It’s been two and a half years since I separated from my ex-husband, two years since I had a bit of a nervous breakdown (which some readers may recall!) and to say that I am happier now is a laughable understatement. My life is so much better now that I lack adequate vocabulary to describe it.

Still, I have to wonder how long it’s going to be before I stop having nightmares where I’m yelling at my ex. (This last one was particularly obnoxious, because I was sleeping with my mouth open and my tongue had dried out, so in my dream, my mouth was full of something–cookie dough, I think–and I was trying to scrape it out, while yelling into the phone. The tactile vividness of the dream was almost as bad as the emotional content.)

I guess it’s really not that long in the grand scheme of things–it blows my mind a little that it was ONLY two years, it seems like something that happened so long ago, in another country in another language under another sun–but it throws my whole day a little off-kilter when it happens, and I spend the morning grumping around trying to get back.

Okay, super-sleuths, I have a question for you.

What the heck is this?

Supposedly it was filmed in the sewers under Cameron Village, a shopping district here in Raleigh, but bugger if I know what to make of those things. (Let me state categorically that I can’t rule out viral marketing or anything else, and I know no details, although I will say that A) strange living sewer blob is not exactly the marketing system that yuppified Cameron Village would go for, and B) Raleigh seems like a weird place for viral marketing to start.)

Obviously it’s alive. The third one seems to have some kind of slender, rigid thing sticking out in the upper right, which it retracts–reminds me rather of the siphon on my Nassarius snail, but could be anything.

Mostly I’m just wondering what they ARE. It moves a little like my soft coral move, so if there’s some kind of freshwater anemone-ish sort of thing, I could see this as a tightly closed version, except that I’ve never heard of such a thing. So I appeal to you, O vast network of knowledge…what could those BE?

The signing went great! We had exactly the right number of books–we sold out ten minutes before the end–so it was awesome. Thank you so much to everybody who came out, and for everybody who couldn’t, it’s okay, no worries–there will be other signings, and I hope you or your cars feel better! 

Also, I had no idea that so many of my readers had inner eleven-year-old girls. Apparently I get a virtual turnip everytime somebody signs up on Howrse and says Wombat sent them. (I did not realize that at the time.) I now have 115 of the things. You people are awesomeand you scare me and I will try to respond to all those notes. (By the way, in case you haven’t navigated the FAQ successfully–starts a little slow with a foal, but the game picks up after about a week, or if you forcibly age your horse with aging points. Also, you need the preventative worm medicine, not the deworming medicine, which confused the heck outta me at first.)

It’s a gorgeous day out, I feel pretty good despite killing a bottle of wine with Kevin’s mother last night, and there’s a hummingbird on the lantana and doves in the birdbath, and once I’m done with virtual horses, I get to play Might & Magic for a few hours, so life is good.

I will not wallow in neurosis. I will not wallow in neurosis. People will show up. Even if it’s just my usual posse–and god, someday I’m giving you all originals in sheer gratitude for always showing up to these things–there will be people there.

(To recap–Chapel Hill Comics, 1-3 pm, Dragonbreath signing.)

To distract myself, please allow me to reveal my secret shame to the internet–for the last month or so, I’ve been playing Howrse. Yes, it is a virtual pet sort of thing, although in this case, it’s virtual horse breeding. It is terribly girly of me. My inner 11-year-old-girl gets ten or fifteen minutes a day to play at breeding virtual winged Fresians. (Hey, it’s free. You don’t have to judge me, I’m already judging myself.)

However, since I know nobody on there, and it’s always nice to know if one’s shame is shared, I’m Wombat, so if you find yourself in that direction, drop me a line! (Or tell them I sent you if you sign up!) 

And now, back to neurosis…

Yep, it’s con-prep time.

Where is the thing!? The thing! I need the thing! It was here yesterday! Without the thing, my plans are useless, I might as well just stay home, life without the thing is not worth living–aha! There it is! Great!

…okay, where’s the other thing?

Rinse, repeat as needed.

I’ll have like twenty-odd pieces for the show, most of them teeny, and I need to go get mats cut for some of ’em today. And order ink. And make an appointment for my brakes to get new pads.

All of which keeps me from worrying about the signing tomorrow, so that’s something!

For once, I might have more than enough art for AC…yet I keep on painting more. It’ll be mostly small pieces–I have nearly a dozen teeny little 2.5 x 1.5 portraits, and only a few larger ones, mostly in the 8 x 10 size range. (I’ll also have a panel in the adult show for phalloi. Madness!) We’ll see how it goes.

