Interlude 3, Page 1

Some comics! finally

Thank you for waiting for these pages to come up! If you don’t follow my Twitter or Patreon I explained it a little there… basically, I’ve been busy reaching out to and consulting with Nigerian women in regards to the upcoming storylines. I’ve kept some aspects of the plot sort of nebulous up until recently because that’s the way I write, but things have been coming together recently. That means… time to check my shit so I don’t do something culturally insesitive/ uninformed, or just inaccurate. And you know I do love me some riffing off of research… It’s a time consuming process overall but I think the effort will pay off.

Many thanks to the gals who have been helping me and who were okay with public credit, including Tomiwa Ade (I’ll be adding a permanent section for consultants on the comic soon). If you’d like to know more about the process of searching for and actively collecting info/ cultural references, I added a little writeup about my experiences on Patreon.

Other than that… just trying to make it through this year as I’m sure you all are doing too, haha. Interlude should be completed before 2017 so I’ll see you with the next page soon. As usual, you can sign up for easy email updates so you don’t have to put up with my periodically spotty bs XD

73 Comments

  • Rev

    As a writer as well, I have mad respect for people who go out of their way to research their shit. It’s actually one of my favorite things to do because it’s fun, and creating stories gives us all kinds of excuses to learn about new things all the time. :) It’s great seeing what kinds of things we have to look up.

    Anyway, knowing that you’ve taken the time to take such care with telling this side of the story, I’m excited to see where this goes!

    • shingworks

      Haha, me too! I am honestly stoked to get to talk to so many different people while researching this comic, it’s a lot of fun to learn things and apply that knowledge to the story… makes everything more believable and (I think) enjoyable for everyone.

    • Windwalker

      I can see where the research not only informs you of the theme/topic you want to write about, but, as you pick up more and more information, it helps to build the story, sometimes even change or add to parts you already had. Even add a concept to your story you never even considered before.

      I’m writing a book (okay…THINKING about writing a book) about a colony on Saturn’s moon of Titan, and the research I’ve done so far has given me so many ideas for the story that I’ll probably actually write it!

      YAY, Research!!!!

  • whatisthis

    oh god, it wants our souls

  • Karyl

    As per REV, I can’t agree more! Props to you on many levels and thanks to your consultants!

  • spottedspeck

    As with above, I totally think it’s awesome that you’re doing all of this research for the comic! (this also reminded me that i need to do research for my own webcomic XD)

    As for the organic mobile, the only logical conclusion I can come to is that the baby is expected to eat it at some point.

    • Darcy

      Baby eating the mobile? Now that’s what I call recycling!

    • Jeff

      “Organic” doesn’t just apply to food. Anything produced from a plant can be certified organic. Given the amount of pestisides typically used on cotton, I can understand the appeal (although I’m sure the price would make me go cross-eyed).

      • Ponyhome

        “Organic” just means “containing carbon.” Organic chemistry includes such yummy delights as benzene, formaldehyde, polystyrene and teflon.

        • hkmaly

          Also, most of world polyethylene, polypropylene and polyvinyl chloride, as well as others synthetic plastic polymers, are made from zooplankton and algae. Granted, fossilized ones, but still, totally organic.

  • foxorian

    I used to work at this store. I’m not shitting you.

    • shingworks

      lol… I’m also not kidding, I modeled it after a certain bean store for the express purpose of fucking with you in particular

      • foxorian

        biggest :| face ever loool
        THANKS, I GUESS? hhahah

        • shingworks

          XD XD I am really pleased that you noticed my troll

      • foxorian

        https://goo.gl/photos/iDBVtVkY3BtutX8i9

        The day I took Bunny to work and we pushed him around in a stroller.

        • shingworks

          Bunnyyyyyy :’]

  • hihi

    used to drought?

  • Ren-der

    Holy Cow!
    I just realized that Bex has a backstory too!

    • shingworks

      XD It took her a while to catch up to us readers, but it’s time to get to know her better.

    • Lost Yooper

      If you think of it, EVERYONE has a back story, but some of them are kind of lame so no one bothers telling them!

      • Asterai

        And some are awesome and tragic and badass, and we still never get to hear them.

  • I think that interlude is gonna be painful, as well.

