And that's it! The end of Chapter 4. Come back on Thursday and I'll have Hrölf's Walter's File up. In it you'll find out just how he's still alive and kicking, and get a glimpse into his ultimate transformation into a washed-up superhero.
Now, if you'll indulge me for a few minutes, I haven't had a good rant in a while. And this could be the last one, so I'm going to make it count.
My friends, I have reached a crossroad. The road on the left leads to Chapter 5 of Super U., onto Chapter 6 and so on. The other road dead ends my ambition to create comics.
I've been struggling with this for a long time. I love drawing comics. But my life is in a strange place; a place where things have the potential to look very, very different in the near future, and I need to ask myself if it's worth it to pursue my aspirations of having a successful comic. I never expected, or even wanted, to get rich or famous from this. In fact, I'm positive that I would continue indefinitely if Super U. had even a small, loyal audience who never gave me a dime. I have managed to retain a few readers, and even pick up some new ones, and for that I am extremely grateful. But let's face it, despite my efforts this comic hasn't even gotten off the ground. It's lost in a sea of comics, many of them superior, and I don't appear to have what it takes to enable it to float to the surface.
I've grown up believing that being mildly intelligent and reasonably talented would take me places. Instead, I now find myself getting older, in financial straits and unqualified for absolutely everything. What's more, I find myself surrounded by a world I don't understand, where money alone makes it turn. Where art and storytelling come second to marketing. Where you will never make it as an artist unless you've mastered digital art, social networking and are adept at coding.
But most of all, I have a family that depends on me, and I can't continue to ask them to support this dream of mine. I know they would without question, and that means more to me than anything, but that doesn't make it fair. I need to take a hard look at myself and discover what it is I am capable of, so that I can give to them as equally as they do for me. I have been a burden on them for far too long.
In other words, it may be time to put away the pencils.
I have a strange opportunity arising. I'll reserve all the details, but it will likely involve farming. It will involve being as separated from the modern world as realistically as I can manage, and you know what? I think I want that.
I don't know if that life will have room for comics. Maybe there'll be an opportunity to keep pursuing this, not for the sake of success, but just for the love of it. Maybe the comic will take on a new form. Maybe it'll be drawn with a muddy stick on sheep skin; I don't really know. I can't pretend to have an answer to that yet. All I ask is that you check back, from time to time, and see if I posted anything new. Sign up to get e-mail updates. Maybe I'll surprise you. It's equally as plausible I'll only be able to deny my desire to make comics for so long.
In the meantime, I'll see this bit through to the end. I'll be compiling the next book (Chapters 3 and 4), if only so I can have a copy of it myself, and maybe I'll put together some new merch for good measure.
Thank you from the bottom of my heart for reading, and if after Thursday I don't communicate with you again, I wish you all the best that life has to bring. If I do communicate with you after Thursday, I still wish that.