Xiam
I am a geek for many things geeky, including Star Wars, Monty Python, Anime and Manga, and my ever-present daydreams and fantasies.

My art style doesn't tend to involve anime and manga all that much - I much prefer to create my own style, a blend of all others I've seen, which often depends largely on the style the series is in.

My current obsession is Power Rush.
  • Real Name
    Andrew
  • Age
    32
  • Gender
    Male
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Sorry for the delay today. As it was Halloween, I was making merry.

Okay, I was watching horror. Alone.

Anyway, was a bit late finishing, then apparently my WiFi isn't working, so I had to make a clever workaround (uploading to my phone, then from my phone).

I don't know if I'll have anything tomorrow, if this situation continues. Will still attempt to have something soon though, I want to do another chapter this month.

In the meantime, though, I hope everyone has a good Day of the Dead, with time well spent with loved ones (regardless of their current state of being).

I hope I did it justice.
Happy Halloween, everybody! I hope you're having a spooky time.

I don't know exactly what I'd intended for this page when I wrote it, but once I went to the drawing stage I realized I can't just show her the whole time. That's boring.

Then I realized I only drew one skeleton, and I risked making people think it was her father. So I figured, screw it, let's have a party.

I wish I'd drawn more, and maybe did a bit better with the art on the three I did, but... I just really wanted the page to be up...
Devil's Night tonight. Hope everybody's ready.

I've addressed death plenty in a past series, hopefully well enough, though not as well as I would like.

But I think it's difficult, really, the uncertainty as to our eventual fate. Is there an afterlife? Do we just rot in the ground, unfeeling, effectively "shut off" forever? I don't know if other people think about these things, but I think I've dwelt upon it far more than I should, and I dread the day when I have to lose my parents. I feel like I'll end up like Ana. Uncomfortable and unwilling to really face it head-on, fearing the possibility that ultimately, there's nobody to actually talk to, and they may in fact be gone, forever.

Though if the last page was anything to go by, I suppose her worries are unfounded.

I'm sorry if I brought the mood down. I'll try to keep it light next time.
Fun fun.

Argh... having little to no knowledge of Mexican culture, I felt so awful even tackling this story. I wasn't even sure the best way this should go. Knowing full well Miguel's preference in stories, I initially wanted something much more gruesome, but I felt like it would be an insult to the holiday. Pretty much the closest thing I have is this fellow, whose friend has come to drink and hear him play music again.

I also had to do a lot of searches to see what Mexican cemeteries even look like. I found the entrance to one that looked something like this, complete with the words, meaning, "Here begins a new life." I thought it fitting.

Ugh, I hope it wasn't a terrible idea to do this one, but I wanted to represent more than just whitebread ghost stories, and as I already went for a Japanese one (which I'm still unhappy with)... might as well, right?
D'aww, little Miguel.

I don't think I initially intended him to be there, but when drawing I realized I was so out of practice drawing people, it would be irresponsible to have three panels of two women I've never drawn before, sitting at a patio table and talking. It's also not visually exciting. Butterflies though...

Fun fact, Monarch butterflies are said to be the souls of the dead. Coincidentally, they show up in Mexico at around the time of the Day of the Dead. So... I thought it would be a nice added touch of symbolism. (And it may very well be his grandfather, but I never knew quite how to apply it to the story, so don't expect it again.)
Holy crumbs, I didn't realize I'd posted pages without finishing this chapter. And I still don't have nearly all the pages finished, but I am absolutely determined to finish this chapter before the Day of the Dead.

Basically, the plan is to get three up before the end of the year, but as I've struggled so much just to do this one I don't know if I'm going to be able. Suffice it to say, I may end up posting holiday chapters that don't involve the holidays.

It's frustrating how little excitement I've had for drawing lately. I think this page was a good example of why - my needs far outstrip my talent, and I'm just not creative enough. I got so frustrated I drew the skull equivalent of an anime girl, and by the last few I was just repeating the same scribbling pattern.

Rrgh. I do want to write though. But enough of blogging - skellingtons!

