Letters to Holly

Friday, June 3

Putting My Notion in Motion

HeroesCon is this weekend. This is one of the biggest conventions on the East Coast and is regarded nationwide as the friendliest for creators and fans. It will be about five times the size of Fanaticon. It runs Friday through Sunday, and I will be there tomorrow, hobnobbing and networking. I'm taking comics to hand out 'cause I'm shameless.

A few years ago, someone came up with the idea for a theme sketchbook. You pick an idea and go to each artist at a show and ask them to draw that idea. I haven't done this before, and I decided rather late in the week to start one on Chef Doom. I think this will go like crazy. I'll post the images on the Cooking With Villainy! blog. The convention scene has been tainted in recent years by artists doing free sketches only to see the recipients sell them for big bucks on eBay. They resent that. But sketches in a book can't pull in the kind of money as would sketches on artboard, so they're considered less of a risk for artists. I suppose I'll get dozens of sketches for this. I hope to.

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The sidekick is adjusting to our new policy of ignoring him at night. He slept all night last night, and he may have been helped by a security blanket (actually a burp cloth). This is the only thing we've seen him cling to during feedings.

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I still haven't heard from the Asheville bookstore that offered to stock my comics. I also haven't yet found the online sale the museum claimed they'd hold for the leftover auction pieces. No idea how my piece did.

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The garden survived a flash hailstorm yesterday. Things are growing very slowly, and I don't know why. The potatoes haven't blossomed. The squash plants have, but the blossoms haven't turned into gourds yet. The tomato blossoms remain closed. The pea plants are still underground, and the sweet potatoes are at a standstill. The garden gets water every day. We got sun, we got compost. But we don't got progress.

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Your Sister dashed out last night to ambush the county commissioners before another budget meeting.

Picture of the Day 
Well, that's just rude.

I don't think I mentioned that an unknown neighbor posted signs throughout the 'hood, including on a pole on our property, warning folks that someone is shooting pets with a pellet gun. I have to admit, I've been tempted to use one on the cats that shit in the garden.

Thursday, June 2

Baby Baby, Let Me Sleep On It

In the face of waking up several times each night to comfort a baby who snaps back to sleep as soon as he's picked up, we've decided to use the nuclear option: ignoring him. I've wondered for a while now if we're coddling, if we've trained him to wake up just enough to want help going back to sleep, and Monday night may have put Your Sister on the same wavelength. She was sleeping on the floor of his nursery as I left for work the next morning. That shit won't do.

For the last two nights, we've put him down after a bath and supper and some cuddling and left him be. If he's awake, he's awake. And when he is, he screams for company. But that's all he wants. He's fed, he's warm, he's dry. It's nighttime, however, and he must learn to downshift when we finish the routine and set him in the crib. We turn the monitor down and let him wail his lungs out until he's unconscious. Last night we decided to test him and not wake him up for a diaper change and nursing. He slept until almost daylight. Eight hours straight. That's almost six glorious hours of uninterrupted sleep, and that is a rarity. But hopefully we can make that the norm. We had also agreed last night to ignore him if he woke up in the middle of the night, but we didn't have to.

I admit it feels cruel, but it's the kind of literal tough love that we agreed to before we knocked ourselves up. If he can learn to accept bedtime and switch off now, it can only help Your Sister prepare for the school year.

Our new supper schedule sees her putting him to bed each night while I cook the meals. If it was her night to make dinner, she'll prepare the ingredients, and I'll cook them according to the recipe. She still does yoga on Wednesdays, and those are the nights I put him down and make dinner. It's my best opportunity to pull my weight.

I'm tweaking the website soon. I'm making more use of Flickr to host my images. I'm tempted to combine this blog and my site, but I still want to keep Your Sister as private as practical.

Picture of the Day
Save me, Super Lightning Tiger. Save me from the sleepless toddlers.

Tuesday, May 31

Gear Shift

I bought some more stands for the minicomics and made labels with a short synopsis and prices. I also added "locally produced minicomic" in hopes that would sway purchases. On Friday, I stopped by the Asheville comic store. The shop owner said the books would probably not sell until they move into their new store, and I can see why. They are a store of piles right now. They need more room for everything. Because he didn't mention shelf rent or any other charges for selling the books, I opened a pull list, guaranteeing I'll buy certain titles when they ship each month. Least I could do. We also talked about the feasibility of paying for a table at Charlotte's convention next year. I could easily team with some local guys and sell four to five comics and sketches for three days. Yeah, I could do that.

I took some comics and stand to the local store. The owner said something vague about commissions, and I probably should worry about that more than I do. I'm not concerned with a profit at this stage -- or more precisely, at this location -- because it's a local venue for getting my name out there. People can get my current minis dirt cheap, but the next books will have the heft of my then-recognized name and higher standards of storytelling. Those will cost a little more. I started a small pull list with them as well.

I announced the store and online buying options on FB and immediately got an order. I bought some simple mailing supplies and started a spreadsheet for the tax man. I'll mail it out Tuesday afternoon right before I check on another potential store location. My first shipment!

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Your Sister spend healthy chunks of time preparing an AP curriculum for next semester. She's slowly getting back into the groove of school.  She took the boy to church Sunday morning, and I took the opportunity to run the route you and I chugged. It is hot here nowadays. I worked in the garden Monday and was dying from the heat and bugs at 8:30. But the garden is weeded and mulched and freshly composted. The squash finally distinguished itself from the weeds, and I was able to get rid of the unwanteds. 

After running and hard gardening, I was actually keen on a bike trip with Your Sister. It was her idea, and I rediscovered my love of biking, thanks to you bringing an extra so we could all three go together. The sidekick seemed to like it too. If I had reason to visit more downtown locales, I'd bike there on a regular basis. Except for one time I rode her bike to the school to remind her to answer her phone, I hadn't been on a bike in 20 years. Wen I went to college, My Dad asked if he could sell the bike instead of letting it rot in the carport. I had a Schwinn with those painful rams-horn handlebars, and I don't miss them the slightest. Yesterday was also my first time in a bike helmet,and I look better in it than I feared. Your Sis clipped bike path locations from magazines, and she's planning late-summer road trips.