I put off naming Victoria’s fursona till the last possible moment. Naming things in general I take too long to do, but nailing it down is always hard. I didn’t want her to be full weaboo and go with Aki shimapima, or whatever, but also not go completely the other way and get all American cute on it. I fell between D&D name and valley girl. A suitable mishmash of things for a mish mash of a character. In a lot of ways the terrible things about fursuits is what makes them fun. Hodgepodge designs cobbled together from a million sources, attempting to be everything all at once. They are glorious in their terribleness.
Alex and her friends are, in my experience, an uncommon example of how fursonas start, but not unheard of. They are more avatars of their actual selves than beings created for the scene out of Zeal. That’s not common because for the most part furries hate themselves. The ones who are deep in at any rate. They are dissatisfied with reality in a way that many people are, but are uniquely equipped to try and do something about it.
As far as me goes, I’ve been aware of furries since the 90s. I don’t know when it became a lifestyle, or hobby, as such, but my awareness of the culture goes as far back at least as ’94. As with most things in life I took part only as an observer until much later. The creation of Alex was an outlet for things and ideas I couldn’t present in the comic, except the comic consumes everything. There is still rarely time for anything else, but I felt like the ideas forming around Alex and her friends were entertaining enough to merge into my world. So I dipped in a little deeper and made comic Alex the creator of furry Alex. It also gave me a place to go with John, who has been a blank slate for most of the comic. When you work with a cast as large as this people necessarily have to fade in and out. When you’re a group of people creating contend at a good clip that’s not to big a deal. When you’re one guy, working at single guy pace, it becomes an issue. Some characters can go for months without getting any screen time. Of course when you go back and read things all in a go that stuff isn’t noticeable. It’s only a problem in reality time. That said I don’t regret adding another handful of people to the cast. In a comic like this a large cast is a series of options that you can always go back to when one group gets tapped out.
Having other groups to play around with helps give the other stories time to come together. As I’ve said before, the original stories that I based the comic on had been cooking in my head for a decade before I ever used them for anything. In a lot of ways that’s the kind of time it takes to create a decent story when you work without an editor of any sort. Day to day it’s hard to step back and look over the entire work when you need that new page all the time. It’s something that not a lot of people can handle. The piles of dead webcomics are proof enough of that.
Back when I started there was a gaming comic that ran for a little while. I forget the name, but the character design had giant ears. Ears that put my ear sizes to shame. I’d like to know what happened to it, but as far as I know it’s not online in any form anymore. I thought it had good characters. Makes me wonder what happened to the artist, you know?