Perfect Social Justice

I feel weird about this one, but life is too short to worry that much about what one is doing!

It was also pretty inevitable that I was going to bring Mona back in–I think I just needed to get away from her for a couple of strips? But it’s just like everything clicks well when this specific Friend Relationship is around, so like, why ditch it for the sake of Ideological Purity? Where you are is where you ought to be.

I’ve been going back and filling in the inks on some of the strips that have existed in pencils only for like, a year now (and which the members of the Abjuration Club have seen some months back), trying to reconnect to the larger story. It still feels weird, but I’m trying to at least keep drawing, staying sort of spontaneous, not taking things too seriously, trying to function, and I guess it is sort of working enough that comics are appearing, so!


Uterus Club No Longer In Session

This is my comic about why I haven’t worked on Bad Mother in a while. It turns out that if you are trans and feel conflicted about your body and reproductive destiny in the ways alluded to here, writing and drawing a webcomic about a cis lesbian and the cis daughter she can relatively uncomplicatedly produce and raise (relative to you), in a way that also forces you to think very carefully and in a detailed way about the childhood and life arc of said cis daughter, is not a good “mental health” decision possibly. So it seemed wise maybe to address this directly.

There are other Bad Mother comix that I may or may not finish and I may or may not come back to it, but I have a couple of Cathy strip ideas (some featuring Mona and Betty, sure) and I want to do those for a while. It’s Frustrating To Write Mostly Cis Characters These Days isn’t the only factor involved in comix production slowdown, and if I had more time to uncomplicatedly spend on comics or less fear of the process of making comics itself, I could probably like “power through” my existing Bad Mother outline? But I don’t have that much time, so I want to spend what time I do spend on comics on articulating stuff from this point of view now. Sorry, if that bugs you! This may result in more comics for you though! Or it may not!

Maybe I will recenter Bad Mother on Cathy (as Allison Parrish once told me I ought to do) so that the same characters you have come to know and love will still be there, but now they will be explicitly viewed through the cruel, jaundiced eye of our heroine! Maybe I will just bring back Boat Girl forever! Who knows what I will do! I don’t!

UPDATE: I don’t even know! I’m still in New Orleans! I am really actively looking for freelance work, if you are seeking someone to design books or edit copy! Please inquire! I am still writing. Instar Books released two new titles since last update, and a third is coming ASAP. We are planning a sweet Fall tour, about which more info soon. Today’s Tarot draw was the Three of Swords, although it’s 11:15pm where I am, so it’s probably too late to act on that information.



Eyes on the Prize

ha ha ha this is based on a TRUE STORY! The true story of Xmas shopping today, December 13, 2014, at a series of suburban malls in Kenner and Metairie, Louisiana; the true story of everything sucks and Mona is wrong because there is actually no way ever to stop this game. So it was at least helpful to keep score for once, to quantify everything sucking for once

Other news that I may not have posted here yet:

  • I started a Patreon called ABJURATION CLUB NEWSLETTER. Once a month I basically dump all that I’ve worked on in the past month into a fun zine format. So it’s a mix of excerpts from my novel-in-progress, Summer Fun, Bad Mother strips in progress (sometimes, not lately, because I suck), sketchbook drawings, and miscellany. Please enjoy if this is your kind of thing! (There is a sample issue to determine whether this is your kind of thing.)
  • Torrey Peters reviewed The Black Emerald for Topside Press’s Spotlight section! It is a pretty rad review!
  • Instar Books has released a new title, Sharing by Miracle Jones! It’s one of my favorite novels basically ever, really indescribably wonderful and weird, and I’m so so so excited that we’re doing a new updated edition of the original Smashwords publication. Please check it out (there’s a preview PDF of the first chapter on the book page), and if you happen to buy it and read it, do us a “solid” and leave a fun Goodreads review?\
  • Miracle Jones and I are gonna do a Reddit AMA on Tuesday, December 16, 2014 at 11 AM Eastern in support of Instar Books generally. Come ask us questions and stuff! It’ll be somewhere on this page.
  • One of the stories from The Black Emerald got all published and stuff in CURA! If you like this strip and others in its vein maybe you will dig it! It is about trading sex for dessert because Nietzsche said so.

Old Scratch

Yet another comic drawn during the bulk of this year where I could not for the life of me get anything done. The joke I guess is that Mona is frustrating to talk to about basically any subject.

I have very little to say about this one! It has been around for a while gathering dust. I actually didn’t realize, reading it over tonight to post it, that I’d never really questioned what an alder tree even is, because I do not have as wholesome a relationship with THE GREAT GAIA as I would like. It is kind of interesting! I’m excited that alder trees have the power to begin to reclaim ecologically destroyed land, that they have this kinda missionary role among the tree population.


