I need more time
There's no easy way to say this, but we'll have to extend the hiatus into September. It turns out that I needed a bigger and more complete break from thinking about Erfworld things than I realized. Writing backer stories or doing anything else Erfworld related was not really possible for me during the downtime. Recently, I've been loading it all back into my brain. We are on track for getting rolling again, just not today.
This is my problem and mine alone. Things are okay otherwise. Linda and I got married in Finland, at Suomenlinna, a pseudo-magical historical island fortress site that was breathtaking. We had most of the team and some wonderful and kind fans of Erfworld come to witness and celebrate with us. Also, do not worry about the art. Lillian is working out just great. There are no serious creative, health, technical, or team problems going on. This is just sort of an "author's headspace" problem, and I'm vectoring out of it now.
I am a little bit worried about Xin, who is as safe and sound as one can be right now in Houston, Texas right now. She's online and able to work, but everyone in southeast Texas was disrupted to one degree or another by Harvey. I also have some family in that area who were hit harder, and they're on my mind as well.
But it's not about the hurricane. I am just not ready to return to regular updates yet. That's not to say we don't have stuff ready to post, but it would be a mistake right now to start again. I'll let everyone know when it's time.
I really appreciate your collective patience and understanding during the last two months. Pledges even grew during that span. We're actually bumping up against Milestone 4 and Free Cards Day now, which is good for everybody's morale and my own. Thanks very much to everyone who has pledged during the down time, and everybody who has stuck with us.
We will be back as soon as we can.
Geeeez people, just stop complaining, we're paying only for updates, it's up to Rob if he want's to get this money and I guess if he believes they need more time to deliver a better story he is still the best person to know it and I'm fully positive with his decision.
In the meantime YOU ALL GO read the whole story back from the beginning again to fully appreciate it!
And then do it AGAIN
Logged back in for the first time in forever and see that my last post was something along the lines of "dont get your hopes up for next month". I think anyone expecting anything other than more of the same vague wording and assurances will be disappointed next week. Even if we do get an update on the return specifically I imagine another couple weeks before it ramps back up to 2x per week (assuming they dont cut it down to one per plus the odd backer story/whatever whenever they get around to it).
My biggest concern which was for a while, was that there's so many threads running in it and even w/ 2 per week it was bogging down, dropping to something less than that (which seems to be the most likely trend to me) is going to stall it even further unless some things get dropped.
I recommended to Rob at the beginning of this hiatus that upon his return, he recruit one of the many fine writers we have on this site to the staff and use them to add a third (or maybe fourth) update per week. Even if it is a background story (like the ones we got in the interim between books), but a canon story. That person could be graduated, once it was made apparent they could be trusted, to writing the first drafts of the text updates, which obviously take a lot more writing time than the scripts would. Rob could then give notes for subsequent drafts (or just insert his own writing flair). Rob's workload would go down significantly if he went from having to write a script and write a text update per week to writing a script, and providing a rough outline and edits to a text update. Once the new writer got accustomed, he would need even less oversight.
Heck, the new writer might even be able to work the backlog of backer stories and other things, letting Rob actually have a life outside of Erfworld.
I hope he considers this, and actually does it. I definitely don't want erfworld to implode, but with 2 days left in Semptember and no status update, I'm afraid we might be near there.
@Raziel: How about Girl Genius then? Which has updated 3x per week all but without interruption for years upon years, with a 3-person team. Granted, that's the gold standard, like trying to tell a radom high school track athlete to shoot for Usain Bolt's numbers, but still... It proves it's possible. Just not while creating all this other stuff that isn't comic pages to shill to Tools. The name might be a little on the nose at this point.
The people who are bitching because they aren't getting their story as fast as they want it are killing me. Its ready when its ready and that's when its good. You're not being required to pay anything for this. If you think that "this can be done" then go ahead and try it. If its as good as Erfworld I'll even give you the same 50 cents an update I pledge here.
That said I think it would be wise for them to go ahead and take 5 minutes to post an updated timeline. This is starting to be like a delayed flight at an airport. I'm starting to fear the reason for the lack of info is the same as the airline attendants, because they know we arent going to like the answer.
@orobouros: True, they do update very regularly - at midnight, most of the time, too. I believe the page has about the same amount of content as an Erfworld comic page, too - but still nothing close to an average Erfworld text update. This is subjective, of course! ^ ^
Oh! But since there was talk of how writing can be improved, and shouldn't be *that* hard - and also other comics, this came to mind:
@greyknight: I swear I've seen it mentioned on the forums some time ago, already...