when do you think a kid loses his innocence?

I don't have a pat answer of my own so allow me to quote Top Dollar. "Childhood's over the moment you know you're gonna die."

Over 1,000 questions!

Other than that man-baby on the last episode of Taboo, I contend I am the most pathetic person on the internet.

Are you neurotic?

Over some things! I worry constantly that people will think I think I'm better or more important than I am, which is one reason I have to knock myself so much. Ya know, so I know people know. I think that's my most prominent and most obnoxious neurosis.

Spend it on what you like! I'm just saying I'd prefer you actually let me pay you money for providing this work.

I followed your directive, anon. If I'm consequently corrupted by wealth and wake up in an Ayn Rand novel tomorrow I'm coming after you.

Do you have any tips to making good comics - things that you think a good comic will have?

I think a good comic will bring something new to the table. It will look at old tropes in new ways, or it will approach narrative from an unexplored direction. I think a good comic wants to be its own thing and not necessarily just slot itself into a pre-existing genre. The saddest sort of comics I can think of are comics that are trying to be what already exists.

All my favourite webcomics are very much their own thing. Take Shadoweyes. It's a superhero comic but it's not like any other superhero comic I've seen. It's different but very comfortable in its own skin.

What are plats?

Plat, short for platinum. The white-haired wright Quigley and his son are Plats. I haven't said what that means quite yet.

Crows are like my worst fear please be joking.

You should be safe for a while. But eventually



I wish you'd open up donations.

Enh, I'd just spend it all on whores and blow.

Giant crows would be pretty horrifying.

Funny you should say that.

I think the giant dogs are pretty cool. Are there any other domesticated animals that are significantly different from the ones we have in the real world? Are there tiny yappy horses for obnoxious ladies to carry around in their purses?

Haha, I had considered having yappy horse-pets for a while :D I had also thought basing all the fauna of the world on a concept of switching the sizes around of fauna in our world, so you'd have giant dogs but tiny hippos and great big pigeons but tiny eagles in cages. I kind of decided that was gimmicky and lazy though, and mostly abandoned it.

Anyway, there aren't any horses at all. No domesticated cats. But there is a much wider variety of domestic reptile that took the place of domestic cats for mousing and pest-control purposes. Starflies are popular pets and lightsources. You'll see hints of great big forest tortoises in the next chapter. Later on there are large fuzzy pigs and single-horned goats and grebbers, which are rather like really ugly overgrown wolverines.

What's your favourite country?

Bat country!

Two-toes, eh? Stealing our jobs, our cookies and our wimmen. We should boil them all in a big vat and pick their lizard bones, am I right?

Damn straight. The only good lizard is a dead lizard D:

Do you make good money doing freelance and Unsounded?

Didn't your mother teach you it's impolite to ask people about their finances?

I'm dirt poor, of course. I'm able to avoid working a soulless fast food or office job because I never buy anything. I drive a barely insured clunker. My clothes are almost all at least five years old. I acquire all music, movies, games (and comics, mostly) via means of dubious legality. I have no health insurance, I eat poor people food, and I never go out.

When people say they wish they were me I want to punch them in the eye.

How many questions from one person such as myself is too many? I only ask because I want to learn more about your awesome comics.

Oh, you can ask as many questions as you like, mate, though a lot of things will be cooler if you wait and learn about them in the story. If I get tired of formspring I take a break.

Duane's Aldish, right? What part of Alderode does he hail from?


Why do the two-toes wear high clogs?

To reach cookie jars.

Ilganyag aside, are there any benevolent practicers of pymary outside the law? Perhaps a secret society of monk-like peeps who practice pymary in secret and encourage opensourcing?

Haha. Opensourcing. It's possible, it's a big world.

You mentioned a while back about how you like to explain magic both scientifically and magically and leave it uncertain to add to the realism. You leave it up to the reader, do you? It's not supposed to be certain, is it?

Some things are fairly certain, like the theories behind pymary. Physics work differently in the world of Unsounded so even things that sound "magical," like pymary, are perfectly natural and rational in that world.

Everything related to the religions of the world though, to how it was created, to the afterlife, these are all presented as matters of faith and yeah, the reader can eventually decide if any of it is valid.

Hi! Love the comic so far. Since you're going to be taking a break until the next chapter, would it be possible to ask for... maybe... small things for voting incentives? Like maybe sketches or concepts or anything like that.

It's not likely. I won't be posting pages up but I'm not quite taking a "break." I'll still be creating more pages for the buffer. Also I have a bunch of freelance backed up. No time for treats, my dear!

"Programmed into the khert" - what's the khert? (A million apologies if you've answered that, I've looked through a lot of the archives, but don't think I've seen khert yet).

I don't think I've ever officially answered that, actually, just implied. I've gotten criticism about throwing too much world info out too fast and without much narrative context, so I'm feeling skittish about defining too much more. Suffice to say that the khert is the metaphysical, skeletal undercurrent of the entire world via which all energy, aspects, and pymary travel. It's the unseen circuitry.

Do you have any general tips about comic creation? About art, writing, anything?

Yeah. Learn from my mistakes and don't be lazy. Thumbnail your chapters entirely before you start drawing. Do character sheets so everyone looks consistent from page to page. Flat with the pencil tool, not the paintbrush. Chill out with the details; reserve them for covers and maybe a single panel a page but don't go overboard - people just gloss over it all while reading. Pay attention to how you're directing the reader's eyes from balloon to balloon. Don't obscure important actions with busy colouring or crazy colours. Don't be too wordy but don't be afraid to use literary devices. Let mood dictate your palette. Always play with their mind.

I would totally read more about Kasslyne, esp. the adventures of Sette and Duane, in some kind of book form-it seems like there's so much there! Are there any books (which actually exist) that you think have a similar high fantasy humor/drama theme?

There was a short adventure on my RP board I'd forgotten about, but it reads like a prototype of the first few chapters of Unsounded. I'm going to chat up the person I played with and see if she'd mind my editing it and posting it up.

Meanwhile, try the Jhereg series by Stephen Brust. It's both funny and dramatic in turn, has some pretty cool world-building, and its main character is even difficult to like!

Did you create Tainish initially for fun, or did you actually set out to create a language native to Kassylyne (or whatever it was in its embryonic form)?

Once I realised I needed a language that had been used by the gods to talk the world into existing, I knew I had to man up and construct it for real. Fantasy languages are fun anyway. I've always enjoyed Drowish, it feels horrible and authentic.

The concept of death seems to play a very significant role in your creative interests and output. Would you consider explaining why that is?

I'm a recovering goth.

Seriously though, the most appreciative you can be towards life is after you've been reading or writing about death. I don't think we ponder death enough anymore, we're too busy distracting ourselves with the most trite and meaningless nonsense we can devise, whether it's money, television, or religion.

Well, I have to obsess over death. I have to stare at it like a bug on my windowsill so it can't make a move without me seeing. In this western world of ours I find you HAVE to keep it in the back of your head, for better or for worse. It's far too easy to fall victim to distraction, to misplacing priorities, and forgetting that the very hands typing this will one day, not so very far in the future, chill, and bloat, and fall to bits.

I don't know if I could, oh my god but you asked. fml.


As your editor I must counteract all this boo-hooing about your break to remind you that you need this time to make more comic pages for the boo-hooers, so don't feel guilty about it, kay? (see that question mark at the end? this is totally a question.)

Ohgod guys, it's my editor. See what you've done? D:

Do you do any life drawing? I mean you probably did in school, but currently? It's fun! You should.

I do life-drawing every day! Well, not strictly from life, sometimes I get sick of drawing my own feet or hand or face and draw out of magazines instead, but I can't work at all if I don't warm up somehow first. Life-drawing is great for that.

Nothing is better than a real live model in a drawing studio though. You can try to get decent nude models in photobooks and magazines but they're always too perfect and pretty. I prefer reality: patches of body hair in weird places, stretch marks, cottage cheesy cellulite, tattoos, testicular piercings, errant tampon strings...

I read up until the third thread - by then I was just crying. I wish the writefag would have been at least halfway decent at their namesake. It makes me want to do better, til I realize what I just said... just, um, no.


If I don't come back in a month to find my inbox stuffed with porn I will be so sad.



Do I have permission to gnash my teeth and tear at my ash smeared hair in despair during this 'month long break?"

Aww, man, it's not even breaking on a cliffhanger! If this kills you you're going to hate me at the end of chapter 4. That one cuts off at a much sticker place.

What the eff is up with that picture that is supposed to be you in those threads? We all know you're Starfish. There's no use in lying.

Haha, did you really read through them all? You're a better person than me. Don't know who that chick is but I'm not confident enough to claim Starfish's studly looks. That man's hair, it is stunning and attractive.

So how long's the next chapter break gonna be? Couple months? Weeks I can deal with.

One month exactly! Only 4 weeks! A scant thirty days!

FFFFFFFFFFFF oh my god no 4chan, WRY?

I know, right.

So these books Mark Rosenfelder wrote would allow one such as myself, with only three years of school-level French, to create a language of my own?

I've never bought his books but that site I linked you to has enough info to get you started. You really don't need to know another real language. It's more helpful to know ABOUT other languages, to know what makes French different from Mandarin and Japanese different from Khoisan and Hawaiian different from English. Researching other languages, even on a superficial level, will give you ideas of ways to make your language more of a departure from your mother tongue.

Do you have any tips on how to create a language? Do I need any experience in one or more langauges?

Let this person teach you http://zompist.com/kit.html

Would you be willing to upload the gems of 4chan regarding Unsounded for the rest of us to view? This includes fic, fanart, threads, etc. I... I... I'm so curious.

The fapfiction is archived, actually. I do not in any way endorse these but http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive.html?tags=unsounded

I realize this isn't a question, but I wanted to thank you heartily for your advice regarding the 'characters in situations' question I asked earlier. I'm going to post-it that advice all over my wall, pc, dog, random people etc. Really though, thank you!


One of the major criticisms i hear about mainstream comics is that male writers cannot write convincing females, that the characters seem to be men in female bodies. Do you think it is possible for one sex to write an accurate portrayal of the other?

Gosh, this is a tricky one.

I read a study once that came to the conclusion that most women are able to, for whatever reason, imagine and accept a wide variety of types of personality in men. Men, on the other hand, are much more inclined to pigeonhole all women into certain roles and assign all women certain immutable attributes. It makes a sort of sense, really. Men are by and large very rational and like to categorize. To have a category be so wide open and ultimately unknowable - to have there be a Type that isn't a type at all and in all instances requires further investigation - I could see that as a frustration to the rationale of some men. Does it effect writers? Perhaps.

I mention this largely because of the way you've phrased your question. Some people - male and female - have decided that a female character who isn't preoccupied with her looks, men, and Twilight is obviously just a male character in a female body. This is not true. She's a female character who has more on her mind than stereotypes. The spectrum of Femaleness is so wide that it can contain absolutely any personality-type you can imagine. There are women who are extremely practical, capable, and rational. Maybe they're crude or athletic. Maybe they have no interest in children or puppies. Maybe they really enjoy sex. This does not make them men with boobs.

That these proclivities and personality traits often make it into mainstream female comic characters doesn't surprise me. People are not reading cape comics to follow the adventures of sensitive, emotional characters of ANY sex. The writers are dealing with ideals, with high action, with intense, anti-intellectual physical drama. They're dealing with people in fucking capes. That the capable, practical, hard-hitting female character has replaced the damsels in distress of yesterday in order to participate properly in these capey antics is an awesome thing and I say poo to anyone who'd lament they're just not "female" enough anymore.

This is not to say that I think mainstream comics are quality literary endeavours. Mostly they suck. There are many, many more devastating things wrong with them than their female characters though. How about the unimaginative storylines, the recycled plots, the endless cycle of death and resurrection, the internal illogical inconsistencies, the barricade of commercialism that forbids anything from ever seeming dangerous, the tedious favouring of brawn over intellect, the plain awful joylessness? They are in all senses grim male-oriented soap operas but we're getting too sophisticated for soap operas. The daytime tv kind are in decline too.

Anyway, in conclusion, YES, I do think it is possible and I've witnessed writers who can write both genders believably and well. But what is even more common is when readers come into a work with preconceived notions about what is male and what is female, and complain when the fiction doesn't submit to their world view. "Male" and "female" are concepts for a more primitive society than the one we're (I hope) developing for ourselves.

When Sette gets all apologetic with Duane (like in recent pages and at the end of Chapter 1), is she genuinely upset or is she more consciously manipulating him with a routine she knows will work?

I wonder :)

Maybe someone asked this before, but...what all is between basic idea and actual comic page? Did you wrote complete story somewhere, do you draw thumbnails first and so on?

I have an evolving overall story in my head. From that I cull actual scripts. There are about ten chapters scripted right now. I don't do enough thumbnails and that's a deficiency I'm working on. I've already sworn to myself I'm going to thumbnail the entirety of chapter 5 before I start on it. I just get so eager to draw I don't want to bother with layout D: Bad Ashley.

Sometimes I find myself checking your Formspring before I actually look at the comic. You're an interesting person (at least, through the lens of your prose). Have you ever maintained a blog or written any essays I could check out?

I've been on the internet a long time and gone through my share of blogs, but I have much less going on in my life now than I once did, and care much less about foisting my opinion of every movie, game, and comic on everyone. I promise I'm not as interesting as my Unsounded-related babble would lead you to believe but it's sweet of you to say anyway.

I've probably asked this before (damn you Formspring, you and your nonexistent search bar!), but do you have any formal art/anatomy/coloring training? Or do you just get by on natural talent and reference books?

Nope, I went to a four year private art college and majored in illustration. All my digital art skills are self-taught as the school only had one digital art class and one part-time digital arts professor, but Photoshopping just uses regular painting principles so no big. I can paint with oils, acrylic, watercolour, or gouache, there's just no damned reason to.

Have you considered a spray bottle or making people smear hot sauce across their visages? I haven't any experience with one year olds, but I dare say the afore-mentioned things work with puppies that bite. :D

An interesting idea but I'd have to spend all day with hot sauce smeared across every available inch of myself and that's just not one of my kinks. I think I'm going to just start giving him little smacks and an assertive NO every time he does it. He'll figure it out.

What are your plans for the weekend?

I was going to see if my brother and sister-in-law wanted to take the kids to the beach tomorrow but Max bit my sister-in-law so hard in the face when they arrived to pick him up that she tearfully insisted they had to leave and so I never got a chance to ask. Does anyone on formspring have any ideas how to stop a one year old from biting the fuck out of people?

Ahem. I will probably finish off page 61 of chapter 4 tonight. Tomorrow I have two freelance jobs I should be able to finish barring edits. Sunday I will probably draw 62, edit next week's pages, finish Portal2, and sit out by the pool to take the glaring white off mah wintry thighs.

Were you quoting Ghostbusters?

Yes. Yes, I was.

Also, how come that two-toe doesn't have a saddlehound? Do two-toes find them uncomfortable, or are they essentially second-class citizens even if they're in the Royal Peace Guard?

Well, the two-toe is on the ground because it's actually scent-tracking Sette and Duane - no small feat considering it's been raining for hours. Otherwise it'd be on the saddle behind the human. They're so small they really don't warrant having their own mount. And yes, also, they're second class citizens even in Cresce. The little critter may be done up in their armour and colours but she's still just a tool, useful only for her sense of smell.

Bah, you're not old! You're younger than me! Plus you're only as old as you feel and act, which means, going by your answers here, you're a teenie bopper! o.O;

I do feel pretty old though. I have seen eons.

Are saddlehounds trained to bite enemies, or are they merely cuter horses?

Bite your head off, man.

Duane talks about borrowing something from the rain/mist in the latest page, it made me wonder about the applications. Could he also borrow the insubstantiality of the air, and apply it to an enemy's heart or brain? What would happen to the air if he did?

It's a good thought but it sounds like an attack that would be too wild and powerful to be allowed by the people who regulate pymary, so the required spell probably doesn't exist. Doesn't mean it's not possible, but you'd have to turn to an unregulated and illegal school of pymary to do it, and that'd make you a criminal and a rather different person from pymarically punctilious Duane-face.

Say you do that though, that your options are more open. Let us logic through what you're proposing. The first thing that strikes me is I'm not so sure the air itself is insubstantial. It CONTAINS things that are seemingly insubstantial like atoms of nitrogen and oxygen. If you borrow the insubstantiality of elements like this to, as I'm assuming you suggested, to temporarily make the walls of the skull or chest cavity insubstantial so you can remove the brain or heart, you are granting substance to the elements of the air - the substance of the skull or chest cavity can't just stop existing, it has to go somewhere after all. "Give substance to nitrogen, that sounds weird." We must mean -solidity-, then. Solidity and Gaseousness are the real aspects we're talking about (Solidity is a useful aspect - that's what so many wrights use to conjure up a simple smack to the head). Well, what happens when you condense oxygen or nitrogen into solids? Volatile things happen. Temperature has to shift to accommodate them. Who knows what other elements are present? How it all will react to phase shifts? How much pressure is created and what that does? How many square inches, feet, miles of air are required to produce the same solid mass as that in whatever fleshly substance you are making temporarily gaseous?

In short, are you going to wind up suffocating/exploding/poisoning half a country just so you can zap someone's brain out? Maybe you can see why something like this would be illegal to attempt at all.

Zapping someone's heart or brain out of them is a neat idea though, so what else might be used to do that? Answering questions like this is what the people who compose spells do.

Can you tell us a bit more about the Victori? Or will that come later in the comic? Your mention of bodhisattva pricked up my interest.

The Victori change in definition depending on which religion you're talking about, but in the Gefendur religion (the one with the Twins, which most everyone follows), the Victori are mortal people who did some great service for the gods and were in exchange granted dominion, wisdom, and freedom to move at will between the earth and the Outside. They supposedly go around helping mortals understand the will of the gods by answering prayers and granting insight.

Tirna, the Youngest Sister, has a reputation as a trickster goddess in some sects though, and her Victori tend to be rabblerousers and troublemakers.

So what did you think of the Royal Wedding? I don't know why I capitalised that.

I really have no coherent opinion on it. Wills and Kate seem eager to be a "normal, modern" couple which is interesting to see, but the whole spectacle still is much too much about the rich and powerful celebrating behind stone walls while the peasants cheer outside. It seems to make just as many people cynical and annoyed as it makes other people happy, so I just don't know!

Whenever you're feeling blue, you can rest assured that your loyal audience will be here to give your life some purpose. And your updates make our lives brighter as well! Feel better? :-D

Indeed <3

Hey, just dropping by to say I hope you feel better ;; Don't force yourself to be happy if you're not feeling it, but don't let yourself get too down cuz it gets hard to clamber out (: -hug- Also, old lady trollin' sounds like the most badass troll ever!?

Thanks, Karaii Y_Y I will sort things out.

What does "Anteit Vaosa" mean?

"Victori have mercy." The Vaosa or Victori are like um, saints, or bodhisattva. But "anteit Vaosa" works as a general exclamation of surprise or bitchy despair.

Old ladies can get away with saying absolutely anything and not get called on it. Is this not so?

Yeeees, but that imperils the likelihood of a troll's ultimate goal, which is to cause a shitstorm. If one cannot shitstorm around granny then granny is perhaps unable to act as a true troll, and is only able to be an untouchable geriatric irritant. That's just going to get one's bony ass flung into a home.

I'm going to bed for now. We can continue this in the morning if I can pull myself away from Kate and Willy's nuptials for long enough. Hats!

Wouldn't an old lady be better at trolling than most?

I don't dismiss this suggestion but have you observed something that leads you to make it?

Can I crawl down into your stomach & drown in acid, in place of your heart?

To /d/ with you, vore fetishist! I-- oh, what the hell. Bring tentacles.

Has Sette ever tried to get Duane to teach her some pymary? (Not that she'd have the patience to actually learn it, but I bet she thinks the ability to explode things and cut off arms at will is pretty rad.)

Duane wouldn't teach pymary to Sette for a couple of pretty big reasons, the least spoilery of which being that the girl isn't nearly responsible enough to be introduced to something so dangerous. She also cannot read. She also cannot speak Tainish. And considering how she can barely speak Common I don't think the zombie imagines he'd have much success trying to teach her to properly enunciate a second language.

Fortunately the lower classes generally disdain pymary and wrights so don't expect Sette to nag him to teach her any time soon. Pymary is an expensive pursuit often reserved for those who can afford the schooling, so there's some sour grapes going on among the disadvantaged.

Koko is easily my favourite character so far - so tragic. I can only hope that it gets risen from the dead as a mopey, philosophising zombie. It's plaintive squeaks will sound the great questions of existence out far more deeply than any words ever could.

Tut tut! This is not a question!

Please don't kill yourself! You're fantastic, and much loved. *Hugs* I hope you feel better...

I would never actually kill myself until I'm an old lady and there's no real point in going on. Right now I can still fap and troll, so there is some hope. You are sweet.

What goretastic, blood-drenched nicknames would you give your cast of characters?

Duane- GREYMATTERS (this has a double meaning, I like it)
Jivi- RATBANE (stolen from Vaan, but that's okay)

...Hmm, particularly good ones escape me. I leave it up to you to finish.

Were Koko's final thoughts really of Bodkin?

Bodkin's final thoughts were probably the Ratspeak equivalent of "OWWFUCK I'M IN SEVEN PIECES."

Sette has a granny?

Indeed. She was mentioned briefly back in chapter 2.

In the robot future, what kind of robot will you own?

Playing Portal2 last night I was reminded how very uninteresting I find robots. In order to make them interesting you have to make them as human as possible. But we already have a surfeit of humans on this planet so why make more?

I don't want a robot, I want a vampire unicorn.

What does Sette do to relax? I'm so stressed out!

She drinks! Or goes and plays with her dad's dogs. Or sneaks into a stageplay. Or chills with the whores and listens to their stories. Or visits her granny. Or naps under the boardwalk. Or plays at the beach if the weather is amicable. It's not a bad life. Go to the beach, anon! Or the mountains! Let mother nature relax you.

Was Bodkin's pet rat named "Koko", or is "k-koko" supposed to be the sound he was making as he was barfing her up?

It was named Koko. Such a gentle soul.

What's Sette drinking?

A Beadman's Imbiblical - Ginger beer flavoured.

Is Sette able to eat fruits and berries and vegetables, or is she a pure carnivore?

There is an apple core in the first panel of today's page. I know Duane didn't eat it.

Hey, Bonecrusher. Do you think written word had more value than spoken?

I would say it's entirely subjective. If a person is dying they would probably find the sound of a human voice of more value than any passage out of a book. Passionately sung lyrics are more valuable than the scrawled lines of a poem. You can actually turn a bad poem into a great song if you sing it properly.

