A New Year and a New Beginning (State of the Blog 2019)

Happy Tuesday!

Alright folks so I haven’t been posting for a while for a variety of reasons. I’ve named a few in the past but the shortest version is this: life changes.

In the informal hiatus I took just before Halloween I had a sort of perspective giving moment. I drew a Halloween type picture, which is becoming a yearly tradition, and posted it to instagram and it did pretty well. Like not viral or anything but significantly better most anything I had posted for a while before and, notably, much (much) better than most of my posts on here do (like ever).

The second thing that made me think, was a passing comment one of my son’s friends asked me in passing “Fin, how did you get to draw to good?” to which I replied “Umm…I just draw.” which wasn’t intended to sound snarky nor obtuse but it was the only honest answer I could give since I haven’t really had a regular drawing habit and I’m not an art student but it made me reconsider the quality of my work.

The third thing that made me think was when I was showing a phone pic of the same drawing to a stranger he asked me “Bro, you drew this? Is it for sale? How much”.

This last one hit me in particular because I have not been offered money for something I created often in my life. Once before but that was a fluke, probably.

After this I had a bit of a revelation/crisis cycle where I began questioning all the writing I’ve ever done and the subsequent choices I’ve made because of it (also I began seriously examining the novel I’ve been working on but have put on hold for over 6 months without serious examination of why) and began putting all the effort I had been “reserving” for writing (but I wasn’t using it for anything except when I got hyper anxious and felt a serious *need* do create something, anything) and put into drawing: all the drawing projects I’ve said I wanted to do but never had time for, drawing the adventure comics, drawing more one off comics, drawing all the scenes from the novel that I’m trying to write, drawing the visions that kept visiting my dreams over and over through the years etc etc.

It’s been a slow process but I have found that drawing has given me something writing hasn’t for a very long time: flow. I frequently finding my self loosing 10s of minutes or an hour or two drawing (whether it be the initial sketch, linework, colouring, texturing, doodling, etc) which has been liberating and empowering as a creator because loosing passion for that which you love and not having something else there that can placate, place hold, or even replace is a deeply hollow feeling.

This isn’t to say I’m giving up on writing or this blog or anything but I am here to announce a shift in efforts and a different approach. The primary change is I’m going to change the face of this site to be a focused showcase of my comics, art, and contact info. Most of the posts will still be available in the archives but in the meantime there will be some down pages.

The second announcement is I plan to start a new blog that is much more focused on books and stories. I will be focusing on books and stories that are bizarre, overlooked, and/or under-appreciated (all subjective superlatives, of course). I plan to mostly stick to book reviews with very light spoilers (when it cannot be avoided). I haven’t built the new site yet, I just got a new laptop to replace my old laptop which was on lend and got recalled (another reason for the hiatus) but I will have a forwarding link on the homepage when it does go live.

That’s all for now folks. I, as Fin, am signing off “Offbeat On-point: A Literary Blog…kinda” for the last time but when I post here again it will still be as Fin but from “Offbeat On-point Comics: Offbeat comics for On-point people”.

-fin

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I’M NOT DEAD!..an Update (Announcements)

im not dead

Happy Tuesday!

Alright folks, this is a post that has been a long time coming for many reasons (most of which I will cover here, the rest are covered in my patron page version of this..hahaha I’m sorry I can’t take my self that seriously, no one would pay me…or would you?(1).

Look I won’t shit my self(2): I haven’t been very good at posting lately.  I haven’t posted much since I left the UK.  A lot has changed. Regardless I’ll fill you in on what’s been going on in my personal/professional life since the last post.

My family life is going better than it ever has but there’s not much to say there other than: my kid turned 9, my girlfriend and boyfriend both had a birthday, and I’ve finally gotten back in touch with my best friend for the first time since his birthday (six months prior). MOVING ON.

What has been really eating up my time is both the event of my girlfriend giving me her old Galaxy Note 4, which has a VERY powerful drawing app (sketchbook) and working on freelance writing gigs.

cow lives matterdate nightheart attacktangent

up to interpetation 1Up to Interpretation 3up to interpetation 2

backupPreview-1welcome to count rubbers keep

If you like my comics please follow me at my instagram page “fin.louie”. I sent my comic portfolio to a local publication, The River Front Times (the RFT in St Louis) and I’m hoping they pick me up but if not I have a hashtag campaign to make sure they know what they’re rejecting.

Aside from my comics I’ve been working on short stories for publication, one of which I think I have a winner for publication. It’s titled…hahaha sorry can’t reveal any details until it’s bought. Soz but me being “in control of sensitive information” is probably the closest I’ll get to being a CIA agent or something.

beale
To my American readers: at least I never cost you 900.000$

Also I’m getting through my novel and I began the Dresden Files audiobooks.  I plan to make small 500 word “impressions” of each book as I work my way through.

dresden
So fucking accurate.

When my short stories get published (operative word: WHEN) I’ll re-post them here.  I am actively working to find a place to post my content under “www.offbeatonpoint.com” for less than 10$ a year (3) but if not I will continue to post online in plenty of places.

