I suppose I owe you a bit of an explanation. I’m gonna lead with the TL;DR for anyone that just needs the brass tacks on what’s happening going forward. So.

Starting today, we are temporarily going to a 2-strips-a-week schedule. We will update on Mondays and Thursdays. This is not a permanent change, but we do not currently know when we will resume our full schedule.

Still here? Wanna know what’s up? Well, buckle up, baby, you’re in for a long one.

Way, way back when I decided that making a webcomic would be a good idea, I set forward one mandate from which I could not falter. I would not miss a scheduled update. Not once. Not ever. I was not going to let that tired old webcomic trope of missed updates plague anything I worked on. I was better than that. I was going to take this shit seriously.

And then last year happened, ya’ll.

I know it’s kind of a tired joke now, but 2016 was a real fucker. Right out of the gate, I was facing down some serious burnout. I love this comic, I truly do. I love writing. But it’s still work. And chapter 8 turned into a far more laborious process than it ever had any business being. (Honestly, I think it shows in the final product, but that’s neither here nor there.) So the writing slipped. Which pushed back the art. And the thing about being burned out is that being super frustrated at your failings does not help you get your shit back on track. It does the opposite, in fact. It absconds with your track in the night, laughing manically as it tosses it into Lake You’llNeverFindItInHere.

So we took some time off. And then this happened. And, uh. I didn’t take it well.

The small silver lining for my life, at least, was that I finally got off my ass and came out to, basically, everyone outside my most inner of inner circles. (Hi, I’m transgender, by the way. And gay! Hot double-whammy, that’s me.) It was good! It was necessary! It was a gigantic, exhausting, expensive pain in my ass! Like, holy shit, being happy about something has never been so emotionally, socially, and intellectually tiring. Needless to say, my relaxing vacation was Not Nearly As Relaxing As It Should Be. Instead it had Scary Capital Letters.

The buffer was getting smaller and smaller by the week. We were still keeping our head above water, though.

And then I got some news about my dad.

He’s had health problems of varying severity, off-and-on since I was in high school. Back this, eyes that, cancer maybe, blood definitely… but this year it hit hard. Hard in the way you start making preparations for. So here I was, trying to both explain my transition and come to grips with it myself when someone told me how my dad was in the process of losing… my dad. I took this about as well as you might imagine.

In between all of this, Shadlyn had her own mountain stuff to deal with. I won’t surrender her personal details so readily as my own, but suffice it to say I was not in any hurry to press her for aid. Don’t get me wrong, she’s integral to the process of making this thing. But I tried to take on more of the workload myself in order to let her deal with her Important Shit. A mistake, perhaps? It is what it is.

Once upon a time, this comic had roughly a two-and-a-half month buffer of strips. And whatever chapter was currently running, scripts for the next chapter were written and ready to be drawn. We knew where this thing was going months in advance. I couldn’t guarantee that my art was any good. I couldn’t guarantee that our storylines made sense. I couldn’t guarantee that our jokes would make you laugh. But god dammit, I could guarantee you were gonna get three comic strips, every week, on time. But it was slipping through my fingers with each passing week. I was barely staying ahead things.

And then the election happened.

And that was that. The buffer was gone.

I’ve been struggling to both write and draw chapter 9 basically as it’s going up. That’s not a tenable situation, as evidenced when I got really sick last week. It’s just a dopey little Z-list webcomic that nobody has heard of, but I’d made a fucking promise to ya’ll. I promised to be professional. I would take this deadly seriously. I would not miss a scheduled update. But I did. And I still feel like garbage over it.

We live, as that catchy fake Chinese proverb says, in interesting times. The world needs all the good we can pour into it. The way I do that is that three times a week, I take a crack at trying to make strangers smile on the internet. I’m not the only one out there getting angry and depressed and scared and tired. I can’t let myself keep using that as an excuse to hide from work. Ya’ll are dealing with all this shit, too. And in whatever small way, our little comic is supposed to be trying to help alleviate that. But that only works if we’re here, putting in the work, delivering on our promise to try and make you smile.

So that’s how we got here. But like some asshole once told me, “you can’t fix the past, you can only apologize to the future.” This is my apology. We’re going to slow down the release schedule. With only two strips coming out a week, rebuilding our buffer should be much more feasible. I hate it. Oh, how I fucking hate it. But the only alternative is say the two words that end every webcomic that utters them: indefinite hiatus. No. That is not acceptable. Not on my fucking watch. This story isn’t done yet.

As soon as we have our feet back under us, the plan is to resume the normal Mon-Wed-Fri schedule. But we don’t have a timeline for that, and it would be irresponsible of me to guess how long that will take.

So yeah. That’s my sob story. I offer it not for pity, but as explanation. I owe you that much. Thanks, as ever, for sticking with us. We don’t know where this road is going right now, but I’d still like to walk it together. And, with any luck, you might just crack a smile along the way.

I… may have to use my hands to make fart noises to get that smile, sure, but if that’s what it takes, then so be it.