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From the Astral Records
14 August 2009
Beloved Automation!
Mood:  happy
Topic: Updates

Extra Akashik update next Friday! Hear ye! Hear ye!

It will (should) be the last page of the chapter, and then we'll move into War's filler story. 

 Automation is a success! And now we're moving oh so slowly. The first comic has been successfully moved and set up yesterday. That would be Beloved.  Check it out if you haven't seen it yet:

http://www.apocalypsewriters.com/beloved/

 I have to tell you: it feels weird having a house full of little Tauses.

That being said, after much thought I am going to cease and desist having chapter traditional issues made of Akashik.  I will still have the odd color one made from time to time, but overall it's just not feasible to keep doing that anymore.  I am more going to focus on compiling the books into 4 chapter issues and putting them up on Lulu, which is where Book One is for sale on right now.

But! C'est la vie.  Hope you enjoyed HB's filler art today.  I hope I can return to it soon. I miss it.


Posted by Death at 12:01 AM CDT
Updated: 13 August 2009 10:16 AM CDT
12 August 2009
Moving on UP
Mood:  caffeinated
Topic: General News

In our quest to get the website automated (and thus release Death from internet slavery) we have opened up a new website, whereupon things will (slowly) be moved over and hopefully merged.  There are going to be some bumps along the way, but that's to be given in these circumstances.   First of all, we're not sure if we're going to get to keep the current domain name. We'll keep you posted.

The new address is going to be based at: http://apocalypsewriters.com. I haven't thought about subdomains or anything like that yet. We need to get the place working smoothly first!

I'm very happy with our new hosts. They're polite, they cost less, and they give us more with (so far) more stability.  We even get to have a discussion forum on board, which has been named Bark Pups Bark and will be at: http://apocalypsewriters.com/pupchatter ... er... or something. Well there's a working link at the new main page if I got that wrong.

The only thing here is I'm worried about losing the blog... but something will be figured out I'm sure. We're clever like that.

I (Death) have noticed that there are a lot of votes in the pin box. Thanks! Keep 'em coming. To my surprise someone voted for the blonde Cerberus Pup girl today. After so long of her not getting any votes, I wasn't expecting that one.

Just also please bear in mind that to date there aren't enough donations (or even requests) for the last pin to justify another pin run.  Support Akashik and help us out!  It's one way to let us thank you for being a loyal pup (read: fan).

It turns out there's only TWO pages left of the current Akashik chapter.. no wait. After today it will be one.  O_O

And yes, we're into week two of the donation drive.  You've read the spill, you can backread if you need to. Please consider helping out if you haven't.   We reset the little thermometer with an amount that equals our goal minus what was donated last time. I like this one much better.

 Oh yes. The little Taus figurines arrived today. That was an adventure, because they came on a semi truck and I live in a cul de sac. But the driver was friendly and courteous. He actually loaded the boxes onto a cart and dragged it from the road to my house by about 4 blocks. Now that's service!

And that's all I have to say about that.


Posted by Death at 12:01 AM CDT
Updated: 11 August 2009 9:35 PM CDT
8 August 2009
Alas, HB...
Mood:  chillin'
Topic: Heavenly Bride

Putting the donation drive aside for a minute (mainly because I dislike doing it), I was sitting here at the house feeling funny because... well... I haven't updated HB. I'm not quite used to the feeling yet. LOL

 And than I remembered this here little conceptual page I did ages ago and thought, "I can't draw well right now, but I can put this up." Because I don't know about you guys, but I like it when I get to see development pages and wotnot.

Next week will mostly likely be a return to the hiatus picture, but eh. Until then.

 Please feel free, o regular readers and fans I shall now dub... eeeh... uh... Shiks? Nah.... what's a good name. A good name... a good name... Oh bloody hell. Somebody suggest one. =^-^= Then I'll rename the blog accordingly.

Something else that occured to me today: I've been meaning to put a glossary of terms up for folks to be able to read and understand the characters by. I remember such things used to be included in the old school sci-fi and fantasy books and... it appears to have disappeared. But why not? I've always liked the idea. So once I find the time I hope to add that section to the website....

... which seriously needs a revamping. Darn my Perl problem.


Posted by Death at 1:26 AM CDT
7 August 2009
Thursday, Friday, Donate Donate Donate!!!
Mood:  sharp
Topic: Donations!!!!

Oh no! Action, dramah, suspense! And that's it for this week! And did you catch the reference in panel 4?

Depending on how things are looking, I may extend the donation drive to next week. As some of you know, I already had to take Heavenly Bride down for the time being. (I'll address that later.)  I was pretty serious about the world being turned upside down over here and Akashik needing that life boat of community support. 

