Here Have Some!

Aug 8, 2020, 6:07:38 PM

I don't think that's quite what she meant when she said, "Here have some!"

But I guess that's one way of getting some drink into your bod real fast.

This week's been light on doing anything creative for myself, but that's okay, you can't constantly be producing new things. Sometimes, you don't feel like it, or life takes over for a bit, and that's perfectly okay.

I want to talk about some stuff I've done over the last few months of quarantine, mainly I started writing a new novella for This Mortal Coil, and I finished the first rough draft a few weeks ago.

So congratulations to me.

Creativity in the Time of COVID-19

So, my work started quarantine mid-March. And honestly, it felt weird to do anything for a while. Before March I was doing a lot of 3D sculpting, but as soon as COVID-19 became more than a thing, my motivation dropped.

For that month I focused on work -- at least that kept me going. We were also trying to hit a deadline so it was crunch time.

I think another reason for my lack of productivity was that my needs as a person changed. We were now in a pandemic. People were buying toilet paper (of all things) and the shelves at the supermarket were bare. We had collectively dropped down in Maslow's hierarchy of needs. We were back to the base where things like food, shelter, and water are important as we try to figure out this new reality.

But like most of us, I figured things out and here we are in August. This year is no better. The pandemic is worse, but I've got an inkling as to how to survive in this age of COVID-19.

I realize I am really lucky in that regard in that I have a job, a roof over my head, and all the basic necessities to keep going. It allows me to move up that hierarchy of needs to things I want to do -- back to where I was before COVID-19. I've always pursued making my own things, it just took a while to climb back up to that point. I also know remaining there is a fickle thing. Some weeks I might not feel it. Other weeks it could be work. Sudden problems can crop up. Maybe one night I'm going with the flow so nothing happens. You never know how long you can spend "in the zone." I'll take what I can get when it comes to personal creativity for the time being.

A New Mortal Coil Novella Series

An idea I've had for a long while was to make This Mortal Coil into a novella series and sell it as eBooks on Amazon. It is totally contrary to the comics which are free to read on this website, but it might be another way to tell more stories, and if there's one thing I know, it's that I can write faster than I can draw.

In mid-April, I began to outline a novella. A few actually.

The goal for the serial was to make ten novellas. Each would tell its own complete story but the ten books would chain together and form an overarching plot.

I'm no stranger to doing eBooks. Back in 2017 I had experimented with doing eBooks on Amazon Kindle such as my Mechanical Bird novellas. They're still a thing you can get on Amazon, but I've been really lax about going further. Regardless, I learned a lot.

There's so much more than writing the book. You need to learn how to make a cover, do ad copy, make ads on social media, and so much more. I'm sure that's tip of the iceberg. I stopped for almost a year and a half because I didn't think I had it in me to keep trying. Low sales were a drag. Even self-publishing made me feel terrible. Those are hang ups I need to get over. I focused too much on the business side of things. To re-center myself I needed to shift my focus back to what makes Mortal Coil fun to make: focus on the art.

I suppose I have a fatalistic view of things. If we're in the middle of a pandemic there's a higher chance for life to go south. So, why not do what you want -- in a creative sense mind you. Yes, you should wear your mask and social distance around others. That's the thing to do. It lowers but doesn't nullify your chances of getting the disease.

In any case, I decided to make my art and do it my way.

This is why Magical Girl Kamiko restarted, and slowly, very slowly, I began to outline new Mortal Coil novella stories.

In May I began to write the first story.

Not everyday mind you. Just whenever. I know the highly productive folks will say you need discipline and gumption to drive you forward, but I wasn't finding that.

And that's fine.

I wrote when I can and word-by-word I grew my story until it was complete. It's far from perfect -- a complete mess maybe. I'm letting it sit right out so I can completely forget about it. The idea is to let it lay fallow and return to it with fresh eyes and do some editing. Then look for an actual editor to help me proofread it. Then make a cover and put it on Amazon.

In the meantime I started putting together a second story. I'm using my notes from this past spring and developing them further. Playing with ideas and shaping them, adding more ideas to them like slapping in new chunks of clay.

It gives my brain something to chew on and hopefully it'll get me through the pandemic. Maybe when we're on the other side I'll have a few novellas -- and maybe 1 or 2 of them might be on Amazon.

This is really a slower process -- I mean it to be, but it lets me be creative in the meantime.

Some New Art

I did manage to draw a little something this week, so here it is:

Kamiko Vogue Fashion Model WIP

Kamiko Vogue Fashion Model WIP

Just something really quick I put together one morning before opening the ole laptop and getting to work.

Anyhow, I hope you have a good weekend, and there'll be more Magical Girl Kamiko to come!