Tuesday, July 1, 2014


My blogging of bloggy things will be spotty this month. I’m looking ahead at several paying gigs, a plethora of medical appointments, six days of garage sales, a couple demanding household projects and a whole list of things I should have done before July.  I’m going to be a busy geezer this month.

Whenever I post something like the above, I get bombarded with all kinds of questions. I’m going to try to answer them today, hoping against hope I won’t have to answer them several more times before the end of the month.

What are those paying gigs?

Some of them are for what I call “My Girlfriend from Canada Job.” I work as an occasional assistant and ghost-writer for a smallish number of syndicated cartoonists. So, like that friend of yours who swears he has a gorgeous girlfriend in Canada who can’t come here so that you can meet her, I have this job I can’t tell you about. That’s how my clients prefer it and that’s how I’ve come to prefer it as well. Often what appears in the published strips bears little resemblance to what I wrote, which is absolutely the prerogative of the client, and it would be inaccurate for me to claim full credit for it. I knew this was the job when I got into it.

I love working for these cartoonists. The work is challenging and fun. There is a great deal of variety in what I do...and not just because of the different genres of the strips. Sometimes I write a few weeks of a strip to give its creator a break. Sometime I take a basic idea and flesh it out into a full-blown story. Sometimes a cartoonist calls and tell me he’s doing a week’s worth of gags on, let’s say, pudding, and I’ll write as many as I can.

With very rare exception, these cartoonists pay me a decent wage, pay me quickly and treat me with the respect I only infrequently got from the comic-book business. They know it pays to respect someone who helps you make their 365 deadlines a year.

The other gigs? I probably could talk about them, but I prefer to wait until I finish them and until I’m sure they will actually see the light of day.

Are you looking for work?

I’m not so much looking for work as available for work most of the time. If you came to me with a job today, I would have to tell you I couldn’t work on it until August. If I hit a period when I don’t have a paying gig on my desk, then I’ll finally get to write some of my personal projects. Those personal projects have been waiting for me far too long.

If you want to work with me, send me an e-mail. I’ll give you the straight scoop on whether I can write what you want me to write and if the terms of employment are acceptable to me. In general terms, I’m open to anything that’s challenging and/or fun...that promises a relatively calm process and a decent paycheck...and where I will be treated with respect.

What’s up with the medical appointments?

While I think I’m in pretty good health, I need a few examinations and tune-ups here and there. None of this involves anything I would call serious.

However, I do need some serious and expensive dental work. That’s not something I can’t put it off much longer. To pay for that work, I might be putting some Silver Age comic books on the market sooner than I anticipated.

When are your next garage sales?

There will be six days of Vast Accumulation of Stuff garage sales in July:

Friday, July 11 (9 am to noon)
Saturday, July 12 (9 am to noon)
Friday, July 18 (9 am to noon)
Saturday, July 19 (9 am to noon)
Friday, July 25 (9 am to noon)
Saturday, July 26 (9 am to noon)

Keep watching the bloggy thing for updates.

What are your household projects?

We are renovating our master bedroom bathroom and have been doing so for several years. I’d really like to see that finished before the end of summer because, if anyone deserves her own bathroom, it is Sainted Wife Barb.

My office and my future reading room are the very avatars of chaos. I need to get them organized. If a certain comics publishing outfit would pay me the money it owes me on its use of a certain electricity-based hero of my creation, I could probably afford to hire a good person to help me complete these projects.

What other things do you have to do?

As I write this, my “Things To Do” list has 272 items on it.  Even if you subtract out my bucket list of things I want to write before I kick the bucket, that still leaves 106 items. If I could get the list down to 200 items or less, I’d consider July a very productive month. Am I dreaming the impossible dream?

To conclude...

My blogging of bloggy things will be sporadic for at least a week or so and perhaps the entire month.  Between now and the resumption of my normal blogging, you can expect to see off-the-cuff pieces on conventions, the comics industry, my online activities, politics and religion. I plan to write these during breaks from my writing gigs and my medical stuff and the garage sales and all the rest.

Hey, now I’m down to 271 items on my “Things To Do” list. Unless I have to add something. Groan.

© 2014 Tony Isabella

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