I’ve just started the coloring on the last page. I expected to have a larger buffer as I finished WPK, but it’s not like it’s *needed* at this point, you know?

I’m trying to figure out where I was, mentally, when I began WPK. The comic began on DrunkDuck, drawn on the same old Wacom tablet, in my mother’s dining room. She needed me to watch her new puppy, so every day I’d go to her house with a big pile of computer stuff, set up, and get barked at for eight hours by a tiny and furious bichon. The bichon is now only slightly larger and is still furious.

The actual layout of the pages is based on those of Lovecraft Is Missing, a webcomic whose creator died during the creation of WPK. I don’t think I ever thanked him for creating such a cool and visually distinctive comic. (I would link you, but the domain has since expired.) Though it’s funny–the last chapter of my previous comic, Broken Space, already anticipated the 3×3 grid that I would use throughout WPK. It’s not a bad system, and it made for good training wheels, though it leaves a lot of wasted space. Were I to make another comic, I’d try something more freeform.

One thing I remember clearly as I sat down to write WPK was my dissatisfaction with so many long-format comics, both in print and online, a dissatisfaction I still feel. They rambled; they never went anywhere; nothing got resolved. Frankly most dramatic scripts now are terrible, and I’m not even talking about the helpless trash the Big Two churn out–that stuff is worth no one’s time. I mean even well-drawn dramatic series online and in print today display storytelling skills that wouldn’t fly in midcentury sword & sorcery.

I endeavored to reach back to early Marvel comics and produce a comic that could be read either as a single huge story or as 20 or so sequential stories. I don’t know exactly if I succeeded, but I had fun. I got to clear my mental slate and shake off my nagging need to react to entertainment I grew up with (WPK has a lot of Buffy and a lot of Babylon 5, and it’s a reaction to both). I got to fill a comic with women who drove the plot, rather than being mere plot tokens, power-ups, or adjuncts to silly bromances. I got to practice my plotting and my art. My art didn’t get much better, but WPK taught me so much about plotting that it’ll take years to synthesize all of it. I wrote three novels while working on WPK, each better than the last. (I think!)

And one thing novels taught me is that I really like writing novels. I probably won’t create another comic after WPK, at least not if I have to draw it. Drawing is fun but it takes *forever*. The sheer time investment in comics is a killer. I’ll be happy to be done with it. Right now I have a pile of novel manuscripts to finish up and, of course, one last comic page to draw.