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Result in thread: The "fite me" thread
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11th Dec 2017, 9:33 PM #1
melaredblu

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You say that, but we greatly rely on shipping in this modern age, such as for the delivery of goods. I'll admit that the war between UPS and the US Postal Service is getting much too fierce, however, especially with contenders like Amazon getting involved.

*finger guns* ayyy
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Result in thread: The "fite me" thread
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11th Dec 2017, 9:27 PM #2
melaredblu

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Shipping is stupid. Ship wars are stupidest.
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11th Dec 2017, 4:04 AM #3
melaredblu

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Hey, it might be cringey, but if it's for charity, at least they're trying to do some good in the process. There are worse things. Cut 'em a little slack, man.
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Result in thread: Be Thankful, Motherfuckers
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23rd Nov 2017, 10:46 PM #4
melaredblu

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I'm thankful to finally have a full-time job after a year of unsuccessful job hunting. I'm thankful to the people who helped me get the job, and I'm incredibly thankful to my parents for having my back when I wasn't making much money and felt like a loser NEET. Feels good to have a life again.
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22nd Nov 2017, 4:53 PM #5
melaredblu

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Well, as a kid, I had no clue that it was meant to be held different ways. I found the PS1 controller, like the SNES controller before the N64, fit in my hands better in general. Obviously, though, the controller certainly didn't stop me from playing and I was being at least a little hyperbolic when I called it hot garbage. I will concede that yes, for the time, it was innovative. But from the point of view of a kid with small hands who didn't really "get" the design (meaning I thought I was supposed to use my right hand to press buttons, stretch my left thumb all the way across to the analog stick in the center, and somehow still use both hands to reach the shoulder buttons and the elusive Z button), it could be unwieldly. I liked the configuration of the Gamecube controller that came after it much more.
As for the Playstation controller, my main beef with it was just that I was so darn used to A and B buttons that sometimes I'd be tripped up by the [] ^ O X setup they had. Not really a fault with the controller, just something I never got the chance to get used to until years later when we got a PS3.
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22nd Nov 2017, 5:08 AM #6
melaredblu

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I tend to prefer the N64 mainly because that's the console I actually played on and have fond memories of. We only had a PS1 for a really short amount of time, but I do remember liking the game we had. It might have grown on me if we'd been able to keep the console.

[spoiler]Regardless of which one is better, we can all agree the N64 controller was hot garbage.[/spoiler]
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15th Nov 2017, 8:40 PM #7
melaredblu

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Image: http://princesschromabonusreel.webcomic.ws/files/threadnecromancer.jpg
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9th Nov 2017, 11:07 PM #8
melaredblu

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MissElaney:I'm generally not a fan of Thanksgiving because my grandmother died of small cell lung cancer a few years ago and living at her house to help take care of her turned into sleeplessly and helplessly watching her starve to death and drown in her own lung fluids which we drained multiple times to alleviate her symptoms but we could not cure her. Thanksgiving was her birthday. Since it's been only a couple years, it's more of a sad and empty reminder than a holiday. As my family fractured from that point, Thanksgiving is also a reminder that some of my relatives are rather petty.


That's terrible. My condolences, I'm sorry you went through something like that.
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9th Nov 2017, 6:33 PM #9
melaredblu

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Christmas doesn't exist until Thanksgiving is over. I refuse to acknowledge it until then, and frankly I still don't want to see its darn face until December 1st.

My family usually has a fairly big get-together. It's sort of a pseudo-potluck. Some of the food is made there, but most of the side-dishes are brought by some family member. We usually supply the deviled eggs, because I make some mean deviled eggs. I'm not super-close with the family, but there are a few people I really look forward to seeing because I only see them a couple times a year. One of my cousins has been helping me try to get basically the job I've always wanted when I've been struggling the whole year to get any kind of job. I'm still waiting to see if the people who interviewed me will hire, but either way, I really want to thank him in person for having my back. It means a lot to me.
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Result in thread: three-word story
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9th Nov 2017, 7:52 AM #10
melaredblu