I managed to find a neat little widget that tracks the donation goal vs. donations. It took me a long time to find it, and I'm not completely satisfied with this one but it will do for now.  It's that little thermometer in the upper right hand corner. If you click it, it will open up a donation dialogue. At least, I hope it will. I'm not a coding expert.

As you can see, my donation goal is $600. I have to tell you that's about 1/3 of my husband's paycut (no, I'm not kidding)... but there's only so much I can ask of you guys.  

To reiterate:  In exchange for a small donation, you get:

1. Extra pages (provided there are enough donations)!!

2. Our donation incentive wallpaper and desktop theme!!! 

3. I'm taking away the Wall Of Fame idea (where your name appears in a print issue). For starters, I have a print bill for Issue 4 that I can't pay at this time. So I'm not sure when I'll be able to set things up for another print issue.  It was a silly idea anyway. Someone, kick my friend for suggesting it to me.

4. If you donate $10 or more, you'll get the nifty Taus with Wings pin.  So you know the amount I have ordered is about 15. I have 9 left.  I can't order more unless I have the funds to pay for it. And we're back to the beginning of the circle.

Oh, and I might be having an extra update next week! No promises yet.  I'm prepared for it if you are, though.

And now I'll address the issue of Heavenly Bride.

Putting it on hiatus was very hard to do. To delve into the realm of TMI, I had tears in my eyes when I did it.  However! A silver lining: people responded. I never knew it had regular readers - or at least I wasn't too sure.  But you guys spoke up by emailing me and posting here.   

I took a full year to write the script to Heavenly Bride, but the story has been in my mind since I was a very small child. Well, the entire story of Taus has always been in my mind as if placed there by... some... unknown... force (cue Star Trek music).  I'm burning with the fever to finish this and tell many many more stories, segments and fish.

I was always worried about Heavenly Bride as a story. In the writing world, romance is the most difficult to write (contrary to popular belief).  Unless you're taking the high school drama route, it's harder to put tension in there that is believable and yet not too cliche.  HB is my first strict romance.  I was so happy to find out that people out there really do like it. I guess it's not a complete failure.

Here's what I'm hoping will happen:

Akashik's current chapter is about to come to a close.  If the donations keep coming, that might be less than a month. (I'll have to count.)  If not, it will be when it will be.  

I have been planning for a very long time to pull a Foglio at that time and put in a filler story.  The purpose would be to buy me (and Conquest) the time we need to do more artwork and get ahead of ourselves in case of emergency.  

Now if only I could get the coding for the website fixed so that it would update itself.

The filler story in question was created by War as part of the original first chapter print of Akashik. She has a very different art style from mine, but her wit and humor are too great to be missed. (Which is why we keep her.)  It's a very short one, and I'm considering just posting it twice a week with an extra page on Saturday should we get enough donations.  It will be over before you know it, and I'll be scrambling, "Where's my paper! YAAA!"

Anyway, that would be when I'm planning to pick HB back up again (if not sooner).  By then I'll know if the electricity is staying on or not, among other things.... even though my deadline to pay things is the 15th.

Now that I know there are HB fans out there, I added a wallpaper to the donation page.  From now on I'll do my best to have a wallpaper offering for HB as well as Akashik.  =^-^=  I don't mind coloring the little guys. It's nice to see Lhung and Taus in color once in a while, don't you think?

And with that I'm running out of news. One last thought (repeated): if you haven't donated, please consider doing so. I don't want to have to leave the art world (and my house).

If you have donated, then a good way to continue to help out would be to spread the word of Akashik to your friends, buddies, and enemies! The more the merrier, so they say....


Posted by Death at 12:01 AM CDT
Updated: 7 August 2009 11:16 AM CDT
5 August 2009
Tuesday Drive Donation Continues!!!
Mood:  incredulous
Topic: Donations!!!!

It wasn't until I was coloring this page that I realized the spunky guy kind of reminds me of my father, with the tall-tales and all.  Big Fish ain't got nothing on my dad.

I thought you guys might like an update in regards to War, who is finally at AIT training for the Army.

She just found out who her unit is, the unit mascot, and how it was gotten.  Ready?

She's a hellhound.

Their mascot is Cerberus.

The old Hellhounds haven't left yet, so there's some complication (which I don't fully understand) where she's a Hellhound but also isn't completely full-fledged until they leave. To wit: she's a Cerberus Pup.

 Her unit's mascot was acquired when an officer stole the Cerberus ornament from a superior officer's lawn. It now attends church with the unit on Sundays.

How's that for hilarious synchronicity?

 Oh! THERE WILL BE AN EXTRA UPDATE THIS FRIDAY!  This is in thanks to a donation I received at the beginning of last week. Long live our supporters!!