What to Expect:

I don’t know.  I plan to post “impressions” (like 500 words or less) of the Dresden Files because I’ve read several  of these books out of order (like 6), when I’m normally an order freak but this series is an exception, My friend Evan got me to read the, currently, newest book “Skin Game” as my first Dresden Files book and I was hooked.

I have been playing with the idea of  doing reviews of “play novels” because I found this nice website indiedb.com but that’s just a fragment of an idea.

Either way don’t expect much from me in the coming months except web comics. And also maybe a birthday post or something.  I turn 30 next month.

-fin

Footnotes:

  1. I’m an asshole. Sorry I don’t have any actual patreon content but if you wanna give me money because you’ve liked my work thus far and want to see more I’m okay with that. I just have a hard time with the concept of having content behind a “pay wall” ie content you have to pay for to view.  It makes me a bad business man but a good anarchist punk ie THE STRUGGLE IS FUCKING REAL!
  2. Unless I’ve drank too much.
  3. WordPress pretty much hates me, I’m guessing its because I am winning too hard.

2018-19 OBOP Annual State of the Blog Post

Happy Saturday!

3rd anaversy.jpg
My lil brain child is growing up so fast. :’) in 10 short years it’s gonna start listening to punk rock and telling me it hates me on the regular.

Wow. It’s year 3 already and I nearly fucking missed it if it wasn’t for facebook’s “on this day” app.  It’s been a long year, if you can’t tell. I haven’t had much time to assess this piece since I’m literally just remembering and subsequently writing this post the day of HOWEVER I HAVE GOT THIS! You watch…erm…read. You know what I meant.

you know what i meant

Okay so I need to open with an apology (to like the 3 of you who read last year’s Manifesto and State of the Blog Post): I have almost failed to fill any of my intentional goals.  Since I moved back to my mother city, St Louis, I’ve been forced to abandon a regular posting schedule which mostly includes giving the big axe to the columns “Working Title Tuesday”, “Rewind Wednesday”, “Thursday Night at the Cinema”, “Slam Saturday”, and “The Sunday Review”.  I will occasionally write for those columns (I do have some things coming down the pipes for Thursday Night at the Cinema specifically) but due to changing circumstances I cannot commit to that many columns unless I can derive an income from it.

A Little About my Life Since Getting Home:

Since the last time I wrote one of these, many things have changed in my life. Literally almost everything for the better.  After getting accepted into Lancaster University (in the UK) as a degree seeking student and beginning the residency application process, I was offered house and a very good job offer back in St Louis.  As per my visa, I needed to return to the USA to renew my visa, I anticipated on going back to St Louis at some point over the summer, however with the job and house offer and admittedly some uni burn out, I decided to roll the dice and come back to St Louis for keeps. It worked out in one way and failed in another.

The job offer I had worked out very well for a time (company went under 6 months after getting back home) however within a few weeks of coming home I met the love of my life who welcomed me into her family and home and I cannot be more grateful for that.

I know I vowed to get out of the food industry but when the company I worked for went under and I had a family to care for, I needed what I could get.

bite and claw.jpg
Look at how far my boys have come though!

I now work at a neighborhood pub/grill as a cook and it’s good, or at least the best kitchen job I’ve ever had anyway.  I like the people I work with, the menu is relatively standard, and the customers aren’t fussy. The pay could be better but it’s not complete shite.

Projects I’m Still Working On:

So I have abandoned pretty much everything I mentioned in last year’s post with the exceptions of the first book in my trilogy of novels “A Band of Misprints” which is making EXCELLENT progress due to my loving and supportive family.

abom to do list
I have big plans which require big post-it notes.

I plan to have draft one of part 1 done by September and likely sooner.

I recently just finished the first act of “The Adventures of Fin & Louie” and am beginning work on Act two.

I have also revived an old blog idea “Why? Answers to All the Questions You Never Asked” and have decided to add it to my current blog as a column.  I have a lot of stupid information free floating in my brain and as much I have a lot of stupid questions floating around (mostly starting with “why”) and they need and outlet.  My fiancée thought it was a good idea and seeing as she gives me many good ideas, I’m going to see it through for a whilst. I already have over 50 “why” questions written down since Monday which gives me faith it might be a good blog content outlet.

Statement of Intent:

I plan to finish draft one of A Band of Misprints and acts 2 and 3 of “The Adventures of Fin & Louie” and if FSM is willing, maybe I’ll finally get around to making coasters and business cards for OBOP (HINT: these would make an EXCELLENT birthday present around 23rd September).

Outside of book reviews, comics, and the occasional wild card post, I can’t promise much else at the moment.  Life is too busy and non conformist stateside for me to be able to make any commitments when I’m not getting paid.  However, speaking of getting paid, I have recently received some encouragement to submit my comics to the local community newspaper the Riverfront Times (or as the local cool kids call it, The RFT). I will keep you posted on how that goes.  I’ll post either the acceptance or rejection letter because either would be a badge of honour.

Stay tuned folks, life is good and getting better.  I have plenty more content coming, maybe some more Thursday Night at the Cinema pieces because YouTube’s algorithm has been really crushing it lately showing me new and interesting (to me) channels which is really exciting.

