The joys of Los Angeles rent, which makes all rent comparably insanely awesome.
I’ll be honest, almost a year ago when I found out my wife and I were going to have our first child, I went into hard core panic mode.
I did the math and realized that on a freelance schedule, juggling teaching part time college courses, while maintaining a 60 hour a week schedule of freelance and searching for the next client, while my wife was working 40 plus hours a week in order for us to keep the roof of our tiny apartment over our heads wasn’t going to cut it.
Freelance illustration, while a lot of fun, was starting to tax me the time one would put in for two full time jobs in order to earn the salary of a fast food employee, without the benefits.
Occasionally there’d be years where I would make much more than that, but the unpredictable flux of feast and famine were begging to take their tole on my health, and I wanted to allow for my son to have one of us as a stay at home parent.
I put everything on pause to seek full time gainful employment, got super addicted to a terrible online mmo in the process (the job hunt was tough, and very discouraging, as job hunts tend to be).
To my joy and relief, after months of searching, I wound up landing a position as an art director at a wonderful company.
I’m not mentioning the name of the company here mainly so I don’t have to preface everything I say with, “this isn’t the opinion of (insert company here).” Out of respect to my readers, I figure I owe them that much.
Anyhow, back to the point. There were multiple reasons I chose to leave freelance illustration and cartooning to have a full time job in creative. I’ll list them, then I’ll get into the really juicy part, or crux of this whole blog posty thing afterward.
1. I got sick of freelance.
I’ve worked for many of the clients I’d dreamed of working for, was starting to build a name for myself, and a certain style, but realize that my love lies in comics, like this very one I’m posting this blog on the site of.
And those sort of comics I love making, aren’t really something I’m super interested in dumbing down or over marketing to where it will kill my love of it. Not saying I wouldn’t take a check for them, but I want to be able to work on something that I know is good, and let that, making a good solid story in comic form, be my end goal, not some profit motive driving it.
2. I missed working with people.
While teaching college I developed a love and passion for collaboration.
3. Benefits, sick leave, guaranteed hourly wages.
I wanted to be able to know my schedule, to leave work, to know when my weekends are.
4. It’s all corporate.
Most of what I was having to do for a living in freelance was corporate. I’m cool with that, but figured working for corporate couldn’t hurt if it carves out more time for creative when I clock out.
5. This comic.
I want to be able to devote my free time being with my kid, my wife, and then working on this lil monster that I’ve left sitting idle during all this flux and transition stuff.
That, in a very short while, brings us up to speed on my reasoning.
Now for what followed, and the crux of this post.
First, it turned out having a newborn sucks up almost all of your free time, life, and social life. Second, it turns out being an art director sucks up most or your free time, life, and social life. Third, my wife and I decided we would move to an area with a lower cost of living so we can actually make a living on one salary, and it turns out moving sucks up most of your free time, life, and social life.
Months flash by, then almost a year, and after having many sleepless “I’ve been absent from social media, haven’t had time to write, don’t even remember my administrator password for my website, ect” dreams, I have finally decided to just get to it, post an update, and explain my plan for this webcomic, site, and so on.
So, this is my start. My plan is to spend 30 minutes to and hour a day writing the next chapter of quarterly stories. I will post here during this process to keep myself accountable, and let any one who might still have interest in this madness of a comic know the status. Once I have the chapter whipped into shape, I will return to the page a week schedule I set up earlier.
I’m hoping you guys will be with me on this, still interested. What I wont do is lower the quality, or rush the writing. What I will do is post amazing stuff as it comes along.
Being a father has opened up so many amazing things and experiences in my life, being an art director has caused me to learn so many new skills and gain valuable insight, while also traveling to places I’ve never been in the country, and opening my mind to so many possibilities.
However, I’m still someone who’s got this addiction to comics. I’m not aiming to make a living doing them at this point, I’m mainly just wanting to get back to making this monster, and seeing if I can manage to make it stay good.
I felt I owed an explanation. Now, I’m gunna do my thirty minutes of writing.
I’ve been slow to update due to my wife and I having our first child, and a busy teaching schedule, however will return to weekly updates soon. In the mean time, here are some interviews I’ve done about Quarterly Stories:
For Christ and Pop Culture magazine: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/christandpopculture/a-life-of-two-stories-an-interview-with-joshua-kemble/
You can also watch them here:
I was invited to participate in “The Next Big Thing,” which is a global blog tour, started in Australia, to showcase authors and illustrators and their current work. And of course, I talked about Quarterly Stories on it! Check out the blog here: http://joshuakemble.com/?p=1335
For those of you who are new to Quarterly Stories, you might notice that I’ll occasionally post a bit about designs and illustrations that I do for a living to keep a roof over my head while making time to create comics. Anyhow, if you’re enjoying the comic so far, and would like a way to support, check out my blog on my illustration website: http://joshuakemble.com/?p=1330 which shows two new t-shirt designs that could use your support in getting printed, and will also help financially keep this webcomic, art thing as a viable possibility. Thanks!
I created the design above inspired by what I’ve been posting on Quarterly Stories, and you might even notice the design features the young Josh character design from Chapter Two. I’ve put it up for the ongoing Design By Humans competition, and if it wins, they’ll print it on a t-shirt. They’ll also provide me with some money, which would allow me some time to write and work on the next chapter of the book.
So, if you’re a fan of the web-comic so far, and would like a fun, free way to show your support for Quarterly Stories, please click this link: http://www.designbyhumans.com/vote/detail/226843#comment-pdqp and leave a vote/comment showing your support. I’ve highlighted the area to click to vote above.
It’d also make a really amazing shirt!
Thanks to everyone who’s been reading and supporting Quarterly Stories with donations, comments, getting the word out on social media, and reviews. You guys have really helped this thing keep going!