Written words last longer, they have a theoretical permanence to them, but does that make them more valuable or less valuable than a voice which only has, ideally, three quarters of a century to sound out? Is it more meaningful when someone sends you an email or when they call you?

Yours is a strange sort of question and I don't believe I have a firm opinion either way.

If Bodkin is da's best friend and Sette is in line to inhereit the Frummagem dynasty I bet Bodkin wouldn't mind if Sette had an "accident". Does Sette have siblings? Any competition for the "throne"?

You are wise.

Sette has no siblings that she knows of although there are more than a few people slouching around claiming to be Nary's illegitimate kid. A thieve's guild doesn't exactly handle succession via Divine Right or primogeniture though so Nary will leave the organization to whomever he damn well pleases, lineage be jiggered.

Can I marry Sette? When she's older of course. I hope she's not spoken for Y_Y

I'm not sure she's the marryin' kind :3 You may perhaps join her personal army and be kicked around by her as she works to ultimately enslave and then destroy the entire world, however. Next best thing!

Uh, excuse me. I'm lost, do you know where the nearest bathroom is?

Squat where you are. We're all friends here.

How do they get those dogs so big?

Wolves are larger in Unsounded's world than in ours, mostly because they hunt grebbers, which are these monstrous semi-aquatic bear-wolverine things that will eat your whole family. Wild wolves are pretty rare these days but before they fell into decline humans managed to, over a long period of time, breed and domesticate them into the even larger work canines you've seen.

Is Bodkin the guy in green in the background of the very first panel?

Good guessing but no, I didn't have a design for him yet so I didn't include him in that shot. I assume he's just out of view behind the wagon.

Do you create playlists for each of your characters? And if so, are they accessible online? I imagine listening to a Murkoph playlist would be quite an experience.

I went searching through my journal archives for my old Murkoph playlist but I guess I deleted it. I haven't created any others, man, sorry :(

I got some complicated feelings towards Duane, I really like his character but... I've got this really annoying necrophobia. So when I think about what's beneath those clothes I want to grab a bat and smack him with it while screaming like a sissy. .__.

He doesn't hold it against you :( The hood and excessive clothing are worn for your comfort.

Does Sette know what sex is, or is she still in a state of blissful childlike ignorant innocence in that regard?

Sette knows bits and pieces of things, and has a vague idea how the whole process works, but doesn't burn much brain power thinking about it. It's what the whores do. Pocketpicking and conning is what she does. She better focus on the latter if she wants to avoid being assigned to the former.

Since smiles are down, your witty respones to a starving Sette, and a potentially edible Duane & Jesus can be considered smiled at. Like this: ;) See?

I aim to please :3 I wonder if they will ever bring Smiles back. I like formspring but its management seems slightly inept.

If Sette and Jesus were alone, and Sette was starving and had no food - would she be able to survive if she ate bits of Jesus?

I think that only works if you're Catholic.

If Sette and Duane were alone, and Sette was starving and had no food - would she be able to survive if she ate bits of Duane?

This question is too weird. It is Easter and there is only one zombie we should be talking about.

Sette has some purdy dirty soles in this new comic.

Yes. Yes, she does.

I've been trying really hard to cut down on my Formspring questions. Have you noticed a significant reduction in volume? Or have my alternate personalities (vide infra) been picking up the slack?

I have noticed! I attributed it to my finally achieving MAXIMUM LEVEL of boringness. I shall have to try even harder to alienate everyone.

Names of countries often mean something, like Sverige(Sweden) " Svea rike " = " Kingdom of Svea " (Svea is a goddess), so does the names of the countries in Kasslyne(and the name of the continent itself) mean something?

Good question! I don't know all the translations but I do know a few. -shane is "to the east" in some dead tribal tongue and sharte is "bitter/harsh." Alderode is Llederod, or literally Monster Country in Old Tainish :3 It used to be overrun by all kinds of beasties thousands of years ago. Cresce was renamed when its original inhabitants were booted a thousand years ago. Crescia was the warrior-queen who won it for her people.

I noticed you haven't added one of those little note things over the index button for a while. Are you going to continue doing those?

I meant to. I have no time these days for much of anything! D: I'm taking a hiatus after this chapter's over and I'll use the time to go back and add content where I'd intended there to be extras.

What's the best part about being a webcomic artist? :3

The fat paycheck every week of course! Oh, wait.

Why is it named "An Unwilling Escort" rather than "A Reluctant Escort" or, as the page title for the chapter's pages says, "/The/ Reluctant Escort"? With "Reluctant" it seems to have a better ring to it, to me.

Don't nitpick, man, it brings me down.

WHO wins with one fisticuffsherausforderung: Turas ou l' Kaisei? [Ogorchenno] - isn'? ; inglese? t my first language!

Pure fisticuffs would go to Turas. But Kaisei would whip out a shiv and gut him first chance he got.

Is Sette more physically powerful than would be normal?

She's strong and fast and resilient, but not superhumanly so. She's just had a hard knock life, as the song goes.

Hmm, stringing her up by her tail may be good punishment, then. No one for her to kick or bite. Gagged too. <.<;

She needs one of those masks they put on Hannibal Lector. And probably a straitjacket, though I suspect she could get out of it.

Has Sette ever stabbed anyone?

Not lethally.

So Sette called her country "Settetania" but none of the other countries on the continent end in "...ania" like they do in our world. How could you worldbuild so terrible Cope I am cancelling my subscription posthaste.

My sense of humour can sink to depths of goofiness you cannot even fathom, friend. Would you like a refund? :3

So, on the rare occasion she's caught stealing red handed, grabbing, pulling, and picking her up by the tail would REALLY piss her off, eh? Would she even be able to do anything about it, or would she just yell and cuse at the culprit?

I think she'd probably twist around and strip the skin off your arm with her teeth, or hook fingers into your nostrils and tear your nose out by the roots, or scissor a heel down into your crotch and crush your soupy progeny.

I, personally, would not try picking her up by the tail.

The first chapter is named "An Unwilling Escort", yet, on the first page it says "A Reluctant Escort" why's that?

There is deep meaning in the discrepancy, a puzzle there for you, the reader, to decipher or maybe it's a typo.

hint: it's a typo

Wait, Murkoph's a dastardly sadistic villain? But he looks so eloquent and handsome! Is he one of those "gentleman villains"?

Well, he is eloquent and handsome! For a corpse that has bugs living in his hair and rats in his coat. I wouldn't say he's a gentleman though. He curses summat awful and allows all manner of prurient ponderations and pornographic peccadilloes to preoccupy his uncombed skull. He knows and acts on the black meaninglessness behind the great stageplay of existence; written out of the script he considers himself a stagehand now, sometimes even the director, but he's only interested in the farcical. He'd have everyone take off their clothes and rut on the boards before stabbing them with prop knives and eating their genitals.

Murkoph is a gentleman only so long as it amuses him to be one. The veneer is thin, just a dribbling varnish, and he's all teeth and hate and horror underneath.

...! Living Duane, might we ever get to see what he looks like? Looked like, I mean. Since you said something about 'pretty', I'm now seriously curious.

Someday you shall. Did I say he was pretty somewhere? Pretty goofy looking, I may have meant :3

How sensitive is Sette's tail?

My dogs get pretty irate when their tails get yanked or accidentally stepped on. So I'm guessing it's as sensitive as a dog's tail.

So.... Starfish likes kids? That's... Disturbing. Did/does he ever, u know... Do anything to any children? And what do the others think about that?

I'd rather leave that up to your imagination x_x

The only other person that knows about Starfish's proclivities is Turas. If the kid was small enough he'd be one to distract Starfish away from doing anything before it happened, but he's kind of a scumbag himself and isn't going to get worked up over it.

How's that poor guy without an arm going to cope? Will he be in any condition to get revenge on Duane now he's missing a limb?

Maybe he can attach a zombie arm to himself, get a crew together, and go to sea on a voyage of revenge. "Ahoy! Hast thou seen the Wright Whale! Hast thou seen Moby-Duane?!?!" I shouldn't answer these questions so soon after waking up.

Do you ever feel like people (strangers, acquaintances, friends or family) use and abuse your artistic abilities? Or are you happy to draw things for them (for the lulz, they're feeling sad, etc), because you have the ability to do so?

I make a point of not being friends with people who are users. I think every artist now and then gets a message from someone on dA expecting free art though. It's part of being online. I'm not all that generous with my time and limited drawing ability. I'm not that fast, I'm frequently busy, and I'm pretty insecure about everything I produce.

It's nice to do art for family when one can, it's just art can be a fickle mistress. It's not just about having the opportunity to produce it. For me I gotta be in the MOOD, man, or it's just going to come out like garbage.

...Sette's cousin TOTALLY lives in Cresce, doesn't he?

She says he does!

How can we contact you off of Formspring to ask commission prices, fees, etc? E-mail?

[email protected]

I can't wait to request my Mamalen Entek x Mountain Ogre necrophile OTP.

Go outside, find a rock, find a stick, and bang them together inside of a seedy tent. Charge admission!

So... What's the difference between day and night for Duane's hunger? Why is it harder to control when the sun goes down? And I guess we just got the answer for what those cuffs did in his bag.

This is stuff you'll have to wait to find out. Even Duane doesn't know most of the why's and how's of his existence.

Who would win: Duane or Batman?

Have you seen Under the Red Hood? I watched it again last night. I think Batman could deal with Zeus if he had to.

If there were an Unsounded Dance-off, who would win?

Regina Flask, Jivi's mother. That woman can jig, can jive, can jiggle!

Ok, what subjects/topics won't you draw involving your characters?

I can't answer that here, it's too incriminating! But I guess one that stands out immediately would be undead Duane anything. I'm not the necro-perv I've been painted as.

DuanexQuigley would be necrophilia, not "yaoi" right? Or.. I remember this yaoi I read once, with a dead guy coming back from the world beyond to fuck his bf one last time, and then his body broke in half in the middle of it. There was blood. D: Hmmm...

I think I read that comic too D:

I wouldn't ever draw undead Duane yaoi, too icky. But living Duane and Quigley, that could be pretty :3 I must at this point stress however, for the record, that both characters are canonically and unswervingly straight.

When Duane says: "after 6 years of time's brutish touch", does he mean 6 years since his entrails dropped out or since zombification? I'd guess the latter, but I somehow expected that to be longer ago.

After 6 years of decay, is what he's saying. So he's been dead six years. It's been interesting to see people theorize he's centuries old-- he ain't.

So I'm guessing some Duane/Quigley yaoi is out of the question?


Not entirely out of the question.

Paid for adult things.... You taking commissions, then?

I do take commissions but I'm booked up for a few months. If you're looking for an adult-themed commission though I'm pretty picky with what I'll take on. Don't get your hopes up.

I'm glad that other guy pointed out the porn directory. You have some cool images there. I like the one of Sette using a jar of evil to make her Christmas tree eat Santa. (Now where'd I put my fappan simulacrum?)

That's an ooooold Christmas card. I should reuse the theme for this year's card, it's always made me snicker.

Woohoo, smut! Dominatrix Sette riding Starfish like a pony, hoo ha!

You lie!

So..strawberry fish are fish shaped cookies with real strawberry filling?

Strawberry fish are real live freshwater fish. They taste nothing like strawberries but when you split them open you find some pretty tasty red flesh dotted with crunchy white parasites. The flavour is like a nice tuna sashimi with sesame seeds.

Holy cow! I explored the open directory you linked to, the one with the flash video and holy cow. Porn! Um to make this a question um, porn?

Yeeeeah, you always want to be careful clicking random links on the internet. There are some smutty illustrations in that directory. I do on occasion draw pictures of people doing grown-up things. Sometimes I even get paid for it! Although not often enough :(

I am lonely and cold. Would you come snuggles with me?

So busy. This smut isn't going to draw itself.

Would you put up a guide to the physics, culture and workings of Kassylyne on the site? It would make learning about wrights, khert and all that awesome stuff a lot easier.

Maybe one day, but I don't know how necessary it is. The important stuff will get explained in the comic. A lot of the info I give out here on formspring just isn't really important. People who never come across it and only read the comic will understand the story just fine without all the background fluff.

If Unsounded gets popular enough, would you consider releasing books?

There's so much work involved for so little pay-off, it's really not worth it for me.

Do you have a job apart from entertaining your fanbase?

Not a full-time one. At the moment I do daycare and some freelance and contract work to make ends meet. As soon as I manage to find full-time work again I'm sure comic and formspring activity will greatly diminish.

It's Latin. It just means 'female lacerater'.

Well I'll be damned.

Hatred of shoes? Why do you hate shoes so much?

Probably because I grew up in a tropical climate.

Do you think people who know you (specifically family) view you differently when they see what you draw? Like, Starfish for example - do they think you a creeper for creating such a character? If so, how do you deal?

Difficult to say - no one in my family reads my comics or cares about my artwork (or me, BAAAAW). My friends seem to be able to differentiate between fiction and reality though, and they don't treat me like a pariah in spite of what I draw to entertain myself.

Unless you're still financially dependent, you shouldn't worry about what your family thinks about whatever odd things you do. If they're relatives worth keeping they'll love you no matter who you are. If they can't get past something that is crucial to your character however, they are just not worth your time. Life is too, too short to distract yourself with idiots, even if you share blood with them.


This one? http://www.casualvillain.com/Unsounded/TWC/sex_machines.jpg

I must have skipped a page or something because I don't understand the phallic jokes about strawberry fish. Can you elaborate?

Were there phallic jokes? I think I missed them or have forgotten them.

Is cremation a purely Aldish practice, if Sette is so unfamiliar with the concept?

Not purely Aldish, no, but almost purely Ssaelit, as she said. The Gefendur faithful (those who worship the four gods described earlier in the chapter) bury the dead. To do anything else almost certainly assures the departed a poor experience in the afterlife.

Would you recommend strawberry fish to your friends?

If they like sashimi. I would eat buckets of strawberry fish. Whole schools!

Oh? So you don't run around barefoot 24/7? ;p

Actually, I'll confess to that. Unless I specifically have to go into a store or something I'm always barefoot. Have you ever driven barefoot? Oh so nice to curl your toes around the accelerator..

The Ssaelist faith is big in Alderode, right? Is it reasonable to assume that's where Duane's religious beliefs lie? I had a vague hunch you'd mentioned this before, and while I did find it it was a real pain. I sympathise with the search function plea.

I don't want to talk about the Ssaelit faith too much yet, 'cause it's a while before it's terribly relevant, but yes, it's only practised in Alderode for the most part. Even there it is practised by only a third of the population these days. It's a faith in decline and one whose practitioners are generally hanged when discovered.

How would your niece and nephew fall on Santa's list? Brats or good kids? I hope you enjoy Disneyland at least as far as you can.

We're going to Disney World! Disneyland is the one in California :3 I used to be a Disney nerd. Though I am one no longer these trivialities still concern me for God knows what reason.

My niece and nephew! They are pretty good kids. They are only one and three years old, however, so I am certain I will want to sell them both to Starfish by the time the weekend is over.

How much like Sette are you, personality/wit wise?

Outside of a certain irreverence towards the institutions of the world and a shared contempt for the czars of fashion, we're not much alike at all. I am not arrogant, superstitious, cruel (much), nor terribly greedy. You think Sette's witty? I think she steals her best material from her da :)

I also assume that this question of hair colour will lead to DuanexQuigleyxPeaceguard MISTAKEN IDENTITY HIJINKS, complete with yakety sax.

An interesting idea :) I'm not so sure it's going to go that way though.

I just assumed that Elka wanted to know whether or not Duane was a plat y/n/m?

You're on the right track.

What time is it at your place?


Who would win in a fight between Murkoph and Duane? When I say battle I mean actual fisticuffs, not fashion - Duane's dorky cloak with billowing capability would be an unfair advantage. Murkoph's bare chest would have no chance.

Aww, man, what if they fight some day? If you know who's going to win there's no suspense!

Why does Elka want to know what hair color Duane has? Is that like, important to tracking him or something??

Hmm! We shall see.

Okay. So who's your favourite vampire? Also, talk about Dracula! Have you read Carmilla and The Vampyre? What do you think about their heavy influence on Dracula, along with Stoker's denial of their prominent sexual themes being present in his book?

Sorry to disappoint but you give me too much credit, anon! While I did read Stoker's book in high school that was nigh fifteen years ago, and I remember Gary Oldman's take on the character much more vividly :3 To be honest when I say I like Dracula I'm ahem, talking about the Castlevania character. It's not all high literature and superciliousness 'round these parts. I'm afraid I've never had an academic interest in vampires.

My favourite bloodsucker, however, is Kain (of Legacy of Kain) followed by Lestat de Lioncourt. I'm also very fond of the main character of a vampire novel named Agyar, by Steven Brust.

Played Amnesia: the dark descent?

I haven't! But a good friend of mine assures me it's excellent and horrifying. If I had time for a new game I'd snag it off Steam, but who has time for a new game?

So, no 'sparkle-pires' causing mayhem in Unsounded anytime soon, then?

Haha. Sparkle-pires. Sparkle-pires should be flung into sparkle-pyres. But no, no vampires in Unsounded at all, actually.

Ya know, I watched the first Twilight movie on cable for lulz and I have a friend who was into the series enough to relate summaries of the rest of the books to me. I'm left morbidly curious to see how they manage to film the last novel. It should be amazing.

Do you watch Phineas and Ferb at all?

Just bits of it, by accident. Not really my kind of thing.

What about vampires? You totally dig vampires.

Depends on the canon. I like Legacy of Kain vampires. I like Vampire Chronicles vampires. I like Dracula. But Twilight vampires? Buffy vampires? Pffffft.

Never apologize for a successful troll? Makes since. if you did, you'd be apologizing for Sette constantly! <3

*high five*

Do you have any dogs of your own? Are they giant?

I have two dogs! Neither are of remarkable size. Both are mutts. One is brown and lanky. The other is black and fat and low to the ground, and looks like Donkey from Shrek. They are both pains in the ass but I love them.

What kind of music do you listen to when you're angry? And when you're sad?

Such a variety of songs. Let's say though, that at the moment, I quite like Lady Gaga and Florence + The Machine when I'm happy, and The Decemberists and Emilie Autumn when I wish my heart would crawl down into my stomach and drown itself in acid and hate.

Y U NO answer Formspring questions? You don't have a personal life all of the sudden, do you? :-(

Nah. Just very depressed lately. I'd kill myself but it's such an ordeal.

I love the layout of your comic! In fact, I think the way you have it is better than most (if not all) the other comics out there. I personally like it as it is :D Um...I need a question... I love you! ?

Aww <3 My layout suits what I do. If I was doing just a straightforward comic there'd be nothing wrong with using comicpress or whatever.

Did Bodkin love Koko dearly? How crushing a blow was it to him when Sette chopped her up?

He was really, really, really angry. There is a lot of story to Sette and Bodkin's relationship but it'll be a while before you get to hear the best stuff, alas.

Are your left arm and shoulder still in pain? I hope you get okay!

All better! Thanks for asking.

*yanks Sette's tail & runs*

Hang on to your spleeeeeeeen.

Does Sette like wine, or alcoholic stuff? I bet she'd be a fun drunk.

Wine and rum, hard cider and moonshine. She hangs out in pubs and finishes off patrons' drinks before the bartender can clear them, then goes to the beach and threatens the tides.

Do you ever get hand cramps when making the comic? (Or REM for that matter.)

I used to work at a shithole sweatshop of a company with half-functioning mice, computers set up at tables, and mandatory ten hour days. Between doing mindless Photoshop tasks and taking four hour breaks to cut things out of paper templates with exacto knives, I developed some pretty crippling CTS. It flares up nowadays if I use a mouse too much or bend my hand back for too long, but restricting myself to a tablet and wearing a wrist brace at night keeps me going.

Did you use and books or tutorials that were especially helpful when learning how to draw?

Nah. The best way to learn how to draw is to do it. A lot. From life. Books can be good for reference though. My favourite animal reference is "The Art of Animal Drawing" by Ken Hultgren and then Hogarth's Dynamic Anatomy for specific muscle reference. I can think of some online tutorials that are fun and entertaining to read through, but if they're drawn in the artist's very specific style I don't know that they're a great idea for people learning how to draw.

What would a bath do to Duane? Make him waterlogged and squishy?

Instigate mildew D:

Maximum level of boringness? So, um, what did you have for breakfast?

Two cups of coffee at McD's. Later in the day I had the world's hugest caramel apple at Disney World. It was like trying to eat a basketball.

Is Duane ever gonna spank Sette?

Duane's not a spanker. He's more a leather strap to the leg type.

Nevermind Sette getting a bath (which she needs) - what about her clothes! Sure she's got a new shirt, but the rest of it - phew!

Yeaaaah, I'm sure she smells of every place they've been. Having Duane as a traveling companion isn't helpful in that department either, since he can't appreciate her fragrance (and tell her to take a frigging bath).

Who would win in an eating contest, Sette or Duane?

Duane! But it wouldn't be a fair fight. He has no stomach so the food would just fall through and gather in a masticated mound at his feet, allowing him to theoretically stuff himself without end. So see? Being a rotted corpse isn't all BAWWW and strife. He could make tens of dollars at pie eating contests.

Awww, no full size of today's comic as a vote incentive?

Naw, I didn't find the art particularly snazzy.

What do you normally eat at McDonald's? I'm curious of your favorites. 90% of the time, it's 2 double cheeseburgers, large fries, and a large coke, no ice, for me.

Formspring, ya daft bastard, it says this question is from four weeks ago. Ahh, I try to limit my McDonald's intake to the rarest of occasions but when I do indulge I love me one of those mushroom Angus swiss burgers. The drippy mayonnaisey spooge on there is divine.

How would Sette fair if left in your care for a day? And in a bit of reversal, if Sette were forced to be a daycare person like you're doing with neice & nephew, how would she fare?

I think... Sette would have fun with them. She wouldn't be all that responsible though and Max would probably wind up as roadkill or shipped to Abu Dhabi. If Sette was in my care I'd tell her about all the rich people in the United States and let her go solve the income gap problem. With a knife. Then we'd go get sushi.

How do you deal with artist's block?

I don't know what artist's block is like for other artists, but for me it's when I'm suddenly overwhelmed by the empty chaos of the universe. Everything I do and think and say seems utterly transient, unimportant, hollow, shallow, stupid, and cringe-worthy. I'm haunted by images of the world a thousand years from now, or images of the cold empty indifference of space, or just fucking graveyards, man. I realise there're only a handful of creative works that really mean a good goddamn, and I'm certainly not making one of them. To quote Bastion, who often tirades over things like this, "We spend our entire life moving into a burning building," and sometimes I fall over from smoke inhalation. That's my artist's block.

How does anyone deal with that? I just play video games or watch movies until it goes away.

Another Batman-related question: are there any villains in Unsounded that even the Joker would find sick? Starfish, maybe?