-fin

An Update on A Band of Misprints and The Adventures of Fin & Louie (announcements)

Happy Saturday!

By EXACTLY zero popular demand here is the anti-anticipated maybe-but-probably-not awaited official update on “A Band of Misprints” Book 1 in The Big River Chronicles AND “The Adventures of Fin & Louie”

So Marc, one of my lovelies, got me a cream-worthy-cool present: a pad of giant post-it notes.  I got to work almost immediately.

A Band of Misprints (update)

total map
The Full Map

So this thing may look like a giant jumble but I have it broken down into smaller sections.

Here is a rough sketch of the city of Big River which is the city in which The Big River Chronicles takes place:

big river map
Big River Map

Then in the first book, A Band of Misprints, most/all of the narrative takes place in The Neighborhood:

cul de sac map.jpg
The Neighborhood Map

I have 3-4 main characters, depending on how you/I count, and I’ve made a relationship map for each main character.

freak and danny.jpg
Freak and Danny character map

brain char map
Brain character map

slick char map.jpg
Slick character map

progress log 1
Looks promising right?

So based on this list of statics…I’m no where close to finished.  I would like to think that prose writing will go much faster now that every time I say “I’m going to work on some stuff” I write rather than “sit down at the computer fully intending ‘to write’, open google docs, realise I’m flailing around with no particular plan in mind but brute force pushing forward with chapter writing, cry a little on the inside at how overwhelmed I feel and generally how that makes me feel like a failure as a writer, play on facebook for a while, smoke a few cigarettes, watch some childrens’ show (Adventure Time, Gravity Falls, Phineas and Ferb, etc) for ‘inspiration’ (both a distraction and self consoling from my inside weeping because of insecurities)”, however dog only knows how long this first draft will take however I am confident I will have the first part, written in full prose and all, finished…lets say: by my birthday this year (23rd Sept).  Realistically, I think I will be done with the first part sooner than that but I’m being kind to “Future Blake”.

 

 

The Adventures of Fin and Louie (update)

So I finished the first story arc in the first trilogy of “The Adventures of Fin & Louie”: Looking for a Friend(1) and the story so far can be found here: “The Adventures of Fin & Louie”.

Now I’ve had the general direction of this trilogy in mind: “Looking for a Friend”, “Fin & Louie: Partners in Crime” and [Sir Title Hasn’t Been Announced Yet].

sir not here
The only spoiler I’m  releasing right now.

I am thinking about redrawing all the comics in “Looking for a Friend” story arc on one piece of giant post-it with intention of being able to fit the other two story arcs on a piece of giant post-it as well.  I may make them into posters or something someday.  File that in the same place as my “I’ll make stickers/coasters for sale” statement (it’ll happen…someday when I have spare money or demand [if I get requests, I WILL find the money like yesterday])

I have not forgotten about the other projects I’m working on (“hair.” and “The St Louis Experience”).  I have no idea when I will get closer to doing anything material with “hair.” however “The St Louis Experience” is something I might be able to start this spring.  I would like to but here is my priority list of projects (my life is a waltz that goes like “family, work, projects”):

  1. The Adventures of Fin & Louie/OBOP
  2. A Band of Misprints/The Big River Chronicles
  3. The St Louis Expierence
  4. hair.
  5. Everything Else

I will try to have another post up for Monday, a lot has been on my mind lately (personal, creative, projects, work, life in general) so I’m pretty sure I will be able to churn something out for Monday, if not know that it’s probably because I was getting into a fight with the Easter Bunny.

easter bunny riot
I fucking love Mall Rats.

So stay tuned, good things are coming.  Maybe more frequently.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

-fin

Footnotes:

  1. You’ve thunk a writer like me could have found a easier way to phrase that, wouldn’t ya?

ANNOUNCEMENT: Starting a New Series on YouTube

Happy Saturday!

Heya folks, my life has always been somewhat interesting but things have gotten rather intense recently leaving me in a situation without a house (I struggle with the concept of “home” but I do know it’s not as simple as “the place where you have a roof over your head” however that’s what I’m currently with out, ie I’m “house-less” but as I am facing the very likely possibility that I’ll be sleeping rough in my own home town this next week, I feel like I am quickly approaching “home-less” as well).  This will very much affect my ability to post with any regularity, as if it wasn’t already spotty since I got back from the UK…

Anyway, I am starting a video log series on youtube which I have yet to come up with a good title for where I will be posting a 5-10 minute long video as often as I can talking about what I’m working on, where I am, what I’m reading, and whatever else I feel like talking about.

I’m including a link to my youtube channel here: Fin’s YouTube Channel

I hope to capture and share this deeply nihilistic humorous vein that runs through my life and in sharing this darkness with you, I hope it brightens your day.

Remember folks, enjoy what you have whilst you can, take nothing for granted.

Stay tuned, I will be posting a transcript of my interview with Osiris Green from Wreck the System soon. I will also be posting the full interview to my YouTube channel as well.

-Fin