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Bound.

… is this literally the first time I’ve ever drawn Sigmund looking angry? Quite possibly!

Anyway, if you wanted to know how to draw an ACAB bindrune… enjoy.1

  1. The translation is… approximate, since the word “cops” obviously didn’t exist in Old Icelandic and “bastard” may not have had quite the same cultural connotations. Also, for the record “ᛅᛚᛚᛅᛦ ᛚᚢᚴᚴᚢᛦ ᛅᚱᚢ ᛒᛅᛋᛏᛅᚦᛅᛦ” would, I think, be the whole thing in Younger Futhark. []
2020-06-09T11:52:42+10:009th June, 2020|Tags: my art, sigmund, wyrdverse|

Everything sucks (especially publishing).

I have… so many Thoughts™ about this post from Foz Meadows. Not directly related to her experiences but by golly if general shape isn’t familiar, and… well.

I never really talk about this publicly, because the Code Of Silence surrounding the publishing industry really is desperately heavy and thick, but there were basically two Incidents that caused me to abandon my never-particularly-successful writing “career”.

The first I’ve alluded to previously, and was essentially that the third Wyrdverse book got canned because the publisher wanted substantial re-writes to re-frame the story from what it was—basically focusing on a broken interpersonal relationship between a sexual abuse survivor, a lesbian filmmaker, a young trans boy, and girl-version!Lain—into… a mainstream m/m romance that would appeal to the publisher’s perception of the m/m market as being middle-class straight white cis women.1

The second was being told, by multiple different publishers, that Elias of Dragon of Rosemont High was unsympathetic because—and I am absolutely not making this up—he’s bullied. The fact that he’s black and the character who’s bullying him is white? And that that dynamic is repeatedly pointed out by Elias himself, even though technically the motivation for the bullying is eventually revealed to have a different rationale?2  I’m su-uu-uu-ure has nothing to do with it.

And I bring this up not because I think my experiences are anything as bad as what Meadows went through—mine were just frustrating and disappointing, not actively traumatic—but I guess just… to have this out there. The degrees and details vary, but I’ve heard the same story over and over since, always whispered quietly in the back of the barcon. Because the publishing industry runs entirely on the hopes and dreams of people who know, deeply and completely, that they are worth nothing and can be replaced at any time.3 And no-one wants to be That Author, and every pressure—from your agents, your publishers—is to be Positive At All Times At All Costs. So nothing gets said, and nothing gets done, and the cycle repeats.

Same shit, different day.

  1. See also: arguing with the publisher over the sex scene in Stormbringer. They wanted it rewritten with Lain in his male human form, again to appeal to some supposed “mainstream” m/m audience. []
  2. And actually an even more different one, if I ever actually wrote more books in that series… []
  3. If you’ve ever wondered why so many people who “make it” in publishing seem to be assholes? Ta-daa! []

Liesmith, chapter 9.

Alis’s Note
… we got there in the end!


Nine

Friday.

Sigmund’s dad answered the door, which was about the worst possible way to start the evening. Sigmund could hear murmured introductions as he pulled on his shoes and hopped down the stairs half-in, half-out of his jacket, but by the time he reached the door he was pretty sure words like boyfriend and date hadn’t been uttered and—thank gods—Lain wasn’t carrying flowers or something equally humiliating.

(does that mean this isn’t a date?)

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2020-05-31T11:03:24+10:0031st May, 2020|Tags: books, LIESMITH, wyrdverse|

Liesmith, chapter 8.

Alis’s Note
… hahah yes I totally remembered to post this on time. Totally.


Eight

“Left! Roll left!”

“I’ve got it, I’ve got it!”

Five seconds later, staring up at the briar-and-circuitry-covered crotch of a Dark Faerunner, Wayne had to admit she did not got it.

It’d been a long, long day.

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2020-05-09T13:34:52+10:009th May, 2020|Tags: books, LIESMITH, wyrdverse|

Liesmith, chapter 7.

Alis’s Note
So, uh. Hope everyone is still keeping inside and washing their hands. Have some story updates?


Seven

The Hat People did find them on Sunday, stumbling out of the bush. Sigmund was feeling okay about it all, though. They’d eaten rabbit and Fantales and laughed around the fire. Then Sigmund had fallen asleep on the rocks, the day’s panic catching up to him. When he woke, he was sore from the ground but less so from his arm. Then Lain had asked if he felt like a badass yet, roughing it in the bush.

