Friday, January 27, 2012

Reality Meets Fantasy

Browsing through my computer files, I noticed this doodle and thought I'd introduce him.
As I was saying in my summary, my first creative priority is a fiction book. There's no doubt in my mind that I love creating comic strips of any kind, but writing is hands-down my passion. Technically I've been working on this current book for about six years: it evolved from a simple story made for friends' entertainment to an extremely complex novel that turned me into an obsessive, socially awkward writer and wannabe-psychologist while every other teenager I knew was having a life. (I have to poke fun at myself.)

Anyways, the character to the left is one I thought this blog's readers might like. His name is Amaya and he's one of my favorites to write about: putting aside his downfalls and ridiculous amount of personal issues, he gets a lot of love from my friends for the fact that he's the book's only character to fall under the trans* umbrella. He's come forth as androgynous and cross-dresses when he can. Also a point of interest, he's pansexual. None of these terms actually appear in the book, since I set their technology/language to be Victorian at best and the concepts of varying gender identity or sexual orientations aren't well defined in their culture, but in a looking-glass they're applicable.

I spend a lot time asserting his androgyny. He frequently bends the gender roles/traits other characters present and ignores what is or isn't "appropriate". Similarly, I make certain his crossdressing follows routines. Even if he can't wear dresses or heels, he always wears silk or pastel robes and fancy shoes to compensate.

Although he's the only trans* character at the moment, I plan to add some others. I'd hate to pigeonhole the collective term by having a sole representative: I have numerous characters with varying sexual orientations, so it's only fair I give as much acknowledgement to trans* folk in the book.

That's all I have to say with this post, though I may share more illustrations of Amaya. Please enjoy the coming "extra" material! -Uly

Announcement: Good And Bad News

As many have probably noticed, there haven't been any new strips in a while. I had hoped to get back on track after this past holiday season but, as life always happens, things creep up when one least expects it.
I had planned to summarize what's being going in with me in strips, but I haven't had the time so I'll share right here:

I had an appointment at the end of December with a doctor who deals with Hormone Replacement Therapy. I was given, basically, a general examination and questionnaire about my health and life before we talked about trans* subjects. It went pretty smoothly despite my nervousness: "transgender" was officially added to my medical records and I have three months minimum to get an "okay" from a counselor to go ahead with HRT. The only part that really rattled my nerves was getting my first breast exam and being told that, eventually, I'll have to get my first pelvic exam. (That's not happening until I've got the HRT slip: if someone's going down there, I want a consolation prize.)

I got a second job at a sandwich shop in my town a few weeks ago. So far it's been a great job, but I admit I'm anxious about when or how my trans* status will be breached. I happen to work with two people I know from high school, both of whom are aware of my coming transition, and while I haven't heard a whisper or gotten any questions yet I'm definitely preparing for it. Before that happens, I'm trying to give this job 100% so when the questions come my work ethic may outshine personal life. That and the fact that this shop's restrooms are single-stall (no running into wary customers or coworkers during nature's call) are keeping me optimistic.

I finally broke down and bought new, actual men's shoes. Don't roll those eyes: this is big news, considering I was left with women's loafers after giving away twelve pairs of heels and three flats! My new casual shoes: black canvas, high-top Airwalks. What was meant to be my new work shoes but ended up being my daily wear: black leather, laced oxfords. Even so, I really miss my heels. Someone, please, put me in a visual kei band so I can wear straight-jacket  boots with spool heels. I don't care what anyone says: if someone can walk in six-inchers it's an accomplishment in balance and endurance.

I have an appointment this upcoming Tuesday with a counselor who (fingers crossed) may be able to help me get the "full steam ahead" for HRT. They were referred to me through my family insurance, and if the right fit, I'll be racing to get everything done in the five covered sessions I have (it would be nice to use what I'm earning in my second job to pay for HRT alone). I'll be sure to give more news when I see the counselor!

Well, that's all the good news I have for now. I feel a little neglectful for the bad news: with a second job, my first creative priority (my fiction novel) and these appointments all happening at once I don't have the means for a regular webcomic schedule. Strips may be posted erratically or with gaps of time between them, depending on when I work or how well I can divvy free time between my different projects.
I'm sorry to break away from this webcomic's intended course, but I can promise it'll never be taken away. It has too much sentimentality and potential for me to toss it in the trash.

Thank you for your patience and understanding!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Thank You!

With this post, I can confidently say the holiday hiatus is over: strips will resume soon!
But for now, I'd like to thank all the visitors that have come to this blog. I never imagined it would garner over a thousand visits in such a short time or for such a small number strips. It's been a frustrating startup, what with family concerns and a busy holiday season, but the support I've been finding through this blog is more than enough fuel to keep me going.
Thanks to the statistics Blogger gives me, I can see which countries many of this blog's visitors come from. The top ten countries are the (1) United States, (2) Canada, (so on and so forth) Russia, United Kingdom, Australia, Spain, Sweden, Germany, New Zealand and France. As one can see, I tried to write "thank you" in these top ten countries' languages.
A few things to say.
Sweden was an exciting top country to see! I don't think I've said it on this blog, but I'm a second-generation Norwegian American. Expect me to visit someday!
Spain was also a wonderful surprise: en mi escuala estudié español por cuatro años, pero gradué último año y necesito practicar si visito España. Yo sé que hago errores! Ah, I haven't practiced Spanish in a long time.
Finally there's a special "thank you", too. The pink writing is in Korean! To date, there has been one visitor from South Korea. My terrible hangul (Korean alphabet) is my way of saying "Hello! I'm learning Korean! I want to visit Seoul and Busan quite possibly never leave!" All my love for you, South Korea.

If I made a mistake in writing or researching these different languages, apologies!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

On Break For Holidays

Apologies for not posting this notice sooner. That's exactly my frustration these seasons: time!
Lately I've had a big step in my transition: after Christmas I'll be meeting with a doctor to discuss Hormone Replacement Therapy. I'm counting down the days and crossing my fingers!
Also these past few weeks, I've been gathering ideas and outlines for new strips, so the moment I get the time to resume regular posting my only issue will be deciding which to do. 
Anyhow, I hate to leave without giving something to tie over. So here's some random art as a treat!

Because let's face it: I'm always going to exfoliate and Korean boy bands are my weakness.
I drew this before attending my first LGBT Pride fest: getting in the spirit, so to speak.
A little graphic I drew for some trans* forums, when I first noticed how I draw my own chest.
Also, I got some new glasses! Unlike my old pair, they're both the correct prescription and guy's frames.

Happy holidays, everyone, and see you in the new year!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Women's Connoishoer

Here's this week's bonus strip, complete with groan-worthy word humor.
Truth be told I love women's fashion, but in the same way I love paintings: I'd rather display the work of art than wrap it around my waist. As for men's fashion, I'm both a frame and a fan.  

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Grandma's Boys Like Chocolate

Posted twenty-five minutes too late in my time zone! It still counts for the 29th, yes? Yes...?
Somewhere in the world, it does.
Anyhow, it feels good to pick up the pens and paper again. Definitely am glad to be back.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Posting News: Resumption Moved to the 29th, Second Strip This Week

The strip to resume this webcomic's schedule has been moved to be posted tomorrow. I apologize for any nail-biting from these postpones: hopefully tomorrow's strip will make up for it.
Also, because I have broken my promise to resume on the 27th, I will post a second strip for week as well.
Thank you, everyone, for your patience and understanding. -Ulysses