Has the Joker ever seriously found something too sick? I suspect if he has it's just because the writers couldn't get it past the editors.

My rudest and most difficult-to-stomach villain is easily Murkoph. He makes Starfish look kind of like a Teletubby. The Clown Prince might take issue with some of what he does.

I have seen Under the Red Hood. Pretty good flick, and I like that there was no "Superboy punched time" involved. What are your thoughts on the DC animated shorts? I've enjoyed most of the ones I've seen, but Superman/Shazam should have been a feature.

Honestly I haven't seen that many of them. Batman and his peeps are the only DC characters I care much about. Wait, that's not entirely true 'cause I do dig Shazam, but the Superman/Shazam short didn't do much for me. Superman gets on my nerves. What was the movie where his cousin shows up? Supergirl, I think, and she's a total jerk and goes to hang out with the Amazons a while. Wonderwoman was kind of cool in that. Anyway.

Ya know that Superman and Captain Marvel story that Jeff Smith did? First Thunder? THAT would have been awesome to see animated.

You're pretty proud of your babysitting talents then?

Well, I would argue there is a distinction between "babysitting" and "daycare." Babysitting is just making sure a kid doesn't get himself killed for a while. Daycare is becoming Mom for ten hours every day. My nephew sees me more than his own parents.

But yeah, I'm pretty good at it.

Ah, I apologize. So you babysit often then, I take it.

Indeed. I mind one year old Max every day from 7-5:30 and I have since he was born! I did the same for his sister which is why I reckon she is now a genius.

Duane's situation is getting more and more depressing D: " I'm dead, I had to feel my body rot and see how it part by part went farther from my living self into a monster, I'm also starving ALL THE TIME now and struggles with my inner beast 24/7. Lol. "

Yeah, it's pretty miserable. One reason for the name of this chapter and another reason I hate this chapter so much. Despair everywhere ohnoes!

In a sense, Duane is no worse off than anyone else - his are just all the woes of life amplified. We're all constantly battling cravings we cannot possibly indulge in. We're all rotting every day, dealing with "time's brutish touch" in our own way. And we're all ultimately alone and unknowable and secretly ugly, trying to distract ourselves from our ceaseless decay in any manner that avails itself.

Hmm, then there's Sette who is young and oblivious, who is obsessed with the external and the material, who can't imagine ever being old or handicapped or unable to win whatever she wants. I suppose between the two of them they almost form one whole, rounded person.


But don't feel too bad for Duane - his problems are your problems, just brought to the forefront and painted with broader strokes.

You often talk/tweet about your children. But I notice you never mention a boyfriend or husband. What are they like?

Ah, they are not my children. They are my niece and nephew.

You're usually barefoot? How dirty are your soles, usually? Is that what inspire Sette to be barefoot all the time? Are your soles as leathery as you said hers would be?

Well, I shower daily, rarely leave my carpeted house, and live in a (for now) First World country. So my feet are clean and about as soft as the next person's. My hatred of shoes didn't inspire Sette's bare-footedness though. She's barefoot because she's a street urchin, also doesn't like shoes much, and it seemed appropriate.

Laceratrix is a real word!

So it's not just dominatrix + lacerate?

I see you are desperately backpedaling to hide the antelope from me, Laceratrix. I... oh, wait, I don't have a question. I was just commenting on the strawberry fish and beginning my bold new campaign of coming up with nicknames for you. ...fire bad?

"Laceratrix" took me a minute, but that's pretty brilliant, sir or ma'am.

Do you have any alcohol preferences? Beer, wine, some kind of mixed drink?

I don't drink. Years ago I liked an occasional frozen margarita or two, but even in college I didn't care for alcohol. There is something so coarse and depressing about it.

Will Sette change her outfit sometime?

She has a few different looks next chapter :3

And just like that, all of your stalkers & Formspring followers with a foot fetish just had dirty, dirty thoughts. <3

Yesterday I was tweaking this week's pages and was reminded page 47 has a panel with a close-up of one of Sette's feet. She's certain someone will fap to it but I have my doubts.

Wow, the super big comic page vote incentive is amazing! Are you gonna retroactively reupload every page at this size, and every page from now on?

No way, man! It'd break my template and eat up even more bandwidth. That page was just a treat :3

Have you seen dwarf fortress? What do you think of it?

Haven't heard of it, I'm afraid.

Yes, that's the picture! Also I fixed my capslock key. Yay! Wait, this has to be a question. Yay?


Do you have a cool nickname people call you?

Online I'm Glass to even my best of friends. Offline I'm just plain old Ashley. I've always wanted like, a cool Monster Truck nickname though. Like BONECRUSHER. Or ARTERIAL SPRAY.

What thread led to you checking here about a vore question? Am I missing something?

There was a half-serious vore/Unsounded /co/ thread on 4chan. I will never stop finding it surreal when I suddenly see a picture of Sette staring at me while I'm randomly scrolling through /co/ looking for Secret of Kells and Dark Knight threads to troll.

Oh. My. God. Someone HAS to draw "6 popped collars + mirrorshades" Duane. Anyway: That Flash intro was cool as hell. Is the blond guy with the shaggy hair the same as the guy in Duane's flashback? They look sort of similar.

Not the same guy :) Sharp eye though, I did wind up recycling some character designs from the abandoned game project. You'll see the other dudes pop up here and there eventually but they're not the same characters at all.

Are you into vore?

I don't really understand it and no, it doesn't do it for me. Sexualized consumption could be cool if it means like, I'm being sexed up by six-armed Cillian Murphy while eating Hawaiian pizza and one of those banana pudding milkshakes from Chick-fil-A.

I don't understand the point of using formspring. You're obviously quite capable of setting up an anonymous comment/reply page on your site, and unlike say, deviantart, there's no "formspring community" to add to your comic's readership.

I believe the point of using formspring is that it's fun. If I had a better comment system on my site I might use that more, but I don't so I don't. I'm often tempted to nix site comments altogether. I'm not sure they add much and I don't often have the enthusiasm to answer them like I should.

Who would win in a manly physique competition: Quigley, Captain Toma, or Buff Army Duane from the Past? (I left out Starfish in order to make the competition fair.)

Captain Toma! He's a ten foot tall beastman who showers in vodka and feeds his children shrimp scampi. We once had a bachelor party for him. He ate the entire cake, before we could tell him there was a stripper in it.

What do you think of Tokyopop closing?

Mostly it irritates the piss out of me. I'm just not certain who I want to be most irritated at.

I guess to start, I'm irritated at TP itself for not operating how I wanted it to operate. I think they should have, by hook or by crook, got the prices of those tankouban down and sold them in grocery stores, Wal-mart, Target, wherever but not in bookstores. Kids don't hang out in bookstores and when they do they think of them like libraries. They sit and read and never consider buying anything or bothering to nag their parents into buying. Bookstores are not appealing to ten year olds, and the snot-nosed kiddies who aren't 'net-savvy enough to pirate are the ones with all the money.

I thought their OEL books were pretty crappy and the ones that were decent weren't marketed properly. Rising Stars of Manga was a good idea in theory - and I certainly participated and am in one of those volumes if you care to look - but they were taking advantage of the idiot kids who won and wrapping tentacles around their IPs.

TP really ran itself into the ground. I am not surprised they are closing. Print has been dead a while but now the corpse is finally starting to reek.

What's with Elka's little blue streak? Does she dye it in for giggles or is it naturally there? (I figure if little girls can have tails, ladies can have blue hair.)

Nah, she bleaches and dyes it :) Elka hasn't entirely grown up yet.

I dunno if anyone asked this before, but if Quigley and Matty were to ride Uaid into a town, would people freak out? WOULD they ride Uaid into town?

People would freak out a little, yeah. It's not that constructs like Uaid are unheard of, but they're not things you normally see outside of battlefields. We all know tanks exist but if one rode down the street in front of your house you'd probably poop some masonry.

I dreamed I went to an Unsounded convention last night, and it was really cool with all sorts of merchandise and world info. Any chance we might get to at least see you at a convention in the near future?

Extremely unlikely. Conventions aren't my thing. Cool dream though.

Could you link to your youtube? I tried searching every combination of keywords I could think of and couldn't find any of the game videos.

I shall not! Because I intend to rerecord the video that's up there now. It was made on my old and crappy computer and it is very choppy. I will show you the Flash intro though - http://www.casualvillain.com/random/title_CS3.html

I can't wait until Duane dons his pymaric mirror shades and six popped collar capes and shows the haters what cool really is.

I wish someone would draw this that isn't me :3

So did Sette used to be part-lion in some other creative endeavour?

There is an illustration in my deviantArt gallery that leads people's thinking in certain directions.

I love you.


Did you ever think of making Tanners/Unsounded a book (or written work) rather than a graphic novel? Or was it always something accompanied by art in your head?

Funny you should mention that. Tanners was originally a novel. I wrote chapters and chapters of it before I realised that my prose is awful and I lack any ability to edit myself. There is so much WORLD in this story and so much to explain that I often still think I've gone in the wrong direction by making it a comic, but if it wasn't, no one would be reading it. No one reads original fiction on the internet, really. The kids like visuals.

So Unsounded may suffer by being in a medium not entirely suited to it but at least it will get read.

I actually thought Duane's outfit was kind of cool (though I like Quig's better). Does that make me a dork?

It may, my dear. Sette's bought him some new clothes now though that I think are marginally less dorky and unattractive, so maybe we all may soon be redeemed.

Please let us play your flesh game!!!!!

Okay... but be gentle.

Which programming language did you use for your doujin game? (Just out of curiosity) Can we see the cutscenes? One day? :hopes forever: It really looked amazing :C

I was programming it in Multimedia Fusion 2. I do know the basics of php, a bit more perl, and a fair bit of actionscript, but not like I used to. I find if you don't use it, you lose it.

The opening scenes of the game are on youtube and the intro movie is somewhere or other. If you've seen those, you've seen nigh all there is :)

At least the man purse is useful! The haircut serves no purpose other than establishing that Duane is an endearingly enormous dork. I'm sure he has some horrible one-liners he could subject the Peaceguard to when he's not tacit casting their limbs off.

Blimey, the little opera rant he gave the slavers in chapter 2 was pretty damn dorky. But I will keep your needs in mind. I swear to you and to the ghost of Avram I will never allow Duane to be Too Cool :D

What's up with all the questions about Sette eating wildlife?

I think someone is theorizing that Sette is part-lion and is amused by the thought of her eating zebras and antelope :3

Do you have a problem with magic being awesome and amazing, or do you just make it all codified and known-about for the purposes of Unsounded - like pymary sounds like it's this world's version of technology, amirite?

Hmm, I'm not entirely sure what the question is. I think pymary - which, yes, takes the place of a lot of what we'd use mechanized tech for - IS awesome and amazing. But I also think the technical achievements here in our world are awesome and amazing. They are not made unamazing or unawesome just because they adhere to the laws of nature and logic.

I enjoy lots of works that don't care to explain their magic. Of course, I feel this method works better in some settings than others. In Harry Potter for instance I find it downright bizarre that no one, to the best of my recollection, ever asked why the fuck can we do this stuff and where does it come from and what does it mean? Even reasonable and very rational Hermione never seemed curious about it. This seemed off to me in a modern setting where mankind has more or less discovered that there's a natural and rational law behind pretty much everything in the universe. More than the obsession with sweets or the excessive alliteration ever did, the failure to address the meaning and origins of magic reminded me constantly I was reading a book meant for children. Although don't get me wrong - I love HP and JK kicks my ass.

Magic in a high fantasy setting on the other hand, where people still believe the sun revolves around the earth and diseases are caused by tiny demons, I don't expect these people to question why there is magic nor the author to even address it. The holes can be filled in with gods.

When it came to Unsounded, I wanted its world to be a bit more sophisticated. I wanted it to be possible to be an atheist in this world. If you fill a fantasy world with the supernatural you are definitively answering a question and I didn't want that question answered. Ofttimes a setting may think it's making itself more mysterious by inserting the overtly supernatural but in my mind it's just the opposite.

Changing the very nature of a world so that a system like pymary seemed so reasonable solved my problem and let me have something very magic-like, that would look totally magical and supernatural to a reader, without adding the irrational and the unexplainable. It was what I needed for the setting but other settings need to do what they need to do and I can enjoy them too.

Do wrights have specialisations? I mean when you describe skills it seems clear that they have some, such as artificers or combat-wrights or whatever - but does it go further than skills, into elements and types of spells?

Wrights certainly have specializations. The practice of pymary is so broad and has so many applications that you'd have to have a specialization to make a career out of it. So you have artificers - people who craft pymarics - but they craft specific sorts. You could have a wright that only deals in crafting high-end weaponry and knows everything there is to know about it, but he wouldn't know how to cast a glamour to save his life. Not because it's not in him to do it, but because it's not terribly important to his field.

One could certainly specialize in a single element (proper word in his system is aspect) but there are SO MANY that it wouldn't make much sense to me to do so. This isn't a traditional magic system that restricts you to earth and fire and water and air. This is a system that uses almost any aspect you can think of. The page I'm drawing right now for instance, there's a little old lady nagging a wright to glamour her dog pink and make it smell like shortbread. Well, hell, "pink and shortbread" are two aspects she's going to need present to do so. Every colour can be an aspect, every shape, every texture, every smell. So having one aspect/elemental specialization, unless you're doing something very clever with it, doesn't make much sense.

For all its rules pymary in practise doesn't tend to look all that different from magic in plenty of other settings. To me, having the logical backing, though, grounds it and restricts it, and gives the advantage to intelligent, creative personalities instead of making magic just an effortless way for weak bookworms to punch muscleheads.

Hey cooldude. Would it be possible to use pymary to steal the "First Material" aspect of a First Material and apply it to something else? Like, you could make yourself into a First Material and bind spells to yourself. It's like getting infinite wishes!

Now you're thinking with portals!

But it doesn't work that way so no :D To move aspects around those aspects have to travel through the khert - the pymaric network - but a First Material's aspect is cemented in place. That permanence is why spells can be bonded to them. They are unaffected by the ceaseless movement of the khert and spells and aspects cannot be worn away. It's like, the entire world is made of sand and soil, the khert is the sea and wind constantly battering it, dispersing it, moving it around, but First Materials are solid diamond embedded in that sand and cannot be worn away.

Did Quigly use up all the First Material air casting spells to make his cape flair dramatically? Where did he buy his cape, anyway? Are capes a wright thing? Does Elka have a cape for fancy wright dinners?

Quigley's cape has a secret :D I've long thought that all spellcasting characters should wear a cape or some form of drapery. Makes for more dramatic magic shots. And if you don't have drama, what have you got?

No cape for Elka though :( Not her style.

I've seen some old drawings of Duane while he still got his hair, and I must ask; Did he choose that hairstyle or was it forced on him for some reason? It isn't really all that... Hip.

I hate to break it to you, darling, but Duane isn't that hip. I did decide to lose that hairstyle for all ages of comic Duane though, so you needn't worry over having to endure it again :D

Are you a brony?

No. I do not understand why people obsess over that show.

It's hot at your place, huh? Come to me love, It's still snow outside in Sweden, nice and cool. And wait until you see my basement...

Sweden has androgynous vampires, yes? I'm on my way.

Was Duane always a thin guy or is that completely an effect of his current deadness?

When he was in school and then the army, he was pretty toned. Afterwards his scholar's physique finally took over and he thinned out - but it wasn't like his current skinniness, which is a cause of just being a crusty skeleton covered in bandages and layers of clothing.

Are you okay? You've been quiet here. :(

I had a bad day yesterday. I'm back for a while though, thanks for asking :)

Pie? Sure, Cake and Apfelstrudel?


I know Shortwings, because he pointed me here, and then I pointed Lu here and I'm ALMOST POSITIVE they're not deranged alternate personalities. So there's that. Also, was that a Pratchett reference?

Pratchett reference... It's possible!

Is there a First Material for air?

Supposedly. It's been depleted for centuries though.

Besides Sette's habit of snatching everything, who in the Unsounded universe has bad habits? (smoking, drinking, wearing socks with sandals, etc)

Haha, Lawrence and Bastion smoke though you haven't met them yet. Bastion will smoke anything that's not nailed down or likely to poison him (too much) actually. Duane has the bad habit of talking down to people and lecturing them. Matty has a sweet tooth. Toma is a workaholic. Elka swears like a sailor. Uaid steps on endangered wildlife. Quigley has a weakness for standing dramatically and letting his cape flare.

That's an interesting thought. Would transgender spells be available, or possible? Hell of a lot nicer than surgery.

Something related to this comes up in the story so I can readily answer that no, such spells are not really possible in the current system. Glamours are sophisticated enough though that they might do the trick if a person's not too picky.

Would Duane take a deal to be returned to life if he did something unforgivable (let's say brutal murder) to an innocent person on the condition it wasn't a child and the only consequence would be he would have to live with the decision?

That's an interesting question. Ya know, I hesitate to give a definitive answer because it really could depend on circumstances, but I would lean towards a No. It hasn't been touched upon much yet, but Duane is a fairly religious person - his faith has helped him survive mentally to the point he's at now. Such a blatantly horrible act would be betraying everything he feels has done so much for him. Again, circumstances could factor into this a lot, but I think he'd see it for the devil's deal it is and refuse the offer.

Would Sette prefer to be a boy rather than a girl? Cos she's already pretty un-girl-like.

Enh. She is who she is and her gender doesn't matter. If she was a boy nothing important would be any different. Who cares what girls are supposed to be like? Sette didn't have any say in the making of those rules and never signed up to follow them.

If Hazel is first mate, What of me? D=

Can you cook? Bring pie.

Will Duane and Sette always be in each storyline, or will you leave them for a book or two? Cos' that would be really sucky. I'm kinda fond of the eloquent zombie and his thief friend.

They feature somehow in most chapters. No fears.

I have asked 100 percent of the anonymous questions below. I am also secretly the entities known as LuDucks, shrunkenone, and shortwings. How does it feel to know that 90% of your "fans" are just one obsessive reader? Also, I'm right outside your window!

Ahhhhhh! D:

Does Sette like hugs? I think she's very not used to them at all.

If Sette likes hugs she'd never admit to it. Hugs are for giiiirls.

I'm not anonymous! I'm just shy. ._.

I still love you.

You gotta draw naked invisible sweaty Sette :D

How do you know I haven't already? D:

I like to read the comics out loud, so are there any accents I could use for Sette and Duane as a rough guide for how they talk (Also, should I be worried I do this sort of thing a lot?)?

No, I refuse to be specific about how they talk :) I say use whatever accent feels right. It's cool you read the comic aloud, I do too when I'm writing the dialog.

What is the difference between a Durlynian (right suffix?) accent and a plain Aldish accent? For that matter, what does an Aldish accent sound like?

I'm really not sure how I would describe the Aldish accent beyond how I already have: Stiff, old-fashioned, formal. I know that each area of Alderode has a different accent - just like it works in our world - but I haven't thought about it so much I can explain the tiny differences in how Duane verbalizes consonants from how someone from Ulpha might :)

"Actually he will be appearing in every scene from now until the end of the story. As invisible ash wafting in the atmosphere." Dude. You just blew my fucking mind. How will I find a replacement?

I'm not sure but I daresay the ashes of your blown mind are now wafting in the atmosphere along with the zombie, mingling lasciviously with its particles, and granting to the poor creature in death the braaaaaaains it had so desired in unlife. You are a merciful zombie god.

Will we be seeing any more of that plod that gets burnt in Chapter 3? He's my favorite character so far. He would've so owned that little girl if club guy hadn't intervened. Maybe you can do a shirtless vote incentive pic of him? O_O

Actually he will be appearing in every scene from now until the end of the story. As invisible ash wafting in the atmosphere. Naked invisible ash. Naked, sweaty invisible ash. I'll be changing the rating of the comic next update, naturally.

How many questions a day do you get on average, anyway?

Enh. Fifteen to twenty. I reckon it'll taper off. I haven't updated in over a week!

Coke or Pepsi?


Coke. COKE FOREVER. I wouldn't piss into a can of Pepsi. And people who say there's no difference? For these people I suspend my pacifism.

Do you have any interest in social philosophy?

I would venture to say every writer has an interest in social philosophy. Kind of goes with the territory. Can't say I do much specific reading on the topic however. One has to narrow in on a few things in this life or risk becoming an all-around sciolist.

I don't necessarily think that acknowledge the brutal tragedies of human history and existence is necessarily cynical - I mean, as you say, these things happened. Isn't it just good semi-realist worldbuilding?

True, and I hope so. But I answered the question from a perspective on the story you can't have yet, since it's not finished nor really even launched into the meat of the narrative. So from my point of view of seeing the whole plot and world at once, it seems a pretty cynical tale to me :)

Let's talk world building! Do you think your world represents a cynical view, or an optimistic/aspirational one? How much do you like to draw on real elements, and how much do you create based on what-ifs? (for example, Kasslyne's strange physics.)

My knee-jerk response was that I have an aspirational view, but upon honest reflection it's all pretty goddamned cynical. Everything we touch we fuck up and I can't make a world with humans in it feel real unless I fill it with atrocities. The worst sociopolitical system in the comic feels extremely possible to me, while the most ideal one feels artificial, and only possible via a set of circumstances I've had to shoehorn into place.

The way pymary and the physics of the land have affected human progress really is a big series of what-ifs, I suppose. With pymary in existence I've realised a lot of the things in our world wouldn't be necessary in Kasslyne, so that's changed armaments, transportation, manufacture, etc. But then one has to imagine how something like pymary would be handled in a human world - how it would be made accessible to the common person, how it would be regulated, how people would break the rules. There's a correlation between pymary and computers and the internet. Casual users have pymarics, but wrights program, gruftgrammers hack, and the Window is a regulating entity - something much more complicated and powerful than the FCC - overseeing all of it.

In dealing with things like the lizard race I didn't have to think too hard about how we've historically handled inconvenient minorities in our world. The Gefendur religion and some of its more unsavory practises may seem bizarre to the modern reader but you don't have to look too far back in history at all to find even worse.

So yeah, Unsounded is cynical but it's not throwing anything at the reader that they can't find all around them anyway.

Have you ever tamed a wild animal?

Only children.

Will you do Bizarro Duane as a vote incentive? D-Man is THE MAN!

Ha, not likely. Obscure formspring humour.

Will we find out if Manashairala is really a "bitch-queen"?


Murkpoh is such a disgusting zombie. He eats babies and people. And yet you seem to harbor attraction (or at least some latent affection :3) to him. What is your response to this?

Murkoph just doesn't give a shit. I think everyone has moments when they wished they didn't give a shit.

What is your sleep schedule like? Are you an early morning riser that goes for a jog at 6am, or do you wake up late and lounge in bed until it's even later, then get up?

