Possibly Noir Craziness

This is going to be crazy. The characters in The Elves of Lleugarnock are specifically designed to be repeatable and flexible, and there are only two main characters, and I have enough trouble with them. Dragon’s Fall has approximately nine major characters, at least five of which insist on being main characters. I’m going to try to draw them in a much more complex, realistic style. I’m going to be a perfectionist about every page, because in my mind this story has more weight and importance than LleuGarnock, and because in this case it’s not just my opinion that counts. I’m barely keeping the pace of two LleuGarnock pages a week, and now I’m adding to this schedule. And yet somehow, I think I can do it. It doesn’t make reasonable sense, but when I think about drawing the first few pages I get a warm fuzzy feeling. I believe I can do this.

So now I’m thinking I should tell all you people something about Dragon’s Fall. Well, it has dragons, obviously, but the other thing is, it takes place in present-day Philadelphia, mostly. It’s hard to say much else, because William and I are both rather secretive about what is going to happen in our plots. I can tell you that it has a bit of noir flavor, and that I would categorize it as web-MA, mostly for intense violence, but also it has some language and sex.

Wow, I’m just recalling some scenes that I am going to find it very unpleasant to draw. I mean, I can write bad stuff without any trouble, but having to draw it is going to make it much more intense.

OK, the thing I’m leaving out which makes it all make sense is that these dragons are disguised as humans; a lot of the characters are actually “half-dragons,” which refers to any blend of dragon and human ancestry. I want to say they’re similar to vampires, but that makes me uncomfortable, even though they totally are, except they don’t drink blood and they’re not dead and all those things that kill vampires don’t kill them. Ok, they’re not at all vampires, but then the standards for vampires have been pretty low recently.

What half-dragons do have are fangs. Also claws, and a second set of eyelids, and very tough skin. They are only semi-endothermic, so they get cold easily. They’ve got your standard supernatural strength and speed, and heal very quickly. OK, apparently I can think of lots of things to say, but I don’t want to give everything away, so I’ll stop.

One thing that worries me is how similar some elements are between the two comics. This is probably just my own very special talent for seeing patterns acting up; I can extend a metaphor between any two stories almost infinitely. But since LleuGarnock was the project I poured all my excess creative energy into when we stopped working on Dragon’s Fall, some of the flavor seeped in. Not the noir flavor, but some of the bittersweet undertone, and it brought an image with it. So if you’ve been reading LleuGarnock, you might recognize some of those elements when you read the first scene of Dragon’s Fall.

I’ve worked up a couple of versions of a logo. I don’t know, I guess they go with the story, but I’m not sure if they go with the feel of the comic. I’m not actually sure what the feel of the comic will be. I keep telling myself noir, because that’s definitely the direction that I want to travel away from my current style. It’s just so far, I don’t know if I’ll make it all the way there, or end up somewhere in the middle of sort ofrealistic fantasy. The logos are pretty standard fantasy fare. I’ve got some slightly different ideas, but I need to go out on a reference photo expedition.

OK, for those of you who are actually interested in the comic I’m drawing now, I’m finishing the second-to-last page of Chapter Three, and if I can finish the last one before Monday, I can be officially three months ahead again! That will go a long way to making me feel better about adding a comic to my schedule. The first scripts of Chapter Four are planned out, and coming up early in the chapter is the only joke that was actually written into the first draft of the original book. It’s pretty cute.

The cover for Four does not fall conveniently on a holiday, but I’m still going to release it as a regular update. It does add something to the story. I’ve mostly stopped feeling bad about doing that because besides the first one, all my cover pictures contribute something to the story. I think it’s worth coming to the site to see.

I still haven’t learned how to stop blogging. Maybe now that I have a proper blog site and I can update as often as I want, I will develop that skill. In any case, I should get back to that page. It needs some color.


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