  • Wood

    “ahem, excuse me, but if it’s a spider, how come it’s got TEN legs?”

    • YEAH SERIOUSLY

    • Zinc

      It OBVIOUSLY has eight legs and two arms. Can’t you see the fingers? ;)

      • Ordinal Chaos

        Now I’m imagining a tarantula with big human body builder arms on it.

      • Edmund

        Hand mandibles!

        HANDIBLES!!

        • Befup

          HANDIMANS!

    • AGV

      Pedipalps, yo!
      Actually it’s too accurate for a toy

      • PositronicGirl

        Definitely pedipalps. I don’t know of any spiders with two eyes, though.

        • Jazhara7

          Most species of Caponiidae only have two eyes . They’re also commonly known as “Two-Eyed Spiders”.

          And yeah, I was also going to say, Pedipalps!

          Woo, something stuck after all. XD

          • PositronicGirl

            TIL, thanks! You can probably guess from my name I’m not as well-versed in the squishy sciences.

    • shingworks

      10 legs, 2 eyes and gloves!! it’s A Mess

  • I spy with my little eye, a baby bump…
    The difference between these last two pages is so stark, it’s unnerving. Can’t wait to see where this goes.

    Also, no empty black page before the interlude?

    • shingworks

      Yeah, the black bumper page didn’t feel right this time… Idk, I might still change it.

      • Asterai

        What about a pale yellow bumper page? Emphasizes the transition but makes it clear we’re going somewhere else entirely.

  • AGV

    So gald that you take so much effort on making your comic so reliable, that’s one of the reasons why I love it (it would be funny if during hiatus you put a label saying “temorarily closed for research”)

    Also, that Itsy-Bitsy spider is too suspiciously accurate…

    • AGV

      Dangit, I forgot to mention, are these floating musical notes holograms or onomatopoeias?

  • May

    Bex! <3

    Huh. I know that nursery rhyme as "Incy Wincy Spider". Is Itsy Bitsy/Incy Wincy a US/UK difference or something? Or does it just randomly vary?

    • Obani

      I believe it is a US/UK thing

    • The Wing

      In Australia, it’s ‘Incy Wincy’ as well. :)

  • Madison

    I’ve got to know, what’s in Bex’s ears here? My first thought was a (future!) music player but it seems like it could be like a (future!) Bluetooth phone or hearing aids?

    • shingworks

      Same as this thingy in the pool panel, just a different style. It’s a AR/ google glass type thing which isn’t worn on Mars in the comic cuz it’s not really necessary.

  • Luna

    Oooo cool! It’s a Bexterlude! I hadn’t expected to see interludes featuring anyone else besides Mike. :D

  • Ponyhome

    Nobody better than Anansi for watching over your kids.

  • Leon

    I hate when I’m just casually browsing a store and the sales person ambushes me like this. O_o

    • Fawnet

      Yeah, Bex is averting her eyes and thinking “I was actually thinking about how boring it looks, but I’ll be nice.”

  • SO GLAD YOU’RE BACK YAY!

  • MikeLinPA

    OH GOD! HELP HER! THAT PINK CREATURE IS CRAWLING INTO HER EAR!!! Oh, it’s a Bluetooth, nevermind…

    • TorgueRND

      Introducing Earfriend, the most important character in MI.

      • Darcy

        Earfriend the Earworm!

  • ShayButter

    Just to let you know, it says 2015 on the bottom header of the page. :x Don’t know if that’s supposed to be so.

    On a side note, love your work. :D

    • shingworks

      i am the worst~~~ (also so impressed that you guys never miss anything)

  • Carolyn

    Oh man, I’m 8-month preggers and I’ve had almost this exact scenario happen to me several times when out browsing baby gear. Complete with Bex’s “Dafuq is this? Imma poke it.” expression in that second panel.

  • Retterhardt

    Bex, the entomologist: “That spider is anatomically correct in a total of…zero ways.”

  • Rebekah

    This page came out on my birthday! :D I really love Bex. I pretty much immediately fall in love with any character who spells “Rebekah” the same way I do. She’s really pretty and I really hope that she’ll be sorry for killing Kallakore… -_-

  • MikeLinPA

    Shingworks, you draw really cute faces. Do you know that?