Well, I watch a one year old every day so I have to be up when he gets dropped off at 7:30. I usually go to bed around 1am. If the choice were mine I'd stay up all night and sleep all day.

What would Sette's beach swimsuit look like?

If she got zapped into our world? Difficult to say.

If Duane keeps going the way he is, at some point will he rot away to a walking, talking skeleton? In an opera cape and top hat?

Presumably. One can only keep the ravages of time at bay for so long.

Do you have any concept art or pictures of a complete vliegeng? The only one I can find is on your devart account but it only shows the head. I'm terribly interested in how their whole body looks!

This is old and a little inaccurate (no wings anymore) but http://casualvillain.com/ljpics/monday03.jpg

Oh? What would she be like at the beach? Don't want her wandering off too far! Hmm, doctor visits, and dentist visits, would be interesting to say the least.

Good luck with that.

But Duane and Quigs seem like they'd have so much in common! A love of the finer things in life, interest in pymary, a desire to magic blast Starfish into next Tuesday. They could empathize with each other about the annoying brats they have to drag along.

Duane and Quigley do have a few things in common, some of them very significant. Once you get to know Quigley better though, you'll see he and Duane are gonna have issues.

Is there ever real hardcore winter anywhere in Kasslyne and will we ever get to see some beautiful snow cowered lands as the journey goes on?

Definitely. It's autumn now and winter is on its way.

Where do I fill out the forms, and any tips? With her thieving skills, I can retire. Also, what'll happen when I introduce her to the internet & television?

She has a pretty short attention span and she can't read, so I'm not sure the internet would appeal much. Television... first time she caught the Disney Channel she'd probably smash the screen in. I think you'd wind up going through a lot of televisions honestly. I think she'd be most impressed by guns and PEZ dispensers.

Oh, okay. So there are families that kind of pass on this secret Ssaelit faith? Sort of like Catholicism under Elizabeth?

Your speculation is interesting :)

Considering reverse-Sette would be an ascetic, her flashbacks don't seem to indicate great luxury. How wealthy are her criminal family?

The Frummagems are pretty well-off. I guess I imagined Bizarro Sette would have no money, no possessions, take as little from the world as she could get away with, and live an entirely selfless existence.

Did Duane become Ssaelit/sympathetic to Ssaelit as a result of his research?

Duane was born into a Ssaelit family. It's been his religion all his life.

Can I adopt Sette?

Yes. Please take her. She's chewed up all my shoes.

What, no guide to Tainish? No notes you wrote for yourself?

Oh, sure, I have notes and wordlists, but those are for meeee. You don't need to learn Tainish, my boy. Learn Romanian, then you can talk like Dracula.

Do you have a single person or series that embodies your views as a comic artist?

Alan Moore is pretty great. I even love that he's a curmudgeon with jungle hair who insults everyone. He'd totally despise everything I do. He's awesome.

No one is without flaw to me though. Everyone's got some weird hang-up or shortcoming so I don't think I can pick out anyone who really stands as the apotheosis of my admittedly nebulous philosophy. As far as a singleseries though... it's a tough choice, but perhaps Pink Sniper.

I always imagine Duane with this annoying British accent, which makes it very hard to take him seriously! What should I do?! D:

Never, ever take him seriously of course. He is a silly man.

When Duane was a scholar, what were the subjects he researched?

Pymary, naturally. He also studied Old Tainish - a language still not fully understood - the ancient Tains, the Ssaelit faith, and the Dammakhert.

Yes, I really am working on a soundtrack. I thought you knew. Unless you thought I was kidding when I told you? Damnit, I listened to Italian opera for you, woman!

Did you forget you were formspringing anonymously? Now I know who this is :3

I don't snobbery in brackets is considered snobbery in secret?

I think you lost a word there, sexy.

Have you ever been in a fight?

I have two little brothers. We've knocked each other's teeth out - quite literally - for infractions as slight as breathing garlicky breath too near the other's nose.

So, does Starfish prefer little girls or little boys?

Little girls.

What gets Sette mad? What are some of her pet peeves? What irritates her?

Life makes Sette mad. The fact that people don't kiss her feet and throw their wallets at her when she passes them by on the street makes Sette mad. Duane irritates her. Words and reading and related things irritate her. People irritate her, especially girls doing stupid girly things. Animals and money are best in life.

What gets Duane pissed off? What are his pet peeves, makes me mad or irritable?

I would say his biggest peeve is anyone being a dick to children. Hmm. He really hates Crescian society and its monarchy. Doesn't like Gefendur much. Thinks most foreigners are simple-minded. Hates irreverence towards pymary. Ha, really, it's easier listing what Duane enjoys than what pisses him off :)

You said most Crescians are black(not all though), so.. Are most Aldish white? I've understood that it's a lot of different groups in Alderode, but do they differ in skin colour too sometimes or just hair and/or eye colour?

Yeah, every class but the Tainish have pretty distinct colouring though, across the board, everyone's fairly Caucasian. You can guess their looks by their labels. Plats are violet-eyed albinos, complete with poor vision and a difficult time with direct sun. Silvers have grey hair, blue eyes, and a bit more melanin. Tainish are mostly towheaded, mostly green eyes, but genetic deviation is actually possible since they're not so much a class as a nonclass. Bronze are light brown from head to toe. Jets have black hair, blue eyes, and a fair complexion. Finally the Coppers are redheads, with red eyes and rich ruddy skin.

Does Sette wear a bra? It's a great place for stashing loot! She could have loot boobs.

I'm only acknowledging this because of the phrase "loot boobs."

Giant sleeping puppy caretaker, then. That's gotta be a sweet gig, right? Also, what are more rambunctious breeds like labs and golden retrievers used for?

I always thought labs would make great babysitters or just family pets or mounts for casual riding. They're generally so great with kids. I don't think I'd copy, paste, and transform an actual lab into the comic though. When I was concepting some of the dogs out I found if I made them look too accurate to specific breeds they started to look silly.

I hope you haven't already answered this (I looked way back!), but any recs for Unsounded soundtrack? I want to reread during the hiatus!

I'm not sure I have one. I wish some intrepid reader would devise a soundtrack, it'd be fun to listen to. Duane likes Beirut and Italian opera if that's any help :D

Would you cuddle a cuttle fish? Would Sette?

They really are pretty cute. I'm reminded of a creature in Alderode that I named a cuddlefish. Saltwater crocodile with two mouths. Even more cuddly.

Does Duane's glamour just cover his face, or does he go in for the whole fake head package (ears, hair, eyebrows, etc.)?

Naw, he just concentrates on what's visible. Waste not, want not.

So if pymarics and wandering roots are made out of first materials, does that mean the twig and bottle shard which Sette offered to the shop lady were actually valuable?

Ironically enough, yes. But not extravagantly valuable. Who's going to want to buy and enchant a twig or a broken piece of glass.

I'm just not seeing it. He looks like Robert Smith meets It to me.

Brandon Lee as the Crow? I

I *hisssss*

I think you should go close your fingers in a car door. Actually I don't think I know who Robert Smith is. He better be an attractive motherfucker.

How about plants? Any funky vegetables out there? With horrifying and/or hilarious side-effects?

The only one that comes to mind is our old friend the Wandering Root. If there are others I've yet to think of them :)

Your Brandon Lee fetish made me laugh and laugh. I'm tempted to ask for the exact specifics, but I'm not convinced an answer would be forthcoming?

Man, who needs specifics? Have you seen The Crow? Brandon Lee is so effing perfect in that movie I can't even.

Has anyone aside from Duane ever been nice or kind to Sette? She may be mouthy, but surely she's inspired some mothering behavior now and then.

It's pretty easy to be cruel and dismissive of Sette. One could argue she's not even human (although one couldn't argue it long as Sette would be likely to kick that person in the solar plexus).

Did you know you can have pet cuttlefish and octopi? I just learned today and now I want one so bad.

Use protection.

I'd just like to let you know that your Trickle Down Economics comment made me love you 10x more.


Does even Sette's underpants have little pockets sewn in for loot storage? She's a small girl, she needs all the loot storage she can get!

Haha, they probably do! I'd like to draw her modifying the clothes she bought from the waystation. It probably took her a few hours of careful sewing to get pockets enough in that new shirt.

Do you play any musical instruments?

To my great sadness I do not! I often think that music is the highest form of creative expression; the highest art! That I haven't a musical bone in my body fills me with angst and black bile.

Will all of your characters be featured in Unsounded? Is it a collection of various plotlines and characters all put together in one epic ballad? Or are their characters that will never be featured?

There are some characters exclusive to Sharteshane who won't ever make it in. Yorick and Ophelia from ChibiZombies definitely will not be in it ;) For now I promise you Bastion and Murkoph though, for sure and certain.

Will we ever see a flashback of Duane's life as a simple scribe in Sharteshane? How about when Sette's Da confronted him and blackmailed him into the guardianship?

Maybe. Those specific scenes are of negligible importance though, so as appealing as they sound I might not be able to justify cutting away to them. Maybe.

There is a brief Sharteshane flashback scene at the beginning of the next chapter. Some Da action, maybe it will satisfy.

I thought you'd ignored the question I asked about death. Thanks for answering it!

I had to give it a good think.

I've been begging my sister to read your comic, but she's terribly lazy. She promises to if someone gets disemboweled with an eggbeater, however. Or... should we not give Sette ideas?

An eggbeater? Really? There are much more efficient ways to disembowel someone. Chastise your sister for me, this is unacceptable.

May we see the pic you draw of your feet?


Chill, bloat, & fall to bits? Hopefully not while still typing; that would be messy!


Is pymary at Duane's level something people can learn naturally (or teach themselves) without formal training? Or are books and teachers absolutely necessary?

Books at least are absolutely necessary because if you want to practise legally you have to use the spells that have been written and programmed into the khert for you. Of course once you have these spells memorized you can lose the books. Teachers aren't strictly necessary except that you aren't allowed to practise unless you've gone to school and been licensed - which requires teachers.

If you want to practise illegally, and money is no object, you can theoretically tell the system to sod off and go about your pymary as you wish. But you do so at your peril.

Given how complicated the magic system is in Unsounded, are there mad scientist equivalents for wrights? I'm thinking total nutbars who mess with the natural order because they can and it's cool.

Indeed. Those would be the Ilganyag (Black Tongues). They're an arcane brotherhood who believe pymary should be (mostly) free and unregulated. Some are nutbars, some are geniuses. They're pretty brutal though. The leadership WILL find you and kill you if they discover you are practising as an unlicensed wright. They're all for free pymary so long as you're paying your dues to them. They are badass motherfuckers.

Damn, your niece looks so much like Sette - just with smaller, flatter teeth. Did you perhaps inadverdantly base Sette on her (I know I've done that before)?

Haha, not really possible. Sette's been around - even in her current incarnation - since long, long before Mackenzie was even a zygote.

How did you invent/create the Tainish language? Do you have any tips as to how I can create my own?

Beyond knowing about grammar and having at least some knowledge of a diverse range of tongues, I think the most important thing to constructing a language is understanding - at least in part - the world of the people who speak this language. How hierarchical is their society? What myths and stories and historical events might have shaped their figures of speech? As a people are they extravagant or are they austere? What do they value? What do they disdain? You can really depict the whole history of a culture in a language, and establish in a few sentence an entire tone. And as you develop the language you'll find yourself developing the world even more. It goes hand in hand really beautifully.

Tainish, for me, came about slowly. I had just single words I used for a long time with my characters so by the time I sat down to actually construct the language I had a basic list of phonemes established just by examining the words I'd already been using. Thing was, these words didn't really jive with the names of the characters. You can't even pronounce the name "Duane" properly in Tainish. Why was that? I had to answer that question and others and in doing so, more of the world opened up. It's okay to decide things and then go back and explain them later. Trust in your imagination.


I don't KNOW. I think it has something to do with cell division.

So I'm curious, how do you deal with some of the more depraved situations people create for their own personal...eh..."pecularities" that they foist your characters into? It's one of those things that's kept me from putting anything comicwise on the web..

Honestly this has only happened once that I'm aware of. Someone on the /tg/ 4chan board wrote a few questionable, throw-away bits of porn concerning Sette and Duane. It didn't bother me at all. I'm not prudish and I've been around. I realised long ago that one of the highest compliments you can be paid as a creator is to have your creations feature in fan media. Whether that's pornographic fan media or not is irrelevant (to me, anyway). It's flattering in all forms and I believe the best way to deal with it is to be a smooth motherfucker. Don't let it ruffle your feathers, and be thankful for the attention.

Don't fear the attention of readers! Don't fear their proclivities. All it means is that they dig your toys and want to play with them too. Nothing they do will ever be canon. Yours is always the Word-of-God and you are the sole author of their true destinies.

Do you know who Oliver Postgate is? Do you have an opinion on him?

I do not know who he is. I don't like not knowing things though so I wiki'd him. A creator of British children's programming whose work was aired largely before I was born? I conclude that I enjoy his name. It has a pleasant ring to it.

Are you a proficient gambler?

I could be but I wouldn't know since I do not gamble. It seems like a monumentally boring activity.

They are /dangerously adorable/. I suggest extreme caution. They are each half of Sette! I am afraid you are doomed, no rescue possible.

You called my niece and nephew adorable so now we're friends forever.

What is your favourite folk myth? How about your favourite poem?

Wow, my favourite folk myth... Perhaps Trickle-Down Economics.

Hohoho! But no politics tonight. I rather like The Soldier and Death, an old Russian folk tale, and I love Br'er Rabbit and Anansi stories. As for my favourite poem I enjoy Billy in the Darbies by Melville (there is actually a character in Unsounded loosely based off Billy Budd), the entirety of Whitman's Leaves of Grass, A Song of The Degrees by Ezra Pound, Edge by Plath, and Les Métamorphoses du Vampire by Baudelaire. I'm sure there are others but these immediately come to mind.

...Max is Sette in disguise, isn't he?

I think my niece Mackenzie looks vaguely like a three year old Sette. Max does have the brutality though. Whatchu think? :3 http://www.casualvillain.com/random/photos/disney.jpg

In the vampire unicorn future, what kind of vampire unicorn will you own?

Let us say she will be as enlightened as a Houyhnhnm, as sexy as Alucard (from CV, thank you), and as batshit insane as the pink and blue steeds from Charlie the Unicorn.

Can you sent Sette over to steal my stuff? I'm moving, and I have got way too much stuff.

Okay, but it better be cool stuff. Once Duane made a big fuss over some old book in his satchel, insisting on its value and warning Sette she'd catch hell if she ever tried to thieve it from him. Next day she naturally did just that only to find it was a book on etiquette :( Sette can't read but she did manage to navigate the illustrations well enough to figure out which was the proper fork in a place setting to use for stabbing zombies in the backs of their knees.

Do you think you might ever have it so the newest page is always on the index page? Or maybe make a latest page link down in the navigation?

Not unless someone writes me a CMS that allows for that and also complete per-page template and content control.

None of the webcomic solutions around that I found allowed me to do template breaking, or effects like the darkening pages in chapter 2, or allowed me to fiddle with the navigation buttons so I could hide easter egg links. I wanted complete per page control. I also wanted comments and commentary separate from the pages themselves.

My current system is a bit more work for me and probably a bit more work for readers - but only because a single extra button click is required to get to the current page. If that is too much to ask, I admit defeat.

When science allows for it, I will personally get you a vampire unicorn! What will you name her?

Shrunkenone <3

No more of Duane's bowl-head haircut?! I feel cheated! His dorkiness is one of his most charming features. I mean, he's still got that NAME, but I think you're going to have to introduce another crippling embarrassment to his design to make up for it.

I dunno, man, I still think he's a giant dork even without the monk hair. You don't think his outfit is lame and dorky? I purposefully tried to make it plain and awkward and kind of ugly, and then gave him that man-purse. That man-purse MUST cash in for huge dork points, I insist on it.

Duane certainly doesn't seem to be respect the Four too much. I'm guessing since you're saying he's religious, that he believes in something else? Do people in Alderode worship in a way unlike the rest of the continent?

I'd rather the comic explain the religious stuff. It's not all that important for a while.

Please let us play your flash game!!! It looks fantabulous ;___;

Haha, I read that as "flesh game" at first and was about to ask you what you're doing tonight. My Flash game... you probably mean my doujin game (which was not done in Flash, only the cutscenes were) and there's nothing to play. It never got very far. Sorry, man.

Does Duane hate Crescians because of what they did in the wars, and would that stop him from being nice to them if they wanted to be friends with him (here's hoping the Peaceguard can forgive him)?

Duane has a problem with Cresce partly due to his experiences with them in battle, but mostly because the Aldish hate Crescians and the Crescians hate Aldish. They cannot stand each other's politics, cultures, values, religious practises, manners of speech, history, favourite ice cream flavours, forms of entertainment, pets, nor music. They are only slightly more tolerant of each other than Israelites and Palestinians.

Can Duane ever get over this? Can Elka and Toma ever get over this? Can anyone ever get over this? Only time will tell.

If I was a wright I would take your comic-making aspect.

Fiend! I would have to learn how to take it back-- and with it, your genitals!

Hey, is that Antelope'N'Chips Sette's eating?

Shush you.

Pymary sounds like it would make a killer combat system in a game. Have you ever thought about writing one?

I was trying to work it into a doujin game I was tinkering with a few years ago but ran into a brick wall with my limited programming ability. Alas.

Where does the name 'Tanners' originate from?

The protagonist of the story was in a crime syndicate that used a well-respected tannery as a front. At night he killed people, during the day he skinned animals and tanned hides.

I asked about 6 questions (got them all answered, too! So great! :)) as Anon for lack of an account. And I'll probably never make an account, as no-one would want to ask *me* stuff - I don't have a cool comic. So please keep it open! ~Reed

Hello Reed! Hey, if I didn't have a comic no one would ask me anything either. It's okay to be boring!

I only ask anonymously becuase I don't have an account. I haven't asked many questions (I was the one with about the dog tack, yeh). Maybe I should introduce myself. I'm Hazel, and I would totally live on a boat.

Hello Hazel! Come be a pirate with me and the Formspring anons. You can be first mate!
Wouldn't it kind of spoil the fun if I wasn't a mysterious anon who just finds the whole world you've built up fascinating?

I have no problem with anonymity. I'm a chantard myself.

Are we going to see Aldish society in a couple of chapters or do we have quite a long wait to see all the stuff you enjoyed creating there?

It's farther away than I'd like :( But it's introduced alongside an all new group of characters and plotline, so we need to take care of some of our business with the thief, the zombie, and the slavers first. It doesn't do to have too many open questions at once, I say.

Why do you think people ask so many anonymous questions? Fear of judgement or lack of account? (can you even ask without FS account?) On a side Note, I'd go with you houseboats are Awesome. Catamaran?

I bet most of the anonymous questions are the same person. Could be lack of an account! You can block anons on your preferences page but I choose not to. Walk on the wild side.

Yay catamaran!

Favourite journalist?

Hmm. Sharif Abdel Kouddous did an amazing job covering the Egyptian uprising - I think he could use a Pulitzer, honestly. The entirety of Democracy Now! is quality reporting. New Left Media has produced some uproarious Tea Party videos. No one else really stands out to me. There are a few ridiculous commentators I enjoy - Cenk Uygur and Anna Kasparian over at TYT are entertaining in small amounts, and I used to watch Olbermann now and then - but they're not really journalists.

What fonts do you use for the comic (if you don't mind sharing, of course)?

Anime Ace! You can get it for free at Blambot.com

What does your basic, non-magic-using soldier use in Kasslyne? Wrights must change the way war works completely, so how does it work?

You'll get to see first-hand later, I promise.

How thought out are the languages in Unsounded? How are the grammatical structures arranged and are the various languages based respectively off of specific languages? Do they have genders etc? Or are they blessedly free from romance language wankery?

There's only one language I've created for the story and that's Tainish, Alderode's second most widely spoken language. It's a convenient one because it was restructured long ago to be much simpler than its original incarnation, so I had an excuse for making all the conjugation and grammer really straight forward. No gendered words, only two irregular verbs, no articles. The economy of the language is somewhat Japanese.

If Formspring had a search function I'd link you back to the last time I talked about Tainish, it had history and details.

Does Duane like hugs?

Mmm, when appropriate.

So what are the Sonories? It makes me think of a screaming collection of severed heads or something.

The Sonories are Cresce's ruling family. They've provided every Queen for the last six-hundred years.

Which character do you find hardest to draw?

Uaaaaid. I had a Sketchup model of him I'd roughed together but I lost it last time I reinstalled. Uaid takes forever.

If you had to pick a house somewhere in Unsounded universe to live, where it would be?

So hard to choooose. Ulestry is nice and peaceful and bucolic and the mountains are pretty, but nothing interesting happens there. Cresce is pretty cool but they value hard work and sacrifice and I'm a slacker. How about a houseboat? Then I can just sail around the coast. Come with me. We can be pirates.

LOL, I just realized that if Tirna really did visit Kasslyne, that means she must've crawled up Fat Yerta's vagina. And with that, I bid you good night.

The Gefendur religion is pretty old. Its primitive founders preached that Yerta actually threw a tantrum and ate Tirna, and she wound up in the world-womb from there. But again, it's mythology. Can't be too literal with it. But yes, yes, vagina, lol. I hope you dreamt of scorpions.

Are there any questions you're surprised no one's asked yet? If so, what are they, and can you answer them? :D

The pooping question that was just asked. But now it's been asked and answered. Let us speak of poop no more.

Does Sette's tail get in the way of pooping?

No, dear.

Does Sette resent having a tail, or does she think it's awesome? I think it's awesome.

Sounds like she kind of resents it. It's not like it does anything useful.

Do you do any non-digital art? Like, painting with acrylics or oils?

I did a lot of acrylic and prismacolour when I was a kid. Then I'd do watercolours occasionally. Physical media is great but the supplies are expensive and set-up and clean-up are time-consuming. Digital art is fast and painless.

Do you have a favorite comic? What do you look for in a comic or web comic or manga?

I think... my favourite comic ever might possibly be Gaiman's 1602. There is something about Doctor Strange in that story that twists my nipples and pokes me in the eye.

I like bold stories, things I've never seen before. I like broken taboos. I always remember certain scenes from comics better than I do their overall plots. Like Kuroi Sabato and the heads sewn onto his shoulders in Blade of the Immortal. Like Kingdok losing his arm in Bone. Rorschach's origin in Watchmen. The Twilight King's first appearance in Courtney Crumrin. Sometimes I feel like I'm going through life sleepwalking, and I need the bold visuals and ideas in comics to wake me up. Movies can have those of course, but there are a thousand people behind what gets to your eyes on a movie screen. With a comic, I'm connected eye to brain with one or two or three creators. It's a more personal and human experience than having a movie pumped into your synapses. This is why novels and comics are superior to video games and movies and television, and always will be.

