Since I started drawing on my phone I’ve done a number of projects:
- Twits Illustrated
- How to become a home-schooled religious wingnut in fifty (50) easy steps
- Doing the Twisters
- Balloon, which is a great story and should be a book, but the idea of drawing the same person 50 times kills me, so I’m not sure what to do with it.
But the one I started three weeks ago is my favourite, most favourite, very most favouritey favourite of all. For Secret Comics Club I’m doing what I think is my best work. I’m saying the stuff I want to say. And I’m doing it for an audience of people who I think actually look forward to the illustrations. The secret bit is fun too.
If you like the stuff I draw, joining Secret Comics Club is the only way to see the best stuff I draw. You can join via Twitter by sending a follow request to @secretcomics. If you prefer to have the illustrations delivered to you via email, you can subscribe here. It would be really cool if you joined.
There’s no spam and nothing for sale. Hooray!
On Friday I was walking outside and it was beautiful. I thought about taking pictures, but then I thought, You just need to be out hear enjoying it for real to actually get it. This is was Jonathan Franzen is writing about, but bigger, and he, of course, does it very well.
Jonathan Franzen talks about technology, narcissism and social media, love, bravery and bird-watching in a lovely new piece in the New York Times, Liking is for cowards. Go for what hurts.
It’s adapted from his recent Commencement speech at Kenyon College (which you can listen to, if it do ya). It’s good stuff. I like him a lot.
- I want you to join so much that I made one of these stupid list posts that ‘pro-bloggers’ tell you to make so that you can generate traffic and be an ‘SEO ninja’. I don’t want to be an SEO ninja because they don’t exist. Also I found that making this list was nearly a violation of some of my more pointless principles, and that hurt a bit, but I Did It Anyway so that maybe I could share secret comic joy with you.
- It’s the refreshing opposite of ‘Pictures on Facebook, or it didn’t happen’.
- You get a weekly illustration that hardly anyone sees. It’s almost like I drew it just for you.
- It feels good to have a nice secret.
- YOU. LOVE. ME. YOU LOVE ME. YOU LOVE ME. YOU LOVE. YOU. LOVE. ME. OH YOU LOVE ME. YOU LOVE. YOU LOVE ME. YOU LOVE ME. YOU LOVE.
- Secret Comics Club is free
- You can join via email.
- You can join via Twitter. Simply submit a follow request to @secretcomics
- If nobody joins Secret Comics Club in the next hour, I’m gonna club this baby seal!
Starting next Tuesday 17 May I will be drawing a weekly illustration/comic thingy that will only be available by email and a private Twitter account. It’s free, and I would love to share it with you because secret clubs are fun. Here is me giving myself an enthusiastic and nearly coherent interview about Secret Comics Club:
Me: If Secret Comics Club was a colour, what would it smell like?
Me: That’s really dumb question, and I bet half the people have clicked away already. Start with something straightforward. People want proper information.
Me: Okay, Mr Marketingguruhead, why don’t you ask the questions then?
Me: Okay. I will. What is Secret Comics Club?
Me: That is quite straightforward.
Me: Yes it is. Are you going to answer it?
Me: Secret Comics Club is a weekly comic/cartoon/illustration drawn by me and emailed only to supercool Secret Comics Club members and not published anywhere else in the whole world. It’s a little ray of oddshine in your inbox every Tuesday morning. It may turn out to be the reason why your Tuesday is better than everyone else’s.
Me: Will there be badges?
Me: That’s a brilliant idea! I hope so. And a special handshake.
Me: Do you know where you are going with this club? Any big plans?
Me: The only thing I know for sure is that it will last at least six months, from 17 May to 15 November 2011. I have some ideas about asking other artists to join the club and maybe offering a paid subscription that gives you secret comics on more days. I’ve also got some people working on waking George Herriman’s brain from cryogenic sleep.
Me: Are your drawings any good?
Me: I don’t know. You can see a lot of them by looking through this blog.
Me: I just had a look. They are kind of odd. Where do you get your inspiration?
Me: Why do people ask that question? It’s like asking, ‘Where do you get your air?’
Me: Yes, but where do you get your inspiration?
Me: Wildebeests speak to me in the hour just before dawn.
Me: In your dreams?
Me: No, on Skype. They live in a different timezone, and that’s the only time they are available, what with the migrating and avoiding lions.
Me: Does your club have some cool rules?
Me: Nope. But I do have two requests.
- You can unsubscribe at any time, but I would be really happy if you don’t unsubscribe until you receive at least four comics, just so you are certain that you hate it.
- Please don’t forward the comic emails or post the comics on the Internet. That kind of defeats the purpose of it being a secret comics club. I’m all for sharing, but if you could share subscription invitations rather than individual comics, I would be grateful.
Me: But can’t I share just this one?
Me: Are you some kind of jerk? I just asked you not to.
Me: Speaking of jerks, are you going to be a jerk if I subscribe?
Me: No. In fact, I will make you a few promises.
- Emails from me will contain no hate speech. There will probably be some making-fun-of speech, but I hope we are all grown up enough to tell the difference.
- Emails from me will not contain any ads. Ever. Also, I won’t be offering anything for sale that is not directly related to Secret Comics Club.
- You probably know that I think of myself as ‘one of those Jesus people’. My comics do, of course, reflect my own worldview, but I promise there won’t be any attempts to convert you, altar calls or promises of blessing from God if you send your £1,000 covenant love gift today.
- I won’t share your email address with anyone.
- Emails other than your weekly comic will be extremely rare.
Me: Do you have any final thoughts for the good people of the Internet?
Me: C’mon, guys! Let’s be a secret club.
Subscribe to Secret Comics Club (via MailChimp)
“The return of the torture debate is striking because its apologists no longer feel the need to advocate for a narrow exception to prevent an American city from being nuked or a busload of children from dying. In the jubilation over getting bin Laden, they’re instead employing this frightening standard: torture of multiple detainees is justified if it might produce a single useful nugget that, combined with lots of other intelligence, helps lead us to the secret location of the highest value terrorist leader many years later. It’s suddenly the new baseline in our renewed national argument. That’s torture creep.”
—The Atlantic’s Conor Friedersdorf on the renewed torture debate taking hold of American politics