Two weeks ago, I returned home from visiting family in Canada. They’d given me a check for inheritance my aunt had left me.
On the ferry ride back to the states I talked with my girlfriend, and we both decided I should put in my two weeks at my day job, the store I’d been at for the last nine years, take a portion of the money and try to draw comics full time. Take six months to dedicate to comics. See what happens.
I’d been thinking of leaving that job for years, but I‘d been dreaming of doing comics full time all my life.
When I left for Canada three weeks ago, I had no concrete plans to quit, yet yesterday was my last day at that job.
I’m thrilled, overwhelmed, and frightened about what I’ve done.
I just posted a new 16 page backup story exclusively for Patreon backers. It was a experiment to try and write and draw 10 pages in 10 hours but ended up being 16 over 4 different days. Still fun though!
At the same time I’m hard at work on Season 2, Issue #0, and the slipcase to hold Season 1. Lots of fun stuff going on!
Season 1 of Incredible Doom is now complete and the whole thing is online for free.
Featuring unlikely friendships, daring escapes, love, crime, and magic, all squeezed over 2400 baud modems. All six issues are available on this site, as well as meticulously produced print versions at buyolympia.com (All back issues are 1/2 off for Patreon backers.)
We are so excited we made a video to celebrate, featuring some very nice things people said:
While we’re getting ready for Season 2 we’ve got some other cool things planed for our Patreon supporters. First, we’re making an exclusive slipcase for Season 1, with an interchangeable cover design.
Second, we’re creating a special printed bonus issue, called Issue #0, that’s filled with short Incredible Doom stories exclusive to Patreon.
After that, in a few months, we’ll be back with the continued story of Allison, Samir, Richard, and Tina. So make sure get notified via RSS, email, twitter, or Instagram.
In order to spend more time working on the project I’m going down to part time at my day job, so if you enjoy the series please consider telling anyone you can, any way you can. This is a great point in the story for folks to catch up, and it would really help me a lot.
I’m so glad you’re here. I love making these comics and I couldn’t be doing it without your support.
This year, at the XOXO Festival closing remarks, Andy Baio asked the attendees to write about their experience when they got home. If we didn’t have a blog he encouraged us to start one, to become active members of the indie web.
I have a blog. I’ve had it for years. I love the indie web. I love owning my own domain(s), and having a place online that is mine. It’s not Twitters, or Instagram’s, or Patreons, it’s mine.
But I rarely blog.
When post here it’s usually to promote something I’m working on.
Random thoughts on the XOXO Festival:
I’d forgotten about how much XOXO means to me. I’d gotten wrapped up in worry about the state of my projects/my job/the world, and XOXO crept up on me. When the day came I didn’t think I was ready.
When I got off the bus at the opening party and saw the festival grounds…
…I was overwhelmed with the following thought:
“I’m SO ready for this.”
At the opening party I met up with friends I hadn’t seen in months. We commiserated over hard times and got excited about each others projects. I was so happy to see everyone.
All weekend long friends and strangers agreed that making the things we make is crushingly hard. Physically and emotionally we’d been pushing ourselves to our limits, all while trying to make it look easy online.
God, that just makes me feel so much lighter. People you respect saying that what they make look easy is actually right on the edge of being too much to handle. May even be too much to handle.
I feel that way all the time. Turns out we all do, I guess. XOXO is where I come to talk about these things and it’s felt like a home.
I got to play with a Playdate.
I saw animatics for a movie I’m thrilled about.
For the first year ever, went to the tabletop section of the festival, and got to play test The Adventure Zone tabletop game.
I got the opportunity to make a comic unlike I’ve ever made before, and met folks who are readers of my current one.
Most importantly, I went to the festival feeling like I didn’t know how I was going to go on, and came home dying to make things.
About two weeks ago I took a week off my day job to do what I called the “Incredible Doom Logistics Vacation Week”.
The logistical tasks, unrelated to writing or drawing the comic, had been piling up for months and I was starting to feel overwhelmed. So I took some time, made lots of lists, and plowed through them as best I could. Here are some things that I accomplished.
Researched packaging / postage for the upcoming slip case to hold all of season 1.
Picked up “chip board” to be cut into the final slipcase.
Designed the interior of the slipcase, including a thank you page for all previous Patreon backers.
Shot and edited a video explaining how to assemble the slipcase once it arrives.
Printed / assembled the remaining copies of Issue #6
Shipped all remaining copies of Issue #6
Created and submitted a version of Issue 6 for ComiXology.
Planed a big celebration / promotion for the public end of season 1.
Wrote promotional material for the public conclusion of Season 1
Got quotes from five different printers for printing Season 2
Got quotes from a fulfillment company to possibly ship Season 2
Created dozens of pages of spreadsheets trying to figure out how to make Season 2 make sense financially now that the printer for Season 1 isn’t available any longer.