As you know, this week I'm urging you to help keep Akashik alive.  (For more information on why, read a few posts back. To sum up: my brokeness is a dangerous offense to life.) 

So far I have gotten a couple of donations. THANK YOU!  Akashik's coffers are now about 1/16 full enough to make sure we can keep going at least another month.  But we need more.

 IF YOU HAVE NOT DONATED to Akashik yet, please consider doing so -even if it's only $1!  Akashik needs your support!

 In exchange, you'll be getting the following:

1. Extra pages (provided there are enough donations)!!

2. Our donation incentive wallpaper and desktop theme!!!

3. A spot in the to-be-added Wall Of Fame - a page dedicated to public acknowledgment to our supporters in an upcoming print issue of Akashik!!! (Provided I have enough names.)

4. If you donate $10 or more, you'll get the nifty Taus with Wings pin. 

That's a WHOLE LOT for $20, $10, $5 or even $1.

And it doesn't have to hurt your wallets because, well, you can donate as little or as much as you want. =^-^=  (That's the best part.) 

Donate and the future of Akashik's pages will be on your screen! 

 

Do it for the future!!!!


Posted by Death at 12:00 AM CDT
Updated: 5 August 2009 10:47 AM CDT
3 August 2009
DONATION DRIVE!
Mood:  bright

There is a thanks necessary for the two people who have donated in the past two months and made the extra pages released possible.

Thank you to both of you.

I'm very grateful.  I often wish I could do more: add more pazazz to the website somehow. But I suck. I'm short on ideas.

That being said, I could reiterate the reasons behind the current donation drive... but I don't want to whine again. I prefer NOT to whine here to begin with. That's what my livejournal is for. =^-^=

To sum up: I'm beyond flat broke and Akashik needs community support.

Being broke is normal for a webcomic artist, even ones that work at other studios like I do.  And sometimes things happen to make things so red, there's no light at the end of tunnel.  Tha'ts how things are for Akashik right now.  And that's how I'll sum up the whining.

So all this week I'm urging you, the readers without whome there'd be no point to making this comic, to help.  As I'd mentioned in my last post, we have approximately 30,000 hits a month from people; people who come and read this comic regularly. I estimated that if each and every single one of you gives ONLY $1 (or more if you wish) that would help. A lot.

 In exchange for that single dollar, you'll be getting the following:

1. Extra pages (provided there are enough donations)!!

2. Our donation incentive wallpaper and desktop theme!!!

3. A spot in the to-be-added Wall Of Fame - a page dedicated to public acknowledgment to our supporters in an upcoming print issue of Akashik!!!

That's a WHOLE LOT for ONLY $1.

And it won't hurt your wallets because, well, it's only $1. =^-^=  (That's the best part.) 

Just 300 $1 donations will help enormously.  That would pay for the website here, for paper to draw the new pages on, ink, markers, and ultimately food to feed the artist with. (Okay, and maybe a candy bar so the artist can get sugar drunk to write scripts with.)  These are all necessary components to creating Akashik, which (I hope) entertains you.

Normally I've just put the donate button up and ignored it because my bills were paid, and so long as people enjoyed the comic I was content.  I LOVE doing Akashik for you guys! I LOVE knowing that people read it, and I'm happy so long as my bills are paid.  Akashik is not a get rich quick scheme... but I can't afford to anymore - at least for a little while. I'm truly sorry about that.

So please, again I ask that you consider that $1. It could make the world of difference.

Today's accompanying donation drive artwork was drawn by our mascot and future Flash wizard, Halona. It's so cute I'll make it a regular button later, I swear!!


Posted by Death at 12:01 AM CDT
Updated: 3 August 2009 2:46 PM CDT
1 August 2009
End of the Line
Mood:  rushed
Topic: Stuff

I've been in contact with a good pin company (www.pinfanatic.com) down in Florida whose head artist just happens to be the famous Sam Gaffin (The Anomolies, The Killer Robots, and Flaming Carrot).  They worked with me on getting some pins for the donation incentives done for less than the normal minimum most other companies require.  Woot. I was very worried about that.

The pin also changed size. It has went from 1" to something slightly larger so that we can still see the detail.

In other news, there will be an extra page update this Friday. This is thanks to two donators who will be eternally thanked. (Their donations are why the pins are happening.)

So tune in this Friday or you might end up confused next week.

Now to address things I wish I didn't have to address here.  

The truth is Akashik and Heavenly Bride depend on community support from folks like you.  Support pays for the website and website bandwidth (so you can see it) and for goodies like print issues and.. yes... pins. 

