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  1.  (1601.141)
    I'm supposed to be clearing up after a great party last night. Among other things, I think I've got a mate back into comics after a long break and one of my friends give me some honest, but good feedback on that the book I've just released (it's in the "Writers - show me your stuff" thread)

    The future? A writing partner from the States has just got back in touch after nearly a year of being out of contact so some of the best stuff I've written might actually see the light of day and the guy who's drawing my comic

    On a less narcissistic level, I've recently realised that most futurists are working on the hardware of the future. Me? I hack software. I'm thinking about how we're going to be upgrading our obsolete thought patterns, consciously improving on the the memes evolution has gifted us with. Soul-grinding.
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      CommentAuthorroque
    • CommentTimeMar 30th 2008 edited
     (1601.142)
    I'm always late to these things since I'm in Asialand. but this is my Saturday night.

    I'm dealing with being a loving wife while at the same time needing some strange dick like you wouldn't believe. I'm trying to make myself a writer, yet I keep hearing Yoda's voice in my head: "There is no try."

    I don't know where I'll be living in six months-- what town, prefecture, state or country. the uncertainty is driving me crazy.

    I can almost, almost see my future, but not... quite. and so I'm watching The Time Machine and drinking absinthe.
  2.  (1601.143)
    @LBA
    And I'm going to the game next Saturday in San Antonio, Texas and I'm freaking THRILLED!

    Oh yeah, that is next week, isn't it? Don't stay in the new swanky new hotel. They had to rescue people out of the brand new elevator last night. I swear I saw them putting the hotel together with Popsicle sticks and glue.
  3.  (1601.144)
    @ Digitalyn: Group hug!

    @ Spiraltwist: Yes I do. Sleep is an androgynous creature of between seven inches and seven feet tall who comes into your room and gently massages the sleep part of your brain until you nod off. Then it puts your hand in a bowl of warm water.

    @ Z: I think it's cruel not to let Bitey have companions called Stabby and Chokey.


    Will
  4.  (1601.145)
    @WillCouper: The bowl of warm water was my idea. How'd you like it?
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      CommentAuthortikistitch
    • CommentTimeMar 30th 2008
     (1601.146)
    Went to a Springsteen concert last night. My husband was assaulted by drunken hillbillies.
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      CommentAuthorBenMiller
    • CommentTimeMar 30th 2008
     (1601.147)
    I purchased a plane ticket out of Prague yesterday. I had hoped to say another 3-4 months, but sadly a combination of Schengen regulations, sporadic (euphemism) income and most importantly the piss-poor dollar are cutting that short. Now I plan a return to LA and more profitable, less turbulent work situation. Afterwards I decided to be sad and drink. I am just waking up. My last month here should be a trip though. Got a 5 day job in Venice, and 3 days of debauchery in amsterdam. Oh well on to the next thing
    • CommentAuthorCaBil
    • CommentTimeMar 30th 2008
     (1601.148)
    Not really Saturday night anymore but let me give this a shot...

    ScottBieser

    I think the real problem was not the stores so much as their clientèle. Most DM stores were and are still nerdboys' clubs and girls -- who are buying up most the tonkoubon these days -- don't feel comfortable going there. There are exceptions, I know (the aforementioned Time Warp for example), but manga had to blow off the DM to find their customers in bookstores not because DM stores weren't ordering the books, so much as because DM nerdboys weren't buying enough of them.


    I think this ties back into Warren's challenge to us at the beginning of the thread...

    Tell me about the future. Tell me what the future looks like. Tell me what you want the future to be. Tell me what you want to be in the future.

    In previous times, people have had to form salons, committees and secret societies in order to attempt to induce the future. Is this what is now required? Have you ever considered this? Are we still too chained to our Elder Gods, even now, to really want to bring on a big dose of The Shock Of The New?


    I think the future both is both made and happens. It will happen, with or without us and because of that individual input may seem meaningless. But this last week we have been reminded of how individuals can shape the future with the return of the Superman copyright to the Siegel heirs. Comics are filled with pivot individuals, with Frederic Wertham in the '50s, Jack Kirby and Stan Lee in the 60s and Kurt Hassler, the Border's Buyer who bullied TokyoPop and others into the successful manga format and thus its current boom at the turn of the millennium.

