Thanksgiving already?!

Happy Thanksgiving to all the American readers out there. I can hardly believe it’s that time…partly because I was convinced the holiday after Halloween was Christmas for a minute there.

It’s been a year. My thoughts will be with those of you who will be missing somebody, or just celebrating alone.

We’ll be having a quiet holiday, enjoying the dog show and trying to get our dog interested in the roast turkey squeaky toy we gave her last year. This is my second Thanksgiving with the delightful pupper, my first dog in almost 20 years! (Which, if you’re wondering, is waaaayyy too long!)

On to the news!

Comics – You’ll find a brand new edition of Social Isolation right here. I’d love to put more content out in this category, but with everybody home the family tablet is in VERY high demand!

Blog – For all my fellow writers out there, my 3-part series, Use Contrast to Create Depth in Your Story, concluded last week. I hope to have more posts like it soon, but right now I have a few reviews to catch up on!


What I’m reading – An advanced reader copy (in exchange for an honest review…you know the deal!) of Helena Rookwood’s fabulous The Thief and the Throne. A while back, I reviewed the first book in the Carnival of Fae series, The Prince and the Poisoner, and I fully expect I’ll have the same level of gushing admiration for this one. Loving it so far.

I’ve read so many books in this pandemic…way more than I ever thought I would. And that’s nearly all thanks to ebook loans from my county library. I made this little graphic to celebrate that and all the things that make such an odd and frequently awful time better. I find that on a sad day, a little WeRateDogs can still make me smile.

What I read last – Mexican Gothicby Silvia Moreno-Garcia. If you haven’t read this one yet, do NOT let anyone spoil the plot twist for you!

Till next time!


A quick note


It’s been a while.

I’m well, how are you?

That’s good/I’m very sorry to hear that.

(But seriously, I hope you are all well and getting by.)

As we all go through this oddness of what some medical professionals are calling “a baby virus” (some baby!), I wanted to drop a quick note with the following orders of business:

#1. Book reviews!

Have you seen them?  The most recent ones are of Andrew Einspruch’s excellent and funny The Purple Haze (fantasy + humor) and Helena Rookwood’s The Prince and the Poisoner (fantasy + just a little romance).  These are two books I loved.  I know I could use a trip to the Carnival of Stars right about now.

Princess Disasterface, Ep. 2.4

#2. New comics!

I’ve been lagging on Princess Disasterface, but managed to complete an episode in April (Episode 2.4).  It somehow takes me hours just to do one page.  Maybe because I can’t stop putting details into areas behind walls that will just get half-covered anyway (see image at left!).  I’m working on ways to be more efficient, but not much luck so far!

#3. NEW new comics!

Social Isolation and Growin’ Pup are my latest (much faster to draw) series…es (just updated today with Social Isolation #4 and #5, and pupdated with Growin’ Pup #3).  Social Isolation will of course be a temporary comic, which I may or may not turn into something else later using the same character.

Growin’ Pup is based on my own life with my puppy, who is a big sweetie that barks at birds for not playing with her and tries to eat EVERYTHING outside.

#4. Writing!

A second edition of A Shadow in Sundown, in which I correct the formatting mistakes of the first edition, spiff it up a little with a new cover and some little graphics, and include a preview of book 2 in the series, will be coming soon.  It’s also looking like I may need more than 4 novellas, so I might have to drop the whole “Quartet” idea.  How DO authors predict these things?  (Though I guess extending a series is pretty common.)

I’m also preparing a pair of free short stories, one set in a version of our world split between magic users and not, and the other about a rather resourceful witch.  More on that later!

#5. What I’m reading:

Tempests and Slaughter by Tamora Pierce (Book One of the Numair Chronicles).  Alas, I haven’t read her work in a long time.  I’m on a library wait list for Alanna: The First Adventure and Wild Magic, both of which I want to re-read.  It’s been wonderful to try something newer (I say newer because I’m behind the times and it’s likely only new to this Tamora Pierce fan).  So far so good 3 chapters in!  (Of course.  It’s Tamora Pierce.)

That’s all for now.  Take care everyone!


Free ebook, (always free) comics!

