notes on “the goldenrod snit”

By now, you’ve all had a chance to read The Goldenrod Snit— if you missed it, you can start with page one here.  I really enjoyed making this minicomic– it’s been way too long since I made a classic eight pager in a few days from idea to finished comic.  I’ve also never posted a comic this way, as photographs taken of a finished book rather than scans of the artwork.  There were distortion issues with the images, but there was a pleasingly immediate quality to the results. (I hope.)  So this has been an experiment all around.

The Snit is just a week old today– I wrote it last Tuesday and Wednesday and drew it last Thursday in about 9 hours.  It shows it, of course, in its simplicity, but I think the style suits the story.  The other indication of high speed work is the medium used– keen eyed readers will note that the entire comic was inked with markers: Sharpies of various sizes, plus the indispensable brush tip Pitt marker, which mimics wet brushwork so precisely.  There’s no substitute for markers when you want to work fast, since you don’t have to wait even a second for things to dry before you can erase out your pencil lines.  No one–least of all me– is claiming you can create a great work of art, or even an especially good 8 page mini, in three days. But you can make something from nothing and try to entertain your readers with a silly joke or two.  Thank you so much for being part of the audience for this attempt.

The plot, such as it is, was suggested by last week’s Pluto flyby and the resulting revival of the tongue-in-cheek anger of certain astronomy and history nerds (myself included) at Pluto’s “demotion” from planetary status.  I thought of Syd, a nerd character I’ve been developing for Kekionga, and knew that he would be one of those people who would get really mad thinking about Pluto.  And getting really mad made me think of the Incredible Hulk, who was on my mind because of all those Hulk-kus I’ve been writing. I flashed on the idea of how funny it would be if Syd, who is a small guy, “hulked out” when he got annoyed about trivial stuff, making him about the size of a regular superhero.

I couldn’t call him a Hulk, of course, but I wanted a name that sounded enough like it to make the connection.  Extra points if it metered the same as “the Incredible Hulk”.  “Snit” sort of went with the whole petty annoyance idea.  And “goldenrod” is simply the name of the color of the ream of paper sitting on the couch, bought at random to print minicomics on if I came up with an idea of for a minicomic that would look good on goldenrod paper.  I’ve always been sort of mad that goldenrod paper isn’t the color of a goldenrod plant, which is a much brighter yellow.  If a Hulk is green (or grey), maybe a Snit is a goldenrod paper yellow.

And so the plot and the title and the new character sort of appeared all at once.  Kekionga’s in-print cast has suddenly increased by one (one that’s suitable only for very silly stories, but who will subtly shade Syd’s character whenever he appears in a more serious one) and there’s a new Kekionga story, too, all without much in the way of planning.  This is what makes it fun.

I’m going out now to reply to Snit comments, and if anyone has any more to to say, or any questions to ask, comment here or on the posts for the individual pages, and I promise I will answer the best I can.

Finally, many thanks go out to my very patient husband who sat up late last Thursday night laying out the printing masters and printing the sheets so The Goldenrod Snit could debut most unexpectedly at SPACE last weekend.


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