1470 Fur Trader.

These 3 probably don’t realize it, but Ed and Mike would probably hang out even without them asking. Jo might be aware they are friendly, but Jess is a little too self obsessed and Reggie would have a hard time accepting that anyone would want to hang out with Mike, just because he still feels Mike is incompetent… Although he’s certainly softened his opinion since the beginning.

Everything from this point on is a really angry rant and NO ONE should read it. If it makes you angry it’s on you for continuing. I gave you the spoiler warning.

I Try to have the current week’s comics finished before the week starts. At one point I was two weeks ahead, ages ago, before the hospital stays. I find that if I can keep about a week ahead of things I am more emotionally stable and don’t kill myself with worry as much as if I’m running day to day. The two week buffer was like some kind of fever dream, looking back on it. I had time to try things and fail while still delivering something I was more happy with. It’s Tuesday and I still haven’t finished Friday’s page. This is the most behind I’ve been since getting out of the hospital. Things just keep fucking me over. I still don’t know how I will feel from moment to moment. I can sit down to work feeling perfectly normal, then suddenly I’m dizzy, nauseous, or any number of random things that makes work nigh impossible. Last night I finally got a moment to work and fell asleep on the floor until 5 in the morning. Of course sleeping on the floor made me feel shitty, so I got into bed and slept till 4 in the afternoon. 14 hours. 14 hours and when I woke up I felt like I could just keep sleeping. No headache from sleeping too much, nothing. I wanted to keep lying there. If I didn’t have to make dinner and feed the dogs I would have. In all honesty, I don’t know if I’ll finish that page tonight either. I’m so stressed and angry all the time that I just want to scream and break things. Every time anyone mentions goddamn, motherfucking, Xmas I get so mad I have to tell them I don’t want to talk about it for fear on lashing out when it’s not really their fault. The teen loves Xmas and will not shut her fucking pie hole about it. In spite of the fact that she KNOWS how angry it all makes me she insists on telling me how many days till it’s here, pestering me to buy presents, and every other things that goes along with it. The other day they bought me “Grinch pills” because my rage is spilling out into the open pretty easily now. It took all my willpower not to flip my shit.
The only thing xmas stuff does to me now is remind me of every fucking year I spent in retail dealing with people shopping for it. Entitled, rude, shitty people every day, constant carols. I aqctually regret using the name Carol for a character EVERY YEAR, but I just had to keep my fucking name theme going.

I only like Xmas from the actual moment my family is together for it. Even then it’s a mix of loving them and wishing they would keep their opinions to themselves… There’s a limit to the number of times I can hear about the good ideas Donald Trump has and we passed it well before Thanksgiving. You know, Hitler wasn’t such a bad guy, except for killing those Jews. He liked dogs and children. FUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUCK.


I’ve gotten over my Christmas hatred in the past 5 years. I think it’s because my family finally decided, ” no presents except the kids”. The stress just went away. I’ve even been brainwashed into not wanting
to rip my ears off

Dude if you need to take a hiatus. no one will fault you. You need time to get your head together and thats fine. Id say if you can finish fridays page and then dont come back until after new years. Youve worked hard and had alot of shit happen. you deserve the break. Also if you cant finish Friday’s in time so be it. Take care of yourself first and foremost.

Sure. Make a “end of the year” pause. You deserve it and what’s more you NEED it.

Totally agree.

If it means you can relax, refocus and maybe even feel better I’m all for the comic taking a year-end break.

Working retail I have very little Christmas spirit left and with mom and dad both gone what little the holidays meant is mostly gone as well. I still have my aunt and cousins, but they have their own lives and kids and such so it’s hard to feel included-that plus I really don’t have the patience for some of the extended family members so there’s a bit of self-preservation in there mixed in.

But sure; take the rest of the month off. If you feel like one or two strips over the next few weeks toss ’em out, otherwise take a break and come back fresh first of the year.

Unless their a complete and total ass I don’t think anyone will pitch a fit either.