Most of the rest of Sunday was spent getting fussed over by doctors and pumped full of ibuprofen for his shoulder. As long as he didn’t try lifting anything heavy, or reaching upward, he was okay.

He did have to sign a lot of forms, though. Waivers saying he wouldn’t sue the company or speak to the press. Lain scowled at his paperwork for a long time before putting his own name down.

“Do you think there’d be money in it?” Sigmund asked, only half joking. “Suing, I mean.”

“No,” said Lain. “And I wouldn’t try. LB’s lawyers are notoriously vicious.”

Sigmund signed.

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2020-04-19T09:24:56+10:0019th April, 2020|Tags: books, LIESMITH, wyrdverse|

Dorks again.

Basically what we learnt from this is “you’re going to have to ink it anyway, so start with that next time.”

Also working from home is very productive for doodling in the sketchbook I have next to the desk…1

  1. I work on stuff in like five-to-ten minute bursts in between doing Actual Work, Corporate Overlords, I swear! []
2020-04-15T08:40:01+10:0015th April, 2020|Tags: lain, my art, sigmund, wyrdverse|

Liesmith, chapter 6.

Alis’s Note
There is an even more longerer version of this chapter here, for those who’re really hankering for some additional awkward nerd bush romance. Also: music!


Six

Friday saw Sigmund stepping out of Dad’s car onto the grass outside LB, carrying his tent and sleeping bag and flashlight and Swiss Army knife and towel and compass and mosquito repellant and sunscreen and, Jesus, Dad. I’ll be okay. It’s only for the weekend.

Except Dad had been so excited about it all. More excited than Sigmund, even. So Sigmund hadn’t had the heart to say anything.

Which was why here he was, standing on the lawn, weighted down with ten million packs like a huge nerd while everyone else was standing around clutching small gym bags.

(FML)

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2020-04-05T11:17:46+10:005th April, 2020|Tags: books, LIESMITH, wyrdverse|

Fun with markers.

… I swear to every Weeaboo god I used to have like ten thousand pencilboards and now when I actually need one I’m forced to resort to using an old Saiyuki document sleeve.

Anyway. Markers over sketches are fun! Also: Lain as a Pokémon trainer, for some reason. Lain’s team is Blaziken, Delphox, Salazzle, Noivern, Corviknight, and Archeops. I think Sigmund’s would be Galarian Rapidash, Lycanrock, Milotic, Mismagius, and (the nuclear option) a Kyurem and a Reshiram.1

Incidentally, Original Form Lain used to get around in an “ugly chartreuse sweater”, mostly because it was the color of pencil in my giant box of pencils I found the most curious. He got a bit more fashionable over the years, going through a visual kei phase in the early 2000s, before settling on a generic hipster look for his current, published, incarnation. And now we come full circle, with gender-ambivalent post-Bad Meme Lain,2 back once more in his oversized ugly chartreuse sweater and loudly clashing nebula leggings.

Never change, Lain. Never change…

Edit: Aa-aa-aa-nd with a bit more of Lain filled out.

  1. a.k.a. Sleipnir, Fenrir, Jormungandr, Hel, Sigyn, and Loki. []
  2. Not to mention post-post-Bad Meme Sigmund, with his beard and long hair… []
2020-04-05T17:31:11+10:003rd April, 2020|Tags: lain, my art, wyrdverse|

Liesmith, chapter 5.

Alis’s Note
World comes atcha fast, man. So, uh. For those of you looking for things to do during lockdown, a reminder that I have various other books on offer from prices ranging from zero dollars to not-zero dollars!


Five

You’re a filthy traitor and I hate you forever.” Then, because lies always burnt on his tongue, “Or at least until lunchtime.”

“Sorry, man.” Em, apparently, had no such issues with untruths. “But the shrink moved my appointment to Friday. I can’t miss it, so . . . gotta pike on camping. Sorry.”

Sigmund groaned, slumping down across the table. Nine forty-six a.m. and they were at the café across the road from the office, having coffees and skipping work. Sigmund’s favorite pastime.

Em’s favorite, meanwhile, was ruining people’s days.

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2020-03-22T08:34:12+11:0022nd March, 2020|Tags: books, LIESMITH, wyrdverse|
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