A short while ago I told you finishing this comic was in danger, and now it's on the chopping block. To explain in a simple sentence: I saw the amount of my husband's new paycheck including pay cuts and burst into tears. I paid 1/2 the light bill, 1/3 the mortgage, his apartment that he has to have while at work, and bought no food. There literally wasn't anything to buy it with.  Throw in that my wallet was lost last weekend, and there goes my ability to job hunt for a while.... There's a lot more to the situation, but it's hard enough explaining here. 

I sat down and did the numbers.  Working for Dandelion Studios doesn't pay the huge difference. But on the other hand this website gets around 30,000 hits a month.  Some are webbots, some are new people, and the rest are regular readers.  Even taking out the bots and new folks, that leaves a very high number. 

So my thought is: if everyone just gave $1 that would make a big difference.  Those dollars would add up and I could do something wonderful like... buy food or pay a bill... My goal right now is to get some things paid off completely around here. If I managed to get some things paid off (they're mostly paid off now as it is) then magically my husband's check would be enough again.

With it being enough I could continue to be an artist without having to ask for community support. (Because honestly I'm content to simply leave the donation button there and not say anything. I've pride just like anybody else, wot.) And being able to continue being an artist would mean that Akashik would be able to reach it's conclusion and I could, ultimately, write more stories.

So if you have not donated anything to Akashik, please consider that $1. Everyone, take a moment and think about it.  That would keep Akashik from going under and me, the main artist, off of the streets. 

Not to mention the karma. Think of the good karma. We all could use good karma.

Thanks.


Posted by Death at 12:28 PM CDT
30 July 2009
Red Light Go Light
Mood:  suave
Topic: Heavenly Bride

Lately I've been noticing a *lot* of traffic to Heavenly Bride, especially from places like Norway and Finland.   There's no rhyme nor reason for this traffic... I'm not advertising anywhere... but there it is. 

 ... cool!  =^-^=

Tonight or tomorrow night, I'm not sure which, the vote ranks roll over. This puts us back at the bottom again. Please vote! If we vote fast enough, we might make it into the 100 spot or higher. That would rock.

BTW just FYI: the pre-order period for the Taus figures is now over.  The company has informed me that they're being shipped and will be going through customs relatively soon.  Then it's a matter of them coming to my door and me shipping out the ones that were pre-ordered.  It's going to be very interesting having a hundred or so little Tauses hanging around the house.

And so far I don't have enough donations on hand for the lapel pin.  This isn't a big deal except that I hate to disappoint the fellahs who HAVE arranged to get one.  Meow.

Despite a massive tooth ache, I've managed to ink and letter two pages of Exiles, create an illustration for the Alice in Wonderland book, and begin the next page of Akashik today.  Let me tell you: the toothache had me screaming in the bathroom at least twice. It's a doozy... but you can't say I'm not stubborn! Must... draw.. pictures... while... still...  CAN!!! Real.. job..will... kill it all!! NOoOoOooo!!!

Oh yeah. One more thing: extra update next week! At least, we're hoping so. That's what's planned. Stay tuned for more later.


Posted by Death at 11:00 PM CDT
29 July 2009
Snicklfritz
Mood:  cool
Topic: General News

Y'know I'm looking at the mood icons for this thing, and there's no setting for sleepy. That's just WRONG!

Hope you guys like the new page, and for you Ganji fans he's not completely out of the picture just yet.

I put up the next pin poll. It's the screen widget on the bottom of this page.  BUT! If I'm not able to order the first pin, then I won't bother with the  polls anymore. They're fun to make and all that, but if they're not working they're simply not working. And that's just how things are.

In other news I got the script for Exiles finally. This is by Dandelion Studios, as I think I've mentioned before.  So far so good. My first deadline is today. Fun fun!

Oh! And I finally updated the Appearances page... because I, Death, am scheduled to represent the team at Tsubasacon.  =^-^=  One hopes that War at least may be able to also make an appearance. She's shipping to AIT in just a few days, so we're not sure where she's going to be come October. And Conquest... well.. she works VERY hard to make a living.  :-p We need to make her rich.

Anyway, be sure to stop by and say hello if you're there!


Posted by Death at 7:45 AM CDT
Updated: 29 July 2009 8:57 AM CDT
23 July 2009
The Ides of... uh... July
Mood:  d'oh
Topic: All comics

Woot. Extra page today.  And the evil stacks up.

 Heavenly Bride will be posted later today. It isn't that I haven't been working on it. It's just that I'm on the last bit of inking and simply cannot because I have the hiccups too bad.  I know that's funny, but it's also the truth.

 Anyway, everyone in the house decided my work space was the Magic the Gathering spot minutes after I set out my paper and pens. So I'm just not meant to have the peace of mind it takes to work on the comic tonight.  I'll have to catch things in the early morning when there's no one to get in my way. Cats included.


Posted by Death at 11:55 PM CDT

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