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made of pizza.
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Result in thread: First webcomic you read?
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8th Nov 2017, 7:07 PM #11
melaredblu

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The first webcomic I was exposed to was Brawl in the Family. I didn't even know webcomics were a thing before that! I was pretty sad when the comic ended, but I still read the archives on occasion. As far as I've seen, the creator is doing well and moved on to bigger projects, and I'm happy about that. He seems like a pretty cool guy.
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7th Nov 2017, 6:07 PM #12
melaredblu

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I am just...such a sucker for the Tragic Backstory(TM). I don't care if it's cliche. I demand angst. I demand suffering. There's not a force in the universe that will convince me that this is cringe, nor is there a single, solitary chance I won't be lapping it up while rooting for the character to overcome said past, because darn it, I love characters with terrible pasts fighting their way into a happy future.

I'm also a hopeless sucker for pretty much every version of the "mysterious character" archetype. Roguish fellow clearly hiding something? Mystery guide who speaks in riddles? Emotionless girl with inexplicable powers? Strong, silent man who broods over a campfire when nobody else is watching? Obviously sapient animal that can't speak but has intelligent eyes? That savvy-looking woman in black with the sly smile sitting at the bar? The team ninjaspy? The cold, calculating team member whose tactics border on ruthless, if effective, making you wonder how they got that way? That one shadow-themed villain nobody can wrap their head around? I don't care if every last one of these is a cliche. Odds are, if you have a character remotely like this in your story, they're probably one of my favorite characters.
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Result in thread: How big is your buffer?
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19th Oct 2017, 7:46 AM #13
melaredblu

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I maintain generous buffers most of the time. Right now, Princess Chroma is into mid-November, as is Soulless. Here I Lie Awake is a new comic, so I started building a buffer before I even started posting. I'm pretty far ahead with that one, but I still need to queue them up to see how far it goes. Late December at least, I'd expect.

For me, buffer is the only way I can keep up. Props to the people who work great under pressure, but I just can't deal with that, especially with Princess Chroma. Some of those pages can take forever to finish and if I'm not ahead by at least a week, it becomes a frustrating mad dash to meet the deadline that sucks all the fun out of it.
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Result in thread: Shonen pitfalls
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17th Oct 2017, 3:38 AM #14
melaredblu

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Sikyanakotik:Of course, the stall tactics you've mentioned mostly show up in anime when the animators are trying not to overtake the manga that it's based on. So I wouldn't worry about that trope showing up in a comic series, especially one not made to adapt something else.


You know, you're probably right. I never thought too hard about why they do it, but it's worth knowing the reason behind it. The thing is, sometimes people will imitate anime tropes without question, like drawing mouths cutting into the cheek in profile (example in spoiler).
[spoiler]
Image: http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/790655201685781282_4411.jpg
[/spoiler]
It's a cheap trick to avoid animating the lips and frankly kind of an eyesore, but so many novice artists (including myself at one time) imitate it. They think because anime does it all the time, that must mean it's part of the "style", rather than an unfortunate side-effect of budget limits or pure laziness. So yes, the stall tactics have a reason for existing in anime, but that excuse doesn't make it good storywriting, nor does it mean that people won't emulate it in webcomic form. It's good that you explained the reason behind it so we can see why the problem exists and know why it doesn't have to be done that way.
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Result in thread: Shonen pitfalls
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17th Oct 2017, 2:33 AM #15
melaredblu

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Best examples of modern shounen imo are My Hero Academia and Hunter x Hunter. Both start off as standard shounen with tried tropes but the difference is they execute almost EVERYTHING flawlessly. They are both working with cliches, but both Deku and Gon are unique in subtle ways and can carry the show with their distinct charisma. Also both MHA and HxH evolve into more mature shows, at some points you would think you're watching/reading a seinen.


