GPF News Archive

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Greetings, all! This particular News update is a special one, as it just happens to be the "really big news" I've been hinting at for the last several updates. Well, there are several items that may or may not become "really big news" that will eventually be coming down the pipe, but this is the one in specific that I've been hinting at. I hope you're sitting down and comfortable, because here it comes....

My wife and I found out very late in December that she is pregnant with our first child. At the time of this writing, the baby should be about ten weeks along, with an expected delivery date of September 2, 2006. Those of you who may have met my wife at a con or perhaps know her from the forum (her forum handle is "kmd") would probably like to hear that she and the baby are healthy and doing fine, and so far we are anticipating a healthy, happy pregnancy. I make no guarantees about the child's mental state once he or she is born; I do plan to make my Perl books available to him or her in case the third panel of this strip is a self-fulfilling prophesy. (Seasoned parents would probably caution me not to leave a valued book in the hands of such a little tike, but the pages are already falling out. I'll just buy me a new edition for my own use.)

As a general rule, I usually try to keep personal events out of the GPF News and leave it just for comic stuff. As such, I've posted a good deal more detailed information in my blog, where you can read further if and only if you're interested. Look for the "Baby Stuff" category, which I suspect will be updated between now and September with such an alarming frequency that only an excited first-time parent can manage.

However, I will try to expound a little here on how I think this will affect the comic. The current goal is to proceed as if it won't, but to still have a few contingency plans, just in case. I work far enough ahead that I should be able to plan accordingly without interrupting the strip. The only obvious exceptions will most likely be convention travel, which sadly will be effectively nixed. My wife is a vital part of my convention team, and I'm not going to ask her to try traveling all over the place while lugging around the extra baggage, so to speak. Thus, I'm afraid there's no way I'll be able to make Comic-Con or Dragon*Con this year, or any other cons that require extensive travel. I still might be able to make a few events closer to home, such as Trinoc*coN or maybe even HeroesCon, but that's about it. Sorry to disappoint anyone already making convention plans this year, especially our regulars at Dragon*Con. Dragon*Con has always treated us wonderfully, and I really hate not being able to attend. Who knows... maybe next year I'll have a special booth "babe" in tow....

My comic buffer currently stands at six weeks, two weeks shy of my ideal eight, and I plan to catch back up on those last two or beyond before September to give me ample leeway for any necessary "paternity leave." "To Thine Own Self..." will end at the end of October, so I should be at or very near the end of the story when the baby finally comes. Ergo, I expect no interruptions to the current story, which should be completed as expected. What happens beyond that, however, could very well be up in the air.

As mentioned above, ideally the comic will continue after Year Eight for at least another few years. I have a number of important stories I want to complete before I declare the strip officially finished, and I suspect Years Nine and possibly Ten will be bigger and better than anything before them. However, I won't mince words: My growing family will always come first. If I find that caring for the youngling takes up too much time and my day job won't allow me the luxury much else, I will end the comic if the need arises. Of course, I consider that a worst-case scenario, and I will do everything I can to keep the strip going before I reach that point. This could include cutting out the color Sundays, scaling back updates, or (horror of horrors) finding another artist to draw the strip while I continue to write it. If GPF is forced to end at the end of Year Eight, it won't be that terrible; the ending of the story will have a nice, definitive closure that will be an acceptable place to end things if I had to while still leaving plenty of room for additional development at a later date. However, my current plan is to keep things moving as per the status quo, with the footnote that things could change if necessary.

I hate to end the News post on a somber note like that, but that's all I really have at the moment. Anyhoo, don't forget that if you find yourself scratching your head over the current events in the comic itself, make sure to check out the News post from November 6th, which includes a bunch of notes and back references that should help clear up some of the confusion. Also, if you want to help out with our Oh No Robot transcriptions, look up the January 9th News post and the related Oh No Robot forum thread for tips, tricks, and rules of thumb (and possibly other digits). Also also, additional notes for the Official Unofficial GPF Wiki can be fond in this forum thread.

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