Is there any, one detail about the world of Unsounded that you're quite proud you thought up? You know, like using gigantic dogs instead of horses, vliegeng, the dammakhert, that there are some seriously badass undead characters?

I really, really like Alderode. It's a horrible country but I feel that it's very well-realised, conceptually. The psychology of the place and its people, the Dammakhert, the classes, the fauna, the language, the religious institutions and the government all work together in, I feel, a believable way. I can't wait to show it to you :3

Canadian spelling is a happy medium between the two 'polar' opposites that are US and UK. I really like the idea of using two separate spelling regimes for different characters though. If it matters - I've never noticed any spelling inconsistencies =]

That's good to know :) One less thing to be neurotic about.

What kind of requirements are there for joining the Peaceguard?

Mostly health requirements. Unless you're entering a magery, military service is compulsory in Cresce. The Peaceguard is a choice appointment though because it gets you away from the hazardous border with Alderode and back into the interior dealing with Cresce's allies and protectorates. How do you get that appointment though? Promotion from the rank and file of the army. But officials are also always watching the training camps for new recruits too intelligent, too diplomatic, too delicate for the trenches.

You can apply directly for the Peaceguard like Elka did but it's rare to get a placement if you're not from one of the Queen's favoured families (fortunately, Elka is).

Does Cresce feel obligated to protect Ulestry because it has no army and they have good diplomatic relations or has Alderode invaded Ulestry in the past and now they're scared those fiendish Aldish will pull a sneak attack again?

There have been incidents of Aldish spies living as Ulestrians and entering Cresce via their shared border, and terrorists wreaking havoc in Crescian villages in the area. The Sonories have quite a collection of their heads. Keeping garrisons in Ulestry is prudent, particularly since Ulestry refuses to maintain a standing army or do much of anything to defend itself from anyone, the hippies.

If James Gurney wrote a story about a culture of men living side by side with intelligent pizzas in fedoras I would buy it, too. Or should we be expecting that from you in the future? ;)

Rats. I can't do that now, can I? :(

Cresce and Alderode hate each other, Ulestry is a conscientious objector's paradise, and Sharteshane is a sleazy den of iniquity. Is there anything particularly characteristic about Madishane that sets it apart from its unhappy neighbours?

Madishane's most important characteristic is probably its large population of fraternal sect Gefendur. The Gefendur religion worships two sets of Twin Gods - two sisters and two brothers. Most countries focus on Yerta and Tirna, the sisters, but Alderode and Madishane give dominion to Riv and Baelar, the brothers. Madishane once had a large population of refugee Aldish (they've since assimilated many generations over) but there was a time when they made war with Ulestry for religious reasons. Cresce had to step in and smack them around. Afterwards Ulestry was so devastated that its people disbanded what was left of its army and made a vow of pacifism. Cresce drew up a border between Ulestry and Madishane - straight as an arrow through the westgate mountain range - and the two countries have enjoyed relative peace ever since.

But Madishane is still probably the most socially backwards country around. They have some nasty practises when it comes to women.

Okay, I promise I wont send anymore Formspring comments. After this one. That should cut you down to about 7 questions per day. ;-)

Aww. But I will miss your sinister silhouette, anonymous.

You seem really intelligent and you kind of intimidate me. Why is your spelling all mixed up between British and American? You must know better.

"Seem" is the crucial word.

I blame my Canadian friend Amanda for fucking up my spelling. We used to have marathon chat and RP sessions over AIM and I thought her way of spelling was superior, so I started to copy her. When I started to RP at Shards, I would play Murkoph and Duane like I was two different people - and I'd use British spelling for Duane and American for Murk. Had everyone fooled, it was great fun.

My spelling used to alarm me because I'm just not consistent. But fuck it. I spell words the way I want and it's all correct SOMEWHERE in the world.

So what motivates a family man like Captain Toma to police the backwaters of Ulestry rather than stay in Cresce where he can be near his wife and kids? Do the Peaceguard have any choice in their assignments or is it pretty much like it or lump it?

Mmmm, these are things we'll find out.

Do wrights have a particular arsenal of spells for all kinds of purposes memorised then, or just the ones they are most likely to use?

Depends on the wright. Most pymary-users don't go around picking fights. They're just tradesmen. They know how to craft certain pymarics or simulacrums or erect barriers around banks or guildhalls or the homes of the rich. If you got into a fight with a wright-on-the-street he probably wouldn't know what in the hell to do.

But wrights who are soldiers, bird dogs, cops, they're likely to have a few strategies they rely on, and if they're wise they'd have the spells required to carry them out memorized. It's like with any martial discipline. You have routines committed to muscle memory and you're known for them. You have favoured techniques that you can bring out without even having to think about them.

"So is a scouter like a PKE meter for POWAH LEVELS?" Pretty much. I was just wondering if wrights could get a sense of how powerful each other was (maybe due to being mutually connected to the khert). This sort of thing happens in anime all the time.

Yeah, if a wright is seasoned he can watch the way the khert moves and flows around a person and get a sense of how well the guy's pymary is going to react with it, but that isn't related to power so much. Everyone's dealing with the same amount of "power" because you don't have access to aspects that your opponent doesn't have access to. So fights are more about being fast, being educated, and being innovative. Or, more often than not, they're about tipping the balance with a good old-fashioned staff to the head or some spry footwork.

How do you measure these things? Look at him. If your opponent is carrying a spellbook around, that's a good sign. If he doesn't have his shit committed to memory and you do, you're going to be faster and more versatile. If he's a soft, fat bastard, also a good sign. You're going to be able to dodge better, react faster, banter awesomely about his fatness. Is he in rags? Has he a lower class accent? A poor man couldn't have afforded a fine magery, and he's not going to be as well-taught as you.

Hopefully my comic battles don't come off like scenes out've DBZ or Naruto. I'll do my best.

Do you put little easter eggs in your comic? Or any super subtle references to cartoons/other comics/etc?

Hmm, some of my friend's characters are hanging out in the background at the waystation. If there's anything else, I leave it up to readers to discover it :)

What was the very first seedling idea you had that led you to create Tanners and then Unsounded?

I think it all can be traced back to figuring out Murkoph's story. There were other stories before that, and some of them bleed into parts of Unsounded. There have always been certain themes that've interested me, ever since I was a kid. But Tanners is really all about Murkoph and Unsounded was born out of Tanners. So, yeah. Murkoph.

Have you ever created a 'Mary-sue' character? If so, can you tell us about them?

I don't think so. Even back when I wrote fanfiction and added original characters to stories they tended to just be crutches for the plot or comic relief. And they were almost all guys. So no, unless someone who remembers my old stories wants to correct me, I've never written a Mary Sue.

Son? I daresay I'm a smidgen older than you. ;)

I bet you're still someone's son :3

You didn't answer my question. I totally thought it would make you laugh. I am now teh sad :(

Maybe it did, but I couldn't think of an answer. Don't be sad.

"Vegeta, what does the scouter say about his power level?" "IT'S OVER 9000!!!!"

Haaaa~ All I know about DBZ is the OVER 9000 meme and that the actor who played Spike on Buffy was in the movie (I still didn't see it). So is a scouter like a PKE meter for POWAH LEVELS? :3

Unsounded sprite comic... Good idea for an April 1st comic if said date ever falls on your normal upload days.

That is a bit of brilliance, son.

How does tacit casting work?

Tacit casters needn't verbalize their spells. Very few people have this ability. Let us leave the why's and how's for later.

Can wrights sense each others' power levels without a scouter?

There aren't... power levels, seriously. What's a scouter?

Why do you have a problem with "nice" protagonists? I mean many of 'em are fallible and occasionally selfish and whiny, but they aren't total assholes. Sette steals and cheats, but she isn't a total bitch. Please explain your "grey morality" favouring.

I would daresay most everyone over the age of ten favours "grey morality" in their entertainment these days. The black hat and white hat dynamic died out with westerns, I suspect because those kinds of characters so rarely have counterparts in real life. There are people who do heroic things and people who do villainous things but to define a person as a hero or a villain, that's something we do to strangers on the evening news, or in the name of religious or political institutions.

Truthfully, I don't think any of my main characters actually are practising "grey morality." I think most of my protagonists (except Sette naturally) ARE "nice." But they also respond to events according to their experiences and their own personal morals which are to them, absolutely just and reasonable. They might not jive with your morals or my morals, but they are being true to their own worldviews. In my opinion, an absolute morality simply does not exist and trying to write a character in a fantasy world who abides by our western morality is a bit cheap and maybe even yawningly didactic.

Ever gonna do seven day a week updates?

Want Unsounded to become a sprite comic?

Are there any unusual birds in Kasslyne?

Mmm yes. But let us not discuss them.

If the world is in her womb, dare I ask where these Hells are that you're now damned to? o.O;

Somewhere in Miami, I believe.

"Someone recommended Unsounded on a vore messageboard a while back and I believe a few readers enjoy that kink.:3" - How do -you- know that, though?

Referral logs and Google, my darling.

Does Fat Yerta ever get mad that people call her "fat" when she's just pregnant?

You made me lol at one of the gods :( Surely I am now damned to the hells.

The world rests IN her belly? Why hasn't she digested them yet? Or is that their version of the apocalypse?

In her WOMB, fool :D But it's religious mythology, you can't apply logic to it.

What's the weirdest question you've been asked so far either about your comic or personal life? Have there been any amazing conspiracy theories (about either)?

Something about what Sette would eat if she was suddenly 50 feet tall. That was preeeetty weeeeeird. Someone recommended Unsounded on a vore messageboard a while back and I believe a few readers enjoy that kink :3

No real conspiracy theories yet. Someone did theorize that Duane was Sette's dad because they have the same eye colour, but that's one theory I don't mind killing outright~

Has Fat Yerta ever tried losing weight? Imagine how much more pleasant things would be if people worshiped Toned Yerta instead. (Though I have to say, she looks pretty good for someone who gave birth to every living thing on the planet.)

Well, the mythology goes that the whole world rests in her belly. So a skinny Yerta would bode ill for humankind :3

It seems weird that Unsounded would still be in the Age of Sail considering the manifold options available to wrights regarding travel technology. Question mark, so it's a question?

The short answer is that pymary doesn't work so well over open water, forcing mariners to look towards more conventional methods. The reasons pymary fails on the ocean are reasons I'll let the comic itself introduce later.

Who did you create first, Murkoph or Duane?

Duane was around first and started out life (or unlife rather) as an RP character long, long ago. Murkoph was created not too long afterwards for a roleplaying game on Yahoo, but then I brought him into play with Duane. They've more or less grown up together in a few different incarnations.

Are you active on other sites other than here and deviantart?

I hang out a lot on AIM and DC++, but I'm not much of an internet socialite.

Does Sette have breasts? Like, even a little bit?

Not even a little bit.

How big across is Kasslyne? Is about the size of North America, or are we talking about Eurasia (or larger)?

From the coast of Sharteshane to the westernmost coast of Cresce, it's about 3500 miles.

You said no more spoilers! Norris killing Duane is a major spoiler! Just like letting everyone know he's Sette's Da! Wait...oh-shit-I'm-so-sorry! ;.;

That's no spoiler! Chuck Norris is EVERYONE'S Da. Is there really a woman left he hasn't yet impregnated?

Do you like dinosaurs? I think they're pretty neat. Does Kasslyne have any dinosaurs? (And would their parts count as First Materials?)

There aren't any dinosaurs nor did the world ever go through an age of dinosaurs. Evolution just didn't go in that direction. The closest you're going to get are the Two-toes (those squat lizardmen) and vliegeng.

Dinosaurs... I like Dinotopia a lot 'cause James Gurney. But James Gurney could paint storybooks about a culture of men living side by side with intelligent pizzas in fedoras and I'd still buy it.

Who is more badass, Murkoph or Chuck Norris?

Man, ain't no one tougher than Chuck Norris. Who do you think killed Duane?

Wait, how the heck did a big douchey loser like Bett get connected to the muthafuckin' khert?

He's from muthafuckin' Sharteshane, criminal capital of the continent. You get some money together and you can buy a connection off a crooked wright.

Is there a lot of trade with countries outside of Kasslyne?

Not really, no. Kasslyne doesn't have the best of relations with other continents. They think the Gefendur religion is weird, they're scared of Alderode, plague, the Dammakhert, smoke eels, the giant dogs, and Kasslyne is flippin' far away from the rest of the world D: Unsounded is still in an age of sail, so crossing the ocean is no small thing.

I would like to place an order for a khert cake and a bar mitzvah, please? (The question mark on the end cleverly makes it into a question, you see.)

I'll need a birth certificate and entrance fee into the local magery, please :3 Your icon makes me sweaty.

Wouldn't it be awesome if a person could gain magical powers from eating cake?

Cake itself is already an amazing thing, my friend. "To gild refined gold, to paint the lily, to throw a perfume on the violet, to smooth the ice, or add another hue unto the rainbow, or with taper-light to seek the beauteous eye of heaven to garnish, is wasteful and ridiculous excess."

Listen to Willy.

Is there any particular reasoning why you decided to call your sorcerous practitioners "wrights"?

I wanted a good, solid word free of wankery and connotations of the mystical, because pymary is meant to be solid, logical, and free of wankery and the mystical. It isn't Harry Potter magic, which doesn't even TRY to explain itself, nor any of those other systems that seem to confine themselves to elite, specially born people. Elitism in fictional magic, I do not like it. You shouldn't need a "gift" to do it and you don't need one to practise pymary. It's a system available to almost anyone with a bit of money, a lot of intellect, and a will to learn and practise. The only roadblocks to the system are manmade; nature itself practises very little discrimination.

And c'mon, there are all these ideas wrapped up with other words for magic-users. What pops into your head when you hear wizard? Harry Potter, maybe. Rincewind. Mages belong in video games. Sorcerers and Enchanters have long beards and need to clean their fingernails.

But "wright" is a word I get to define myself, one that doesn't already have baggage attached. Same with pymary and pymarics and khert. These are my words :)

Ahem. But if you're asking why specifically the word "wright" it's because wrights are workers who are in a very real way rearranging the building blocks of the world. They're spellwrights. Spell workers.

Now, if you want to read something else into the word, I won't stop you. I'll just wink.

Can someone be disconnected from the khert? (Would suck to be that guy, if so.)

They can indeed. But by law - and this law is actually continent-wide, from Alderode to Sharteshane - only being declined into a slave strips this right from a wright. Disconnection isn't like flipping a switch either. It hurts and there's a strong possibility it will drive you bonkers.

Anyway, this is getting close to mentioning things I wanna wait and let the comic introduce, so no more khert-talk for now please :)

How does being stabbed with a special knife connect you to the khert? Or is it just one of those things they tell people you have to do which is entirely ceremonial?

Well, considering that most people literally cannot work the arts until they've been rited, the ceremony, the stabbing or at least the cake must actually have something to do with gaining access :)

And I love you. Marry me? Or at least have a good fling if commitment isn't your cup of tea.

I'm afraid I'm married to my art. It gets terribly upset when I come home with marks from other peoples' teeth on my neck.

The term Soulbonding is definitely fluffy. But, I had to ask, since I've been following your work for years and have seen you talk and consult your characters all the time. Curiosity kills the cat, and all that.

I still love you.

So has being rited got anything to do with the scar Quigley has and which Duane had before his skin sloughed off?

It has everything to do with it.

Being rited is a big deal. If you're going to pursue the arts you're rited at ten years old (for middle and upper castes, plats and silvers much younger), and it's as much a practical procedure as it is a very weighty cultural and religious ceremony. Your whole family and social group are there, you get presents, and there's yummy food and cake, and then they stab you with a special knife and seal the wound with a flaming-hot brand. It's fun!

When you say you have to be rited to be able to use pymary at all, do you mean that a connection has to be made to the khert so the wright can access it?

If you were any more on the nose you'd be a zit.

Have you ever heard of Soulbonding? Both the "characters live in my head and we chat all the time" aspect, and the simpler "this is my favorite character ever!" side?

Yeeeeahh... if I had not recently become a harmonious being of light who rejects judging anyone, their worldviews, or their proclivities, I might admit that I frequently make fun of people who use that phrase.

But I'm a harmonious being of light.

I love Reboot, but in that case, we all knew right from the beginning that the whole thing took place in a computer. It wasn't some poorly thought out tweest.

Tru dat. Unsounded isn't secretly a computer simulation however. I promise.

So when Duane tells the beastie to put Bett to sleep, Bett was effectively tentacle raped to death?

Not a bad way to go. But Bett wasn't killed. So we'll say he was tenderly tentacle-raped into a blissful slumber (except not really).

I want to point out that I called Toma before anyone else. Ever. Me first. *sacrifices laundry day to bounce quarters off his abs*

You're gonna put an eye out with all that flying coinage.

Oh, my interpretation of the pyramic beast in Chapter 2 was that it was meant for putting people to sleep. Well, the more you know.

Well, I would think the beastie had killing capabilities since Bett pretty clearly told it to kill Duane, but what does Bett know? Not very much, we soon learn. Your interpretation works for me. The bad thing about formspring and getting every little question answered is sometimes - maybe even ofttimes - the official answer isn't as cool as the readers' theories.

Does magic exist outside of this continent? It seems like it would be . . . different, without this complicated system to keep magic sane.

Yep, it exists everywhere except in one weird country where the local religion says humans shouldn't mess with it. The mechanics are the same elsewhere but wrights use a lot of tokens in lieu of spoken enchantments, and much less sophisticated spells. Really, if you want pymary, you go to Kasslyne. War and magic are the continent's specialities.

Hey, you know Sette. She can acheive things when one's back is turned even YOU can't explain! Like emptying that tip jar awhile back so quickly & quietly.

Skillz, bro. Mad skillz.

In chapter 2, the pymaric Bett has: is that made with First Materials? If so, is the beastie within a representation of whatever that material came from? What is it? Or is it just an imagined, monster-ish thing?

The blue glass bulb part was FM, yeah. Duane called it a "creature constructed." At least I think he did, I'm not looking it up at the moment. So it was a manufactured entity and not a very good one, which is why Bett found it on sale and why it happily turned on him with hardly a lifted finger from Duane.

Here is some trivia: my original idea was that the pymaric wasn't meant to be used as Bett used it at all. He was told by the salesman it was a combat summons, but really the creature was a pleasure beast meant for brothels and tentacle fetishists. I was going to have Duane smugly point this out but it seemed a bit uncouth for him :3

Does Captain Toma have six-pack abs? :3

Baby, you could bounce a quarter off them.

I had noticed that pymary was a lot like programming (especially given some of your previous Formspring comments). Kasslyne isn't just one big computer simulation, is it? 'Cause that would be t3h ghey.

Super ghey. Although did you ever watch Reboot? That was cool.

Sette vs boy pee contest? You KNOW she'd cheat and use her tail when no one is looking!

How would that even work!

Who's the most famous stage (or hey, maybe there are screens on Kasslyne) actor in the world?

This is a terribly specific question! I sneeze at you!

Anything a boy could do could Sette do better?

Not anything. She can't draw pictures in the snow with her pee. Well, she could try, but it's difficult without a posable pisser.

So, if it's so difficult to do pymary quickly, how was Quigley able to put Starfish so easily (and quickly) in his place by the use of pymary on page 17 of Chapter 3? Is it because Quigley is just that awesome? Or... is pymary different for Plats? Or...

Most combat techniques are difficult. How long does it take to get a black belt in karate? How long does it take to master fencing? I guess what I was trying to get across is that pymary isn't like having a gun holstered on your hip. It takes years of practise, schooling, and a lot of skill to do it effectively in a combat setting. Quigley started learning pymary when he was two years old - plats have to learn as young as possible, for obvious reasons. Many plats also have a natural connection and ability with the khert - they seldom have to be rited and the pathways are very steady for them. I know that's probably Greek to you right now but trust me that it's a good thing.

Anyway, in short, yes, it's because he's awesome, and yes, pymary is a little different for plats :)

Have you ever read any of Glen Cook's stuff, specifically the Black Company series? Your fantasy stuff has the same feel to me.

Not familiar with him, I'm afraid.

Just as long as it doesn't upgrade to Window Vista by the end of the comic, I'm fine with whatever purpose it serves the overall plot.

I've tossed around the idea of naming the head wright WIlliam Portals. get it get it get it?

Does Elka like to poke hobos with sticks or other pointy objects?

That's rude, man. Don't poke hobos.

Are there a lot of limits to the use of pymary?

Plenty. You can't use it all if you haven't been rited and to be rited legally requires school and money. Then you have to know the spell you want to cast and you'd best pronounce it right or it's going to blow up your insides. In addition to the actual incantation there's the variables you have to feed it - say you want to lob a bit of sunfire at someone. You have to say just how much heat - using ancient Tainish measurements - your position, your target's position from your position in degrees, the speed of the projectile, and the roadway in the khert you want to use. And you better calculate fast because your opponent is looking to smack you before you finish. He might very well hear what you're casting before you've even gotten it out, and steal your aspects away, leaving you with no juice for your spell. And as previously mentioned, when you mess up a spell, it tends to literally detonate somewhere in your organs.

I like to compare pymary to programming. This will only be helpful if you know a little bit about programming, but imagine reciting programs in your head, as fast as you can, while someone else is trying to kill you. To be anything but rubbish you have to have as many useful programs and functions memorized verbatim as you can, summoning them up and plugging in environmental and directional variables except - all the time - the amount of available RAM is shifting erratically. The directories are all changing locations. Someone is attacking you and you have to avoid those attacks even as you prepare your own. It's not easy and there are complications on top of even these that can make it more difficult.

Of course, this is talking about pymary in combat terms. An artificer working quietly away in his shop making fake arms, he has time to methodically plan and cast and work out his figures. If you threw him into combat however, he wouldn't be fast enough and even Sette could knife him before he got a spell off.

Anyway, I really love wanking about pymary. I wish it was real.

Are the Window responsible for dealing with illegal usage of pymary and the likes of Duane and Quigley?

Let's not talk about the Window yet, they're a ways off.

What's the civil service called? The Obstruction? The Inefficiency?

Well done.

Why is it called the Window? Also people really jump on the female characters in this comic, huh? I think Formspring's going to explode when you introduce the 'babes'.

They're the Window because they're the only legal "window" into the pymaric system.

And yeah, dudes be silly.

Elka & Sette need their own Formspring accounts so people can chat with them!

It's a cute idea but people would just ask spoilers :)

The Window being the governing/authoritative body of wrights?

You got it, my clever little monkey.

Elka seems to like penis jokes. If she asked a question on your Formspring, would you answer it? ;-)

If she didn't ask it anonymously. I like her ;-)

Just as funny would be to order the lighter similarcrum & get the fappan one instead. "Let me light that for you, miss!" *splorch* "I-I didn't know, I swear!"


