, I don’t want to faff around presenting a nice wordpress, I want to get on with actual comics first and foremost without any of the old excuses.

GretaBackpack2webAs the concept art above illustrates I have still been at work on comic stuff while I’ve been away. I wanted to have a clear plot, plan and a nice backlog of pages before I showed anything publicly, what I absolutely didn’t want was another load of long hiatuses and broken promises.

The story this time is a reasonably lengthed little comic, open to being a serial but self-contained and achievable, once again embracing the hand drawn black and white crosshatching I started out in. It’s been progressing quietly for some time now and all being well it should start appearing online in the next few months with a goal for print in the not too distant future.

I could say more about it, slip you plot hints or apologise and moan some more for my past failings but honestly, right now I just want to shut up, sit down and get drawing again.

So yeah, stay tuned!

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4 Responses to Coming out of Cold Sleep

  1. DT says:

    Hey! Nice to see you’re still alive and doing comics! Sad that Branch didn’t develop like you intended, but I think all comic creators go through that. And as you said yourself it’s always a gain in some way. I look forward to see what you’re working on!

    • Ozy says:

      Thanks DT, pleased to be back in touch! You always gave me interesting feedback so I’d be thrilled to see what you make of my new stuff.

      Dying to get it out there but I’m trying to be a little restrained and finish a few more pages first as a safety buffer ;)

  2. Stig Hemmer says:

    I stumbled across your DrunkDuck profile by accident today and followed the link here on a whim.

    Good to see that you are still around.

    I wouldn’t say that my time reading Branch was wasted. There was interesting world building, and I liked the main character. Knowing her has enriched my life. (The boy… not so much)

    Good art too. The image of the city inside the cylinder still stays with me.

    I read a lot of web comics. I know going in that there is a large risk of the story being bad or unfinished. That is OK. This is my decision to make. In other words, don’t be afraid to waste the readers’ time.

    You had another comic that has also been removed from the Duck, about a girl who didn’t fit in very well. (I am terrible with names, I don’t remember her name or the comic’s name. Sorry)

    That was a good comic. Well ended too, as I recall. Why did you disappear it?

    Good luck with your future projects!

    • Ozy says:

      Hey Stig, thanks for getting in touch! I remember you made a lot of encouraging and interesting comments on my comics, I appreciate that greatly to this day.

      I’m particularly pleased to hear Branch made a good impression; although it again makes me feel guilty I never saw it through… The characters and plot had a whole lot more going on I would have loved to realise but as I mentioned in the post the overall length began to feel unachievable, while elsewhere the largely digital colouring and art processes just made me miss pen on paper all the more.

      On the subject of disappearing; I must confess I did pull both Branch and ‘A Girl Called Hate’ (the other you mentioned) because they were both half finished. In retrospect maybe this was selfish and rash of me; I just didn’t want a profile cluttered with stories without endings, hence why my standalone shorts survived the cull. I’ll probably repost or even legitamately revive them someday but right now I just need a clean(ish) slate to work with.

      Getting beyond all the downbeat stuff, the good news I am about to start launching my new comic on The Duck and ComicFury this afternoon! As one of my old readers I’d be super happy if you gave it a look and passed on your thoughts perhaps?

      Thanks again for the kind words :)

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