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HeroesCon 2015

We were in Charlotte this weekend for HeroesCon. It's the second time I've been to this Con, but the other time was 2005, and I was only there for a day, so it was a completely different experience. We went to a few interesting panels and got to hang out with some of our favorite comics people, so that was pretty cool, but I had a few specific takeaways from the weekend.

  • I'm never paying for a room at a Westin again. It's not that it's a bad hotel, it's just that they nickel and dime the everloving shit out of you. The lovely bottle of Dasani that goes on your bill for twice normal cost if you drink it is a trend that I'd love to see all hotels abandon, but $20/day parking and $13/day internet access? Yeah, that can fuck right off.

  • It pays to find a place that sells groceries. A loaf of bread, a bag of chips, and a package of sliced cheese makes for a great substitute for overpriced breakfasts and other random times where you're not hungry enough for a sit-down meal experience. We saved well over $200 between the three of us

  • No more long trips for "going as a fan" cons. The balance between producer and consumer is something that I've been thinking about a lot lately. The panels I went to at Heroes were mostly geared toward would-be producers, but they served mainly as a reminder of the need to focus on my own shit. I don't need to stand in lines to get autographs from people whose work I appreciate. I need to be creating the kind of work that I will appreciate.

There are plenty of cons around the local area that I can go to for the con experience. Traveling out of state for a con where none of your friends are going to be is a bummer, no matter how many cool guests are there. ChattaCon and DragonCon (and Kami-Con as long as they continue to invite us) have become my only must-go cons, and I'm pretty happy with that. The other local ones I can take or leave depending on who I know that will be showing up.

Also, Jackfruit tacos are pretty good.

Answer for question 4294.

What type of natural disasters frighten you the most? Have you personally experienced a disaster of that type?
I have an outsized fear of tidal waves. There are a lot of things out there that can kill you, many of which are far more common in my area (i.e. tornadoes), but there's nothing like looking up in the distance and seeing a towering wall of water coming your way from which there is no escape.

Journal Comic - Commission


I did this to warm up today - seems like it could be a good way to get back into both drawing and journaling.

Or maybe I'll just post this one and never do it again.

I was never here. *VANISHES*

Answer for question 4158.

There's a lot of nostalgia around old franchises coming back right now. Movies, TV shows, even action figures! What's something from your childhood that you wish would come back? Why?

(This question will remain in place for a few days while Writer's Block is re-launched -- we'll have new questions each weekday starting on Monday!)
Is it too obvious to say Star Trek?

Sure, Trek never really went away per se, but it's definitely due for a comeback. On one hand I was disappointed that they didn't try to embrace the success of the 2009 movie and piggyback a new TV series onto that, but the prospects of it coming out and being really good are better now than ever before.

I would love to see what a Trek show would be like after Breaking Bad, Game of Thrones and The Walking Dead have shown how much you can really do with TV.

And so it begins again

I've gained a bunch of weight back. I was down to 213 at my lightest in 2011, and then I slowly fell off the wagon. I hovered at around 228 for some time and then started packing on pounds again this year.

It's probably no coincidence that my rapid weight gain coincides almost perfectly with the introduction of Taco Bell's breakfast menu. Mmmmmm Crunchwraps. 247 was a wake up call for me last Sunday. Although it's still fairly far from my all time high of 264, the future trend was clear.

I am now fully back on calorie counting. I'm not doing 1700 calories this time, at least not at first. Looking at some different estimations, I can currently have around 2000 calories a day and expect to lose weight. This is something I'll be recalculating and adjusting backward every 10 pounds or so - I think not having an adaptive calorie goal is the real reason I met resistance at the 213 level and ended up giving up the first time.

It's working pretty nicely so far - I'm already down to 241 after not even a full week. I don't expect to shed 6 pounds EVERY week, but even if I drop down to the expected 2 a week I'll be down to around 200 by Kami-Con.


Buzzed Bear and Octeapus

We have two Misters Coffee, because coffeemakers are the best way to make iced tea but you don't want that tea to taste like coffee. Since they look basically the same, we put little stickers on them to differentiate which was which. The coffee maker has a bear and the tea maker has an octopus. As a warmup drawing, I decided to make them into cartoon characters.


I can easily see these two trading barbs in a wacky office comedy.


10 years ago


I might do a few more of these as I get back into practice. Until then, enjoy my imperfect suckage!


And then a pet happened

I slept 24 hours of the 48-hour weekend. And yet I'm somehow still tired. I'd be concerned except for the fact that this is probably just reflective of my otherwise poor sleep cycle during the week.

We got a cat.

A couple of friends from work found a stray that had just given birth to a litter of kittens. They fattened her up a bit and got her vet work done. The kittens were easy to get rid of, but the mom still needed a home.


She's a sweet cat, a black domestic shorthair with a little white bowtie currently named Ophelia. It's a good name, so we might end up keeping it, but we'll have to see what her personality says about her. She sat on my lap last night and watched TV with us, slept in the bed with us, and she likes to follow Chris around the house. Even though she's a stray, she seems to be acclimating to the litterbox pretty well, so that's definitely a good sign. I just hope that trend continues, and she doesn't try to eat Chris's plants.

We'd been considering getting a dog, probably a Greyhound from Second Chance Greyhounds, but I don't think our current lifestyle of both being gone for the same concurrent 11 hours a day during the week would really be the best environment for one. We're still interested but I think we're going to have to re-evaluate after Chris gets another job. But cats are more independent, and she seems to be fairly tolerant of other animals should we decide to get a nice chill dog, so I think it'll work out.

It's been half a year since we lost Luna, and it still hurts to think about that, not to mention Kim and Leo's cat Ferris who just passed recently. I lived with that little guy for years and will continue to miss him. But it's good to have an animal in the house again.


*peeks head in*

This is the part where I'd normally talk about how I'm planning to write more, and sheepishly attempt to convince myself to do better. But this time I actually have been writing more - it's just not here. I've been doing 750 Words, which was okay for me but ultimately not something I can recommend. There are three reasons I haven't fully jumped ship and you're now seeing me back here.

First off, 750 words is great at what it does, and that's to act as a completely private place to write where there's nothing holding you back and you can just let the vocaburrhea spew forth without having to worry about it making sense or being worth sharing with anybody else. This is great when you're in a creative bind, and I've actually written some decent comic scripts in there.

But that's the thing - it is private. Nobody is going to read that stuff but me. That'd be fine except for the fact that my brain seems to be hardwired to form letters into proper sentences and write as if I am talking to somebody even if I'm not. And if I'm doing that on 750, why not do that here? Some people on my friends list are making notable examples of using Livejournal as an actual journal, writing about things that they care about and things that are going on in their lives. I could probably use me some of that.

Secondly, 750Words itself is run by a programmer that is balls-forward in a way he probably shouldn't be. The service was originally free, but the author got bored with it and declared there would be no further updates. That's fine, of course, people lose interest in projects, and maybe it was good enough as is. But THEN he decided to start charging for using that service. I happen to have an older account that is grandfathered in under the free rate, but charging for the service at this point guarantees it is unable to grow any further.

Third, since it's built for disposable writing, there are only tools for examining your content en masse (you were feeling Happy today, mostly concerned with Relationships, etc.) I can't go back and look for some of the actual good ideas I had in these posts without going back and reading through the whole thing. That does not suit my purposes.

So I figure I'll start doing my writing here again. I may get myself into trouble a little bit, but if it helps reinforce some bonds I have with fellow humans, it's probably worth it.