Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Get Well Soon

Staph infections are no joke. Take care, Scott.

29 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hope you get better soon Scott, take it easy buddy.

Sage said...

Best Wishes Scott, also nope the baby is ok. Take your time and rest up!

Jim Cowling said...

Terrible, crappy fill-in strip, and yet another reason why Kurtz needs to build up a stockpile of strips (like an actual professional) instead of drawing them within hours of posting them.

Anonymous said...

The guest strip was just plain terrible. Poorly drawn, poorly executed joke with a lead-in that didn't even make sense, and a nonsensical last speech bubble. Bleh.

Scott, poop is not for playing with.

Lord Darian said...

I liked the guest strip myself. It's a spoof of a comercial played here in the states.
If you want to rag on WTH, start a WTHmakesmesad blog. :p

R.W.McGee said...

Get better Scott, that super staph stuff is no joking matter.

The Wax Lion said...

Yeah, staph can be grim. Take it easy, Scott.

And I liked the guest strip! Simple yet funny, and good use of a running joke. Lighten up, Jim. :)

Sage said...

I think a staph infection is one moment where we can cut Scott some slack Jim, geeze. He put a strip up, and it relates to PVP, sheesh

Jim Cowling said...

Nope, I'm sticking to my guns -- he needs to build up a stockpile for when he is too sick to work.

evan said...

I'm with Jim on this one. Sort of.

Yes, a staph infection warrants cutting Scott a little slack, and yes... he posted a comic today. And the comic isn't horrible. It's a fin guest strip.

BUT, it wasn't today's comic that was posted today. It was yesterday's comic that was posted today. Jim is absolutely correct when he says that Scott should have a buffer of strips for when this sort of thing happens. And I've been saying it all along. The stories need to be thought out and written in advance. This flying by the seat of his pants thing is not professional.

If Scott worked ahead and had a few weeks' worth of comics done at any given time, I think we would see an improvement in the quality of the story arcs, and he could get the occasional staph infection without haulting production.

If this were a hobby, then I would only think the strips should be thought out in advance so that story arcs could be crisper and better planned. But Scott is supposed to be a professional. He's written a book on how to do it, I don't think it's too much to expect him to act professionally in this respect.

Anonymous said...

Keep forgetting about the book. It's kind of like getting fashion tips from someone who has trouble buttoning his shirt up straight.

Anonymous said...

Jesus, some of you fuckers have a disproportionate sense of entitlement when it comes to your webcomics. Guy has a staph infection, and your reaction is "Fuck him. He should work ahead of time so that I am not deprived of my free comic strip. Or, more to the point, my option to nitpick and bitch, piss, and moan about every tiny detail of said free comic strip."

Anonymous said...

heres an anonymous with a different opinion!

Yes, scott has an illness, and he gets slack. but in the larger sense, ive agree about the bulk backup.

and dont fool yourself by thinking this is all free. scott wants your business, its just that in the model of webcomics, the actual product is what is called a loss leader, or something that you take a loss on because it gets people in the store. (the web store) this is scotts job. he makes a separate published book, and merch. and the main part of it, the free part, hes unprofessional about.

not that hes a hell of a lot more unprofessional than half the other successful web artists out there, but it is what it is.

47 said...

Anyone upset by a missed comic is clearly out of line, but it's perfectly valid to state that PvP ought to have a buffer.

I doubt that Kurtz is overflowing with free time, though, so a buffer is likely a luxury that he'll have to do without.

The Wax Lion said...

Let's be fair here--lots of great webcomics don't have buffers. Sluggy Freelance is notorious for its delays, backups, filler strips and whatnot, and I am still a daily loyal reader after 10 years. Questionable Content--one of the best newer webcomics I've seen--is always finished on the day he posts it. Order of the Stick, winner of approximately one bazillion webcomic awards, updates so erratically it's scary, and has been known to go on periodic hiaturs when Rich is having health issues. Scott is in good company here.

I can complain about a lot of things with PvP (the last 2 guest strips, f'instance--meh.) But racking on Scott for this particular issue seems completely uncalled for to me.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous to the rescue!

Click

The link above will take you to a video of the Webcomics Discussion Panel at STAPLE. Scott (tries to) explain why he doesn't have a buffer and most likely never will.

He also talks about Guest Strips and how he sometimes feels bad if they get a negative reaction from his readers.

Anonymous said...

achewood's chris onstad, today: "Why don't I work a day in advance, you ask? Well, that's kind of like asking me why I'm a boy. God put what he did where he did, and now I'm prone to thinking of Chuck Norris every few days. I make no apologies. I doubt Chuck would either."

aaand im going to disagree. newspaper artists, comic book artists, animation artists all work with deadlines. all of them learn time management, or they dont work.
this is simply because webcartoonist's are their own boss.
i have no problem with an artist setting his post time at 3 in the morning or midnight or noon. but i think the inconsistancy is unprofessional.

R.W.McGee said...

wow, today's guest comic is making me want Kurtz to get better REAL soon. Terrible Calvin and Hobbes rip off.

Jai said...

Holy crap, it IS a Calvin & Hobbes ripoff. Still, I appreciate the artwork. It's always nice to see furniture on PVP.

Jim Cowling said...

"Let's be fair here--lots of great webcomics don't have buffers."

Let's be fair here -- that shows that lots of great webcomics could stand to be more professional.

