At last, after nearly two years of work, Other Sleep, my first graphic novel, is complete at a whopping 172 pages in length!The final chapter is now online to read, so go do that!
The work isn’t completely done yet, of course. I’m getting everything formatted and ready for a printed collection, a time-consuming and tedious task for sure. I have yet to determine what bonus goodies to throw in as backmatter, an issue which is also determined by cost. I’m looking at making it about 190 pages total, and well, the more pages you add, the more expensive it gets, and I’ll probably have to sell them for more than I’d like if I want to make any profit at all, 25 dollars or so. Still figuring all of this out, if you can’t tell.
There is also, of course, the art show in February at the William King Museum. That’s something I need to figure out too, picking out what I want to hang, how to hang it, working out an artist’s statement, stuff I did back when I graduated from ETSU and shouldn’t have too much trouble recalling, but still a lot of work.
Right now though I just feel a bit aimless. I’ve been going almost nonstop since August or September, and now that I’m at the end without any pages to draw or color, I don’t know what to do with myself. I want to relax this weekend, but my brain refuses, so I’m already scribbling more and more ideas down for the next graphic novel. I know for sure, however, that it’ll be ages before I start on that. I want to hone my craft a bit more, study more, try my hand at some things I haven’t really gotten around to this year, reassess my work, all those things, before I attempt another graphic novel.
I can’t believe I reached this point. I can’t believe I finished it. There were plenty of dumb delays, I could have finished it even sooner, but that I managed to pull it off at all is kind of crazy. Looking back, I did very little planning. I was just about to graduate when the idea struck me and I started sketching and doing layouts. I just dove in with very little planning. I’d only had the first three or four chapters written when I started drawing, I was just figuring it all out as I went along, and it shows. Painfully, in some cases.
Getting it all together for print has me looking back at the first few chapters, something I haven’t done pretty much since first working on them. The art has me cringing now, but there’s also a lot more going on than I remember doing, oddly enough. I’m rediscovering little tricks I pulled and then forgot about, so that’s fun. I wanted to write more at length, deconstruct what I’ve created, talk about certain choices I made, but…maybe it’s too soon for that right now. I do want to make a list of what I think are failures as far as it’s all concerned, things I disappointed myself at, but will I share that? Probably not, it’ll be something to keep for myself and refer to when I start on whatever my next project will be.
If you’ve been keeping up with this thing since the very beginning, you have my gratitude. If you’re just now getting around to reading it, then I hope you enjoy it and tell others about it. I want as many people as possible to see this and read it. Go on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Reddit, whatever, and let everyone know, I will be indebted to you if you do.
More than anything else, I hope you stick around. I’m not sure what’s coming next, but whatever it is, it’ll be even bigger and better than Other Sleep.