I can't speak for Hunter X Hunter, but one problem that's really aggravating for me with My Hero Academia* is the constant recaps like the audience has ADD. This happens a lot in shounen series, where information that's already long-established gets retreaded for the umpteenth time, often not even bothering to make new footage. It's waaaay too common in anime in general to reuse footage (and considering I write a Magical Girl comic, I know I'm throwing stones all over my glass house here), but MHA in particular really goes overboard in making the audience watch the same thing we just freakin' saw. I could literally skip the first 2-3 minutes of some episodes of MHA and miss pretty much nothing because it'll all be recaps and recycled footage from the previous episode. The manga of MHA doesn't have as much of a problem with that, thankfully, but I still think this is a point worth keeping in mind even when writing a webcomic, since it basically boils down to Show, Don't Tell. If you can't keep your audience up to speed without an exposition dump, then you need to rethink your approach. This applies to shounen-style comics, but it's good advice overall.

*That being said, I actually enjoy MHA a lot, so don't think I'm knocking it as a whole.

I also hate it when a shounen series screws around building "tension." Raising suspense is fine, but there's only so much staring down, trash-talking, pontificating, and monologuing about the upcoming battle/tournament/card game I can tolerate. Some shows just have terrible pacing with their rising action and unsatisfying payoffs *coughNarutocough*. If you absolutely must have The Standoff, use it to advance the story, not put it in cryogenic suspension while the characters chatter on.
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Result in thread: The ceiling feels heavy.
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"The ceiling feels heavy.", 13th Oct 2017, 11:50 PM #16
melaredblu

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On this Friday the 13th, with a hint of misfortune and dread in the air, I welcome you to Here I Lie Awake, a brand-new horror webcomic.
Image: http://hereilieawake.webcomic.ws/files/screenshots/screenshot.png

Our tale begins in a small coffee shop, with a strange confession of sleepless nights and fear that can only be described...
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12th Oct 2017, 8:01 PM #17
melaredblu

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I actually do enjoy picking stories apart myself, so I'm not disagreeing with you even in the slightest. This will all certainly sound amazingly pretentious and snobby, but I take literary analysis very seriously, even if I have a certain contempt for how it's taught. There are right and wrong ways to do it, but some professors are so caught up in their own conceptions of a story that you often don't analyze it so much as you just learn how to read the professor's mind. That makes it hard to learn proper technique for oneself. So here's how I think it should be approached. (Warning: Feel free to skip to the TL;DR if you find me insufferable).

In my mind, literary criticism is just a sliding scale from formalist to deconstructionist. The extreme of formalism is a robotic play-by-play with an uncompelling thesis ("I read The Bells, now I will proceed to summarize the structure and conclude that it is a poem about sounds), while the extreme of deconstructionism is basically just stupid, edgy headcanons ("Mario is totes a psychopathic maniac, you gaiz!!!"). Both extremes share the fatal flaw of ignoring the actual themes. All other critical approaches (historical, sociological, gender, etc.) fall somewhere on the scale, because while they each have a different subject they focus on, they'll ultimately adhere either more to interpreting the story at face value or to looking at the subtext. Which way they lean can also depend on how well the method of analysis fits the story. Some stories, for example, have more meat to them if you apply a historical lens than a mythological one. It isn't to say the mythological lens doesn't have value, but perhaps it's simply not the most fitting way to look at this specific work. In order to formally analyze any work well, you need a solid understanding of all the methods and determine the most fruitful approach. You need to also take the work as a whole, and not focus on one small aspect. Understanding a story in its full context is vital, no exceptions. You also must be intellectually honest with your criticism. Don't ignore aspects of the story that contradict your thesis and don't play up inconsequential details or fabricate "symbolism" to prop your thesis up. If you find your hypothesis under question, be open-minded enough to accept that your starting point was proven false and try another approach.

Does that sound like hard, tedious work? Good. That's because it is. And that's why the average reader shouldn't be expected to deliver in-depth analyses and instead be expected to just enjoy the story for what they see in it. Their insights are not to be brushed off as irrelevant, of course, but it should be at least acknowledged that it's mostly based on opinion, not scholarly method.

Except.

Except.

The reader-response method.

