Updated: May 7th, 2013

Latest Scene:

Latest News

10.25.2013 @ 11:22 am - Fixed?

I think we finally found the problem. For some reason the server’s disk space had maxed out, and it was screwing with the functioning of the website. Still not sure what caused the error, because the website only uses a small fraction of the server’s total space. I’m still awaiting a report from my provider, but overnight disk usage went from 98% to 10%, so clearly they found the root of the problem.

In any case, I’ll keep checking up on it to make sure it’s not acting up again. Sorry it was causing problems for you guys. It was a really frustrating mystery, and I’m glad the site appears to be fixed now.

Still going to be awhile before I start updating PS again. I haven’t had the most productive month in terms of art production for STRANGER. I’ve had to back off because of my neck. It’s pretty clear the root of the problem has to do with stress and anxiety (sound like any characters you know?), and I’m going to be seeing a neurologist soon to see if there can be anything else I can do about the problem. In the meantime, yoga, physical activity, and massage therapy seem to be prescription. Learning to relax into my work seems to be the key, but it’s hard to do. I’ve spent most of my adult life in high gear sprinting at my deadlines, and now my high gear has been eliminated because I lock up when I try to slip into that mode.

Right now I can tell you I’m accumulating some rich experiences that will undoubtedly come back into my writing at some point. Kate & Mike’s story has always paralleled my own life in many ways, and this will be no exception. Even choosing to have Kate be a werewolf wasn’t just a case of me thinking it was cool, but because it’s such as juicy metaphor for dealing with one’s internal stress and anxiety, quelling the beast inside. And Mike’s calm, Zen demeanor being the antidote. These are the forces I’ve always struggled with myself. Beneath that calm exterior, I often had this swirl of anxieties, anger, and frustration that I always fought to keep in check. Everyone does. In many ways, that’s what this story is about when you strip away all the tropes, adventure and nonsense.

Anyway, I’m now having to stop and face those fears and learn to cope with my own anxiety and response to stress. Like Kate, I’d been running away from it for quite some time, always feeling like I had a freight train bearing down on me, always trying to meet the next deadline, the next update, the next convention. And last year the freight train caught up with me. And I got flattened. My body rebelled, and now I have to learn to work without having to feel like I’m constant catching up to everything. It’s humbling, and a bit humiliating to admit that I wasn’t able to meet my own (admittedly, unrealistic) expectations. I have to thank God/The Universe/Luck that I have a supportive wife and family to take care of me while I work through this, because if I didn’t have them, I would be in a bad way right now. And thankfully, I am not.

I’m still working, but I’m having to change my relationship to my work, to my business, and to my comic. And it isn’t easy. I’m looking forward to getting back to PS, but it may take awhile. I’ve got a lot to work to do before I get there. But I will get there.

Thanks again to you all for your patience.

10.24.2013 @ 3:04 pm - Still scratching my head…

As you can see, the site is still not back up. I finally have a little time to poke at it, but so far I’m completely flummoxed as to what is causing the problem. Basically, the database keeps crapping out when it comes time to access any of the webcomic content. I don’t know if the plug-in is broken (a re-install failed to fix the problem), or if the server’s database connections are simply being overloaded.

Right now I don’t know how to fix it short of nuking the server from the OS up, because I suspect simply wiping the site and restoring from a backup is not going to fix the problem. Other options include moving to a new machine entirely, or re-coding the site from the ground up using a newer version of WordPress and Webcomic or ComicPress. None of these options are very appealing.

At this point I’m in way over my head. I can handle my fair share of PHP, MySQL, XHTML and such, but this is getting into arcane server areas that I don’t know how to fix.

At this point I’m just confused and frustrated and ready to throw in the towel on this whole webcomic thing. Managing all this really isn’t as fun as it used to be.

10.09.2013 @ 5:18 pm - Can I recruit you? (Website is *not*back up…)

After checking in on the site for the past few days, it appeared to be back up. However, as soon as I wrote this post saying that, the archive stopped working again. *le sigh*

Since I’m only one man with limited capabilities, I’m wondering if you guys might have time to poke at the site from time to time and see if comes back to fully functionality again. If you run into any problems or success, please post the details here in the comments section of this post. That way I have a metric as to how this is going. In the meantime, I will ping my host again and see if there’s anything else that can be done.

In other news, I just finished a short retelling of a Chinese folktale for the Cincinnati Art Museum for a piece on their exhibit on the Daoist Eight Immortals.

In other other news, I also had a physical last week, and the conclusion is I need to go see a neurologist about my continuing neck problems. Hopefully they can help me clear this thing up for good, but I’ll continue to work at a measured pace until that happens.

09.26.2013 @ 6:26 pm - STRANGER (or where the hell is PS?)

Okay, in addition to the website freaking out on us (for which I’m very, very sorry — I honestly haven’t found the root of the problem, yet — my provider says there’s network problem of some sort) I have been completely remiss in keeping you all updated as to what is going on. First, since I last posted, I’ve been working on STRANGER, and I’m really happy with how it’s turning out so far. Here’s sneak peek:


To answer your big question: When is PS coming back?

Answer: After I finish STRANGER.

Q: And when is that going to be?

A: I honestly don’t know yet. Rough pencils are finished, and I’m about 20% through the final artwork. I’m also juggling illustration projects around it. It will be finished this fall for sure, but there will some lead time as I finish up the next PS scene before anything new gets posted here.

Q: What’s up with the archive? Are you changing anything?

A: No, it’s just my server freaking out. I will get it fixed as soon as humanly possible.

Q: Do you hate us?

A: Absolutely not! I am grateful to you for sticking this out with me. I know you just want to keep reading the story.

That said please understand that I have a lot of responsibilities I have to handle right now, and unfortunately I have to put PS on hold until I finish them. I understand that I’m not very good at communicating at times, and frankly it’s because I get overwhelmed. There are people out there who live to interact with everyone they can online, but I am not one of those people. When I’m working on a project, I tend to stop interacting online so I can focus.

I admit I am at fault, and I should have checked in so I found this website issue more quickly. I’ll do my best to make sure that doesn’t happen in the future.

Rest assured, I will be finishing this book, and you will be there to see it. It just might be a couple more months before PS starts posting again. I hope you understand.