• Category Archives Public Journal
  • Public journal of author and cartoonist, A.P. Fuchs.

  • On Getting Unstuck with Ideas

    Ideas are a funny thing. Sometimes they come to you fully formed; other times they’re a few ingredients short of a full recipe.

    This happened to me recently.

    If you know me, you know I operate on a Loose Skeleton approach to ideas. An idea comes but it’s often missing the main tissues that connects the whole thing and forms a complete picture.

    Yesterday (I think), a skeleton of an idea for Project Rebuild grew some muscle and took shape. After, I was able to step back and take a good look at that shape and see if it was viable or not.

    It was.

    There are still some finer points that need to grow on this idea, things like its skin and overall aesthetics, but the bulk of the idea is complete and, I suspect, the rest will be sorted out on the drawing board.

    Here’s the point: Don’t dismiss an idea just because it’s missing its meat and potatoes. Like any meal, it all begins in the kitchen as loose parts that will later be combined to make a dish. Some ingredients you have in your pantry, some are hidden away at the back of the shelf, others you need to go to the store for.

    Bottom line: Write the idea down and let your subconscious do the work of adding more things to the pot and getting it cooking. You’ll be surprised as to what comes out.


  • On Think Days

    Sometimes the mental baggage piles up, and I’m not referring to personal issues (though those days happen, too). In this case, I’m referring to creative efforts. Sometimes the headspace gets cluttered, and when you’re often going 1000mph, it can happen even more. Throw some sleep difficulties on there and, well, on some days life is like peering through a fog.

    Today will be spent coasting, that is, moving from thing to thing and spending time in thought and sorting through my mental landscape and getting myself organized. Of course, this looks like I’m doing nothing, but since making books and comics is primarily a cerebral effort, I’m actually doing a lot, just intangibly. Often, the bulk of the work is done in one’s head and what shows up on paper is only a small piece of said work.

    Think days are allowed. Coast days are, too.

    Here we go.


  • On One Thing at a Time

    In our effort to Slow Down to Speed Up, we’ve been adjusting our workflow to One Thing at a Time. Yes, we have several irons in the fire at any given moment, but in terms of dedicated approach, we are working on one thing at a time throughout the day, sometimes for the whole day depending on what it is.

    Example:

    Today’s main task was proofing the second part of my two-part article series for Patreon on what to do if you feel your career in the arts isn’t doing well and then uploading it. This is complete and can be accessed here.

    The next task was to promote it online (also done). Now we do this blog entry before moving on to something else.

    However, the day had a priority task–the article–thus the One Thing at a Time approach.

    Due to world events, I’ve had to adjust my workflow and for right now, One Thing at a Time is the best thing for how I conduct my day.


  • On the Herculean Effort

    Everything is a Herculean effort today.

    Every task is being done in increments because I’m tiring easily.

    I’d opt for a day off, but since I’m an extremely boring person with little interest in anything outside of making books and comics, we’ll do what we can to keep the machine running until a full recovery is made.

    Just pinned down the paper for the Fredrikus No. 1 cover on the drawing board, and all penciled and inked buffer pages just need a short review before scanning.

    Getting there.


  • On Gearing Up for Three Project Launches

    Soon, my on-line offerings are going to go through a change-up because THREE project launches are happening all around the same time!

    This was not planned.

    The three things:

    1) Launching Fredrikus

    2) Launching a new serial novel on Patreon

    3) Launching Year Six of The Canister X Transmission

    I suspect my work schedule is going to shift for a short season at that time so I can spend my days doing the necessary Web stuff to get this all going. That said, creating will drop to second tier as these roll out so I can properly get them out from the studio and into the world.

    Formal announcements to occur around the time of the launches.

    Regularly check back here on the blog to stay in the loop. My door is also open if you have any questions about these upcoming project launches.


  • On Art and Never Arriving

    Prompted by a chat with artist Sean Simmans last night, I got to thinking that it is impossible to ever fully arrive in the arts field.