Agree completely, even webcomic artists need to take vacations now and then, and the Christmas season is the most common period for when they take some time off.

Hiatus only helps if the time is used to build a decent sized buffer. most of the comics that update regularly without driving the artist insane have AT LEAST a month of buffer and usually more than that, a couple have upwards of six months because life just keeps happening.

then you can take breaks as you need them, ride out the slumps, and bang out comics to refill the buffer when you’re feeling artistic.

Your in good company for retailers that hate Christmas music. There is only so much you can listen to. I never experienced rude customers or the shifts I worked had less due to the late times.

If you require that much sleep I wonder if you have enough light in your room. Some people, can be affected by the season change. It might be worth picking up a sun lamp. It can help.

I hate to hear that your suffering for your comic. Many of us will be here if you take a holiday. Build your buffer back up and experiment. You should enjoy your art not be angry at it. The world you have created is one of the best.

You don’t seem like the type of person to take a hiatus, but I personally would be happy if taking some time off helped you in any way. For most of the webcomics I read, authors take off time or deliver late comics whenever it suits them. Sometimes for issues that are serious even on the surface, sometimes for ones that I can’t understand as just a reader. The stuff you have going on definitely falls into the first category and still you’re extremely diligent about getting your comic out on time and in the best quality you can. Please take care of yourself, if for no other reason than so you can keep giving us this excellent comic. Don’t turn into Oda who has to take a break every other week these days because he pushes himself so hard.


Seriously though, us long-time readers (and patrons) are familiar with your struggle to not strangle Father Christmas until he turns blue, and then take a shovel to his face to finish him off. Just keep in mind that we support you, and will continue to do so, even if you take a break. Especially if you take a break to get healthy/centered. You’ve delivered quality content three days a week since forever, barring medical emergencies. Everybody gets some time off from work for rest and relaxation: it’s called vacation time, and you’ve more than earned it.

Since it is Christmas, the most dreaded time of the year after tax season, you might want to post your wishlist from Amazon again. People who can’t support you on a monthly basis on Patreon, but still want to contribute, could buy stuff for you.

I not a particularly vocal reader but i just wanted to say that if you need time take it. i can list one one hand out of the hundreds of comics i read of people who didn’t take a break. and those haven’t been going on for more then a few months. all im saying is if you need a week or more take it. its better then you running yourself into the ground.

Cough cough Schlock Mercenary Cough cough…
but the ability to update regularly and stay sane doing so is all about the buffer and one to two weeks just doesn’t cut it.

a break to refresh might be nice but coming back to all the same problems afterwards isn’t going to accomplish anything in the long run.
the smart thing to do would be to take the hiatus time and use it to buckle down and build a decent buffer of at least a couple months. that way as long as the buffer gets refilled regularly breaks can be taken as needed without impacting the update schedule.

Me, I shant be advicing you to take a hiatus. If you feel you need one, take one, of course, but it seems to me that you’d be better off doing what you love, instead of making free time only to have it infected by christmas.

So my advice is: Do fun stuff (and feed the dogs). And also, tell anyone who speaks about christmas presents that you’ve decided to give everyone on your list a subscription to ‘Knitting World’ or some other thing you find ridiculously inapproriate but inoffensive as a christmas gift. (In case a subscription to ‘Knitting World’ doesn’t fit that bill around the people you socialize with)

PS: I have no idea if there is a publication called ‘Knitting World’.

It is the time of the internet so – Yes – Yes there is. It was the first hit on Alphabet-Incorporation’s search engine.

Maybe looking at free subscriptions to all those you feel obligated to give something too would be a fun exercise – or delegate it to the teen if your batteries have run that low.

On the Hiatus front – go ahead and take one and just build up the buffer as you will and if you feel any pangs of guilt on not posting then let us give you stuff to post. Maybe greeting cards from or to our favorite characters.

