Let me start by clarifying that this is not the Ethan and Lucas reboot. We’re getting closer to that, but we’re not quite there yet, and I’ll address that in a moment.
So what is this? My two-thousandth update, if you can believe it. Nearly eleven years and a couple thousand comics. It’s wild to think about. And though Ethan and Lucas are not part of the comic at this exact moment, they were still there for ten of the eleven years, and are still very much at the heart of this whole thing. So when I started thinking about what I could do special for update number two-thousand, this just made sense.
Earlier this year I had talked about doing a limited edition signed print featuring Ethan and the gang, sort of one last nod to their misadventures before the reboot began. It made sense to finally do that, to coincide with the big two-zero-zero-zero. I also thought people might enjoy seeing these characters again, since the reboot is taking longer than expected to get underway.
I couldn’t settle on a single image to sum my feelings about these characters, so I drew two. Two different sides of Ethan, if you will. And so these limited prints will stand as the last artwork I draw of the gang in their original incarnation before I put them in a new setting for new adventures.
And what about that reboot, I’m sure you’re asking. With good reason. Nobody more than myself expected to be further along with that by now, trust me. It occurs to me that I’ve updated people on forums, and during panels at conventions, but that I haven’t made a blog post update on the situation, so allow me to do that now.
Last November when I ended the Ethan and Lucas story, I had a clear plan in mind. A few months of reestablishing the gaming focus with one-shots, and then launching the reboot by spring. However “No plan survives contact,” as they say, and this year was not something I’d factored into my plans.
In January, as many of you who read the newsposts may know, we nearly lost our dog Simon due to complications from a collapsing trachea. A few months later, he did in fact pass away. I don’t want to get back into the whole thing, but it devasted us. It was all I could do just to make the weekly comics, and I was checked out, emotionally, from any other projects I was working on.
And then, right after we lost Simon, my wife and I found out that we were expecting; a little boy due in December. You can imagine the emotional roller coaster, both ends of the spectrum back to back.
So the following months were spent in a bit of a whirlwind, first helping her through the fatigue and nausea of the first trimester, and then getting our house ready to sell, and moving, etc.
However, that’s not to say a hectic personal life is solely to blame for the delay, nor that I haven’t been working on the reboot. At this point I’ve written the scripts for three issues of the new Ethan and Lucas adventures.
In the process though, some questions on the matter of format and sustainability arose that I needed an answer to. And so it seemed prudent to do a “trial run” to test out some of the answers I came up with. I wanted to get feedback on the format I was planning before I made any sort of commitments to it with the Ethan and Lucas reboot.
So I put the reboot on pause and set about writing a story featuring the Players, from an in-character perspective as their tabletop RPG counterparts. A fantasy story. I decided that this would not only let readers get to the know the Players on a more personal level, but it would allow me to test the waters with this storytelling format I’m hoping to use for the Ethan and Lucas reboot. Get feedback on it, and tweak and improve it before committing to it.
And that’s where we stand at the moment. Ultimately, I’m just not going to rush the Ethan and Lucas reboot just for the sake of getting it out there. It has to be done properly, and the way I want it done, and in a way that I can continue to do it. And ultimately, personal things have to come first sometimes. Especially now that I’m going to be a dad.
But I want you to know it isn’t something I simply forgot about, or no longer cared about. Trust me when I say that there is nobody out there that wants Ethan and Lucas back more than me. I’m working hard to get us there, I promise.
In the meantime, here’s to two-thousand comic strips, and looking forward to three-thousand! Thank you all for your support, past present and future.