What's the most expensive, complex prosthesis anyway can order?

It'd have to be something custom, I imagine, maybe even so customized that the Window was petitioned for entirely new spells for it. I dunno specifically though, use your imagination :)

Have you played any of the Fallout games?

I have not! I find the concept depressing.

Do you have all of your information about the world committed to (electronic) paper, and will we ever see it? Or will we have to wait for you to kick it and your progeny to sell it to us as ShardGlass' Silmarillion?

I have some of the complicated stuff written down, like some of the rules and histories of the religions and Vits (Alderode's ruling body), and I have a few massive text files full of vocabulary and rules for Tainish. So yeah actually, I have a crap-ton of setting information sitting around. If I have a chance before I die though, I'm deleting all of it. I shall suck everything with me into oblivion when I die, like a black hole. Mwa ha.

Has anyone ever ordered the fappan similarcrum and accidentally had the lighter fingers similarcrum installed instead? O_O

Let's hope so :D

Elka's fantastic. I admit I was harboring some ill-will against her for being so willing to rub Sette's face in the guts, but that's completely under the bridge now. On a different note, how far off is Murkoph from an appearance, chapter-wise?

Oh, I'd rather not say. Wouldn't you prefer to be surprised?

Sette and Elka would get along well eh?

Enh, I can't agree. You'll soon see that Elka is extremely kind (to people who deserve her kindness) and Sette is a wretched little troll. Da says a meaningful friendship cannot be built purely on a predilection for pranking about private parts.

I dare say, from your responses here, and today's comic, Elka is modeled after your own personality/sense of humor. ;P

She's not too far off :)

I know you use a mix of accents for Sette (and I think some of the other characters too) but do you ever worry about using words that are too obscure? I had to look up "toggery".

Yeah, I have to be careful. I've received complaints from ESL readers who find certain lines totally incomprehensible. When I do throw in an archaic or Old World word I try to keep it understandable in context. I didn't think toggery was difficult because "togs" isn't a terribly uncommon word in the US for clothing, and "bloodied toggery" certainly can only be referring to his clothes in that line.

But it's always a struggle.

*blushes* Your pet? Does this mean I get taken out for walkies and belly rubs? I'm house broken! :)

I should hope so at your age.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aPX5mRSQ3pw THAT line, when he's swimming in money.

Ach, damn, those Disney Afternoon shows occasionally had the NICEST frigging animation. I think they took a clip out of there for the opening montage. Good line :)

The Sette in money thing. My only comment on it is that she should say Scrooge's lines when swimming in his $$ bin. Their accents would be similar enough. ;)

I can't think of any of Scrooge's catch phrases. Maybe some blather about his Number One Dime.

If it's not too personal, what time zone are you in? I want to be able to calculate when Unsounded updates.

American EST, my pet. Or GMT -4:00 if you like.

...you totally gotta draw Sette swimming naked in a pile of money.

On it.

Is Murkoph's undead status similar to Duane's? He looks a lot more intact........

Hohoho. It's entirely too early to talk about Murkoph.

>:C I still ship ElkaxPetr. Though my shipperness has attained the level where even inanimate objects get a look-in: Sette x money. Am saddened by loss of Petr - any chance of a bromance-y picture of the team for old times's sake? >:C

Sette x money is canon. Now I am imagining her swimming naked in a pile of money a la Scrooge McDuck. Peaceguard bromance... We shall see >:C

I have to admit, my heart sank a little when you said that we'll never see Petr again. I was looking forward to seeing him kicking some ass with his new Verlosian Silver hand.

Oh, I'm sure he will someday, though he doesn't strike me as much of an ass-kicker. More of a reasonable gentle giant type.

...you totally need to draw Sette as a zombie.

Do I? I was unaware of this need :3

Does Petr's irrelevance to the future plot imply that he'll be kicked out of the Peace Guard, or just that he won't be traveling with this particular group of Peace Guarders in the near future?

The latter. It takes a helluva long time to recover physically and emotionally from loss of limb, and longer still to adapt to a prosthetic. This leaves him in no condition to return to duty any time soon. It would be frightfully unrealistic for him to laugh this off and go back to patrolling with Toma & Co. right now, hmm? These are the boring things I think about.

Does Elka have a crush on Petr as well? :3 I mean, I noticed she seemed awfully concerned for him when he got his hand cut off. A regular girl wouldn't have given a shit.

Noooo, they are just friends and comrades. I hate to break it to you but you will never see Petr again. His role be done.

So, is bowling common in Cresce?

That seems a safe assumption.

Petr <3 Elka <3 Toma <3 Petr?

Elka <3 Toma's dog

Sette is Toma's secret lovechild, isn't she? Admit it!

I think Sette would commit suicide if she found out her father was a cop. Unclean!

How come Petr doesn't have a wife / girlfriend? He looks like a big cuddly teddy bear.

Haha, who knows. Maybe girls don't have much interest in a guy who's on the road so much. Maybe he has a crush on Elka and he's holding out.

As a horse person, I wonder how the dog tack works. Do they wear bridles and bits? Or if they don't, how does the rider control them? Also curious about the saddles; dogs are so different from horses, curious to see how that affects the tack.

No bridles, no bits. Dogs are smarter than horses, and saddlehounds respond perfectly well to voice and hand gestures. There's a bar in lieu of a saddlehorn for holding on to, but only noobs use it. I'm no expert on tack and I'm the laziest researcher in the world, so you won't see much fanciness with the saddles. Just a strap under the tummy and another forward crossing the chest.

Oh, and does he have children?


Who is Captain Toma married to?

His wife!

Are Elka and Petr married / in relationships?


Captain Emil Toma is pretty smexy. As much as I enjoy that uniform how about some shirtless incentive love?

Careful there. He's a married man.

Ah, so the type of First Material also affects the strength of the enchantment?

It dictates the strength of the enchantment that can be placed upon it. For example:

Say an artificer is constructing a simulacrum of a right arm. She would need to permanently apply a number of aspects to it, probably culled from living creatures. What creatures she was able to use would depend on the material she's working with. Say she wants to give this arm the strength of a pack dog. Well you can't apply that kind of strength to timber, even a First Timber, and have it bond. You would crack the arm. Apply it to a steel frame filigreed with a First Silver however, and you can pack a lot of power into the limb without the material buckling. You wind up with a kickass prosthetic that can have all kinds of boosts applied to it without breaking.

But First Silver (aka Verlosian Silver) is some of the most expensive crap around.

So what do those adorable fluffy giant dog mounts eat? Rabbits? Special-made biscuits? You mentioned the Unsounded world has canning technology, but I imagine it would be cumbersome hauling giant dog chow cans along on every long journey.

Family dogs generally eat a combination of processed pigeon chow and their owner's scraps. There are giant, towering rookeries that raise millions of pigeons that are slaughtered and made into fairly inexpensive dog food. Having a dog isn't the cheapest thing in the world though - they're bred, trained, and carefully cared for, so it's quite an investment. Dog thieves are treated about as roughly as we used to treat horse thieves.

You do have to consider their needs if you're going to take them away from a food source though. The military saddlehounds are no lap-dogs - they can fight and hunt, so they can procure their own meal if they have to - but the big packdogs are bred for size and stamina, and can't take care of themselves well. You'd have to make sure you packed food for them, too, if you were going on a long journey.

Okay, so now you have to tell us about Marrowroot and Starstain. Please dawg, please. Is the silver Elka mentions normal or some First Type silver? And what's so bad about a soldier with a wooden arm?

Marrowroot and Starstain are just types of First Timbers. The silver would indeed be a First Material. Verlosian Silver is actually the most potent, powerful stuff you can craft from, so a silver arm would be pretty badass - much more badass than a wooden arm, which are for civilians and foreigners. That's Elka's reasoning - Petr is Peaceguard and her friend so he deserves the best.

Why do you hate Chapter 3 so much? You're making it cry! Q_Q (FWIW, I think it's fantastic so far.)

I can't help it! I have to hate my stuff before other people hate it, just in case, so that if they do like it it's more of a pleasant surprise. There is no logic in my brain, it is full of crazy.

What do the letters on the dog's behind say? (The doggy's very pretty, btw. I want one. Or maybe two).

CRPG. Crescian Royal Peace Guard. It's a brand.

What do you think the world will be like in 50 years?

Irradiated, half-dead, and post-Apocalyptic. I've been watching a lot of gloomy documentaries on Netflix.

Ack, why would you destroy the pages??

Because I am full of self-disdain.

Is the storyline of Tanners very similar to Unsounded? It would be awesome to see more old pages from Tanners if the content isn't spoilery.

Tanners' storyline is very similar, the difference is that its storyline doesn't kick in until half-way through the first book of Unsounded. I'm kind of insane and destroyed pretty much all my old Tanners pages though. I got the ones I posted off a friend who had them saved. I'll see if I can dig up anything else.

The way you utilize the website design in your page compositions completely blows my mind. Do you plan this out way in advance? Is it difficult to get everything to line up perfectly? Are you some kind of web design genius as well as the regular kind?

Thank you <3 Yes, there are certain game-changing scenes that I planned and continue to plan to give accompaniment. It's not something that should be overused though because it will diminish the effect. Lining things up isn't difficult at all. For every chapter I keep a separate template file. Once the page itself is finished I plug it into the file and then construct the border-breaking effects around it. The site's designed in a way to make implementing all this pretty straightforward. It really is very, very basic html and css stuff and anyone could do it :)

What’s non-essential or unnecessary? What else can it be used for? Can the rules be eliminated? Can I increase its frequency? What ideas could I incorporate? Can I use other ingredients or materials? What else is like it? What can be overstated?

Mosquitoes. Catch with chopsticks, better reflexes, please Miyagi-san. Always. I see no reason why not. Anything that strengthens and proves your thesis. Yes, but don't be wasteful. There is nothing new under the sun. Everything, because everything is transitory and only the moment matters.

I just realized tomorrow is Wedsnesday. That means Unsounded updates, and that makes me happy.

Just conversation though. The rest of this chapter is unpleasant and boring to me. Let's go read some RASL.

Not offensive, but I will say that the eyes on some of those jellyfish are freaky-deaky?

I dunno, I think the eyes look like very cold, jaundiced vaginas.

What's up with these Squids and Octopi and Jellyfish and such?

Beats me, it was one of the new Formspring themes. Do tentacles offend?

There definitely needs to be a CSI: Kasslyne. Just imagine the crypt scene: Captain Toma: "Looks like the situation........*sunglasses*..........just got out of hand." YEEEAAAAAHHHHHHH!!

lawl again

You should do a vote incentive pic of Sette rockin' dope-ass FUBU gear while the Peace Guard looks on disapprovingly.


Is it wrong to want the story to change completely and become a fantasy cop drama now?

That really is a cool idea. I tell ya, I've been tempted more than once to give the Peaceguard a lot more page time than the overall plot calls for. Write me some fanfiction!

So, next page: Elka: "Too bad FMA-style automail doesn't exist in this universe. Edward is sooooo dreamy!" Toma: "Yeah, Petr's pretty much S.O.L." Elka: "Damn, being out in that rain got my shirt all wet. I'd better take it off..." *END SCENE* Close?

Edward isn't dreamy D: He's like three feet tall.

So is Duane's body made of First Materials, or is he capable of maintaining it because he can renew the spells?

Good questions. Let's keep wondering about this for a while.

First thought is that zombies are borrowing mind from the handler, but with the limiting that seems like a fast route to brain damage. Is it just because zombies cannot themselves borrow, but need constant borrowing to sustain themselves?

Not a bad guess! Zombies can't do anything though. They can't cast a spell, they can't borrow aspects. They're just objects, meat, carbon. They are entirely motivated by the external spellcasting of their handler. The handler isn't putting any of his own cognitive or motor abilities into them, he's just firing up their brainstem and working their taxidermied musculature until they fall to bits. They're fragile clay, however, and not made of First Materials like proper pymarics, so the minute he stops his sorcery, they fall to the ground.

Wow, Formspring changed its layout between this question and the last. Creepy.

Because because because human bodies aren't made of first materials so they can't have a spell stuck on them forever?

Ding ding ding! My mind is blown.

You said Elka uses the baton because she finds swords a liability. You also said undead are more vulnerable to blunt weapons. I would assume even nonsapient undead are sometimes a problem in the world? As a wright, does Elka have a specialty with this?

Elka finds swords and cutting weapons a liability because unless they're crafted with certain materials, the edges of these weapons can be stolen by criminal wrights and turned against their bearers, as was the case with Petr's sword and Duane. If Elka has a combat specialty, it's fighting wrights.

Nonsapient undead - in other words, every single undead creature save Duane - are really not a common menace. Plods cannot function without a handler to control them and upkeep their enchantments, and if a handler goes rogue it's much more efficient and damaging for them to throw spells in battle than to puppet mindless plods. A plod cannot function without a handler. Independent zombie hordes cannot happen in this world.

Now, class, using what you know about the pymaric system, can you tell me why zombies can never be independent and always require an active handler to perpetually upkeep their enchantments?

Is Elka a wright?

She is. She'd planned to come out of the magery and try to qualify for a nice, uneventful career enchanting two-ways, but she lost out on the open positions in her district to more qualified wrights. Rather than settle with another assignment and wait until more positions opened up, she got a little hot-headed and decided to join the Peaceguard. She dislikes the Aldish nearly as much as Duane dislikes the Crescian, and hoped to go out into the world and foil some of their bullshit.

The Peaceguard wound up suiting her just fine. Eventually Elka found herself paired with the esteemed Captain Emil Toma, a personal hero and one of Queen Sonorie's own agents. Toma can be a dork but mostly it's a good life.

Is there a fourth member of the Crescian Peaceguard squad that has been absent until now?

There's also a kid with them and a two-toe. Well, I say kid but he's like eighteen. You'll see them towards the end of this chapter and a bit in the next. He's kind of a weenie.

So, I noticed there was talk of Unsounded characters and stuff being part of an RP formerly... Are you going to use any player's (aside from you) characters in the story?

Nope. That would be a little crooked, hm?
*g* Hah, I suspected you were messing around, but I was thrown enough to ask anyway. I quite dislike "detect evil"-type stuff and it didn't fit into the story at all. The new explanation makes a lot more sense. :-)

"Detect evil" spells and trinkets never detect the kinds of evil I'm interested in. They'll be obsessing over a zombie while I'm looking in the other direction at genocides and wars. Phooey.

You should draw a vote incentive pic of Petr brofisting Captain Toma and Elka at the same time O WAIT HE CANT LOLOLOLOL!!!!!!!1 (Because he's missing an arm.)

Petr is a big guy. He could still sit on you.

Wait wait. Petr, Elka, Toma, Jivi...do all Crescians have four letter names? Allthough there's Starfish's friend Turas and he doesn't

Most Crescians have four letter names, yeah. There are four Gefendur Twins, the Gefendur religion is huge in Cresce, and it's become kind of a superstition that names longer than four letters lead to a wicked life. Turas is not Crescian - he's Madishanian - although he could be used as an anecdotal example of how the naming superstition is true :3

I mean, as a black guy I can't see an enslaved Jivi and not think "enslaved brown guy= racial commentary." It's just what I bring to the table. I hope you don't think that if you were intentionally commenting on race that you'd be doing a bad thing.

I understand, and it's good to have leave to go in that direction. At the same time though, I've had friends of colour tell me how glad they are just to have darker people in a fantasy story in a way that's NOT commentary, that's just some black characters allowed to be badass, or involved in interesting situations, or be something other than sidekicks or villains. There was a big stink not long ago about the dearth of racial variety in fantasy. Elves and dwarves don't count. This was probably on my mind.

I guess, while I absolutely don't mind you or anyone else seeing other than what I intended, I don't want to say, "Well, THIS means THAT, and you should feel bad if you don't perceive the deeper meaning!" But if you're an English major it's your duty to find deeper meanings, so continue to disregard me :) If I manage to tell a story that is for the most part a pretty good fantasy adventure tale on the surface but still has levels to it that readers can investigate and reinterpret, I'll feel good about myself.

I guess this "evil" animals sense from Duane comes from the creepy necro magic that brought him back to life and not from Duane's soul being evil. I mean, the man got some faults, but he's not villian material, not yet anyway. Far from it.

Naw, he's not evil. Animals just don't like that he smells like a bag of bones and yet is gesturing and speaking like a regular human.

If evil is always in the eye of the beholder, how can animals sense it? I'm quite perplexed about the animal comment, given the overall non-black-and-white morality of the story so far.

I was kind of messing with you :3 "Animals sense evil" is an old wives tale. They don't like Duane, really, because he's not natural. They don't like plods either. Things that smell dead shouldn't move and it unsettles them.

Ah! Thanks for clearing that up. I had assumed that Duane's attack cut through both Petr's arm and his sword in one blow. This explains why the effects looked different on metal vs. flesh.

No problem! Whenever anyone uses weird spells or attacks, look around the panel and you should be able to figure out what they're using, if it's not spelled out plainly. I'm a big stupid nerd like that.

Also, when Duane cut off Petr's arm, was the red mist that he used for cutting & grabbing made from Cara's blood?

You're half right. Blood has a viscous, clinging quality that he used to snatch up Sette, so he did use that aspect. Good eye. Blood hasn't a cutting aspect though. For the cut he used Petr's own sword. If you look carefully at the panel in question you'll see Petr's sword shatters, its cutting aspect stolen and exhausted by Duane's attack. One weakness of pymary is once you redirect and use an aspect, unless it's plentiful, it's gone. Duane's reckless cutting spell used up an entire weapon. This helps keep the power of the pymaric borrowing system somewhat in check.

Do functional prosthetic limbs (like in Full Metal Alchemist) exist in Unsounded, or is Petr pretty much S.O.L.? :-(

You will find out in exactly one page.

Is the little kid in the vote incentive Matty?

Sort of! It is a defunct character named Lucky Puppy who, in a few of the older versions of the comic, was Sette's long suffering sidekick and partner in crime. He was a mute. Matty is in a lot of ways a much more interesting reimagining of the character. You'll see Lucky Puppy scattered around in various bits of old artwork - he always wears the goofy hat with the bird on it.

Is Sette evil or just intensely frustrated at not being fed?

She is sad that she lives in a world without Audiosurf.

Ooh, old-art vote incentives would be fantastic! Would these be early concept-art/pages from this particular comic, old RPG art, or both?

Let's do some old pages tonight. I'll stick up a few when I update.

I want you to know that your comic is one of the very few reasons I don't mind still being awake on Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday nights working into the wee hours of the morning.

Aww <3

Is necromatic magic considered "evil" by most people in the Unsounded universe? Also, how common are magic users in this universe? The guy on Ch. 3, p. 30 seems surprised at Duane, but in more of a "How rude!" sense than a "Holy shit, magic!" sense.

Magic and magic users are absolutely common and unfantastic - as well they should be, since aspects of society revolve around mankind's ability to pymaricaly manipulate the world. Magic is so mundane in fact that I avoid using the word "magic" since it implies the fantastic (you'll never see the word in the comic), or something that doesn't have an explanation. Pymary is perfectly logical in the context of this world, and there's nothing "magic" about it.

But there are certain kinds of wrights and certain abilities within pymary that are uncommon. We shall learn more of this.

Is Duane evil or just intensely frustrated at not being dead?

Evil is always in the eye of the beholder.

Why does Animals dislike Duane?

Animals can sense evil.

So does that mean you're a 4chan user? It intimidates me that you may have seen what I was saying about your comic.

No worries. I actively avoid any mention of my comic on 4chan. I usually just see hate and it feels bad, man.

My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic - best cartoon on right now, bar none. And I don't even like ponies! But I like /these/ ponies. Augh what is wrong with me! You must watch it. You will be assimilated into the herd.

I watched the first episode long ago, when the MLP nonsense on 4chan started. I thought maybe it was deceptively mature or contained sophisticated themes or gags that would go over kids' heads. But it didn't. And it's animated in Flash.

I am glad that five year olds have a decent cartoon to enjoy. But I do not wish to watch a cartoon series written for five year olds. Peace out.

Does Duane have a lot of empty space inside him, if everything is dried up and/or removed?

Why do you ask? He's not going to help you smuggle your drugs over the border.

What Pokemon would your characters be?

I don't know enough about Pokemon to say, I'm afraid. Do you have an opinion on the matter?

I bet Matty's one of the later alternate characters. A video game from his perspective would be easy to code, I imagine. The fourth character would be Starfish, of course. He'd overwhelm enemies with his sexiness and super molestation powers.

Oh, Jesus, I lol'd.

Are you going to have new vote incentive art up anytime soon?

Probably not this week. I'm having a hard enough time balancing regular comic art around all the freelance work I have queued up at the moment. Although... I could post old stuff, like what the comic used to look like. Think that might be cool?

Will we ever get to see Sette kick butt in battle? So far we've only seen her get in trouble and need Duane to bail her out.

She's kicking ass on the page I'm drawing right now, actually. It's not too far off.

What if the game developers told you they were making that Unsounded game but the end product was a linear corridor shooter with no cutscenes, a fully-voiced (Seth Green) Duane and a dialogue wheel with Only. One. Option. What then, Cope? What then?

Pssh, I'd never sell the rights to an Unsounded game unless I was given veto power. YOUR QUERY IS INVALID. Seth Green is awesome though. Have you seen Robot Chicken Star Wars? Ohman.

I'd say that between the jars of guts, the gang of vivisectors/slavers led by a pedophile, Duane's arm choppiness, the zombies, and Fat Yerta's bodacious ta-tas (with prehensile nipples), your PG-13 rating is already blown. May as well go all out!

I wish I had long prehensile nipples. I'd eat Cheetos with them so my fingers didn't get all orange.

If Unsounded were made into a video game, what sort of game would it be? (Hard mode: Assume a game genre other than RPG.)

Ooh, I like this question. I think it would be... an enormous 3D Metroidvania. You'd start the game out with Sette and Duane as PCs and be able to switch between them at will. Sette would be very fast and spry but have very low HP. She'd attack with a dagger and an assortment of subweapons, and have a higher jump, some wall scaling abilities, trap detection, very thiefy. Maybe if you take an enemy down without taking damage there'd be a QTE triggered and if you were successful, you'd kill 'em plus steal an item.

Duane would of course have his magic. MP builds up on its own but I'd apply the pymaric system so you could only use spells if the aspects required were available in the area or if you had something appropriate in your inventory. Duane would have pretty high HP but a severe weakness to certain attacks, weapons, and enemies (hammers, fire, holy magick) and just be downright unusable if there's a necromancer enemy around. Limited movement too, slow, not much of a jump, probably wouldn't give him any of his floaty spells.

There'd be awesome animated cutscenes, a world map connecting the dozen huge, sprawling, different areas together, and later in the story you'd pick up two more party members that I won't name 'cause spoilers.

