Blog Post for April 25, 2012: “So There’s Some News…”
Here’s the thing: Harold the Astronaut is going on hiatus for a few months. I thought I’d just rip that band-aid off.
Why is Harold going on a hiatus? Quite frankly, I need time to re-tool and re-focus both the strip and my creative process. I’ll admit: if people were streaming to the site in droves, and there was a Harold animated movie in the pipeline, and those funny tee-shirt sites were putting out shirts with clipart of Neptune and Sally quotes ironed onto the chest, I might feel differently. I might not go on hiatus.
After all, success values maintenance and nothing else. It’s devious that way.
Luckily, I don’t have that to worry about. And I can see clearly that something has to change.
It isn’t that I don’t have more Harold stories to tell. That’s far from the truth. To be honest, I have the strip planned out until September 2014. Don’t believe me? Go on, test me.
July 18 of this year: a gag about Harold and Sally eating Clementine oranges.
May 15 of next year: part five of a 14-part story involving Harold, Sally, and new regular character Sam (who is debuting in the second issue of Carbon Copy Magazine) going to college on Neptune.
February 19, 2014: the eleventh part of Harold’s origin story, a full page illustration of Harold and his flightmate, Rich, being strapped in for launch.
Having stories isn’t the problem; the creation of those stories is. I don’t want to go into details, but basically my creative process currently lacks certain qualities that I need it to possess. What I’m going to do over the next couple of months is experiment, perform trials, make errors, discover what I truly want Harold to be, and then come back strong, healthy, energized, and fresh.
It’s like learning baseball. When you first pick up a bat, you’re just excited to be on the field, playing this game you love. Then, when you get your first hit, you feel so powerful that you just want to keep getting that same hit, over and over. Eventually, that stops being satisfying so you start to really learn the game, really pay attention, really engage. Only then do you find real satisfaction.
Friday will be the last Harold for two months. This week’s strip is the first one I ever drew, and it appears in the first issue of Carbon Copy Magazine (still on sale!). Friday’s strip is the second one I drew, and it also appears in CCM. They’re different, but in some ways they’re the best Harold strips I’ve done. They’re obviously homemade, and I kind of like that shaky Charles Schulz-like ink line I have.
Maybe a hint as to Harold‘s future direction? You’ll get nothing else from me.
Before I go, I want to thank you if you’re reading this. Honestly, thanks. And I’ll see you soon!