Jackie, I can’t speak for everyone obviously, and I am certainly not responding to this as though I read stuffs that I shouldn’t (or did :P) but at the very least I have noted, and also myself feel…you’re a great guy. Seriously. You’re a likeable person and you have this amazing talent for art and story telling. If you need a vacation or break….take one. honestly, I think you know a good portion of us are into manga and stuff as well and we live through hiatuses (some that go on for years, looking at you lair game and HxH) so…yeah. We support you and as for the bullcrap that is this time of year, I’m right there with you. So you do whats right by you, the fact you interact and are so easy to access and talk to, I don’t really feel like just a fan, but more like…umm…whats more than a stranger but not quite a friend but still better than acquaintance? Doesn’t matter I guess. At anyrate, I for one appreciate all you do, and when you need some space and time, I can totally just re-read the archives and wait for you to be ready again, cus honestly, this isn’t just a story I like, but you, Jackie/Crave/et al are all very much as part of this world and story you created as any of its characters and plot.

least I have noted,others and also myself feel* (hate when you leave out an entire word and can’t edit :P)

Yes, definitely! Please go ahead and take some time off to rest and recharge!! We want you to be well, and we’ll still be here when you return.

I’m just grateful that the store I work at only has the occasional carol (the jazzy sort are semi-tolerable, but the sultry ones are fucking CREEPY), mixed in with, now that I think about it, quite an eclectic mix (ranging from rock, punk and grunge, to country, to pop/dance/whatever the fuck the cool/dumbass kids listen to these days). It has not driven me to murderous insanity as yet.

Customers… yep. Probably only 10-20% (on a good day) of actual customers I see are seemingly pleasant people. The rest of ’em, I hope a meteorite impacts your vehicle DIRECTLY upon the product you just bought. Since of course orbital bombardment is not covered under warranty and no actual fault can be attributed to our store as compared to your own fucking stupidity, which is why consumer laws have expanded in recent years…

The only pleasant thing about Christmas is the day itself, when my mum’s family gets together (dad… does not really associate with his family much). The only annoyance for me is “When are you getting married?”, “Do you have a girlfriend?” and other nonsense.

Oh dear, please please please be more gentle with you. Its the holidays and stress is way up on everyone, if its not presents, its food, or travel or webcomic buffers that have disappeared. As others have said, we will still be here next year loving your work, and waiting anxiously for what happens next. Take a break, if you can…


I would like to express my agreement with everything this poster has said…..except the huggles! part. Sorry dude, but just not goin’ there. Now if Carol was available…..
Seriously man, take care of yourself,and take whatever time you need. We’ll be back -next week, next month, next year.

hmmm wow…… you’ve felt bad every moment ive over eaten to the point I feel bad and slept every moment ive slept as far as I can tell, that’s slightly creepy. also ya Donald trumps a complete twit. Hope you start feeling better soon.

Stonecutting is hard work anyway, and that’s especially true when you’re engraving. One of my friends used to do it with a hammer and chisel (so that’s where she got those guns!) but she switched to a rotary router-type machine a few years ago. I still like to visit while she works, but talk is out (noisy!) and I have to wear a filter mask in addition to the face shield.

As far as the strip is concerned, perhaps another week of guest strips would buy you some catch-up time. Even if you take a week or two off completely, I don’t think you’d lose readership. Just put up a strip of Nina in a bikini, holding a sign saying “We’ll be back in a few days/weeks.”

Bah, humbug. I hate the holidaze, too. Both my parents are gone, my sister and her husband are busy getting my niece licensed and off to UConn, and I haven’t even seen my oldest brother is three or four years. But the retailers are ruining it for everybody. I know they start the advertising earlier and earlier, but could you at least wait for Halloween, guys? This year it started with Best Buy. They started beating me over the head with Xmas commercials in freakin’ September! WTF? Are they that greedy? I’m blowing off the Company events this year (a luncheon tomorrow and the Big Party next Thursday). I’m just not feeling it. Except for the irritation.

And next time Donald Trump is out of the country, we should refuse him reentry on suspicion that he’s a Moslem.

