If you're reading this than you know I've decided to place the strip on a half year hiatus and may be curious to learn why.
Creating the comics, while highly rewarding, takes a considerable personal investment in time and energy. This has always been the case, of course, however the last couple of years has seen an increased demand on these resources from other areas of my life.
Like many folks, the recession has hurt my savings harder than I would have liked, and I've been pulling down a second job for the last year and a half in order to catch up. It's not a bad job - I know many people right now can't even find a job, much less two, so I'm hardly complaining. But it does mean that between the two jobs and the comic strip I've been working close to seventy hours a week, nearly every week for the last eighteen months and the cracks are beginning to show. I really need a break from the self-imposed weekly deadine, time to relax, recharge my batteries, and pursue other interests for a while.
Stuff I'd like to do... Spend a couple weekends just sleeping in without having to worry about getting anything done at all.... Help my father with some of the projects around the house... Spend more time walking the dogs - they enjoy it and we can all use the exercise.... Tinker with some computer art programs I've acquired over the years but haven't had time to learn... Get a decent camera and experiment a bit with advanced photography... Maybe get in a little geocaching... Install some of the computer games I got last Christmas but haven't had time to play yet.... Spend a few cold nights under the stars with the telescope and a thermos of hot chocolate.... Find a cute red-head and treat her to a movie or two (I'd even be willing to waive the red-head requirement to sufficiently cute candidates - drop me a line!)... :)
It sounds like a lot of fun but placing the strip on hiatus has been one of the toughest decisions I've ever had to make. When you invest as much of yourself into a creative endeavor like Mynarski Forest for as long as I have, it becomes a part of your identity. Putting it away, even just temporarily, it's like giving up a piece of yourself - it almost feels like a pet died. And then there's the sense of obligation I feel towards my readers. I'm accutely aware of how valuable peoples' time is these days, even if we're just talking about a few seconds to download and read a weekly comic. You don't *have* to keep coming back here every week, so for you to share a little bit of your time with me and listen to what I have to say, it's a privilige I don't take for granted.
Nevertheless, I've been increasingly aware of the need to slow things down a bit and take a little personal time. I'm hoping to be back, well rested and eager to go, sometime early next spring, and I'm hoping you'll come back and join me!
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