That seems to be a legitimate question to ask (what is the price of kumquats in Antarctica? is not) and if you are coming to this About tab then you might have found yourself asking this very question (or you are a spammer looking to leave a comment about where someone can get some really bitchin’ shoes). You’re here either way so I might as well make this as passably interesting as possible. 12 Men Died Making This Strip is a webcomic about nothing in particular (all right folks, pack it up, nothing to see here) which in the end means it can be about anything. The “anything” is limited to whatever comes to mind in my day-to-day routines (or sent to me by furry creatures that live in the skies); but I try to follow one basic principle in its creation. There is a quote by the 6th Century philosopher MacGregory the Lesser-of-the-Two that goes something like this: “All this conversation of doom by Gods and Banshees is dispelled by laughter… or leopards… or lepers!” Supposedly he was stoned to death shortly after this, but went on to release his philosophical master work Treatise on Flight Using Elephant Bladders so his death might have been largely exaggerated. The point I am trying to make (I’m not really) with this is that this webcomic is a satirical, parody, slice-of-life, serious examination, never-do-well, ridiculous send-up, half-hearted, silly, contradictory, and pointless look on everyday things and nonsense (maybe). It is one of thousands (countless) of comics all trying to compete for the beloved attention of consistent readers. So is 12 Men Died Making This Strip any good? It’s brilliant (I’m drunk)! That is me talking though. It’s Horrid! That could be you (you mangy cur). I do this comic for my own enjoyment and fun (and the technology given to me by the elves). The dream of almost every creative person I know (all 1.. 2.. 3.. 4… 18 of them) is to be recognized for that one something that they enjoy doing with their time (like milking snakes); I am no different. I would love the accolades and the bursting praise (money works too, money always works… and dry roasted peanuts) for what I am doing but in the end it’s not important. This webcomic will continue with or without readers (but it would really like them) or until the hosting runs dry (my credit gets maxed). It’s my own personal grab at immortality (right for its privates) you could say, I’m not afraid to admit it.
12 Men Died Making This Strip first started in the mostly forgettable year of 2009 (a year that promised flying cars and leather pants with built-in LED lights; both failed to come to fruition) It started off as a one-time joke in regards to a friend’s webcomic. It then continued to grow slowly (actually it was about once a day for a while). In the very beginning stages it was drawn very haphazardly (true statement), like a three-year old with crayons and a bottle of Jack Daniels whiskey (a false statement; it was much worse). It continued some time in that form until I decided to try to do a better job with it (but only slightly better and at once a week), but that would turn out to be short-lived (the Holy Roman Empire cheered). After about a years worth of time and 131 comics I let the whole strip go dark. Civilizations grew and fell. Salad makers ended up on infomercials. Some authors wrote books; terrible authors wrote books and made millions of dollars. The price of dairy rose and sank. I made messes and cleaned up others. In the end, it’s hard to walk away from something that you would consider a part of yourself (believe me, I have tried it with my offspring) so it is with renewed vision that I have come back to the strip. I wanted to relaunch the comic as something I was really proud of and not as something I was just doing (in a way I am still just “doing it”). Success or failure aside (IMPORTANT: I am aiming for success this time), I think that the work I am doing now is worth my time and worth the time of those that stop by and read it (at least enough time to bookmark it or
block it from your browser). It is still a work in progress, but that is true of any endeavour and nothing exactly special of any particular medium, if you’re not advancing or changing you are probably dead (though, decomposing is a form of change…).
There is a simple answer and then there is the answer that has much more of a mythological substance to it. The mythological version goes something like this: Somewhere in the deserts of the far east a ruined leather-bound papyrus book that was buried in a unceremoniously discarded ceramic pot. Poor sheep farmers and internet spammers came upon the vessel one day, after a great and powerful windstorm changed the course of the sands, Deeming it a sign from some far away god in the clouds (but higher up since humans had already traveled to space by this time) they opened it up with their hammers made of lamb skulls and jerky. What they found were the remarkable remnants of an ancient prophecy foretelling of a horrid time with great technology and dial-up internet speeds. It also told of an unknowable and unkillable (I guess that would make it slightly knowable) being that was pure evil (like perceived large corporation evil; no! more evil than that)! So many centuries would pass and this being would return to destroy everything or at least attempt to, but like so many other mythological prophecies there was another side to the coin. The book also told of a select group destined to rise up throughout time. Twelve brave individuals that would sacrifice their lives to prevent the destruction of the Everything (also part of the prophecy but I am wrapping this up so I am not going to go into now… because I said so). The very exploits of these Twelve Men are retold in the very digital pages of this comic; their exploits that have saved our lives and world we live on countless of times. This comic honors them and begs (literally begs) that they not be forgotten but praised and raised before the masses. THAT is why this comic is called what it is, not because I didn’t give a damn about the crappy art style in the beginning and thought that having twelve men die to make such a horrible looking webcomic was personally funny.
If you are still reading by this point you might be wondering who I am. You can call me Tim. I am a 30-something year old husband with two little daughters (that seem to be endless fountains for inspiration). I live in Texas, USA (not that there are Old World Texas’ just lying about on some far-flung continent) When I am not writing and drawing 12 Men Died Making This Strip I spend time being a stay-at-home dad and lurking in a bookstore part-time for cold hard cash to fuel my raging video game collection. I am a self-confessed nerd and geek. I have a bachelor’s degree in Literature which affords me an unstable career choice and a cynical worldview. I spend most of my other free time listening to Queen, The Aquabats, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club and other various bands, along with video game scores (it goes along hand-in-hand with my video game addiction). I would hope to one day just draw webcomics full-time or full part-time since fatherhood is a life long
chore dedicated career. I use a WACOM art tablet and Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator to craft my comics (I really don’t know how to use them but I make do) My favorite artistic people range from the artists and writers of the PBS kids show Wordgirl to Steve Purcell’s Sam & Max comics. There are other people in-between but there are far too many to state them all. Lastly about me, I look almost completely like the drunk scribble of a self-portrait on the right except I am typically sporting a beard (they just don’t look right when I draw them).
Well, here we are at the end of this. I bet you’re so glad you stayed to the end? Yeah, I won’t be leaving the ability to leave comments if I can help myself, haha! Anyway, I hope you enjoy this webcomic as much as I enjoy writing and drawing it. Where ever this eventually goes I thank you all and will share none of the profits!