Arthur, King of Time and Space Arthur, King of Time and Space

Rants 2012 January - June


1. My laptop occasionally overheats, or something; it may have to do with sleep mode. One of the symptoms of trouble is it stops recognizing attached USB devices, like the mouse or drawing tablet. Letting it cool down for an hour or overnight gets it back to normal. Sunday night I was concerned for an hour that I might not be able to draw cartoons if the laptop continued to give me trouble about all the devices I use to direct the cursor. It came back, but it reminded me that I ought to amend the previous statements I've made in this space that if I miss an update you should check my LiveJournal or my Twitter feed (both with buttons among the links above).

I've stated before that even if I have computer problems I can tweet with my phone, and update status will appear at Twitter and be mirrored at LiveJournal. Well, the LiveJournal mirroring has become unreliable and I don't use it anymore. For update status, if you should ever have questions, you'd need to go directly to my Twitter feed.

2. When a Shape of Things to Come is labeled "true story", it means Arthur is taking an event or an exchange of dialog from his life. This is what I used to do with my pre-internet pencil journal comics. With a Shape of Things to Come labeled "true story", it may or may not mean that the event or dialog are taken from my life.


I just want to apologize here for not posting here any more. I've always said that it oughtn't take longer to read the newsposts on a webcomic site than it does to read the comics; but that doesn't mean I've stopped posting the kinds of things I used to put here. I just do it in 140-character increments now.

As long as I've got your attention, I have been meaning to mention here that the year of the Grailquest in the space arc will be an adaptation of the greater portion of the novel first draft that was my first attempt to convert King Arthur in Time and Space into a work of its own. Those of you who read that on Usenet at the time will have recognized the episode on the planet Monsalvat as having been derived from the same work.

I will also mention that I've figured out how Arthur is going to turn the election around. It'll be with a motto that's a phrase I scripted years ago for Arthur's future last scene with Agravaine in the space arc, which I ended up debuting during the tournament Arthur and Lancelot went to together while the False Guenevere was at Camelot.


If you read Creative Pocess, then you know the computer drawing tablet I've been using to draw that and AKOTAS was rendered useless in an accident a week and a half ago.

Ordinarily when I think about doing AKOTAS in Arthur's triangles, usually my aesthetics revolt. I like my triangle style very much which is why I use it for my fanfiction cartoons, even though many people don't like it which is why I decided to use line drawing for my more general interest project. Having initiated the project with line drawing, I feel there's been a reasonable expectation created that I won't permanently switch to a style I know some readers dislike. If I had started AKOTAS as a triangle project that would be one thing, and often I wish I had; but I didn't.

This week when I began to think about doing AKOTAS in triangles on a temporary basis (as I did during November and December 2007), it produced a great relief, a rush nearly as great as the one completing and uploading a cartoon produces. I took this to mean that line drawing with a mouse is a soulsucking, evil procedure great burden relative to drawing with a stylus, more of a burden than I've consciously realized; and that I need to stop, lest doing AKOTAS itself should come to be perceived a burden.

Line drawing will resume when I get my tablet USB cord replaced, whenever that is. Thanks for your patience.


I said this in my LiveJournal yesterday, so I probably ought to say it here too.

Friday's cartoon reflected that I am once again considering, and more seriously this time, converting AKOTAS permanently to triangles from line drawing. As of the LiveJournal entry, in reaction to Friday's cartoon, I've received two lukewarm comments against the idea and none in favor.

Yesterday marked eight years of consecutive daily updates at AKOTAS. I made the decision at the beginning to create it in line art because I knew that appeals better to a general audience than the triangle style. For much of eight years I have wished I had decided otherwise. Despite several occasions when triangle style has been evoked under emergency circumstances (usually for only a day at a time but, now, twice for weeks at a stretch), I have resisted making the change because I feel a reasonable expectation has been created for the readership that line art will be the standard.

The thing about line art in webcartoons - the thing that induced the switch, in effect to this day, to triangle style for my fanfiction webcartoons in 2001 - is that line art relies on computer peripherals that break down and can't always be promptly repaired or replaced. Every other production decision I made at the beginning of AKOTAS - working in MSPaint, what font to use, to code the site myself in what HTML I know so that anything that goes wrong is something that I did and that I can fix myself - was in aid of streamlining production so I could produce cartoons at any Windows PC in the world, so AKOTAS would never miss a scheduled update.

And I like the triangles. I like minimalism for its own sake. I deny it's a lesser style just because it's simpler and faster. For my purposes it's better because of those things. And it's distinct: it won't ever be confused with someone else's work.

I like the triangles better. Yet there's still that nagging reasonable expectation I feel I've created for the AKOTAS readership. Plus - though I didn't think to say this for LiveJournal - when I do nothing but triangles, I do end up missing my less minimal style.

But then there's this:

This drawing from my deviantArt account appeared in an LJ entry of 2/20/12. In the comments then I said I wasn't seriously considering switching to this style for AKOTAS because of, in so many words, the reasonable expectation thing, but that was a little disingenuous.

I could do this style without a scanner or a drawing tablet. It wouldn't be quite as time efficient as the triangles (though it's actually less time efficient to produce this style from scanned line art). It could be done with tablet line art or with the line or shape tools in MSPaint.

I said at LiveJournal that I am probably going to switch to this style at AKOTAS sometime in the next week, to try it out. If I never switch back, I said, you'll know what I decided; but if I switch back to triangles about a week afterwards, that might represent a permanent decision.

Then several people commented at LiveJournal that with triangle style it can be more difficult to remember who the characters are. With AKOTAS' large cast, that must be enough of an issue already. I'll begin the new style tomorrow and barring unforeseen difficulty I expect I'll keep it through the remainder of the AKOTAS run.


Due to temporary logistical difficulties, AKOTAS' update time until further notice may vary widely from the customary 02:00 or 04:00 GMT. A given individual update may come about the normal time, or it may come about 14:00 GMT, or it may come about 23:00 GMT the previous day.

That's just for Tuesday through Saturday. Sunday and Monday are up for grabs entirely.


Update time ought to settle back to normal now.

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