The Circle receptionist didn't come in today, so as "Backup Receptionist," I am doing it today. The good news is, I have a computer to work from as I do, so I'm not totally cut off. I've been spending the time getting ahead on my SJ scripting. Which reminds me...
Snagged From tygermoonfoxx's Journal...
"MOUSE, n. An animal which strews its path with fainting women. As in Rome Christians were thrown to the lions, so centuries earlier in Otumwee, the most ancient and famous city of the world, female heretics were thrown to the mice. Jakak-Zotp, the historian, the only Otumwump whose writings have descended to us, says that these martyrs met their death with little dignity and much exertion. He even attempts to exculpate the mice (such is the malice of bigotry) by declaring that the unfortunate women perished, some from exhaustion, some of broken necks from falling over their own feet, and some from lack of restoratives. The mice, he avers, enjoyed the pleasures of the chase with composure. But if "Roman history is nine-tenths lying," we can hardly expect a smaller proportion of that rhetorical figure in the annals of a people capable of so incredible cruelty to a lovely women; for a hard heart has a false tongue."
----- Ambrose Bierce (1842 - 1914), The Devil's Dictionary
I just find that quite amusing, partially because I know a few mice, but also because Wensley is finally going to make one of his rare appearances in SJ the week after next, beginning a new subplot that was largely the brainchild of my colorist, katayamma. It's going to be sprinkled into the current plot as well; I'm not sure if "subplot" is the right term for it, more like a changing feature of the background.
Life is like that, y'know? Old stuff goes, new stuff takes its place, and so on. SJ is a strip that emulates life, so the only true constant that should be in it, is change. I've got to make sure I don't get so attached to any single element that I become unwilling to let change happen where it should.
To that extent, it seems to me worthwhile to ponder the mortality of my characters. While most of the characters are currently hale and hearty, people don't stay that way forever. The issue of character death, while not something I have any plans to deal with in the immediate future, is one that may come up at some point.
There are so many potential stories for SJ that I haven't pursued, that soon I'm going to need to start writing them down before I forget them. I have had ideas that centered around Tiffany, Leonard, Drezzer, Conrad, the Watering Hole, larger issues in the SJ world ... sometimes these ideas bear fruit (Yin going to The Village was an idea I held for a year and a half before running it), and sometimes they just sit there (I've had an idea for Drezzer that's been around since I came up with him, but never acted on). But sometimes just the process of thinking about them gives me insights that color future strips.
The concept of the characters just sorta living their lives while I write it all down comes to mind, here. Sometimes the characters do things that I wasn't expecting or don't have any real explanation for, which then later suddenly become very clear. I love it when that happens, because then I am enjoying the story the way a reader would, as well as enjoying the creative process.
A lot of times, when I'm coming up with a story, I also get ancy to find out how the audience will react -- and it's always a surprise when I find out the answer. Sometimes, the audience loves stuff that I barely even noticed, and other times things that I think are super-cool, the audience hates, or worse, ignores.
It's a very strange thing, this cartooning business. But I like it.