    To say that the DM is the way it is because of the retailers or the consumers and so cannot be changed is to inherently deny the possibility of a future even partially directed by individuals rather than social/cultural trends. Hey, remember with the Soviets said history and society were on their side, and that they would inevitably 'bury' capitalism? That worked out right according to plan, right?

    Out there right now are probably several people that at least have the potential to be the Kurt Hassler of the DM, that have requisite knowledge, experience and reputation to have the eureka moment to could change the DM. But individuals can fail to make the future. Ask any steampunk fan and they can point to people and moments that should have changed the world but didn't. Babbage and his machines, for example. The future can become inevitable though. The environment can prepare one for the future, by saying that this is the time and place, that all of the pieces are in place and all that is needed is for the right person to come along an express it. Wertham, for instance, merely was the crest of societal and cultural trend that was already worried about comics, but one without the other could not have created the future (our past) in its specific form.

    This is what I am saying. I want to talk about how to create the environment for the future, rather than just throwing one's hands in the air and saying the future is fixed, or inevitable, and then we should just lean over and take it. So when that person comes up with the solution, they will face an environment that is willing to listen to it rather than one that has already decided that change and thus a different future than the past is impossible.
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      CommentAuthorLBA
    • CommentTimeMar 30th 2008
     (1601.149)
    @ Spiraltwist

    Thanks for the heads up, I doubt I'll be able to afford any swanky new deathtrap hotels, I'll have to get by on crappy, old deathtrap hotels.
    • CommentAuthorCaBil
    • CommentTimeMar 30th 2008
     (1601.150)
    And that turned out way "ranting from the mountaintop" then I liked, but if we are going to talk about the future, let's talk, argue and even insult each other over it, rather than just watch it cruise on by.
  5.  (1601.151)
    @ Spiraltwist: It was damp.


    Will
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      CommentAuthorzarhooie
    • CommentTimeMar 30th 2008
     (1601.152)
    I absolutely *loathe* people with superiority complexes. Just because you have some fucking awards and are older than dirt does NOT give you the right to be a jackass. That right is earned, and they *certainly* haven't earned it, not as far as I can see. Also? Bitching someone out because they didn't follow an unknown procedure isn't just mean, it's downright inappropriate.

    *fumes*
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      CommentAuthorWaxPoetic
    • CommentTimeMar 30th 2008
     (1601.153)
    Future for me: the same fucking thing, only funded by me, with traveling; i like it in my world these days, except for the part about the job that i haven't yet lost. near future: lots and lots of Vonnegut and the occasional break from reality, and apples with peanut butter. less near future: poetry slams.

    Future for everyone else: i have been separated from the rest of the world for a very long time, and am only now deciding to re-connect, so i actually have no clue what the present looks like, or a bunch of the past and no desire to be irresponsible about the future. although i would like to advocate against the resurgence of yuppies. it's a thing.

    i'm late to the open mic - which is cool - my stage fright is kind of explosive.
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      CommentAuthorAdmiral Neck
    • CommentTimeMar 30th 2008 edited
     (1601.154)
    The future for myself is finally getting into the habit of writing regularly and then creating something of worth instead of pootling around on the nets (politely) commenting on other people's work (not that there's anything wrong with that; it's a learning experience after all). First, though, I think I have to lose all hope in my future, or let my worries get on top of me, spurring me into action. I'm so stuck in my ways that the only way I've ever changed in the past is by staring a nervous breakdown in the face. That's not really healthy, is it?

    The world future? Quantum teleportation, virus wars, telepathic assault, and fifth dimensional tourism.
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      CommentAuthorRachel
    • CommentTimeMar 30th 2008
     (1601.155)
    Missed Saturday by a long shot but right now I'm trying to think of a way to get to SDCC, or Chicago or the UK. I've got little bits of me being pulled in each direction and the only way I'm going to get what I want is if I find a giant bag of cash on the side of the road.
  6.  (1601.156)
    Teh Future: How Glorious

    In the future people will be afraid of losing organic autonomy,which will be one more reason for an intensified movement of religious fundamentalists who will further polarize the political spectrum; essentially the same crap we have to deal with now, especially in The States.