Hoo, boy, the reader-response method. That fifth-grade book report-tier, dubious, infuriating, woefully misused mess of an approach. Pardon me and all of my salt, but this one is a ratty mess that's a terror to unravel. In my mind, it's just another form of deconstruction, the difference being that the reader's personal experience, no matter how far removed from the original context, is given weight.

This is not always a good thing.

Even so, it might be most popular way for the average person to analyze a story, perhaps because it's easy to explain how you think and feel, but hard to analyze outside your own mind. The problem is, people mistake their own impressions for what's actually in the story, and sometimes their impression is just...y'know...wrong. Yeah, yeah, I said the "w" word, but I'm sticking by my guns here. It is entirely possible for a reader's interpretation to be invalid. I don't have anything against people for merely being wrong, but when they take their wrong ideas and start using them as a reason to talk smack about the creator or spread false conceptions of a work to people who haven't experienced it yet, that's what gets me upset. Maybe if more people understood how hard it is to craft a good, well-researched formal criticism, they'd be less likely to make insane leaps like "X character said a racist thing, therefore...the author...is racist???" and more likely to realize that their "interpretation" is just their own first impression and nothing more.

TL;DR: Lit analysis may not be a science, but it is a discipline, darn it, and people need to know what they're doing before they start acting like their word is law!
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12th Oct 2017, 9:49 AM #18
melaredblu

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It really galls me to no end when people make harsh assumptions about a writer based on the things their characters do or say, especially in situations where a character's negative behavior isn't immediately shot down like a Saturday morning PSA just to ensure the audience that it was a Bad Thing. As a matter of fact, I actually take it as a possible sign that the author still has some learning to do about writing if the characters only ever parrot their values and the only characters who act otherwise are villains or fools. Being able to realistically portray other states of mind and opinions is a strength in writing that I admire, even more so when the writer can make a character argue convincingly for their stance even when they're in the wrong. A good many compelling villains are written that way, and we wouldn't have character development if every protagonist started out doing the right thing. For that matter, a character becoming a worse person doesn't mean the writer thinks their descent is a good thing, either. It's true that most stories have a bit of the author in them, but assuming all of a character's darkest traits must also be the author's traits seems to me a really narrow-minded view of what the act of storytelling is.

There's also a plague of over-analysis, I think. Like, there's this paranoia of writers and content creators having these hidden agendas or coyly-disguised points of view that only barely peep out like Freudian slips. As somebody who studied English in college and has actually read many different books and poems that were...products of their time, so to speak...I'd say that's a bit ridiculous. Truthfully, writers who have deeply-held opinions (whether socially-acceptable or not) rarely pretty it up and pretend to think otherwise, because they think they're right. Nine times out of ten, you're gonna get a Jack Chick tract, not some carefully-coded cipher, and you're not clever for "deducing" that some perfectly average author is a Bad Person because a character said a line of dialog that might be construed as offensive in another context. The sad thing is, I can also attest that this sort of absurd reaching is strangely encouraged in higher academia, and it really does a disservice to the literary arts. Not every story can or even should be taken as an unrelated extended metaphor. Sometimes you get more out of things when you take them at face value.
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Result in thread: ComicFury - User Picks
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6th Oct 2017, 1:27 AM #19
melaredblu

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snuffysam:Megan Kearney's Beauty and the Beast is listed as "Other", not Romance. If you would like to nominate it for the Other category instead, please update your submission.

(in a new post, otherwise I won't notice)

The others have been added.


Okay, I'm updating my submission to have BatB nominated for the "Other" category. I could've sworn the genre for that comic was romance, but derp.
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Result in thread: ComicFury - User Picks
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5th Oct 2017, 8:18 PM #20
melaredblu

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Holy cow, I've never been nominated for anything! I'm so flattered! Thank you, Proxy 170!

As for me, since there doesn't seem to be anything suggested in the Romance category yet, I'd like to suggest Megan Kearney's Beauty and the Beast for Romance. It's a very well-illustrated and well-written adaptation that adds a lot of depth and complexity to the original fairy tale. I actually don't even like romance as a genre, but this comic is so refined and compelling that I can't help but get engrossed in it.
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