Dear God Or Whoever Ya Are

This was originally drawn in February or March or something as a kind of totem against the fear of continuing to draw and update this webcomic I was then experiencing. I guess it DIDN’T TOTALLY WORK, since I haven’t finished inking and coloring it until now, but it was nice to see it looking at me from my drafting table from time to time, reminding me that comics are important in my life!

Geez. a whole lot has happened? I guess this video of me reading with other rad writers is an important component of that, as is this new thing I am doing with pals?


Higgs Boson

I don’t draw often enough is the thing. This is a script I have had sitting around for a few months, hastily finished so I would have something for the most recent Rocksalt Magazine (vis.) I would like to be positive about comics, and I’m glad I can do something like the first panel background quickly these days–thinking about how long, painstaking, and ultimately ineffective the process of doing those was ten years ago. I just wish I had time, could make time, to do this more often.


Reality Choke


This is the start of a little storyline, but do not HOLD YOUR BREATH for the next couple since I am in the process of moving house to New Orleans, and the rest of the strips aren’t altogether done yet, you understand

I am aware that like every strip has been about Mona and Cathy lately and this is no exception, but I don’t know–for a long time I couldn’t really write this strip and writing about Mona and Cathy gets me back into it, so there you are

that is all i have to say rn


Quelles Miserables

BOOK CHAT again! I do love old things but Victor Hugo is not really one of them

The dates these are supposedly posted obviously have nothing to do with reality–I think I was reading Les Miserables sometime around April or May of 2014, just finished this strip in October finally, posted it November 2013.

I swear there are some strips involving Betty and school coming up soon! It’s not all just Cathy and Mona being sassy with one another. Although most likely the next five strips are gonna be about Cathy and Mona being sassy with one another, so brace for that.


Awful Tumbles

I drew most of this strip back in like October of last year and have been leery of putting it up ever since, to a degree greater than I am leery of putting forth anything I write or do. The most recent thing I have worried about: the reaction to Jessica Udischas’s awesome Manic Pixie Nightmare Girl, specifically this strip, which got her banned from posting to reddit’s r/transgender. That is awful and I’m mad at everyone who gave her shit about the strip, because it’s sad and really beautiful and I feel really really fortunate never to have experienced anything as bad as what she’s drawn, and expecting people who do experience shit because of their identity on a regular basis to somehow magically rise above that shit so you can feel comfortable that Everything Is Okay is NO GOOD.

About this strip specifically, or I dunno why I am leery of it: I’ve been really fortunate to retain a lot of cis friends after transitioning. It sucks to have that be something that I can consider myself fortunate about because it’s not really the norm. But at the same time, this privilege differential is real, I did watch the way I was treated change in subtle ways that line up in wackily coincidental fashion with the overall ways society is structured, and I end up thinking more often than I’d like to admit: if it came down to it, like if I did something that pissed this person off or something, at what point would they use my being trans against me? At what point would they reveal that All Along they were tolerating/humoring me rather than actually believing me? To what extent am I a joke or humorous detail to people I like and trust when I am not present?

I don’t think this is an irrational fear. And a lot of the time in late 2013 I had pretty much Cathy’s experience: spending hours reading tumblr as my primary point of contact with Other Trans Women and feeling the grim sense after it, when I spent time with cis friends, of whatever this emotion resolves to: it’s only a matter of time before this breaks down. It’s only a matter of time before I become a problem for these people. Maybe it has happened already.

I don’t think this as often anymore–honestly because I have met and spent time with more trans women since 2013 and I do kind of feel like I’d have A Place To Go To in terms of human contact if things got bad, which puts less immediate strain on friendships with cis people, same way maybe that knowing you have enough money to survive for a few months if you quit your job tomorrow makes it easier to go to that job. But I do still think it, and there is not a way not to think it, and it is one of the grimmest parts about being trans: the inextinguishable paranoia that at any moment, it can turn into trans vs. cis, that maybe everyone is waiting for that moment. If you think this is crazy and that I should get over it, I encourage you to step into the mysterious cabinet that lets you live as a trans person for the next 24 hours and get back to me on this idea.

Mona, as written, is not gonna (intentionally anyway) be a jerk to Cathy in this way, which I know with 100% certainty because I write her. But I mean Cathy doesn’t know that about Mona, just as I don’t know that about other people I know whom I don’t write dialogue for (though the people I *do* write dialogue for are okay is the thing), just as they don’t know that about me when we’re on opposite sides of other privilege differentials. Yet their friendship is of long standing and overall social forces are not a metric one can use to evaluate a specific connection between people. And it’s not like Mona is fucking up here in any way, except in the general ways that she is a fuckup. THE WORLD IS FUCKING UP IS MORE THE THING AND WE ARE ALL CAUGHT IN ITS WEB.

I don’t know I’ll just post this, maybe other people have had the fun experience of feeling extra depressed and alienated after reading tumblr and harboring suspicions of everyone they know who does not share their context