    The ability to copy human consciousness into an electronic form will be a lot longer coming than might be suspected due to unforeseen problems--even with accurate brain models they'll fail to account for the psychological need for a body and you'll have a whole host of electronic beings traumatized with phantom body syndrome, as well as being hampered by remaining tied to the processes created by physical evolution that will keep them from exploring alternate forms of thought. The first digitized minds will be seen by their digital progeny as a bunch of stodgy, intellectually limited conservative doofuses (or is that doofi?). Again, more of the same.

    We'll go into space, and manifest destiny will become very popular. Eventually we'll discover that we accidentally destroyed several species of sentient lifeforms because we couldn't tell them from the amorphous clouds or that they mentally inhabited a radio wavelength that, when we used it to communicate, lobotomized their entire society. Better still, we'll probably persecute and eventually murder members of our own species whose ancestors got an eyebrow mod several generations earlier. This will be seen as a horrible tragedy, and one never to be repeated, until the generation that committed the atrocity reaches old age, and then a poorly educated younger populace will stop caring about it, aside from having an organization and individual to take the blame for it.

    We'll live a lot longer, because when our body parts break down we'll introduce processes to regenerate them enough to keep them working. We'll do this instead of using preventative medicine to fix them before major problems manifest because it's a better business model to medicate the symptoms. Eventually we'll get replacement parts, which will be similar to replacing car parts that have ceased functioning. Except for media stars, who will get mods and medical treatment to be eternally 18-24 years old. But no one else will be able to afford it, or if they can, it will be seen as disingenuous not to show a little age.

    In the case of the brain we'll replace malfunctioning sectors with new growth of tissue. This will result in memories being relegated to constantly diminishing sensations of previous experience--we'll remember remembering things, but lose those original memories as they are replaced by new sensation in new brain matter. This means we'll also have to retrain our minds how to use our bodies as functions that were learned early in life diminish and those areas are replaced with new tissue.

    Well, that and some more stuff, unless, as is likely, the next big technological leap will come from a source, discipline, an industry, or idea, that right now is considered so marginal as to be laughable. We will experience an entire sea change in the way we think, because it will come from an area that no one thought would ever be seriously considered, changing our way of life so utterly that later generations will look back at the way we live now as so vicious, savage, yet simultaneously mundane, stupid and boring, that we will be for them the savage ancestor who was forced to craft tools made of stone because he was so dimwitted compared to themselves. (Incidentally, in opposition to this view I can't imagine the amount of genius there existed in the early craftsmanship of tools--the amount of unprecedented will and imagination it took to construct from what must have been completely disparate elements something new, with a new, easier better function than existing elements could provide).

    In the future, I think history will look back at us with hefty disdain, and that makes me both sad and hopeful for a future where our present has earned that disdain. But I am simultaneously saddened by the prospect of a future nearsighted enough not to recognize the struggle and difficulties of the human condition as it was before--as I often feel when I look at our own historical accounts.

    Bit of a rant, I guess, got on a roll there.
  7.  (1601.157)
    @CaBill

    I like the way you think.

    I wouldn't say the DM is doomed to always be the way it is. On the contrary, it's doomed to change, just like everything else. I was simply talking about the past.

    I'm holding out hope that the handful of really good DM shops will thrive well enough to get successful imitators and the landscape will change for the better. Meanwhile, folks like me have to figure out how to make money in comics in spite of the DM.
    • CommentAuthorCaBil
    • CommentTimeMar 31st 2008
     (1601.158)
    I'm holding out hope that the handful of really good DM shops will thrive well enough to get successful imitators and the landscape will change for the better. Meanwhile, folks like me have to figure out how to make money in comics in spite of the DM.


    What can be done to encourage good DM stores then? I know that I don't have the answers, but let's throw out some ideas.

    Tagging stores in Google Maps as either indy or manga friendly?
  8.  (1601.159)
    At this point, the conversation should be taken to somewhere more suitable, like Panel & Pixel.