Vote over at TWC to see a panel from tomorrow’s page! That probably contains more arguing…

First things first, you have one more month to enter my fashion design contest! ONE MONTH! I’m up to 11 entries, which is very cool. Keep sending me stuff! Don’t be afraid! I love them all. I’m still working on getting a gallery up of the current entries, though I am very busy/lazy, so that’ll happen when it happens. My hardwood floors are getting refinished and it’s fucking up my life this week.

So, maybe it’s time these two actually talk to each other. 200+ pages of random antagonism gets old, so we gotta resolve some shit, maybe.

This chapter has been interesting to write, because last chapter was dramatic and actiony, and this chapter revolves around shoving a few more pieces into the puzzle. Technically, chapter 6 was the climax of…the first part of the first arc of this story. So we’re now in, I guess, Act II of the…first act. I don’t know. I don’t really think three act structures in storytelling are technically that effective. Whatever pace of information a story needs to take so that your readers stay engaged, and so that you’re naturally building towards climactic moments that have actual impact, is how you should set up the story, ultimately. This chapter is more slice-of-life quietly masking what’s actually a very long exploration of Malaya’s anxiety issues. And seeing as last chapter, she finally started to accept the whole werewolf thing, and the whole werewolf thing is intrinsically tied to her anxiety problem, well…you deal with one, you deal with the other. So, now we’re dealing with the other.

There’s been a diagram going around twitter of ideal word balloon placement…um, I guess I break all those rules on a regular basis. In an ideal world, that middle panel would be split into a couple smaller panels rather than have all those balloons in one place…but it’s funnier this way to me. I like the back and forth of the conversation this way. Splitting it into smaller panels that focus on characters adds a layer of emotionality that I didn’t want. A lot of this sequence of pages takes place with like, almost no eye contact. That’s how I pictured it in my head, and I think that’s where these two are at, relationship-wise. They aren’t friends, they aren’t even really enemies, and they don’t trust each other. It’s another awkward conversation, but with much different undertones than the last awkward conversation in this chapter. (Because Vincent and Elias are awkward because they want to be friends, but are both very bad at knowing how to do that.)

Anyway, I went to C2E2 in Chicago, which is a fairly gigantic comic convention. And kind of terrifying. I felt like a dad at a One Direction concert for as out of place as I was. Don’t get me wrong, I’d have been super jazzed to be there say, in high school. I liked things in high school. I’m not a fan of many things at this point in my life, mostly because I don’t have a lot of spare time and most current media seems really ephemeral and hard to stay attached to. I’m a fan of a lot of older things! I love Star Trek, for example. But walking around comic conventions reminds me how much stuff has changed since the last time I was bothering to pay attention, I guess.

Also, conventions iiiinstantly jack up my impostor syndrome issues. Like, hey! These people are all here and they’re doing this and they’ve got thousands of followers on Twitter and publishing deals and you’re…plugging along. It’s that feeling you get when you’re picked last for kickball, that there’s some inherent reason why you’re not up to the level of generating more attention for your work. BUT THEN…I have to remember that I’ve been doing this less than 2 1/2 years, and I’ve gotten great feedback and some really ride-or-die fans, and I just have to stay focused and not let the demons in my brain talk too loudly. It’s not easy, but I’ve got time, and I know this story is worth telling.

It’s worth telling, because I like it. And I’m not a fan of many things.