Meanwhile, I run mini-prints. Saints, saints, more saints…

As a reminder, there’s a Dragonbreath release party/signing at Chapel Hill Comics on Saturday, 1-3! Be there or be…err…elsewhere, I guess. (Oh god, no one will come, it will be horribly embarrassing, or one fan will show up and feel cheated because it’s just me and Kevin staring at our shoes…)

Okay. Got that out of my system. I do that every time. I will do that every time until the day I die, unless I somehow become as big as Neil Gaiman, in which case I will begin to fret that there will be too many people and they won’t all get their stuff signed and they will feel cheated because they stood in line for six hours and then I fainted of heat exhaustion before meeting them. I don’t see a middle ground on this one.

Time to drop Kevin’s kilts at the dry cleaners and get lunch, I think.

It was a dumb joke, but I thought it’d be a great painting.

Then I went on-line and discovered that approximately ten thousand people have made that joke before me. But heck with it, it was too potentially cute NOT to draw.

Warhamster 40K: Black Templar

(I figure it’s a crapshoot–either all the 40K fans go "Aww! That’s so cute!" or they go "Well, you got the sigil wrong, the Black Templars don’t have the pawprint, they’ve got a…" and then I have to explain that yes, I KNOW, but it’s a HAMSTER and eventually drink myself into an early grave.)

Whew. Okay. Not quite as wrecked today from the con-hangover. There may even be productivity! (Madness!)

Unfortunately, I have retained one of the worst bits of the con…the earworm. Otter started singing "Strangers in the Night" behind the table sometime on Saturday, and it evolved horribly, until I began making up my own lyrics in the shower, much to Kevin’s dismay.

Wombats in the niiiiight–
Exchanging glances…
Pooping cubicallllllly–
Good thing they don’t wear pantses…

Pest Bobs in the niiiight–
Reproducing…
I kill them on sight
It’s time for juicing…

Etc, etc, ad nauseum.

The garden bloomed in our absence–there’s little green berries on the holly, the anise hyssop is going gangbusters, and the bee balm is covered in deep magenta flowers, with hummingbirds zipping around them. There are buds on the black-eyed susans. The echinacea appears to be dead. (I’ll try again in fall–maybe it just needs a chance to establish the roots.) The giant rudbeckia has a spectacular flower, which would be even more spectacular if it hadn’t fallen over and deposited the flower somewhere in the lawn. (Next year, cages.) 

And now, time for running prints. And if I become particularly ambitious, I will go strip another chair.

Also, check out this awesome sculpture! The artist wanted to do a 3-D piece based on my  "Orandas on a Wire" painting, and her blog has the step-by-step process. It’s really cool!

Well, there goes MY indie cred…

So apparently, after years and years of doing a webcomic, of slaving over a hot script, polishing dialog, honing my art style to a vague linocut-like edge, it’s all payed off.

I’ve finally broken into mainstream comics. That’s right, y’all, the real deal. As good as it gets. The big time. The hallowed halls.

We’re talking Marvel.

Obviously I am far too cool for all of you now, and also for my pants, which is why I am going on to head to glory alone, in my underwear. (My Bettie Page shirt can stay, and my socks are tie-dye and thus can come with me as far as the bus station.)

Surely the movie deal can’t be far off!

Vampires Under The Floor

I am extremely tired.

Con accomplished. And I am exhausted.

I don’t know why I’m so tired after this one compared to all the other cons I do. This one destroys me in waysthat no other con does. I’ve decided that it must be vampires under the floor. I’ve done some that are bigger, plenty that turned even more dismal profit, ones longer, ones with concrete floors just as hard, ones with drives just as lengthy, my corsets are no tighter, my boot soles no thinner, and for some reason, after Heroes, I’m so tired I’m practically weeping with exhaustion.

Last year, I got to Kevin’s from the con–I hadn’t moved in yet–and he flatly refused to let me keep driving, because I was at the point where I was so tired I might as well have been driving drunk, and even though I haven’t been spending the night while his kids were there yet, and we were trying to be circumspect, I fell into the bed for four or five hours because I was physically unable to keep going. Which is kinda funny, in some regards, because Kevin and I were dragging our gear out–he was half-dead too–and we were saying "you know, humans get sent on forced marches, for DAYS, and I mean, sure, they’re awful, people drop dead, it wasn’t the Bataan Fun March, but they can go for days and days and most of them manage, so why the hell are we whimpering and limping and light-headed after maybe five hours spent mostly sitting down?" I mean, seriously, we were wrecked and we weren’t even drinking heavily at night or anything–we were in bed by midnight or before both nights, I had a single rum and coke one night, and just…my feet are about to fall off, and my powers of concentration are badly degraded.

I dunno. Vampires under the floor, maybe.

It was good to see people, run into some old friends, we had some great food, it wasn’t a bad experience by any stretch–thanks very much to the people who came out, it was really good to see you (and it would have been much more exhausting without people to comedistract me!)–but I am inhumanly tired.

I go die now.