Boss battles would be knuckle-biting exercises in pattern-recognition, like Order of Ecclesia's, with maybe puzzles to some of them, like Soul Reaver's. Michiru Yamane would do the music. Crowds would roar. Pants would be creamed *_*

...Starfish is going to capture Sette, isn't he? God god, will that ever be epic. Wow. She'll bite his aorta out.

Sette biting someone's aorta out could cost me my PG-13 rating D:

I don't anticipate an answer but I just wanted to say those are some awesome details. I was unsure of the significance of senet beasts, etc. until now but having them literally become worldstuff is very cool. First Materials lore is also nicely mythic.

Thanks, man. This stuff will all become relevant to the story later.

Okay, so from that I would assume you can mine First Materials in some places, from the mountains - correct? If other senet beasts become their habitat, then I guess there would be other ways of getting First Materials from different environments?

You have it exactly. When they die and their flesh petrifies permanently into mountainous granite, the mountain ogres' hearts crystalize into a a First Material that is only obtainable via mining. Very valuable stuff.

There's a First Type for most materials you can think of - gold, silver, wood, stone, sand (which can be fired into glass), fiber, etc. Some come from senet beasts, some occur via other means. The popular theory in mageries and temples is that the entire world was initially crafted of First Materials, but time and the ill doings of mankind caused these substances to change, diversify, and devolve into the present world.

How "juvenile"? Is the comparison between Uaid and an adult mountain ogre like an adolescent to an adult, or more like a baby to a giant? Are mountain ogres called mountain ogres because that's their habitat, or because they get really freaking big?

Mountain ogres BECOME their habitat. They grow up, mate with each other, and meld together to become the mountains of the world. Mountain ranges are the bodies of thousands of ogres all resting eternally in a comfortable ogre-pile.

I've been thinking about your comic too much. Is Uaid a giant pymaric?

Parts of him. Remember when Duane called the tree beast from the first chapter a senet beast? Senet beasts were the very first creatures to inhabit the world, supposedly, and have within them First Materials, making them permanently enchantable. This is one reason the wandering roots are extinct now - they're terribly valuable as components in pymarics and were hunted out of existence.

Anyway, mountain ogres are also senet beasts. Uaid is partly made out of the taxidermied bits of a juvenile mountain ogre that's been massively enchanted into locomotion. The metal bits are all perfectly practical and unmagical metal bits. So he's a mash-up.

Is Sette happy at home?

Standing in the rain and clutching at her zombie's cloak, she didn't make it sound like she was.

Because you "find a wide variety of humanity beautiful, and wanted an all-inclusive cast," then does that mean you will have Asians in your comic, too?

Yep. But not for a while. And not in as prominent a way as my dark and fair characters, alas.

I think you're lying about using Murkoph as your avatar for everything. Either you're hopelessly in love with him or he controls everything you do and the constant promotion of his face is so he doesn't eat you. amirite?

You've been talking to him, haven't you?

You need to read this. Every artist does: http://www.austinkleon.com/2011/03/30/how-to-steal-like-an-artist-and-9-other-things-nobody-told-me/

I think most professional artists already know all that stuff, man. Probably a good thing for students to read though.

A grown man cursed to shambling half-life and a prepubescent lion-hybrid girl thrown together by a mobster's dream of not being teased about her and bonding over their mutual hunger for blood and flesh. Is this the ultimate everyman story, or what?

Not an entirely accurate summary :3

Do you like April 1st stuff, or think it's a day to be avoided?

April Fools Day is my favourite day! But I forgot about it until last night and it was too late to do anything cool. Next year!

While I'm aware you are not going to tell us all here how old Sette is, will that at some point be answered in the comic? What about Duane?

Duane was 33 when he became what he is now. But as for how long he's been that way, best to wait for the comic to say :)

So what's the world beyond Kasslyne like? I saw that 'magic' was said to be treated differently on Kasslyne, using kherts instead of cyphers. I guess I'm wondering how much of the world is fleshed out. You seem to put a lot of thought into your world

A world beyond Kasslyne? You mean the endless void through which the giant turtle and the four elephants float, supporting Kasslyne on their backs?

but srsly there are only two other continents. I know the basics of 'em but they're not fleshed out to the extent Kasslyne is. They are boring, peaceful, civil lands and no one would want to set an epic tale of war and corruption in them.

How many questions do you get per day? I've asked what I would deem to be "a lot" of questions, but even I'm amazed at how many more there are when I check this page for updates.

Ya know, in the past week I think it's jumped up to like twenty or thirty questions a day. I'm not sure how many different people it actually is though. I am equally flattered and weirded out and confused that anyone could find this so interesting.

I'm going to be honest with you: I want to see some sexy Crescian women. Also, and many will disagree with me on this, but good job implicitly racializing Alderode and Cresce's antagonistic relationship. Clever, bold move.

I find Elka sexy and awesome. I hope you will too. But this comic isn't about sexiness, it's about people.

Cresce and Alderode's relationship does not, honestly, I swear to you, contain a racial dynamic. Yes, most of Cresce is dark-skinned. Yes, most of Alderode is light-skinned. Their hatred of each other, however, is political and idealogical, and has nothing to do with appearance or anyone believing the other one is biologically inferior. I think you'll see this as we go along but pleeeease don't think I'm trying to say anything about racism or race relations or the races themselves. I am not that presumptuous. The countries are different colours because I find a wide variety of humanity beautiful, and wanted an all-inclusive cast.

But ya know, if I fuck something up at some point, or something feels one-sided or stupid, let me know!

Would all this Duane junk lust truly be necrophilia? Duane's not a corpse, he's sentient undead. So, if anything, shouldn't there be another name for the Duane fetish so many seem to have? The Sette fetish has a name. Pedophilia. ;P

Well, I'm not one who's quick to put a derogatory label on anyone who develops a crush on any manner of fictional character. Fiction isn't reality, and many of the less conventional characters we like in fiction we almost certainly wouldn't want anything to do with in person. It's just responding to ideas. Trolls aside - and I will bet you the person harping on Duane's nethers is a troll - it's just people responding to ideas. Some chicks like sensitive but powerful guys who speak well, can fling fireballs, and are tormented. The fact that the guy is gross and undead isn't really important. Some people like manic, grab-you-by-the-balls chicks with small boobs who don't take no shit. The fact that Sette appears so young probably doesn't factor into the equation in most cases.

But it is possible I'm putting too much faith in humanity. I've just always been very concerned about damning people for this because I know I've developed crushes on weird fictional characters before. I used to really, really love wraith Raziel from the Legacy of Kain series. Google for a picture of him. In the games he's amazing but if he actually showed up at my doorstep? fffffff no

I also don't want fiction to ever, ever, ever be censored just because it arouses the passions of unsavoury individuals. I don't care what's in it, how vile or blasphemous or insensitive it may be, I am so dead set against censorship in any form. So connecting someone who reads questionable material with someone who actually performs questionable acts, this can lead to horrible legislation. In fact it already has. I would like it to stop.

Anyway, that was a tangent and probably a much more serious answer than you were looking for, but I'm waiting for water to boil so there was time to rant :3

How many pages with the peaceguard?

I'm not telling you! Be patient.

So I guess Duane's supposed to like, eat Sette or something? I mean, if her mission's some ploy, I guess her father's expecting to let nature take it's course or something? Poor Duane. Even if he could taste, I bet she'd be too stringy to enjoy.

An interesting theory.

When it comes to writing, have your characters always told you what to do, or did you have to learn how to "listen" to them?

They pretty much always tell me what to write. I am only a willing set of hands.

I just listened to " Hold it against me " By Britney Spears, and for some reason I imagined Duane singing it to Cara, wanting to eat her up at the " If I said I want your body now, would you hold it against meeee~ ? " part. It was slightly disturbing.

Go outside, get some fresh air. Take a little nature walk. Come back and format your harddrive or smash the appropriate CD - whichever sends your source of Britney Spears music back to Hell.

Quigly may have Tiger Blood, but Duane has Adonis DNA! ;P He may have tiger blood, too. I mean, he COULD have both if we let him nibble on Sheen awhile. Let him, please? Then those tired of listening to him, WE can be 'winning'!

Hehehehe Adonis DNA. Honestly, Sheen is too entertaining to feed to a zombie. I just wish he'd be entertaining and crazy AND maybe do a good deed or two.

What is it with people and Duane's junk? Maaaan, that's just gross!

The internet, my darling. The internet.

How long have you been working on Unsounded as a comic? Does it have any predecessors we could read? :D

Difficult to say... Unsounded used to be another comic called Tanners and I worked on that on and off in lots of different incarnations for nigh on ten years. There are old versions that might be fun to post some time - random comic pages- but there's not much of substance available in graphic novel form (plenty in prose form though).

Will chapter 3 ever go back to Sette and Duane or will we now get to follow the peaceguard until the end of the chapter?

Nope, it'll snap back to Sette and Duane for a while afterwards.

Weird factoid, I found out about your comic through 4chan... /y/ to be specific, is this strange to you? (I on my part am just really happy to have found this comic! It's awesome even if I don't want to be shipping any of the characters at this moment.)

Nothing is strange to me. Not sure why /y/ would be interested in Unsounded though, it's not exactly bursting with bishounen or even characters with skin. Anyway, glad to have ya!

Does the fact you didn't answer my question mean that it was a spoiler, or that you just couldn't be bothered? Do you answer all the questions you are asked?

Not sure what your question was, man. I get SO MANY QUESTIONS and it's becoming a timesink to answer them all. So I'm starting to delete repeats and silly questions and comments that have no questions in them. And spoilers, of course.

Tiger blood?

Charlie Sheen? Be glad you are ignorant of this, it is very stupid.

Following up on the earlier question, will Murkoph eventually be making an appearance in the story?

Certainly! I can't leave out Murkoph, he'd eat me.

Wait....so if Duane is now the Phantom of the Opera....why hasn't he called Sette a 'little prying pandora" yet? XD I have this fantastic mental image of him singing "Stranger Than You Dreamt It" now.....sorry.

It'd make a pretty good parody, man :3

Re: Duane vs. Quigley, I just want to add that Quigley would never fall for Sette's BS on p. 35-37. If someone ever reminded him of Matty, he's probably just magic blast him down a flight of stairs like a boss. 'Cause that's just how he rolls (I imagine).

Tiger blood!

When Sette says that her dad's "bum ends where it should," does she mean that he has no tail? Furthermore, does she see her tail as an extension of her butt because of how she phrased that statement?

Yes and yes.

Is Murkoph part of the Unsounded world?


Lu, who I trust for all my feral child information, informs me that the lack of antelopes and zebras is because Sette ate them all. Fess up. The secret purpose of this secret mission is to secure a supply line of veldt herd animal carcasses for her!

You are a silly creature.

Duane is such a sweet guy, I want him as my bro'. Even though he got some hunger issues, and you know... Talks too much. The whole undead thing doesn't bother me much, as long as he doesn't stink. Sette should keep her promise to be nicer to him.

You still dunno him that well, man. You might not like him if you knew him better. Sette, however, you're pretty well-acquainted with by this point. Do you really think she's going to keep her word? :3

If you had to carry a fruit on your head for the rest of your life, what fruit would it be and why?

I believe... it would have to be a banana. A banana would stay balanced on your head pretty well and perhaps look like a quirky headband. An apple can't do that. Stupid apples.

Is the Temple of Song part of a separate religion? (An Aldish one, maybe?)


Whatever happens, I hope we don't learn more about the little blond girl Duane pictured on p. 36. Little girls are so annoying! Why can't Duane have more flashbacks of hunky dudes like he did in Chapter 1?

Aww, I think little kids are great. Sette has a flashback of a (debatably) hunk dude in chapter 4. That should keep ya a while.

How does Sette catch fish? With a fishing rod, or diving right into the water and catching them with her ferocious teeth?

She catches them with her own two hands as she's yanking tins of them off shop shelves and then running the frig away. Work for a meal? That's for regular people!

Was the fat vendor lady at the waystation freaked out by Sette's pointy teeth, or are waystation ladies pretty much used to seeing Fucked Up Shit in the line of duty?

This is a world in which it's a pretty simple matter to change your appearance into anything you damn well please, if you can afford the magic. A little girl with pointy teeth isn't much weirder to a person in Kasslyne than a kid with a blue mohawk is at the mall to us.

A tail though, a false appendage like that, that's beyond the capability of a glamour. First time it brushes against someone and they realise it's not just a magicked trick of the light, you're gonna get questions.

Do you ever wear nail polish? What colors do you like? I got metallic cyan right now, it rocks.

I never wear nail polish. My nails are chewed down as far as they go :) Metallic cyan sounds hip though.

I'm sorry, but I must throw in one important issue in the Quigley/Dwane debate. Quigley's blind son could walk off a cliff at any moment, but Sette would have pushed him and eaten his antelope. Dwane has several times the offspring problems Quigley has.

Haha <3

Ok, so inquiring minds want to know, what exactly IS the nature of Starfish and Turas' relationship? Jivi compared them to a husband and wife... is there more to that simile than the nature of their bickering? How did they meet?

Starfish and Turas (and Ephsephin for that matter) all work for the same guy. Turas and Starfish have been friends a while so they have something of a rapport - though that usually consists of Turas just submitting or rolling his eyes at Starfish's bullshit, and Starfish bossing him around. Turas is probably gay - I always get that vibe from him - but it's not particularly relevant. Starfish isn't gay. Starfish is a pedophile.

When will we get to see Duane's zobie face for real again?

When some nasty shit happens.

How would you feel about seeing the inevitable /34/ of your characters?


Does Duane have to wear a hood or could he just wear shades instead? And then take them off when he makes puns about tense, dramatic situations?

The idea of Duane in Cool Sunglasses makes me feel happy in my extremities. This is not outside the realm of possibilities, though it wouldn't happen until after chapter seven.

Why do Duane's eyes glow? It's pretty.

Because they're enchanted glass eyes that interact weirdly and erratically with the rest of the enchantments that make him function, particularly when he's too distracted or upset to keep everything running smoothly.

I'm pretty sure you haven't answered this yes so... How do you pronounce Sette? Also, to be more interesting, do you like any cartoons???

I've answered it twice! :) Sette rhymes with Betty.

I like lots of cartoons, although nothing that's on the air currently save in reruns. Darkwing Duck, Talespin, Mighty Max, Batman: TAS, Avatar...

I really, really, really want Unsounded in print! How long before that's possible?

No plans for it, I'm afraid.

What did Sette say when she first met Duane?

"...worst zombie EVER."

Sette definitely seems tomboyish. I presume breaking wind & belching are two unlady-like things she's not afraid to do.

Even the best of us have to burp and fart sometimes. Otherwise we would explode!

What things do you do to stay healthy?

Jog to McDonalds.

Do you feel sorry for the torment you have put some of your characters through, or don't you mind, because they are fictional characters and all?

Well, they are indeed fictional characters so it'd be weird and perhaps psychotic to feel bad for what I do to them. They suffer for a noble cause. Their suffering entertains me and it entertains you. They fight and die like ye olde Colosseum gladiators, wishing only to win your approval and distract you from tedious reality, which lacks magic and justice and whimsy. Throw them a rose and all is mended.

what color/print is your Snuggie?

Hunter green. Alas it is too hot in Florida now to use it again until at least November.

Will we ever see Stte's Da at some point before the comic has finished, be it flashback or them returning home?

There are some pretty good shots of him in chapter 2. But yeah, we'll meet him in real-time eventually.

If I put Sette or Duane in my webcomic as cameos, would you object to it? It's just that I like to put lots of obscure awesome characters in my crowd scenes.

I'm not gonna tell you that you can, but I won't lose my shit if you do :)

Any particular regular time you update the comic, or is it mostly just when you feel like it?

Mostly a little before or a bit after midnight EST on update days.

Tail fleas? At least she doesn't have ticks. Hmm, does this mean Sette gnaws on her tail when it itches?

Not really necessary. Fingers, ya know.

Fact. Mages always wear robes for PRECISELY this reason. Dramatic entrances, eldritch chanting, aloof tower-dwelling, wordy condescension, and magically-induced pyromaniacal tendencies just lose their luster when you wear jeans and a tee shirt.


I've run out of inappropriate questions to ask about Sette! Um. Got an inappropriate factoid about her?

Her tail has fleas.

Does Sette like boys yet, or mostly just think about how to get money from them?

Except for family, everyone in the world is either an obstacle or a target. Their gender doesn't matter.

Billowing and clothes that hide your features are a must! Like FF Black Mages! Big hats making shadowed faces..big, poofy pants, etc... You see a black mage, you think POWER! Or a dark blue robed Orko.... <.<;

This man knows what he's talking about.

In regards to Quigly vs Duane.. More sparkly magic? Please, if Twilight taught us ANYthing, it's that sparkly makes things lamer. not cooler!

Ahh, this is true. I think the key to good magic is having a lot of things to billow around you while you're casting. For instance, a wizard in tight-fittng clothing, they have nothing to blow in the majestic breezes caused by their spellcasting. But a wizard who's in robes and perhaps a hooded cloak, they're all whipping around all over the place all intimidating like a pissed off and fluffed up cat, and they will probably mess your shit up.

Now let's review Duane: 1. He could eat you at any minute. 2. He talks too much ("Blah blah blah I'm Phantom of the fuckin' Opera" when saving those milk maids). 3. He's racist against black people (Crescians). 4. NO shirtless pics, only skinless ones.

Now on the other hand, Duane--
2) Will chop off your arm and not even give a shit.
3) Is totally not racist, why, some of his best friends are black!
4) Is... balls, he totally is the Phantom of the Opera, isn't he. He even likes to sing. WHAT HAVE I WROUGHT.

I think Quigley should win vs. Duane. Let's review: 1. Quigley dresses nicer. 2. Quigley poses for hot shirtless pics. 3. Uaid and Matty are super cute. 4. Quigley's magic blasts are sparklier than Duane's. I could go on, but not enough characters left.

These are strong points. Allow me to counter. Quigley--
1) Apparently has the internal organs of a seventy year old
2) Wears spectacles which means he is weak and bookish
3) Has a bishounen face, is very tidy, and obviously styles his hair (gay)
4) Has a blind son who could walk into a tree or off a cliff at any moment, which might be distracting.

Does Sette have a theme song?

Hamster Dance! (not really)

Is the Sette in much of the drawings on your da different from the Sette in the comic?

Well, that's RP Sette for the most part. So yeah, a bit different.

Are you a girl? Cos you're called Ashley, and yet you always draw yourself as the bearded blond zombie (Murkoph, I think?)?

Yes, I am a woman. Although it would be cool to be a bearded blond zombie. I use Murkoph as my avatar because I like him. lol.

Am I the only one excited to see what happens when Sette stabs Duane? And once she finds out it doesn't hurt him, stabs him regularly, just for fun?

Heh, I think she's already figured out he's hard to hurt. She was in the room when he was stabbed last chapter and she's already bitten his fingers off. She'll have to devise another way to lay him low, should the need arise.

What all would Sette do if magic somehow had her grow to be 90ft tall? And what would she eat then?

Back to /d/ with you, vore fiend.

I gather you like Moby Dick, what other books are you fond of? Have you ever read Victor Hugo?

Perdido Street Station, The Vampire Lestat, A Tale of Two Cities, Agyar, Treasure Island, Two Years Before the Mast, the Harry Potter series... I've never read any Victor Hugo. I have a hard time with translated novels. I don't want anyone or anything between me and the author's intentions, ya know?

Has anyone from Cresce tried diplomacy with Alderode and vice versa? I nice fruit basket can work wonders, I hear.

Aldish fruit baskets often have bombs in them. It's a thing.

I created an Unsounded fanfic starring Suette (pronounced "sweaty"), Duane and Sette's child from the future who's come back to help them in their quest. If I send you some drawings, can you write her into the main story? She uses a katana and kicks butt.

Haha. Sweaty.

Is Duane good at drawing or kind of a n00b?

Naw, he's pretty good.

Do you have a larger version of the Kasslyne map? The one in your World section is a little hard to read, specifically with the Alderode regions

Yeah, but you don't need to see it yet. It's a while until the story reaches Alderode. Someone suggested I do a big map poster and I think I shall, with cool illustrations around it.

Do you really think heroes are boring? Why? I find that viewpoint staggering.

I can't think of too many works of fiction in any media where I didn't find the villain more compelling than the hero. Real heroes are some of the rarest things in our world and because of it I find them very difficult to relate to. I've never known any. Most people are villains, in large or small ways, putting themselves first, ignoring the needy, obsessing over money and the material, wishing for harm to come to others, and very rarely, if ever, doing something purely for someone else at cost to themselves. Villains in fiction interest me because they're often just regular people, amplified and badass. Even the most outrageous villains can find their doubles in real life. Someone wants to take over the world, someone murders millions of people, someone concocts diseases, someone kills and eats people - done and done and done.

I suppose heroes are who we wish we were and villains are who we are. My cynical nature makes the latter my preference.

How is Cresce pronounced?


And what about her physical health? Shame on Duane for taking Sette so far away from a ready supply of antelope and zebra. Is the poor child going to go mad with hunger and rickets?


Could Duane use his glamour magic to disguise himself as someone else? Also, what if Duane wanted to disguise himself as someone ugly? Could he make someone prettier by uglifying himself further?

These things are all possible within the constraints of the system. The latter though... could you make fire hotter by extracting the warmth from a block of ice?

It looks like Duane is drooling, how does that work if his body is dead?

Magic! Can't talk properly without saliva or some manner of moisture. He's got it handled.

When will Duane and Quigley have their death match so we really get the chance to see some powerful magic? :D

Chapter 5 is one long fight, half of it between Quigley and Duane :O

Do you like Transformers? Not the shitty movies but the cartoon :P

Not really, no.

How many words are in the first book?

I will devour your soul, LuDucks.

Will Starfish gain godlike magic powers and destroy Kassylyne Kefka-style? I bet he's secretly the last boss of Unsounded.

This seems inevitable. I like the idea of him growing enormous like Ursula at the end of The Little Mermaid, and all the puny protagonists circling his ankles and throwing rocks. Perhaps there is also a thunderstorm and a Hans ZImmer score.

Am I a terrible person for looking forward to Duane acting like an ass more often? (I also am of the opinion that Duane became zombie-fied because he did something to deserve it.)

I personally think Duane has been acting like an ass since page one, but people are blinded by the vocabulary and the undeath. There aren't a lot of heroes in my comic. Heroes are boring.

Have you ever played Valkyrie Profile? Mathis' character design reminds me a lot of one of the characters from it, so I'm curious.

I haven't but from his first page people have been screaming Lizard or Lazard or Lezard? So I've Googled it. There is a visual similarity. All I can say is *SHRUG* He will eventually change clothes.