While I didn’t get everything done that was left to do (the business plan for season 2 isn’t nailed down yet) but it feels SO much better to have all the above off my shoulders.
We did run into a snag however.
Before we launched Incredible Doom I knew I wanted it to fit into a slipcase that you could put on your shelf. So, to make sure that was possible, we figured out how we were going to do it in advance.
We reached out to a press that had done something similar for a friend, and also tried something we thought was a bit clever. We bought a Cricut machine.
The Cricut machine is mostly used by crafters to take digital shapes and patters and cut them out of paper for use in scrap books and such things. We wondered if we could use it for something else.
We’ve already used the Cricut to do things like cut out the holes in the feelies for issue 1, making it look like a miniature piece of paper used in a dot matrix printer. We also used it to cut the three ring binder holes in the feelies for issue 3.
Secretly, we’d also done tests for using it to cut much thicker material in order to create the slipcase.
We did tests back before the series launched, and did tests again shortly before announcing the slipcase.
Then, during the “Logistics Vacation Week” we finalized the slipcase design, and Jesse started producing the slipcases on mass.
Or that was the plan.
The Cricut machines failure rate was incredibly high. So high in fact that Jesse would work for hours and not get a single usable slipcase. That’s no good.
So, after two years of the Cricut machine waiting patiently for this day, I’m in contact with the same printer we spoke to before we launched issue 1, to get a quote for them to create the slipcases for us instead.
Although we’ve loved putting together all the little handcrafted issues, items, and slipcases from season 1, we’re ready to hand some of those duties off to someone else and get back to the writing and the drawing.
We’re getting it all worked out. Because of your support it’s not a huge setback. I’m confident we will be able to find a solution to the problem since we’ve got a budget to work with. That’s all thanks to the kind folks [backing on Patreon](patreon.com/matthewbogart. So thank you.
So that was the “Incredible Doom Logistics Vacation”.
In a few weeks I’ve got some more time off from day job planed. I’m thinking of calling it the “Incredible Doom Season 2 Write-a-thon”.
I posted this to the patreon a bit ago, but today I finally get to tell you three big bits of news Jesse and I have been working on for years. We didn’t want to talk about them till they were close to happening, but it’s finally time to show our hand.
Season 1 Finale
I’m thrilled to announce that season 1 of Incredible Doom is going to reach its climax and conclusion with Issue 6, the issue currently in production! We’re building to a moment we’ve been wanting to draw since 2017! I can’t tell you how excited I am about this.
To fit it all in, Issue 6 is going to be more than double the size of some previous issues. So it has taken a bit more time to complete, but I’m going to start posting new pages again next week, and I think it will have been worth the wait.
There’s several reasons we want to release the stories in season format. Many are creative, such as the opportunity to change narrative devices. Similarly to how we can change the point of view character between issues, multiple seasons open up new creative options. The switch also lets us make some logistical changes, like printing techniques, release schedule, and such.
Finally, the switch also lets us do two huge things I’ve dreamt of doing from the start:
When planing Incredible Doom I listed everything I’d ever wanted to do in comics that I hadn’t done. “Make a prestige mini comic series that fits into a slipcase” was at the top of that list. So after Issue 6 is in the mail, we plan to ship backers a custom slipcase you can slide all of season 1 into.
This was so much a part of the original plan for the series that, even before the project launched, we investigated how we could manufacture these boxes at home. We used the same machine that created the miniature dot matrix printer sheets for issue one to design and cut this proof of concept:
The finished design will be much better — but it will, just like the issues themselves, be meticulously handcrafted to be something you’d want to put on your shelf.
After the slipcase goes out, we’ll collect all the short Patreon bonus stories into their own, member exclusive, Issue #0. In the spirit of B-side collections, or ’90s era issue #0s, it will include ALL the backup stories created for the season—like Allison and Sam Meet, My Two Dads, Tina, and the various Evol House Activity Pages, as well as some completed pages that never made it into the finished issues. It’s a cool behind-the-scenes collection that will fit into the same slipcase as the rest of the issues.
I want to acknowledge how your support has made all this possible. I recently cut our printer a check for $250 for reprinting Issue #2 covers. Another $200 bought the project access to a risograph machine, which should enable all kinds of cool new print material. I just bought $100 worth of cover stock and will be spending another couple hundred at the IPRC today. Not to mention that you literally bought the Subway sandwich I just ate while I was working on this blog post.
Thank you all so much. You are amazing. I think we’re doing something really special here and I’m honored to be a part of it with you as we wrap up the first big story line.
There are LOTS of new pages of Incredible Doom #6 up on the main site . I’d accidently neglected posting about it here. Go check it out.
Also, in addition to those, Patreon members just got to see several more a few weeks early. There are lots of benifits to becoming a member if you’re enjoying the series. If you’re interested you can see more here.