As I continue to work on this series, I'm getting a better handle of how the storytellers tell their stories. Which may require a rewrite of this chapter's finale, or I'll just leave it because of time constraints. Eh.

What's this about cover pages now? Cripes, now I have to go draw something new... and cripes, I had to save this as a JPEG just to fit the size limit. All the skulls, I guess. Even after reducing the amount by "zooming" (I screwed up saving and no longer have the large version except in my initial 2x PNG, great) it was too big until I went JPEG.

Yeesh.
"Can anybody tell I'm Mexican?"
Geeeez, ran it a bit clustered there, sorry...

Anyway, yeah! Since I don't have time or energy to cram in all the stories I want (right now, at least), I'll jump straight to the Day of the Dead. It's okay though. It involves the dead.

Also sorry for yet another late one - both in time and date. Hopefully I'll be on time for the next one, the actual story can finally begin.

Only problem is, I've got the ending but I don't know how I'm gonna get there. Siiigh... I don't want it to be only three pages long, you know? But, well, let's see how it goes.

The year should round up with stories for Thanksgiving and Christmas, by the way. Since Michael Doherty's already got Krampus covered, I've got something else planned.

(Actually, had something else planned anyway, so I don't suppose that matters. Still... seems almost inevitable.)
Oh, Hatch.

Whew. Sorry for the (MASSIVE) delay, you guys. As a consequence, I've pretty much decided to skip a whole cycle.

Which is fine. My original plans were to have the first cycle be holiday stories, so this keeps up with that (the time between Obon and Halloween really detracted from that). Sadly, this is not a Halloween one, but it can count. Explanations to come.

I just hope I can keep up with updates. Ugh, it's been awful lately, sorry again, but I really hope to at least finish the first cycle by the end of the year.

I really wish I could get another artist though. I definitely think I have far more energy (and aptitude) for writing than I do for drawing.

Anyway, as far as update schedules go: I'm shifting from noon to sundown EST for this chapter. Will hopefully keep it like that for thematic purposes, but we'll see how it goes, since I need to actually LOOK IT UP each day.
"Oh come on, we're all thinking it."
Sorry about the continued delays, things have been kind of... ehhh... lately... and I was not looking forward to the necessary details on this page (candles, why did I want to do candles?)

Anyway, new story now! Originally I was hoping to do this with the wraparound as its own separate story (or unsorted) but apparently I can't do that and still let it remain in order of viewing? So I can't actively separate the stories from the wraparound, which means you get these folks if you want to just jump to one story or another.

But egh. Hopefully I'm writing them well enough that you don't have to angst over it.

Anyway, changed a few things for color and shading preferences, not entirely happy with the shadows on the walls but I kind of like what I've settled on for candle glow. Still a bit anxious about some of the character designs. Emiko is still hard to pin down, Miguel reminds me of a Mexican Peter, and I'm suddenly realizing that Hatch is a blend between Hiro Hamada and a character I haven't yet released yet, who incidentally looks strangely like the Imp with a beard, and also round ears, and is human. Apparently I have go-to character designs. That can't be good.

Question - since this is horror, should I update at sundown or midnight, instead of nice and sunny noontime? Or do you folks not give a damn?
We can blow out that first candle now.
In retrospect, I could have just ended this on Saturday. Or on Friday if I didn't have that day of feeling miserable. Sigh.

So, that's the end of the first story. Anybody? Any good? No good? Aaagh... I guess this is what this'll be like.

Hopefully I'll get better at this as we go.
Well... in my head it was animated and more head-on, but I think this turned out really nicely. I'm pretty happy with it. The Bubble-like spirit is almost exactly how I pictured it.

It's beautiful. And hopefully a bit spooky.

This and the last page initially had the spirit talking directly to the girl, here, but I decided to go a different way because:
A) Ghosts are often a bit wrapped up in their own troubles to notice the living anyway,
B) I think it's creepier that there's a disconnect between them, and
C) It outright had her asking if she could help, which felt a bit too brave for her. She's already being a bit bold to investigate altogether, right? I expect her to not expect she could do anything to help someone who seems in distress. Or, alternatively, she doesn't want to stick around any more than she has to.