I think next time Donald Trump tries to re-enter the USA, the ASPCA should stop him, for their suspecting that he might be a human being. ;D

You know, ASPCA, the pets people.
Just a little snarky humor, yanno.

I used to have a buffer too, but I’m dependent on someone else for my scripts, and he’s not really grokked how important a buffer can be to a comic artist, psychologically. So I am, right now, looking at the strip which will go up on Sunday, it’s penciled, & some of the backgrounds are in. No inking and no coloring has been done. The framing is in place, I see some reformatting I will need to do, & I realize that the second panel will have to be redrawn. I’d love to have a good week’s worth of buffer for this.

I had, at one time, a full month’s (or more) buffer, but then my brother came down with Cancer. That was seven years ago & I haven’t caught up yet.

I have said it before the more and more jess opens her mouth the less and less i like her, and reggie well i have never lioked reggie his attitude reminds me of too many bullies that picked on me when i was growing up

Jackie, you are an amazing artist, storyteller, and individual. This is the only comic I have ever liked enough to put my money behind. I would very easily keep paying even if you took a break. I’m not in a position to tell you what to do, and I won’t. That being said, everyone has their limits. Hitting the limits you are getting to is NOT a failure. Hell, to me, it’s very much an unprecedented success that you have kept going with all of this with all of the other stuff you’ve gone through.
As others have said, you’re more than just an artist to us. You make us feel like more than just your fans, more than acquaintances. You take the time to go through the comics and respond when you feel it’s appropriate, and we know you read what we say even when you don’t respond. That means a lot. You care about us as much as we care about you, and that means we want you to stick around for as long as possible. We’ll stay right here with you.

Your webcomic is one of the most consistent I’ve read, alongside with Unsounded. Don’t beat yourself, and take your time to increase your buffer, indulge in leisures at your convenience, concentrate in what matters in your life, etc. You’re a great person, and that transpires in how you make your characters so believable and special, and rightfully so, you’ve got this loyal community of readers here supporting you. Take this month for a spin. Relax. We’ll be here.

(Jess, oh you… May you be in for a surprise, I really hope so!)

Bless you for tolerating that child. I certainly couldn’t. Sounds like she needs a good long talk on considerations for the feelings of others.

Alternatively, move to Alaska. It seems nice.

I can comisserate, Jackie.

I remember one hideous year, maybe 2011, when nearly ALL of my state’s radio stations played holiday songs [all Xmas-season long]! It can be really easy to over-do the winter holiday(s) hype. Ugh.

I used to love Christmas music. Loved it. Played it constantly from Thanksgiving on. I only worked two holidays seasons in retail, a decade ago, and my affection for Christmas music has just started to return. In the last couple of years I’ve been able to enjoy the occasional holiday classic without feeling my blood pressure rise. That was definitely an unexpected cost of the job.

I second the other posters that you should consider a breather. Your reliability in posting has definitely been instrumental in building your core readership, and I admire your commitment to that regularity. But I also think you’ve reached a point where you could take one week off, announced ahead of time with the date of the next comic clearly posted, without significant risk.

Aye, your dedication to posting consistently, reliably and often has been pretty incredible. Alongside the other webcomics in this humble one’s rotation, it’s safe to say that this consistency of yours is a luxury that most readers can come very easily NOT to expect, and certainly not something most would fault you at all for breaking from momentarily.

You’re doing great work. Keeping yourself (relatively) sane and healthy is probably a factor here. Take whatever time you need, guy, and thanks for everything so far.

Again, a really interesting way to dtaw noses. It looks really good and I don’t think i’ve ever seen anyone draw noses quite like you have in panels 1-4.

I totally understand about retail ruining the holiday season. I was a cart pusher at All-Fart for 2 years. And trying to clear a snowy lot by yourself during the busiest time of year sucks ass. Especially when your new shitlord supervisor who got hired to that position right out of business college is breathing down your neck about it.

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