First post of 2020!  I hope you all had a great New Year…and if not great, then perfectly quiet and uneventful. 🙂

A Shadow in Sundown is about to start a promotion (Jan. 8 – Jan. 12, 2020)…so, any second now!  The digital book will be free to all readers for 5 days only.  The writing is “clean” (no swearing or excess violence), it’s written in a unique but easy to read dialect (a combination of post-colonial American and contemporary informal/folksy) that really brings it to life.  It’s suitable for young adult readers on up (I personally still read a lot of YA–it is my first love, after all).

This is the story of a fragile, “frail” girl who gets caught between two worlds: the one she was born in and the one she visits every day, where she is taught by some very dangerous residents…Do check it out!  Don’t forget to write a review and be honest.

Here’s a little sample of Chapter 1 to pique your interest:

I’m five minutes late to leave the house when Mum starts sewing up my jumper, with me already inside it and raring to go.  I’m so hungry I can barely get my shoes on.

“I’m going to miss my meal, Mum,” I complain.

“’Course you won’t.”  Mum keeps sewing, and frowns when she runs out of fabric before she runs out of me.  “They wouldn’t let you starve.”

“Teacher Imila would.  She’s strict.”

“No one’s that strict, dear.  The shadows know they have to be careful with you.  Your father and I made sure of it.  Hold still, Kith.  You know I can’t have you catching cold.”

“It’s hot out, Mum.”

“Then I can’t have the sun getting you.”

I lift my arm despite her fussing.  I can count two ribs where the stiff fabric doesn’t meet.  The ancient bone needle is dangling, and Mum snatches it before it can graze me.  I don’t care about scratches from little needles, but I do care about missing my meal.

Mum tuts when I say as much, but then she makes a knot and breaks the thread anyway.  “I bet there’s ten-thousand shadows in their World, and out of all of them who might be teachers, Imila has to be yours.  Go on, Kith.  And slow-like!  Not like yesterday.”

As soon as I get my bark-bottomed shoes tied I ignore Mum’s warning and run straight out the door.  Home is up north of the Old Well, so it’ll take me much too long if I take a cautious walk, and then I’ll be hungry till goodness knows when.  Besides, there’s nothing like running through the valley with the warm wind of the yielding months slapping at my skin.  People like Mum can’t understand.  No one in Sundown can.

Of course my Auntie Arlhabee sees me while she’s out in the garden my mum helped her plant.  As soon as she realizes it’s me whizzing by, she starts to yell.

“Kith Canto, you stop your running right away!  You know what happens to children like you when they stumble and fall!  Oh, and look at you with your bare arms and legs!”

“Anon, Auntie, I’m late to get to the Gate and I haven’t any time!” I call over my shoulder.

I veer away from her garden, all nimble-like as only I can be.  She gasps when I almost stumble, but I manage and go on.  These shoes are supposed to protect my feet from twigs and stones and the like, but most of the time they just make things go half as fast and twice as clumsy, and it’s the Eighth Month besides.  I’d much rather be barefoot.

“You stop this instant!” she keeps shouting, and she looks like she’s about to pull out all her pretty, gossamer black hair.  “I’ll get your Uncle Cahn’s wheelbarrow and take you down there myself, before you break your neck!”

I just go on running and let the summer wind hit me in the face.  I get scolded wherever I go, and a couple of the more solid folk look like they might grab at me.  Once, I feel someone catch at the curls flying out from my back.  Thank goodness he or she thinks better of it and I can keep going without breaking stride.

I have to shorten up my steps to head down the slope, and that’s when I realize I got a follower for real this time.  I look over my shoulder and brace myself like I really am gonna get grabbed, but it’s only my friend Finchoa.

Finchoa looks like she’s been chasing after me for I don’t know how long, and she sure won’t be grabbing me ’cause she can’t hold on to so big and solid a thing as my thin little arm, even if she tried with all her might.  She looks like she’s breathing as hard as me just to skim on over.

I can tell she’s relieved when I stop between the willows, ’cause now there’s something to block the wind.  She’s a wispy one, and it’s hard for her to move around when there’s so much as a stiff breeze on.  She’s got no weight to her at all.