I know I wouldn't.

(Still, maybe it going right for her screaming to go away might be more terrifying. Ah, nuts.)
Sorry for the lack of update yesterday. Was having a rough day.

Probably gonna be cranky now, too. I accidentally saved the working file for this over the one for the last page. I have a 2x version for all pages saved, but... well, I hope I saved when I had the most recent version.

...Crap, I didn't. Agh. Anyway, page. Emiko's story is wrapping up soon, I'd better start scripting the next.
I think I'm getting better at the backgrounding and shading...

Maybe...

What do you guys think?
It feels like she turns too fast. Does she turn too fast? I think she turns too fast.

Anyway, comic! Initially I was going to just take Sundays off (or, at least, no post on Sundays), but Friday kind of wore me out, so... weekends off, I suppose.

A bit tough to get back into the groove.
Spooky.

Sorry for the delay. More panels than normal. (Did you even notice?)

Not entirely happy with my work here, but some of it's pretty nice. Also, I absolutely had to give a tongue-in-cheek reference to manga fanslations with the onomatopoeia. I even considered using the kana here but I felt that might have been a bit too much.

I won't be doing this whole story in Japanese, I promise.

PS: That's not sperm. It's a hitodama.
Whew, only about four and a half hours of work. I should do comics this lazy more often. It's good, too, because I was really not looking forward to a scenery page.

We have a title page, guys! Yeahhh! The story can finally begin!

Sigh... like shouting in an empty room... I miss you folks.
And thus why I wanted to update this all at one time. Sigh.

Anyway, so now we have a bit of backstory and explanation, hopefully. I can't believe I'm going to try and do a hundred of these, I'm already exhausted. Probably doesn't help that I haven't done comics in a while.

Eesh.
I suppose it might also end with the sunrise.

Of course, I don't have to follow any of these rules, mwahahaha. Except the weirdness.

So, anybody excited for this? Bueller? Bueller? Just Hatch? I hope I'm not just doing this for my own sake.

(Geez, this'll be an ordeal if so.)
I can't believe I nearly forgot to do these candle and shadow effects. Feels more eerie and mysterious now, nice.

For those familiar with Hyakumonogatari Kaidankai, you'll have a bit of an idea of what we're in for. If not, Emiko will explain further.

Though you could've just clicked the link. But honestly, if you're going to just be reading the comic and not my comments, it'd be best if I explain there anyway, right? Yeah? 'Cuz you should just be able to read the comic itself and ignore my rambling. Heh... erm... oh...
So here we have, by order of appearance:

Emiko, Miguel, Cass, and Hatch.

Three guesses as to which my favorite character is.

Originally there were going to be five, but I realised that a mistake I've made in the past (Gary the Alchemist, Power Rush) is that the more characters I have, the higher chance there will be at least one flat, boring character. In this case, the problem was between Miguel and another, named Lars. I decided to axe Lars to give Miguel a stronger presence.

Which doesn't seem to make much sense since they won't appear in most of these chapters except as a framing device. However, who they are will hopefully paint their stories as we go, and therefore it was important that I had more defined personalities among them.

Other troubles occurred. Particularly names. I had Hatch's name in from Day One, I don't know why but I thought Hatch was a perfect name. I'm not even sure if it's his real name or a nickname. Hatch is just Hatch.

Emiko and Cass settled in shortly thereafter, and Miguel's only came together after I got rid of Lars.

Funny thing about Emiko's name, hers is the oldest out of any of these. I had an old idea for a story back when I thought I could make a video game with no experience whatsoever - it was a boy of a strange mountain- or cloud-dwelling race of elves. When I realized it was an actual name in Japanese, I thought, "Well screw it," and just gave up on the whole thing. The story was kind of terrible anyway.

But as I was doing this I'd juggled names, struggled, and eventually pulled this one out of the ol' internal name folder. Given the concept of the series, it seemed only natural.

And one last ranting bit... geez, I'm bad at faces. Took me ages to finally settle on how they look. Cass especially was a problem, and the point where coloring I almost left her pale and gothy when I suddenly realized she looked too much like another Death. Except significantly more sullen.