Turtle Club Newsletter 10: A Year of The Turtle
The Newsletter was never meant to be a super formal thing. So when I decided I had to pull back on stuff earlier this year to figure out how to balance life with a kid, this was the first thing to get chopped. Welcome to the first newsletter since August! Wow!!!
I wanted to take some time to reflect on the last year a bit more holistically, on the Urbane Turtle first year, look ahead a bit and share some words of thanks. So, let’s get started.
Random Comic Panel of the Week (from several weeks ago)
The Year in Review
2021 was, despite, well, all of this *gestures broadly at the entire world*, one of the most personally fulfilling and enriching of my life. As I look back on the year, it has been easier to measure my accomplishments and general self worth outside of my full time job status, which has long been something I struggle with. First, and most importantly, there was the birth of my son and the new focus on family that comes with it. Being a dad is an exhausting and exciting and fulfilling thing.
But this year also saw some real progress and growth as a professional writer. Committing to the website and paying for the hosting was always a challenge to myself to create and focus on my writing. That challenge has led to a renewed commitment to writing and a reminder of both how much I love it and, to be immodest, how good I am at it. Writing about comics has deepened my appreciation for the medium that I had quite frankly fallen away from a bit the last couple years.
Putting together this body of work on the site has led to new professional opportunities, and I can say that I have been paid to write about comics! It isn’t much, but it is affirming that I am on the right path to something more creatively and professionally fulfilling.
It’s been an honor to be published in PanelxPanel, a terrific magazine, not once but twice. The lesson I am taking away from the progress I made this year is the importance of taking a chance on my self. So I look forward to where I’ll be in 2022, with more focus on writing and more commitment to being out there and visible
But beyond getting a few dollars here and there for writing, just sharing my words on urbaneturtle.com and here in the newsletter has been worthwhile and something I feel very proud of. I don’t have much of an audience, but a few readers here and there, and I appreciate that anyone takes the time to read any given article. So thanks for being on this journey with me.
The Year to Come
So, the site has been on hiatus since summer. The whole taking care of a new human life thing left little time for regularly writing or the other time commitments related to it like the research and reading. On top of that was a level of work and stress from the day job that has been fairly unprecedented in my six years there, and completely exhausting.
I've managed to get a couple things out the last few weeks. Looking ahead, I am not sure when I will be able to get back on a regular schedule, but I am putting together ideas so I can plan ahead and maintain some regularity.
One thing I am realizing is the kind of writing I want to do and share requires a lot of reading to do justice, so my dreams of a weekly content churn is not likely to come to fruition, barring some kind of ongoing series or column that I cannot think of right now (but I am noodling on! I'd love to get something small done with that regularity.)But work is in progress and I think at some point I should be able to manage something monthly. So if you miss seeing my posts regularly, well, I'm optimistic. I would also like to some time here in the newsletter for more quick and silly commentary.
As always, if you are reading, I am open to your suggestions for what you would be interested in reading.
WHY DO COMICS HATE ME?!
Now for the return of everyone’s favorite segment!
Looking through some recent solicitations (a thing I rarely do anymore) in prep for writing this week’s newsletter I was struck by how much of DC Comics’ upcoming slate looks so darn good. I want to buy almost every issue! So that’s what I have to complain about. The comics are too good and I want to buy all of them! The Josh Williamson era has begun, and I want to purchase it all.
We’ve got an upcoming Shadow War, a big Wonder Woman event, plus Nightwing and an Earth-3 crossover event that looks like goofy fun
Marvel on the other hand seems to be going out of their way to make things I have no interest in, barring the current The Thing miniseries and The Eternals. Which I somehow completely forgot to place in my Year in Review post but definitely warrants at least an honorable mention! Shame on me. Go read the Kieron Gillen/Esad Ribic Eternals book. It is great, and this comes from an Eternals skeptic and someone unfamiliar with even the original Kirby book until last week.
If you're still reading, know that your worth is more than your job, more than the money you make, more than your productivity. In this, another year of plague, surviving is no small feat.
That’s it for 2021, girls, guys, and non binary folks.
Here’s to survival.
Hopefully we’ll be doing this again next New Years Eve.