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#477: Copycat

June 3, 2010

Notes from the Manager

Short one this time!

In case you weren't aware, Avatar director James Cameron "was among a group of scientists and other experts who met Tuesday with officials from the Environmental Protection Agency and other federal agencies for a brainstorming session on stopping the massive oil leak"; he is "considered an expert on underwater filming and remote vehicle technologies," according to the Washington Post. Despite the snarky undertones of this strip, I think anyone who's read an in-depth interview with Cameron knows that the man knows his technical stuff inside-out.

Here's a decent article from Vektorrum with a little background about Jim Cameron the inventor. It notes that Cameron is "collaborating on the design and construction of a new deep sea exploration vessel that will explore the Marianas Trench in the South Pacific." Yeah, he might be worth having in the room while people brainstorm ways to fix the leak.

Dances with Wolves director Kevin Costner, for his part, was motivated by the 1989 Exxon Valdez disaster to help fund a consortium of scientists dedicated to developing technology that "mitigates oil-infected water before it hits the coast." He has invested $24 million of his money to help develop a centrifugal oil separator that BP says it will test soon.

So yeah! I've recently updated the Kickstarter backers, but thought I would share some of the same information for you:

Month four of the two months off from taking any other freelance work has begun, I'm sad to say. :1 As I've mentioned before, to say that I vastly underestimated how much time it would take to complete the new material for the book is a big understatement. The prequel story is proceeding, however — I've got the script where I'm happy with it, and I'm starting to draw it.

I've got backgrounds dropped in for many of the pages and I'm getting the main characters in place, so that I know where I'll be dropping in the reader cameos (and other background characters). Kickstarter backers will get sneak peaks at the story, but as I've also said before, this story is exclusive to the print book, so no one's seeing the whole thing until the book is out.

Speaking of which, I am still confident that it will be in my hands (and yours, soon after) this fall, thanks to finding a US-based printer that was within my printing budget. Their significantly faster turnaround compared to the Chinese printers will hopefully balance out my own delays.

However. Since I've gone a month longer than I'd budgeted for (and counting!) with the Kickstarter project and Multiplex does not currently bring in enough money to pay all of my bills — as you can imagine, my living expenses are spreading a bit thin. Because of this, I've reluctantly added a little button for PayPal donations at the main site (as you may or may not have noticed already). For those of you who aren't already Kickstarter backers, please consider making a SMALL donation — or buying something from the Multiplex Store to help support the strip just a little bit longer. Hopefuly the print collection will make Multiplex a self-sustaining business, of course, because I would love to continue doing the strip full-time — and be able to leap straight into the second print collection. :)

PayPal donors (in any amount) will get access to an exclusive desktop picture featuring Melissa from the prequel story in a Slave Leia costume. You can see a little preview in the right sidebar, on the new PayPal donation button. It's similar to the Tinkerbell desktop pic of Sunny. It's not PG fan service, I swear — it's just nerdy! I'll update the desktop pics periodically, of course, to encourage you to keep supporting the strip.

Thank you all for reading!

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Sunday, November 1, 2015

2015-11-01 14.15.23

Thank you very much for the outpouring of kind words since last Friday. It meant a lot to me, and I’m happy to say that I have great news: things may not be quite so bleak as I thought last week.

For some background, since I haven’t shared much of this publicly, my cat Punk very nearly died in September from a urinary tract infection. A slew of medicines turned things around after a rough couple of weeks, and he had two great weeks but then relapsed. As it turned out, the strain of infection he had was resistant to the antibiotics he was on, so he had to go on some new meds.

Because he wasn’t back at 100% (as close to 100% as an 18 year old cat with three chronic diseases gets, anyway), the recovery this time was very, very hard on him. Punk had to be taken to the emergency room last Wednesday evening, then he wasn’t handling the pain medication they prescribed very well — or eating, except when I would spoon feed him baby food — so I was… in a very bad headspace last week.

With non-stop attention and some tweaks to his medication dosages, he began improving steadily on Friday evening, started to eat on his own and seek out my company on Saturday, and he even meowed for the first time in two weeks on Sunday.

If this keeps up, this will be the third time he’s cheated death (last month, and a bout with pancreatitis a couple of years ago), but I’m still nervous about him relapsing yet again. There’s also the very real possibility that there is something else going on behind all his recent troubles…

But… he’s a tough little guy, and he’s had a great couple of days,which is very encouraging. He has even managed to get back to work on the strip with me (pictured above!), and we’ll hopefully be able to keep at it.

The Multiplex update schedule may be a little erratic for the next couple of months. If that happens, hopefully it will be because I need more time to finish my MFA thesis, not another downturn in Punk’s health. Either way, thank you for reading, and thank you for all your support — financial, emotional, and… egotistical?

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