Well… Zombie Roomie is back from my two week hiatus. I wanted to keep folks aware of some of the changes/goings-on/etc. that effect Zombie Roomie…. Here they are in no real order and it gets kind of rambly in places:

Guest strips:

During the time I took off, I ran guest strips from two awesome individuals, Carter Reid (The Zombie Nation) and SeirX. Those guest strips have been taken out of the archive. That’s not representative of anything regarding quality or whether or not they’re to be considered ‘canon’ or what have you… it’s just a personal preference that when I go through a comic’s archives I don’t like the jarring dissimilarities between the regular artist and the guest strips.

I have decided that after any hiatus that has guest strips, said guest strips will then be moved from the archive and placed with the other guest strips on the Extras page. It adds something special to that page, frees up the comics from the archive, and allows for relative ease of viewing of all the guest strips without going through the entire archive.

Panel size:

It’s subtle, but, I’ve increased the size of each panel in the normal sized template. They’re a little wider than they used to be. I wanted a little more room to have the characters and their speech balloons breathe.

Other than changing the font back in the beginning of January, this is the biggest change I’ve done to things that show up in every strip since I’ve been doing Zombie Roomie.

Upcoming site redesign:

We’re on the second site design for Zombie Roomie. I’ve had this design active since the beginning of the year and while I like it…. I’ve started to think about things I want to change and have been planning a complete redesign.

I don’t know exactly when it will happen. I haven’t even started doing any of the actual work on it yet. It’s just something that is on my radar.

If there’s something that you, the readers, want me to include or remove from the redesign let me know.

I do think that I’m going to reduce the number of ads on the site. On the front page there are seven ad box areas now, and I’d like to trim that number down some… some, but, not zero. The way I see ads on this site is that they’re producing next year’s ad budget for Zombie Roomie. I haven’t advertised the comic using paid advertising and do not plan to until the comic is a year in the can. So, the money that the ads generate are paying for the ads I’ll place on other sites in the next year. Which should bring more people to the comic which should in turn bring more money from the ads they see to fund the following year’s ad budget.

I know I want to have it done by October 26th, the one-year anniversary of Zombie Roomie, but, in all likelihood it’ll be active long before then.

Creative team:

I spent several days thinking over what I wanted to do with the characters, stories, and overall feel of Zombie Roomie during the break. During that time I decided that I want to make sure the characters, especially John and George feel like they should to me. That means I’m going to start writing the comic again rather than just putting my two cents in on a script or having the outline of a script and having someone else write it from there. Bill had been doing most of the writing since the beginning of February and various strips before then… but, Zombie Roomie wasn’t his brainchild and he was just working in the world I setup…. During the time he was the primary writer for the comic there were some hilarious comics produced if I do say so myself and there are still quite a number of scripts that he turned in for the remainder of the world tour/soul searching story that are pretty damned funny…. but, I want to take more control of guiding the comic that I created.

In this end, I’m going to use some of the scripts that were turned in by Bill and edit them where I feel it is needed to take Zombie Roomie where I want it to be. Some of the scripts that were turned in will be shelved and I might see if they’re reworkable or whether or not they just have to stay on the shelf. And… I’m going to start adding in comics that where written by me again into the current storyline, starting with today’s “Unholy Ground” strip.

Hopefully Bill will be okay with this and perhaps even contribute occasional scripts or jokes again after the scripts that he turned in run out sometime in the future. The character Bill wont have anything horrible happen to him or anything. He’ll show up if he’s needed, but, he’s not being written out of the comic.

Zombie Roomie is something I’ve been working on for almost a year now and putting comics up since the end of October. It is a project that consumes much of my time. I want to be in control of it and do things that make me giddy for you, the readers, to see on update days.

Removal of the forum:

Realistically the forum was a ghost town.

I knew it would be, but, it was useful for collaboration between Bill and myself. Without having Bill write most of the scripts anymore, even that hidden area of the forum would soon have tumbleweeds blowing through.

If people care to post information about a comic or blog post on the site, the comments section is always there.

Moving forward:

I’m going to continue with the soul searching storyline and let it play out; it has months left to go.

After the world tour ends I’m not going to have another major storyline for a while at least none that last more than two weeks or so. There will be some new characters added into Zombie Roomie, but, the guys will be back in the apartment and dealing with day-to-day life/unlife again for a bit. This world tour storyline will have been the biggest sidestory that has occurred in the comic and it will hold that title for a long while. It wouldn’t be as long in real life if I did more than a MWF comic, but, since we only see John and George three times a week it stretches out the length of time that this storyline takes.

By the time the world tour/soul searching story ends I’m going to want to get back to the supporting cast something fierce. Characters like Jack the Wolfman, Francis N. Stein, Vlad the Vampire, Glenda the Witch, Jamal the Creature from the Black Lagoon, and others will start showing up after things have settled down for John and George. I’m also working on a few additional members of the supporting cast, both supernatural and normal folks.