And they lived happily ever after!
I started this strip over 9 years ago. Since then my mother’s passed away, I’ve fallen in love, gotten married, gone back to school, had a baby, another’s on the way, and yesterday was my 39th birthday. So, a lot has happened. It’s been nice to have this as a constant in my life, but I feel it’s time to move on. I’m going to try answer the questions I think you’ll have. Feel free to ask more in the comments section.
Why am I stopping?
Part of it is that I want to grow as a cartoonist. I want to work in other areas, like hybrid comics: part writing/part comics. Part of it is that I’ve been writing female-centric comics for so long, and now that I have a son, I want to write something for him. But I don’t want to change Princess Planet to be something new. I want to let it be what it is. There was a spark that made me decide to stop. My wife was looking at me colouring Epic Sail and said “You spend a lot of time on that”. I realized that I’ve set up a certain expectation of full-colour, 6 panel work with Princess Planet, and now I feel like exploring work that’s more immediate, and of varying length, and varying update schedules. I’ve never missed an update in 9 years, except when portioning out guest strips, and that took a lot out of me. It’s time for a bit of a vacation.
Will there be a collection?
I’ve pitched a collection to one publisher already, but who knows what will happen? If you really want a collection talk to your favourite kids book/comic book publisher and tell them to collect it. Put it on their radar. With my growing family size, I don’t have room in my apartment to store boxes of self-published books. If you want to be kept informed about possible collections, or other Princess Planet news, you can email SignUp @ theprincessplanet.com and I only email you if I have important Princess Planet alerts.
Will there be more Princess Planet?
I’ve made a 12 page pdf, called The Danger of the Dinosorcerer, with a self-contained adventure for Princess Christi and Princess Boo. I haven’t asked you guys for money before (except the few of you who bought prints at shows -thanks!), so I hope you don’t think it’s unclassy of me, but I’m offering it as pay-what-you-want download (minimum $1 Canadian). It’s all new material. So, if you want to use it as a tip jar, and give me some money in exchange for the enjoyment you’ve received from the strip, that would be much appreciated. If you just want to buy it to get 72 new panels of Princess Planet, that’s cool too. If you don’t want to pay anything, you’re not missing out on an integral story line or anything, and you can always reread this strip. You get it by clicking on this link.
I don’t think the website will have any new strips, but there might be new pdfs for sale – either because you demand it with your dollars/comments/emails, or if I get struck with a story that I just have to share. I’m not ending the strip because I feel like I’m done with the characters and world. I’m not sick, or tired or Princess Planet. I’m just interested in trying other things.
Over the past couple of years I’ve been working on a book for OWLKids, called Draw Out the Story: 10 Secrets To Creating Your Own Comics. I’m really proud of how it turned out. It focuses on how to tell stories with comics, rather than on teaching you how to draw. You can draw in any style, or write in any genre, and the book will be helpful. If you’re interested in the comic-making process, check it out. (And if you click on the link when you buy/pre-order it, I get a bit more cash than if you don’t). This link is to the softcover but there’s a hardcover too. I’ll be having a launch party for it on September the 21 at The Little Island in Toronto. It’s an amazing all kids comic shop on Bathurst St. Here’s a few sample panels from the book.
Beyond that, I’m not sure what my next big project will be. In my spare time I’ve been working on a video game with a programmer friend, but that is years away from completion. I’ve also been working on little strips here and there, and pitching full-length graphic novels to publishers. I’m also updating a tumblr off all the pop culture portmanteau I don’t use in Princess Planet. This strip has never been a place to drop a Star Wars or Doctor Who joke, so GarbageBarf has been a place to get that out of my system. What’s mostly taken up my time in the past year has been looking after my son full-time. My wife’s got the steadier income, so I’ve been looking after the little man and fitting in comics when he’s napping or visiting nana. And you can of course read my Alex & Charlie comic every month in Owl Magazine.
I want to thank all of the readers who have been involved in making this a fun experience. I really enjoyed the banter we got going. I enjoyed seeing you riddle out the extra gags. I think there was only one troll in the run of the strip. So I want to thank all the commenters, especially those who got into the double digits: Ribuprissin, RavenBlack, ColdFusion, Golux, mdf, Lars, Hoppy, Reynard61, Nonsensicles, Lightbulb, Scarodactyl, Proteus, Alice Quinn, Anonymous, Bok, Anton Sherwood, Blue Night, Daniel, Dante Wynter, Varkarrus, USB, Sam, Kim, The Blonde One, das, littebeast, sirbacon, Emma, Toner, DSil, Aeonsama, Tamfang, Jai, KNO3, Mary Tee, Philosopher Zurg, CatzCradle, and Fat Sweaty. And thanks to everyone who drew Fan Art for the strip: Lars, Daniel, Hambot, and Kathleen! Big up to the people who covered the strip, El Santo at Webcomics Overlook, Alice Quinn at TDot Comics, Hansel Moreno at ReadComicBooks and Jenn at The Dragon podcast. Thank you to the readers who came back to read the strip but didn’t feel the need to comment; the silent majority is much appreciated. A HUGE thank you to everyone who referred a friend and recommended someone else check out the strip. I want to thank my friends and peers for supporting me with encouragement, and guest strips, especially Steven Charles Manale who put up with me calling him for help with punchlines a lot. All the Transmission-X crew. And of course to my amazing wife, who helps me figure out what is funny and what is not. You are all awesome wizaardvark warbarian typhoonicorns!