  • Hmm…so you buy an organic mobile, and over time, as the baby grows up, it–decays? Or just falls apart?

    ;-)

    • shingworks

      It’s just made of organic ingredients so the taller or airborne baby can safely chew on it XD

  • Ben

    All we really know about Bex is that she has at least two sons, aged about eight and ten, who are stated to be still alive (she uses present tense in her description of the photos/videos, for example).

    She is, or was in a relationship with a man, who may or may not be their father, but acts in a paternal manner. I notice here, that she doesn’t wear a wedding ring, but appears to be pregnant.

    For no reason yet explained, it appears that she has abandoned them to come to Mars as a permanent colonist, but has conflicted feelings (at least when Mike called her out on this).

    She has shown lethal violence towards Kallakore, who managed to establish communication and a relationship of some sort with someone as withdrawn and “difficult” as Mike.

    Right now I’m waiting for a reveal of some sort, because there are just too many things that don’t add up but may be important

    • shingworks

      aHHH shit I forgot her ring, thanks for noticing that. And you’re spot on about the rest.

  • LadyBeCreative

    Der-Shing, I just want you to know that I discovered your gem of a webcomic on 12/22 at 11:50pm (via DeviantArt), started from the very beginning, devoured your delicious artistry and complex storyline (thus feeding my starving bookworm who has been sadly neglected for the past few years), and literally finished this latest page at 3:10am on 12/23. You’re. Flippin’. A-MAZE-BALLS!!!
    Happily awaiting the next installment!
    P.S: Your amazing talent is inspiring to this student graphic designer! Keep being awesome!
    Extra P.S: Apologies for any spelling/grammatical errors….it is after 3am after all :P

    • ProphetZarquon

      I just did a similar thing.

  • Reikenbach

    So far, I don’t believe anything we know about Bex really paints her, culturally-speaking, as Nigerian rather than American-leaning Western. No apparent accent, no unfamiliar references or phrases, seemingly no distinctive outlook, preferences or practices harkening back to a different societal norm. It’s possible that this theoretical future takes place in a Nigeria uplifted to a first- or second-world country, I suppose, but the significant cultural shift that would entail likely makes the need for accurate real-world research a bit less important – elements would still be present, certainly, but seen through a very different lens.

    Interested to see how this ties into the character we know now and the greater plot.

    • shingworks

      Well, we haven’t gotten to know Bex very well yet, but there are a few things here and there… I just don’t want to shoehorn shit in unnecessarily to “prove” her background to the reader. I also find phonetically written accents super embarrassing to read and write but you can go ahead and pretend her voice has one if you want, since it does.

      • Reikenbach

        I’ll agree on transcribed accents typically being unpleasant, though people with dialectic differences can often use subtler syntactic abnormalities in their language and grammar that denote them as an outsider. The easier yet somewhat hamfisted approach is often to have another character make a comment along the lines of “That accent…Colombian?” or similar, which wouldn’t really be appropriate under these circumstances.

        • shingworks

          Yeah, keep in mind we’re on an international base, with scientists who likely often attend conferences and such that feature peers from all over the world. I think it would be pretty odd to point it out (also, Bex wears her country of origin flag on her arm, haha).

    • lily

      well, she called Mike “Uncle” which is a Nigerian thing to do!

    • Little Brit

      While obviously a character’s ethnic/cultural background holds a varying level of importance, Bex’s personality, character morals, traits and interactions all have a much stronger indication of her as a person than knowing what accent she has – at least to me. We’ve only really seen her in a work environment, in which people have a common interest and often a uniform. She’s been talking about her job and what she hopes to achieve (and trying not to die), as she should be. It would seem a little weird/ham-fisted for her to turn up in traditional Nigerian garb and yelling about her ethnic origin when she’s just another person trying to get the job done!

      • shingworks

        Yeah, nobody is really questioning Mike being from the US despite him not being cloaked in bald eagles and eating apple pie while reciting the preamble or something lol.

        • TinHeart

          Goddammit, now I really wanna draw this. But I am a lazy bastard, and so it will never be so.

  • Little Brit

    I have to say, her slight diastema is downright adorkable! That awkward grin in the last panel is so sweet!

  • Minutiae

    Aw I’m so excited for you to break my heart again <3

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