Now we’re at 143 pages/day. How cool is that? Three new readers in the space of one day! 103 pages to go!
Hey guys, I really like today’s comic. I put a lot of unnecessary work into making it sparkle but I wanted to do something special for you people after this awesome week of awesomeness and what has really been an awesome month, an awesome summer. Therefore, I threw in lots of little details such as celebrity cameos, special beverage names in panel two and this:
I’m thinking maybe that could go on a t-shirt some day. We’ll see. Anyways, I went on a roller-coaster for the first time yesterday. In fact, I went on about 8 roller-coasters yesterday. I went to Alton Towers with Jason, Neil and James my crazy movie buddies. As it turns out I didn’t get to see Transformers with them but that film’s awesome whoever you see it with. So anyway, Towers. Specifically, Alton ones. It was great. I can’t describe it in this news post. Just imagine me frightened, excited, ecstatic, breathless and dizzy all at once, stumbling off Oblivion or some other similarly scarily-named ride shouting “That was so ASS!” at the top of my voice. That kind of became the catchphrase of the day, in fact, which has been the first time my friends and I have spent a day quoting something I made. I did it!
As the day wore on we became increasingly psyched and increasingly cliquey until one man turned around in a queue and told James that he was expressing himself too much, rudely, and it was ruining his otherwise silent queuing experience and suggested that he might shut the fuck up. James pointed out, with the aid of friendly glove puppets, that there was a degree of hypocrisy in suggesting that someone should be ‘more fucking polite’. The man was shamed into silence and the fun continued uninterrupted until late into the night.
So anyway, my day was fun upon a bun of some description as anyone else who has queued for an hour for a minute of undiluted joy can verify. For anyone else such a long queue might present a deterrent and they will never know what they are missing out on. It’s essentially a microcosm of all our lives if you think about it. Also, wood pigeon.
Here’s something new and interesting — I’m actually going to discuss the comic in this log-thing.
First a confession. I didn’t used to be good at updates. I spent a year building a backlog of strips and managed a grand total of 20. Just shows what a deadline will do to productivity because I whipped off 20 strips in 10 weeks without breaking a sweat this year. But in the past… well, just check the archives between September ’06 and April ’07. Back already? That was quick.
Those days are gone, I promise. Barring some major disaster (like a dead parent or my left hand being cut off by ninja), we will not see the return of those dog days of the Great Slump of ’06. Since the slump I have done two things:
- Discovered Photoshop
- Discovered Podcasts
You would not believe how those two little discoveries can change the shape of a man’s work schedule. And since April of this year I have been updating every week, twice a week, providing a comic which is both written and drawn (forget written and drawn well — by webcomic standards the fact that I can write in correctly-spelled English itself is a mirucle). That’s four months of solid work. It makes me wonder. Some small, cynical part of me is doing a calculation.
Life on the Fourth Floor has existed for two years. It has 81 strips in its archive now. That’s quite a lot. So where is everybody? And I don’t mean that in a ‘I want to get rich’ way or a ‘I want to be better than everybody else’ way or even a ‘everybody hates me’ way. Because right now I’d take hate over what we’re looking at now. I don’t have enough readers. I work on this comic every day of the week — writing it, drawing it, tinkering with the site, thinking up new ideas — and I’m thrilled that every month 2000 people read Fourth Floor and come back later on in the week to read more. That means the world to me. It touches me in a way I cannot explain. It’s like my childhood spent watching cartoons and being bad at sports is finally being justified. And isn’t it better for a few people to love something than for a lot of people to just like it? But it’s a shame to put all that work in for so few people to read it. And that’s why I’m publishing free comics on the internet — because in the past I’ve just drawn pictures for myself and the people I know and now I want to widen the net.
Bearing all this in mind, I want you to consider the possibility that I will one day (God forbid) become despondent with the comic’s performance and give up, that a new slump — more terrible than the last — will begin. Right now I feel confident and happy. But if that confidence is shaken the whole thing could go tits-up. I don’t know how long the confidence will last but I do know that it will not last forever. What keeps David positive, what fuels him? Readers. When the numbers go up — even if it’s just by one — you just bought yourself another month of comics. When I get feedback — bam — that’s another two months of free entertainment. When someone criticises me we lose a week.
This is where you come in.
If you’re reading this now… well, it’s a three-score miracle since you’re:
- A reader.
- A reader who actually reads the news posts.
- A reader who has read this far down the page without leaving to read Penny Arcade.
If you’re reading this now I want you to do your part to help the comic. Get a friend to visit the site. Direct them to the good comics, the ones you found funniest. Sell it to them. Be an ambassador for me, an evangelist. If my calculations are correct, if I am to have any hope of living off this I need 100 times more readers. I’m going to do my best to make the comic 100 times better but if you’re going to do your part you need to tell 100 friends. Each. And if you’re anything like me… well, I only have about ten. And I don’t even like any of them. So forget 100 friends — let’s try just the one. Let’s see if together we can double the comic’s page-views. If we do that, everyone gets free wallpapers. Forever.
Right now we’re on 123 pages/day. Our goal: 246. Good luck. You rock.