“Oh, Kith, why do you have to do that and scare everybody half to death?” she whines while I let her catch up.  I’m working on getting my breath back myself, and easing the pain in my shins so I don’t trip down the slope and land face-first into a big old tree.

“Nobody in all the World knows what it’s like to starve but me,” I tell Finchoa, “so I can’t be late, and you’ll just have to take my word as to why.”  I try to rub the cramping out of my shins while Finchoa perches beside me on the ridge, and I guess she radiates concern.  ’Course she’s concerned for the wrong reason, which she always is, being the worrying type.  The only thing I worry about is not getting my meal.

I’m so close to the Gate now that I can feel the hair standing on my arms and the back of my neck.  The wispy folk like Finchoa can never tell, but ones like me and my family can feel a shadow within a furlong.  Doesn’t matter what kind of a breeze there is, our hair is gonna stand straight up and our skin is gonna prickle when there’s a shadow on the frontier.  Sometimes I even get a cold feeling, like when I’m standing at the mouth of the old dried Well and the cool air comes up from underground.

I kind of hate my lessons with the shadows all hanging around me.  But I love to eat, and I need to eat, so what’s the use in complaining?  If it weren’t for the shadows I’d be dead.  That’s the awful truth of it.

Phew!  So that’s my sales pitch done.  In other news, we have a brand new episode of Princess Disasterface!  Episode 2.1 is here.  We’re back on our regular timeline, though it won’t be the last we’ve heard of Leona and that mysterious cheeseburger-topped present.  I think the final panel is my favorite I’ve drawn so far!

Cheers to you all,


New (Year’s) Content

Hi, all!  First off, let me wish you all a peaceful New Year.

I come bearing content.  Princess Disasterface now has its first Holiday Special (aptly titled Holiday Special #1), and we now have an illustrated Cast of Characters.  One of the lines came out a bit blurred by our witch friend.  Gah.  Something to fix in the New Year.

I’ve been toying with the idea of creating an actual Princess Disasterface comic book.  But where will I find the time?  Another resolution, I think.

In other news, I am very slowly putting together a fantasy short story collection to showcase my writing style.  Sales of my first novella are NOT exciting (in fact they may still be zero).  Building something like a reader base takes time. I doubt I would buy a review-less book from a first-time indie author, either.  So the goal is to continue to put out accessible quality content and eventually attract readers. That is the plan, at least!

There’s still a paperback version in the works, too.  (You notice my blog posts read like a wish list of completed tasks?!)

I couldn’t be happier that you’re all here with me on my comic(al) adventure, though.  Thank you for making Princess Disasterface a part of your free time.  It’s been a wonderful year.

Cheers, and a Happy 2020 to you all,


Episode 2 begins!

Princess Disasterface is back!  Episode 2 begins here.

I’ve been making some font changes here on the website and in the comic to make things look a little sharper.  When I said there was a learning curve to building this website, I meant it!  I only recently figured out how to alter the font attributes so things are more readable.  Not to mention justified instead of centered.

Baby steps!

Anyway, it’s nice to be working on the comic again.  My little break didn’t get me as far ahead as I hoped, thanks to my delayed release of A Shadow in Sundown.  The truth is I probably need to set a more realistic timetable for myself.  Once, I aimed to release almost every week…and now we’ll see how it goes.  Any scene/episode that requires a new background takes a lot more time to put together, and then I end up behind.

My Episode 2 resolution will be to relax and enjoy the process a little more.  I’m really looking forward to creating younger versions of the Duchess (whose name has been revealed–Diometra!) and the Queen (Esmerelda Sparkles Medina) as I delve into their backstories.



The End of Episode 1

Here it is, 1.9! The end of an episode.

Princess Disasterface is a lot of fun to make, but it does take a bit of time! For that reason, there will be (what I think will be) a short hiatus before the start of Episode 2.

Episode 2 is going to have a slightly different flavor.  For one thing, Bonni’s objectives have to change.  For another, I’ll be introducing a new character, who I have yet to even draw.  And while I have an image in my head of what he looks like, things have a way of changing when they get to…um, screen.

Anyway, I really appreciate everybody who reads this.  Cheers to all of you!

Till next time,