Phew, we have had a busy few weeks since the last blog post.
We know we promised you guys a blog post on EGE. Truthfully though, the event was such a disappointment this year compared to 2015 that we didn’t really know what to say about it. The traffic flow to our booth was really bad, and we ran at a loss. We were positioned right by some trash cans and the most exciting part of our day was watching people sort their recycling correctly (though most of them got it wrong). The crowd was kind of half-hearted too. All the other vendors we spoke to also reported that their sales were way down from last year, even the ones with good traffic flow. None of us could understand why this happened, because the event was twice as big this year, with even more people through the doors than last year, and it was after payday. With the jump in booth prices, we’re not sure if we’ll be doing it again next year. We might instead just focus our energies and finances on FanCon 2017, and make it a really great one!
The next event we will be attending is Open Book Comics Fest! We are much more involved with the fest this year than we were last year. We have been helping out with marketing and such, doing some art for ads as well as doing a really fun window mural for The Book Lounge, which organises Open Book Fest. We worked with Deon de Lange for our design, and Luis Tolosana and Mak1one did the window adjacent to ours. Mandy Watson from Brainwavez teamed up with Doane Smuts and documented the whole thing. The result was a really cool timelapse and some interviews on our process. You can view the article, videos and photos here! And yes, Ben was holding my butt to help me remain steady while standing on a narrow ledge, working with my arm above my head. Open Book Comics Fest will take place on the 10th and 11th of September at the District Six Homecoming Centre, adjacent to the Fugard Theatre in Cape Town. You can check out the programme for the rest of the fest here.
We also did a fun podcast interview with Wogan May (aka Tetsudra) from Anthroculture, a brand new furry community for South Africans. It was great to chat with him about our comic and he did a great job of editing the interview and made us sound cool people. You can check out the podcast here, and if you are a local fur, you can sign up for the Anthroculture forums here!
Lastly, after 8(!!) years of struggling with carpal tunnel syndrome, I’ve finally gotten a proper diagnosis to confirm it, and a very gross/painful cortisone injection into my carpal tunnel to try and fix it.
Carpal tunnel syndrome is what happens when the large nerve running through your carpal tunnel (called the median nerve, which runs through your wrist/carpal bones and controls your thumb, index finger, middle finger and half of your ring finger) becomes entrapped due to pressure within the carpal tunnel. This is usually due to inflammation from a repetitive strain injury, which in my case was caused/aggrevated by writing, drawing and using a PC mouse. This pressure causes weakness, numbness and pain in my fingers and wrist, and essentially ruined the extra fine motor control that used to be my pride and joy while drawing. It’s essentially ground my career to a halt because I can’t stick to deadlines and can’t promise consistent work because I have no idea if my hand will let me do those things. I have also been unable to work on Cottonstar as much as I needed to. I’ve tried physiotherapy, improving my working posture, getting an orthopaedic chair, exercises, and rest. I thought I’d give it an extra long rest over our wedding and honeymoon, and see what happens, but even after almost two months of doing minimal drawing, even just drawing for half an hour made it hurt and go numb again. I was so fed up that I decided to get over myself and just go see an orthopaedic surgeon. He confirmed that what I have is definitely carpal tunnel, explained the condition to me in more detail, and outlined the treatment plan.
This was the first of (potentially) three injections. Each one takes about a week to start working properly and the slow-release cortisone lasts for six weeks. If the problem persists after the first injection, we try twice more, and if that fails, surgery will be on the cards. I am hopeful that the injection will work. This is day two after the first injection. I could hardly move my hand yesterday. Today it’s much better, though any wrong moves, pressure or sudden position changes remind me loud and clear that my hand had been messed with! In any case. I hope to take part in Inktober this year without my hand completely caving in. Keep your fingers crossed (because I can’t right now, ha-ha)!
This turned out to be quite a long blog post. Thanks for reading it all! Here’s to you >–| (that’s a martini glass, lying on its side, because I’m not sure how to do an upright one)