The first one just quit. I waited for a week and nothing happened. So, I'm starting a new one. I hope I have the energy to make all this happen again. I hope I've not taxed your patience too much. More to come.
Below is a recounting of the last posts from Tirades
Tuesday July 08. Hurrah! Oh, happy day! My website had finally been updated! It had taken me a full year to get to this. Not for anything else other than my not being able to focus on the task as well as not being able to contact the original person who put up the site for me a year back. After several tries, over many months, I had to let go of trying to have that continuity.
Kathy Long is the Kat in Kat and Mouse, a web design company who is also famous for Paul Dini's Jingle Belle site. She did a good job, didn't she? And timely, too. The con is just a week away. She and I talked a month or so back and we discussed the eventual needs of the site. The long term plan is to move the site and make it so that I can maintain the content of the site--yep, more new stuff and updates more frequently--all by my lonesome. I know about as much HTML as your garden variety 3rd grader, which is enough for me to post an image here and there or color a font and get in trouble in the long run. I need the pros. These pros. But all that would mean more time and involvement from me. I was still in the middle of finishing several books and keeping down a day job, not to mention an adoring family who could dock my allowance (sheesh!). So, we opted to keep the update small for now and do the minimal job of having info on "who this Ronnie del Carbo is? And what his story?" I mean, I've done those who visit the site the disservice of offering nothing about my profession or what I draw this all for. Really, the people have gots to know! Well, not really but it's come up as a query now and then. "What is Paper Biscuit?" "Where are you and what do you do?"
Well, I don't answer that at length but in brief, yes! I hope you all come by and visit as often as you've done over the last year. I do appreciate everyone who writes and I write back every single one--except for the odd one or two that can be attributed to the plain, "It fell of the radar." But don't be discouraged and write me again. I love mail and read them all--some several times over and to my family.
Well, that's it for now. See you at San Diego. I'll try to keep a travelogue of pictures going so I can have a review of the week that was the Comic-con on these here pages.
Friday June 27. I reprinted the first Paper Biscuit from last year hoping to make good on a promise to those who wanted one but had come by our table too late. I tried to honor as much as I could on line but because of the meager numbers I had left that was short lived as well. But here it is, a second edition but better. Well, actually, more appropriately...REDDER. I've had difficulty getting the orange that I had wanted for the book in the first printing. Not only was the color not quite what I wanted but it also fluctuated throughout the run. Some had come in with more saturation and some was even downright yellow. I had to live with it and given the quality of the book I was really quite happy anyway. So, knowing that I was rolling the dice on the cover color and not ready to have a completely different cover altogether (if any of you received last year's postcard, I had at one time thought of making that the cover for this reprint) I went ahead and gave instructions on getting this color right.
Well...it's more saturated and no fluctuations this time. But it is red. Oh, well. I can always say that "it's the original intention anyway!" In fact, I may just say that at the con. Those of you who read this will know what that is about. Regardless, the printing quality is still excellent beyond words. At 900 dpi the pages are superb. The paper quality is more than I can ask. So, tell your friends that I have more now. Just don't tell them about the cover color.
And, oh boy, I got Paul Dini of Jingle Belle fame to write a glowing endorsement for the first issue. I must say that he had promptly responded and generously gave of himself as only true pals do. I owe him one. That green strip you see is a bookstrip that is an added trim to the book. Smart looking, eh? Aside from that, the book is now with an honest to goodness ISBN and a barcode!. Looking very legit and grown up this book is. Don't ask me what that does for me, I don't really know. I guess this means I'm a member of some fraternity of print addicts. These markings brand us as slaves to our addiction.
PAPER BISCUIT 1.5
I had a Paper Biscuit #2 in the works (see image at right--a page detail). I just plain ran out of time. I was really bumbed, I really wanted a second issue for this year. But like the grasshopper in the fable, I fiddled and faddled. Okay, I was working on FRAGMENTS but it's not an excuse as far as I'm concerned. I could've pulled it off (too many days when I had the blahs). But in order for the book's quality to hold up to its older sibling I would have to do a lot of work with little time left. The day came when I had to cut bait on the effort and just let go of the notion of a second issue. It was a sad day.
Two weeks go by. Then Jamie Baker came around with a printer lead he found. The prices were okay but the turn around time was six weeks according to the website. I don't have six weeks left till the con anymore. I did, however had what was an aside in a dialogue intended for the second issue that had always intrigued me and I was looking for a place to flesh it out. I also had an illustration that was done a year ago that could be its cover. Hmmm...It would have to be smaller and a stand alone story. Smaller like a real pocket book, as in, fitting inside your shirt pocket size. Can they print it in less time?
I e-mailed Dream Weaver Press and asked. JD Calderon wrote back and said they can do it. Well, to make a long story short (or in this case a short story...er, shorter) it all worked out. I have the books today, just arrived. Paper Biscuit 1.5 A small sibling to the first issue and not quite a second issue. I just couldn't show up at the con without anything on Nina and this will be my offering until I can do the second issue justice.
All grasshoppers heed these lessons.
A Pixar Book Launch
Yesterday, Enrico and I had our day to signal that it was time to let the book out...there. Our daily lives don't have markers that say one part has ended and another begins. That's what rituals are for. Birthdays, anniversaries, April 15...Enrico and I discussed and started this book enthusiastically without marking the day we decided to do it. I couldn't tell you what month that was last year. October...November...maybe it was December. Can't remember. The ensuing months and weeks had their fits and starts, and sometimes it threatened to stall completely as the toil of days and actual living pushes any time that could be purposed into making pages out of your reach. But here it is, the books are here and in a couple of weeks we'll be in San Diego. Guess what goes on in our minds concurrently and silently? What to write and draw for the next books.
We have to ritualize that this book is ready to go out. Otherwise we'd be caught up in making the next things and this newborn won't have it's send off. We had a nice show of people here at Pixar. They came to support the small venture of two of their collegues, to annoint us as we go off to the BIG show of the convention (okay, "annoint" is a bit much but its close). Glad to have so many come and be part of our journey and we are grateful for the support so willingly given.
Monday June 23. Preparation for the week of the convention is all fiction. You dream it up. Writing the outline of events leading up to the event itself. What to bring? Man, and those boxes. Do we need to have other stuff? Must remember to bring water. Spent a lot of money already and still going to go for a little more. Hotel, food, phone calls, logistics, Preview Night, where's Shane gonna be at? I should buy a video camera...like now! No updates on the website yet. Hoping to get to that in a couple of weeks. Sigh.
I should get some sleep.