    You may be doing poorly or extremely well on the scale of subjective success, but wherever you are is only temporary and never stable.

    Any art form is about finding one’s voice, which is different at 30 than it is at 50 than it is at 70. Your style will constantly change, sometimes–and ideally–for the better, but also sometimes not.

    Unfortunately, we have been sold this packaged idea of what success looks like in the art field, genres ripping apart the industry, and marketing madness brainwashing us into what we’re supposed to think art looks like . . . but it’s never accurate.

    Ultimately, art is living and fluid and is like water, always flowing, not a dam in sight.

    Your work might be polished, but even in a polished state, it’s incomplete because there is always that one thing you could have done better or a little bit smarter.

    Art isn’t prefect. It’s not supposed to be. Then it isn’t art. That’s Sean talking and I agree with him.

    Whatever your craft, where you are is where you are. If the art is made, you’re an artist. And, in that context, you have arrived . . . but our work never will.

    It’s all about the journey.


  • On the New Coronavirus Paradigm

    Coronavirus is on the rise, and with it now growing inside Canadian borders, various precautions are being taken that are affecting many areas of life. Old routines are gone, new ones are being formed. Strange timing because I was in the midst of a planned routine change already so it’s kind of a double change-up for me in that regard.

    We’re finding our footing in this new paradigm where we all need to band together to see this through as healthily as possible, both domestically and the worldover.

    I’m not sure what the next few weeks are going to look like as things ramp up. I also don’t know what the next few months will look like after Canada peaks with this thing.

    Time for changes.

    Time for kindness.

    Time for patience.

    We’re all in this together.


  • On Those Hidden Readers

    Recently, I’ve been giving some special thought to my hidden readers, the people who buy my books and/or read my blog and/or watch my YouTube channel but don’t say anything or make themselves known in any way. They’re the readers I’ll never know about other than through the number of books sold or the number of times a post is read or a video is watched. If you’re one of those people, know that I do think about you and do appreciate you spending your time and money on me. You are considered every bit as important to my little operation of heroes and monsters as the people I do know about.

    You are not unnoticed and you are valued and you are one of the reasons I try and do my best with everything I create.

    Today, you are visible. Tomorrow, you will be, too. You were yesterday along with other times in the past, and you will be as the Timeline of All Things unfolds.

    Thank you.


  • On Ambition and Fatigue

    I have a lot to do.

    Lots has been done but I still have some fairly large projects that need completion.

    At the end of each day, I’m beat.

    The frustration: After a full day, I’ve hit my wall. I can’t work anymore. Technically, I could and get by, but I care enough about this stuff to ensure I carry it out to the best of my ability so I honor not only the work but, more importantly, my reader. That said, though I could work a little more or do some task a better way, I know I won’t be at my best therefore run the risk of messing up. Sure, I might still do a solid job overall but if one thing is off, well, I don’t want my reader to be the recipient of that. When you want to work because you enjoy it but you know you can’t is very irritating.

    I live and breathe books and comics. This is what I do and who I am. It’s tough when you need to step back even though you know it’s for the best.

    A character flaw I’m working on, the flaw being not always knowing when it’s time to step away when it’s a good thing to do that. This applies to both knowing when to call it quits for the day and when it’s time to declare a project done.

    Anyone know when the next workaholics meeting is?


  • On Settling in with Your Work

    With winter in full swing and the temperature plummeting, I’m hunkered down in the bunker here at the Central getting things done. If you follow my newsletter, you know I had to do a bunch of work before I could work. This was the fall and early winter. Now I’m in a position to work on Project Rebuild and get my other ducks in a row.

    There’s something magical about settling in with your work. Something comforting, alluring, and satisfying. It’s one of those things that you could put into words if you really tried—but defining it would take away its power. Instead, I’m opting to just enjoy the feeling, revel in it, and get things done.