(As an aside, when I used to read Sluggy, I always felt like I was doing penance for something. So I stopped.)

Sage said...

Oh well, at least Scott can take a full week of people not critiquing his work
:)
Also, why complain about something thats not going to change? I really wish teh sky was red just for a change, but no one seems to want to change that

Sage said...

I also wish that doctors didnt have bad handwriting, dogs didnt poop so I dont have to pick it up, people would drive smartly, and that I didn't have to pay taxes. Yet I think none of this will change.

Biiirdmaaan! said...

I think some people are trying to push the ideals of print comics on web comics way too hard. Fact is, the web comics market has shown a great deal of tolerance for erratic updates if the end product meets some quality it's audience feels is worth it. Top-tier web comics kind of fall into a continuum of updating:

Some you can set your watch by (Sinfest), others update whenever they damn well feel like it (Megatokyo, Three Panel Soul), but most fall somewhere in between (PvP, Penny-Arcade, Sluggy).

Honestly, I don't think this reflects so much on the creators as it does the maturity of the industry. Maybe some day, it will be as rigid as the newspaper strips, but right now web comics are still dominated by hobbyists. I hope it stays that way because it allows for a wider variety of comics and more experimentation.

The lack of a buffer also, in a sense, creates more of a direct link between the creator and audience. Whether this is for good or ill is a matter of personal opinion. (A good litmus test would probably be one's opinion of the end of the last PvP arc.) On the other hand, there are print comics for people preferring the more rigid updating schedule.

Also, I think that it's a factor of self-publishing. They don't have some comics syndicate mandating a buffer, so they put it up as it's done. Creators pay directly for the lack of a buffer - if their updating is too erratic, they'll lose fans and ad revenue. If the comic still pulls people in, well, no harm, no foul.

Biiirdmaaan! said...

Also, damn that was rambling.

The Wax Lion said...

To each their own, Jim. :) We've all got our tastes in what makes a good webcomic. I think Penny Arcade is utter crap, but I know there are plenty of people who love it.

I'm just saying that a lack of buffer (or a lack of professionalism for that matter) has never stopped me from reading a comic that I consistantly enjoy. I don't hold webcomics to the same timeliness standard that I expect from a printed comic, because--know what? I ain't paying for webcomics. If I paid Scott a dollar every time I read PVP, then sure I'd be pissed if I ponyed up my dollar and got a filler strip. But I'm not. I'm a whole lot more bothered when the comic is on time but not funny--because I know PvP can be hilarious when Scott's "on", and it makes me frustrated when it's not. If timeliness is your personal pet peeve that's fine; giving the guy shit while he's fighting a staph infection seems a little excessive, but whatevers.

Paul T. said...

Howard Tayler (Schlock Mercenary) has a 30+ day buffer and it seems to me that he's in the same business as Kurtz...

* They both author webcomics...
* They both author books...
* Howard's strip is daily... and in color...
* Kurtz's strip is... um... semi-daily and black and white...

Oh, OK... Maybe they're not in the same business... Howard is a professional webcomic author... Scott is... Well... Not...

Kurtz makes himself out to be some high and mighty expert on producing webcomics when he can't even keep up with other webcomics.

Scott needs to grow up and decide what he wants to be... A webcomic author, a book author, a podcast star... Just PICK ONE already...

evan said...

Well, that I disagree with.

There's no reason why he can't be a web cartoonist, write books, and record podcasts.

There's really only two problems that I see, and one is that Scott seems to have a hard time writing a good story arc, at least lately. His motto of writing himself into a corner seems to be leaving him, well, in a corner. And then he just sort of ditches the concept. If he worked ahead, he could get to that corner and figure a way out of it. Or if he couldn't figure a way out of it he could abandon the story before it starts getting posted.

Secondly, he's now one of the authors of a how-to book on webcomics. If nothing else, this shows he considers himself a professional in the field. As a professional, he should really act more like one ad have his strips consistently on time. If he doesn't want to consider himself a professional, then I will stop considering him one and the expectation of timely postings will drop as well.

biiirdmaaan! said...

Re: Paul

They're both professional webcomic creators. They both make a living off of it, and I think that more than qualifies Kurtz to write a book about it.

The only difference is that Taylor meets some arbitrary standard that you think is important but not really demanded by the industry. (Nothing wrong with that, btw. Keeping up a buffer requires a lot of discipline, so props to him.) There just is not any industry standard requiring it, or market forces that punish somewhat erratic updates, so I'm not sure what point it is to critique that.

I do, however, think it would be an interesting experiment if Kurtz would at least sketch out an entire arc beforehand and not deviate from it in response to fanboy criticism.

Jai said...

"Order of the Stick, winner of approximately one bazillion webcomic awards, updates so erratically it's scary."

Although, to be fair, OotS usually updates with two full pages of full-color content absolutely chock-full (Chocks generally get REALLY full) of interesting, amusing, story-driven dialogue and action. There is definitely more content offered up each week by OotS than by PVP. The OotS website's hosting seems to have "issues" fairly frequently, too. Of course, none of that means that Mr. Burlew wouldn't benefit from a constant buffer of strips any less or any more than Mr. Kurtz would. I just mean to say that I have a hard time considering the two as equals, since Mr. Burlew consistently seems to work much harder at what he does than it seems Mr. Kurtz does.

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