There's this girl that I like and I think she likes me, but I'm afraid to ask her out because I get so nervous. What should I do? Also, I'm lactose intolerant.

My brother is lactose intolerant. He drinks soy milk. Try that. Don't ask the girl out. Women are crazy. Be gay and find a nice Hispanic boy. Hispanic boys are hot.

It'll be interesting to see how Duane copes with Sette dragging him into Cresce itself. I assume that the details of theCresce/Alderode conflict, as well as Duane's part in it (if any) is spoilerific info, ja?

I can tell you what the public believes. The Aldish public believes pretty much what Duane ranted about - Cresce is a warmongering, envious, tyrannous land ruled by a corrupt whore of a queen who wants Alderode wiped off the map so she can have its lands, and the rest of the continent for herself.

Cresce believes Alderode is an evil, greedy, backwards country that's been cursed by the gods and they have to be kept inside their own borders or they'll taint and destroy all of Kasslyne.

How many pages are in the first book?


How many chapters are in the first book?

It's still in flux. There is a giant chunk I may cut out of the middle because it's seeming more and more extraneous. We'll see.

How many books are you sure you will do?

Ideally there will be three. This first one is loosely about what happens in Ulestry and Cresce, and how the Red Berry Boys situation is resolved.

In a top ten list of most powerful wrights in Kassylyne, would Duane rank in it? How powerful is he?

Gosh, the twelve year old boy in me wants nothing more than to define everyone's abilities and actually make a top ten list (I can, ya know) and talk about how awesome they are... but not yet.

(Duane's super powerful though and kicks all kinds of butt and his power level is over nine-thousand at least)

Can you give us a hint about chapter 4? Formspring fans are your /best/ fans! :D

Haha, I am undeserving of your enthusiasm. Let's see... "Hounded by the Peaceguard and haunted by their yesterdays, Duane and Sette finally reach the border-town of Mulimar, the last checkpoint before mysterious Cresce. Unfortunately the Red Berry Boys are keen to cross via the same route..."

That's the best I can do for ya, man, sorry :3

Has Sette named her favorite stabbing knife?

I don't believe she has a favourite stabbing knife. Knives are like your kids, ya know. Don't wanna play favourites.

Does Duane draw often? He totally needs to draw Sette. Though I guess it'd be tough to get her to pose for him as a model. Maybe if he gave her fish.

Haha, Sette probably would pose for him if he paid her in hard cash but she's pretty vain, so maybe she'd do it for free just to see how gloooorious she looks inside one of his journals. Duane does draw a lot. And write a lot. And read a lot. By-product of spending too much time alone.

Swims in the buff? Way to get those perverts drooling... Wait, you seem to LOVE teasing & taunting... Sette's personality is based off of YOU isn't it!?? If..you had a tail, & sharp teeth, and went around bare foot....

It is true that Sette and I both have a touch of the troll about us, but I am much, much nicer. I give you a decent comic to read for free every week, don't I? Sette would charge. Sette charges for everything.


If Sette wanted to go swimming, would she wear a swimsuit, or just get her underpants wet?

Pretty sure she swims in the buff.

Are you ever gonna post more Unsounded concept art and stuff you did from ages ago? I checked your DA, but there's not much there. I must have moar!

I don't really have any! Honest!

What artists, if any, would you say you've been influenced by?

My favourite artists draw nothing like me so I'm not sure. That may be why I'm constantly caught up in a suicidal spiral of self-loathing. I've read that I have a pretty generic western anime style. What factors into that? Disney plus common Japanese anime traits? There you have it.

Back to Duane's glamour, in ch 1 he burns the Wandering Root, and Sette wakes up & says that the forest "got ugly." Is that because it burned, because the WR died, or part of the magic Duane used? If it's the latter, is it the same process as the glamour?

It's because the Wand'ring Root died. That was its valley and without it, it shriveled up. I was having an ecological moment.

Do you have aim or msn or anything? It'd be cool to hang out with you some time.

That's sweet of you to venture, but it's not true. I'm not all that cool to hang out with. Even my closest friends must endure long periods of dead air when we're chatting so I can do work.

You mentioned Melville already. What modern authors do you like, especially pop-lit writers (if any)?

I was pretty fond of Steven Brust for a while (he's a fantasy guy) and Anne RIce. I don't have a lot of time to read fiction anymore though. I've been trying to finish Something Wicked This Way Comes for ages now but just never have an opportunity to sit down and read. It might be time to go totally lame and obtain audiobooks.

Every time you mention a break in posting the comic I get a break in my heart ;_:

I don't enjoy doing it, man, honest. But I like to have a chapter finished so I can edit it, and THEN post it. Editing is important. Won't be longer than a month break though. Print comics regularly make you wait a month between chapters :)

Do you have a favourite song?

Just one song? Impossible!

Duane is stripping in the comic right now. Just thought you wanted to know 8D

Oh, you.

Yes! yes you should! Gordon Liu was the leader of the Crazy 88's in Kill Bill vol 1, and Pai Mei in Kill Bill vol 2. This movie is from the 60's/70's when he was still quite young, and is one of his best kung fu films I've seen! A must see!

Oh, yeah, I know who Gordon Liu is. I'll have to check it out, man, thanks!

How did you get so awesome at comics and drawing? Did you receive any formal training? Or did you just suddenly appear in a Florida alleyway, fully formed, thirty, obsessed with nice zombies and a natural awesomeness for drawing?

Man, I'm not all that awesome, but thanks. I do have a BA in Illustration and blew a large amount of money at a private art college. Lots of practise, lots of obsession, lots of discipline.

How far ahead in terms of drawing pages are you?

70ish pages. I keep posting extra pages and it's eating into my buffer. I suspect a longer break after this chapter is over may be in order.

How many chapters are in Unsounded, roughly?

I have no idea. I only have the first book laid out at the moment.

You like Metroid! Hooray! Any particular reason why?

Super Metroid is one of the most superbly designed games ever made. The gameplay progression is flawless, fun, fabulous, fruity. The atmosphere is bone-chilling, still scarier than ninety percent of intentionally moody games these days. Flawless, baby.

Do you ever draw porn of your characters?

I plead the Fifth.

Soma for life, amirite?

Castlevania's Soma? You can have him if I can have Alucard. Mwa ha.

How many pages long is chapter 3?

52 pages.

Even Lords of Shadow? I know a lot of old school fans got into a blood rage over that one.

Ya know, I really wanna play it but I lack the right console. Some of the video looks kind of neat and the critter designs are cool. Yeah, Gabriel is a fugly bastard but I'll forgive a fugly hero if the monsters are at least fun to look at. I dunno, I can't judge until I play it.

The politics behind the game kind of piss me off. I thought it was dirty how Konami swiped the franchise away from IGA and gave it over to Kojima and some mediocre Spanish studio. IGA has pretty consistently made magic with the series on handhelds and I don't think he gets credit enough for that. Order of Ecclesia is a frigging fantastic game. If they let him make another handheld Castlevania, I'll be appeased.

People already gave me the videogames I want for my birthday! Nobody gave me your art for my birthday. :( Can I commission you art you were gonna do anyway?

Sure, commission page 54 of chapter 4 :3

Are all zombies sentient?

Just Duane, as far as anyone knows.

Kung-Fu flick love? Ever see The 36th Chamber of Shaolin, starring Gordon Liu?

I haven't! Should I?

What are your favorite video games?

Vagrant Story, FFVII, FFT & FFXII, Super Metroid, LttP, Castlevania (all of it, collectively), The Legacy of Kain series (sans Blood Omen 2), Devil May Cry 3, Bioshock, Lumines, some others that I'm probably forgetting...

would you criticise and/or give feedback on any artwork?

I'd rather not. I'm not all that good at it and it's a bit time-consuming to do properly. Sorry!

So Duane relies on pure willpower to keep him from acting plod-like? Is that the essential difference, or are plods just made differently than him?

Questions in this vein are just all kinds of spoilery.

Do the guys who manage zombie workforces remove the zombies' teeth? Seems like that'd be a necessary safety precaution in case one of them gets twitchy. Also, when zombies do manage to eat someone, where do the remains go (can't poop when you're dead)?

The plods wear masks bolted to their shoulders and the lower half of their heads. They ain't eatin' anyone. If they did though, the remains would just settle in their stomachs, or fall through into their pelvis and spill out onto the ground. It's about as nasty as you'd imagine.

Dunno if this was asked before (Formspring needs a search function, or at least one that's easy to find.....), but have you ever studied any martial arts?

Formspring needs a search function or some kind of question index page BADLY. I have never studied martial arts but I've seen Drunken Master 2 like, seventeen-hundred times. That has to count for something. I actually really like kung-fu flicks.

When are you planning on posting more art to da? I love seeing your work.

I don't do much extraneous illustration anymore :( When I'm not working I have to give my free time over to Unsounded. Comics don't make themselves, alas.

Hold on, Sette already had a bath. Remember? When the tree thing tossed her into a pond awhile back. Doesn't that count?

This is true. That probably dislodged at least a little bit of crud.

What was so bad about Dirge of fuckin' Cerberus? Gameplay? Story? Or both?

Both. Everything. The way the case smells. Why do you want me to live through the trauma again.

You're 30? I got you beat by 2 years!

Haha! You're statistically likely to die sooner! <3

So you're saying the best way to get known is to get awesome at drawing?

That seems... correct. Do you think people should become well-known because they're only mediocre at drawing? There are certainly people who have managed this and I've seen threads dedicated to them on /co/. You don't want to go down that path.

You should open up commissions! I got birthday money, and I wanna give it to youuuuu!

I got no time though! Go buy an awesome video game.

It's my birthday today! 8D

Happy Birthday!

I guess 30 is the age at which we start feeling like Duane.

At least we're not stuck with Sette.

It's my birthday today! Augh, I'm 30. I'm decrepit! Could you sketch me something to cheer me up?

Wow, I'm thirty too!

There's really no way to cheer you up. Thirty is the beginning of old age. Soon we shall be cancerous and dying.

Ok, what's your most hated regular video game then?

Dirge of fuckin' Cerberus, man. I hate that game with the heat of five-thousand suns. I wouldn't wipe my dog's ass with that game. I would, if I met its creators on the street, drop my shorts and piss on their feet, and fall down in a rage, kicking and screaming and bellowing incoherent curses about how they destroyed FFVII for me.

THAT GAME. That game wrecked my soul.

I would, looking at this formspring which is basically a bio, hazard a guess you're kind of a zombie fan? What is your favourite zombie flick? What about videogame?

I'm not as much of a zombie fan as you think. I'm a fan of the sentient undead. I can't think of a "zombie" movie that has a coherent person inhabiting their dead body as it rots, and that is told from their perspective. You'd need to look towards something like "The Fly" to get a real taste of the horror of it. It was Vagrant Story though that turned me onto the idea of waking up from death as a zombie capable of recognising its own situation, and what that might mean.

Favourite zombie movie is easily Shawn of the Dead though 'cause lol.

So if DeviantArt is a good way to promote yourself, how did you get known there? Did you actively take measures to promote, or did you just sit back and get the 10, 645 watchers you have? Tell me your secret to success, O glorious one.

Oh, I didn't sit back, dude. Look through my gallery. I produced work that people dug. If you make quality stuff (and/or if you pander), people will appreciate it and show up. Keepin' it real, I attribute most of those watchers to people who like my fanart. Most people don't give a crap about an artist's original characters until there's a story to go along with them. I did the fanart because I really was a fan and I wanted to, but if you specifically want to promote, pick a popular fandom and produce something for it. Can't hurt.

What do you have against MMOs?

I find it to be the most vapid form of time wasting. Just about every MMO out there is based around farming and grinding, requiring massive expenditures of time to get anywhere. Only, unlike in other games where, as you invest time, maybe you're being told a great story or honing gameplay skills, in MMO's you're just earning polygons with shinier textures and making arbitrary and meaningless numbers tick up.

I can't tell you how many people I've talked to who've complained about not having enough time in the day to create something or read a novel or learn a new skill, but in the next breath are telling me about what they did in WoW the night before.

Do you ever play any MMOs?

No. No one should.

Do you play any videogames?

Right now I'm playing Tactics Ogre, VVVVVV, and doing another run of RE4 on Wii. Video games are love.

You said that there are legal and illegal Wrights. Quigly is an illegal one apparently, but what about Duane? Did he have a license? Does whoever is managing these ley-lines know that a man who should be dead is tapping into it?

This is a very good question. Too good. You'll have to go on wondering for a while.

I personally think Duane would win a fight between Quingley and him. He could just pull back his hood if things gets too intense and give Quingley an instant death in the form of a heartattack xD

Sssh, you'll make him cry.

Is the Unsounded one big epic story, or will there be smaller story arcs that are self-contained and can be read on their own?

It's one big story, I'm afraid.

I'm looking at putting my graphic novel up on the web - do you have any pointers on how to get a webcomic known around the interwebs?

It helps to already be a moderately popular artist, with a few followers on dA. All I did was announce my comic on there, keep putting out pages regularly, and now it seems a fair amount of people read it.

Don't do a comic for popularity though. If all you want are people kissing your butt, you won't last. I was making Unsounded with no one to read it but a few polite friends for a year and a half before I went public with it. Do it for yourself and your story first, always.

Who's better at cooking, Duane or Sette?

Depends on your tastes. Duane can fry up a breakfast or put together a manly stew, but Sette can concoct avant garde dishes like sardines in chocolate sauce and fried dumpster rat. So it may well be a draw.

What sorta music do you listen to?

An eclectic mix of weeaboo VGM nonsense, dark and bitter folk-pop, peppy electronica, movie scores, New Age frippery, show tunes, anything Spike links me to, and Tchaikovsky. This might interest you - http://www.last.fm/user/Murkoph

I think it's pathetic that so many people ask such perverted questions about Sette, like if she's still a virgin, if she wears panties, etc. In an unrelated note, how's that pic of shirtless Starfish coming? I bet his nipples are the size of pepperonis.

You are funny. Come write for me so I don't have to.

Just FYI, I've asked 100% of the anonymous questions below. How am I doing so far?

Not bad, man. We're totally flooding people's inboxes. I wonder if anyone's pissed off yet.

A messenger bag is too small for Duane to fit his junk in?

Sette shoved a whole blanket and pillow in there 'round abouts the beginning of chapter 2. Followed by Duane's journal. Her breakfast stuff. Heavy manacles. A Buick.

Labels are pointless, true... But can I sit with you at lunch? I never get to sit with any of the really cool kids like yourself.

PSSH. You know the kinds of kids who grow up to make webcomics and spend wild Friday nights indulging literate pedophiles and roleplayers on formspring? The kids whose parents won't buy them anything that doesn't come from K-Mart and who spend their weekends squinting through VHS fuzz to make out third generation copies of Ranma 1/2 fansubs and who draw emo fancomics starring tormented original characters in the Darkwing Duck universe. I had to hide in the art room during lunch. I didn't have a Jansport bookbag which at the time meant I had a diseased foreskin for a face, socially speaking.

But yeah, you can sit with me.

Since other people have mentioned it, but I can't seem to find an answer confirming these: are the cuffs he's wearing part of the magic holding him together? And does he actually have a bottomless bag for collected stuff?

Duane is wearing no cuffs. And yeah, there definitely has to be something going on with his bag. It's too small to be holding as much as it's holding.

Oh. My. God. Duane stuffed Cara into his bottomless bag, didn't he? Had a craving for some trail mix, did he? Hmm?

Can't... breathe.

How do you see yourself? I mean, like - tomboy, artist chick, punk, slacker, etc?

Enh, labels are for kids, don't you think? So they know who to sit with at lunch. I'm just me.

I was re-reading the comic and, though I'd taken notice of the cuffs before, I'd never really paused to think of them. Does Duane wear them at night? Does the magic keeping him together wane when he's asleep...? In that same vein, does Duane even sleep?

I wonder.

Re: Matty's vs Duane's vision--Is Matty's magical vision so poor because Quigley doesn't know how to make good magical eyes, or does he just not give a shit about whether or not Matty can see clearly? (I suspect I know the answer, but...)

You'll see.

Is Sette wealthy or hygienically minded enough to have panties? Though I suppose they'd be easier and cheaper for her to get than shoes.

Sette wears underpants. "Panties" are for frou-frou girls.

Could Sette and Duane hide in Duane's "bottomless bag" if needed? You know, the bag that contains Duane's enormous junk package. :-)

That is such a good idea. I can never use it now unfortunately because you've spoken it aloud. THANKS FOR NOTHING.

Do you have one of these ridiculously contrived coffees as some kind of personal go-to drink?

Nope, just an espresso. Those mixed coffee drinks are pretty fattening.

As a follow-up to my previous question--what would happen if Sette jumped into Duane's bottomless bag while holding onto the lip of the bag, thus pulling the bag inside along with her?

There'd be a loud, staticky pop, like a breaker bursting, the smell of methane would singe your nostrils, and suddenly you'd feel the tip of a dagger pressed menacingly against the small of your back.

Why doesn't Sette wear shoes? She just likes to feel the ground underfoot? I guess it's quieter maybe.

I answered that one pretty well here - http://www.formspring.me/GlassShard/q/2260715191

Would "RP Sette" get along with "Unsounded Sette" if they met? What about if "RP Duane" met "Unsounded Duane"?

Oh, they're totally the same characters as far as their personalities go. It's just they're at different points in their lives, have been through different things, have had a lot less luck. In RP you can do crazy soap opera events just because they're fun to do. Characters are constantly up and down, dealing with emotional devastation one moment and throwing a dinner party the next. Something like Unsounded has to be a little more grounded in reality (even with zombies and magic and bottomless satchels).

I don't even know what I'm talking about now. I'm going out for dinner and espresso!

Dumb question, but is Quigley a virgin? Or would that be a spoiler? (I have a theory that Matty is a Christ-like figure: an innocent who will bear the suffering of the world on his shoulders. That would tie into Quigley's flight from Alderode as well.)

Oh, you. I will at this point officially spoil Quigley's virginity: he done tapped him some ass.

Whenever I read Glamour anywhere, I can't help but think of Changeling: the dreaming

It's an old, old term for illusory magics. It makes me think of the movie "The Craft," personally, which perhaps hints at my gothy proto-wiccan faggy teenagerhood.

There seem to be a lot of thematic similarities between "Unsounded" and the webcomic "Sonichu". Was this one of the inspirations for your story?

Googling "Sonichu" was fun. Thanks for that.

Will Sette and Duane be friends like in your RP? Because that's so beautiful!!!!

Aww, wasn't it? Unfortunately those were different versions of the characters and they were living out different lives. Unsounded is its own thing. Just hope for the best.

Make ANY of your character discuss politics w/ Ann Coulter & I promise you- Your characters would hate you more than they would for any other hell you put them through!

Yeah, Duane wasn't happy.

You said that Duane is sensitive to heat, exactly how does it affect him?

Warmth like on a summer day is the worst - it burns and makes his phantom skin crawl. Actual heat, like fire, isn't so bad. It just hurts. The theory is that his senses are so muffled that what he can feel - temperature - is so startling and sharp that it hurts and discomforts simply because it's SOMETHING.

Happily, Duane loves winter and will sit and read in snow drifts. Once he lost track of the time and froze for a few hours in the exact position of Jack Nicholson at the end of The Shining.

Does getting high make it easier for you to create?

It used to. I haven't smoked in years.

Hypothetically speaking, would Cara have lived if Duane and Sette didn't find the "Mild Damsels" and go after the Red Berry Boys? Since those "slaves" in the cart with Jivi had slices in their chests and I assume the RBBs never left bodies behind before?

Unhindered, they would have done their business with Cara, sewn her up, and put her in the cart "alive." So yes, Duane and Sette interrupting that abduction and then finding the RBB's lair did technically seal Cara's fate. But don't tell them that, they'll feel bad.

Dumb question, but is Sette a virgin? Or would that be a spoiler?

You're right, that's a dumb question.

Down with pants! Up with skirts!

Ya know, I don't own a single skirt or dress. Up with jeans!

Does Sette know anything about Cara? Did Duane manage to keep that hidden from her? What /did/ Duane do with Cara, anyway? Eat her? I know he has zombie cravings, and she'd be a convenient snack.



You'll see.

How old is Sette, anyway?

Old enough to know better!

Was Duane a zombie in your old RP, or is this also a new thing? I've seen plenty of your Sette & Duane concept art where he appears dead-ish, but also plenty of art where he appears quite alive.

Duane was a zombie. And occasionally a ghost. But, ya know, art. Sometimes it's fun to draw a character alive or being eaten by a squid or as the opposite gender or discussing politics with Ann Coulter (find that meme, I challenge you).

If Sette went topless, could she pass as a boy? Desperate disguise I know, but a thief like her tends to get into desperate situations!

Take a look at any shot of her in just the red shirt. There's nothin' there, man. Delicious flat chest.

Cool page! Do we get this 'true look' of Duane's face because we look right into his eyes, because he is so upset that he let his glamour slip or did he actually cast something (the light effects seem to suggest that)?

No, your first hunch was right. His hood slipped and we see some eye, so it starts to cause interference. The glowiness is just 'cause MAGIC. I will take any opportunity to put in glowiness. His face is all over the place in the rest of this scene, he hasn't the concentration to keep his glamour from flickering or his hood from slipping. Rawr!

I like Sette's outfit, but does she just have the one set of clothes? It'd be awesome to see how she looks in different outfits. She better be careful her clothes don't get damaged, 'cause they can't be easy to replace!

Haha, in theory they should be difficult to replace but she managed to find just the right shirt at the waystation shop so... But yeah, she just has the one outfit with her. You'll get to see her in a few new looks in chapter 4.

Now i REALLY wish I had known you & been part of your RP group. Your stories/games sound like something I'd want my character to be a part of! Even if Sette did abuse/take advantage of my character.

Hey, man, nothing's stopping you from starting your own RP group and ripping off Unsounded ideas. Just don't tell me about it! ;)

Duane needs to chill... Nah, how am I kidding? I love it when calm characters lose it and go all " HULK ANGRY!!! HULK SMASH!!! BLAAAUURGH!!!! " 8D Is it going to get worse? Please tell me it's getting worse! I need more RAAAAGEEE!!!

Duane is quick to anger if you push the right buttons, but if he didn't ultimately have more self-control than rage I don't think he and Sette would have made it this far :3

Maybe Duane got seduced, raped and betrayed by Cresces Bitch-queen, hm? Well, cut out that rape part. He wanted to. I know. I SAW IT ALL!

Hohoho. Duane speaks in a lot of metaphors, ya know.

Sette looks like a little child-troll from a Swedish children's book I read when I was little. Not the Harry Potter kind of troll but the ones with tails, big noses and gold rings in their big ears. They're also clever and cunning, like Sette xD

Someone else said that! It amuses me :)

I love the sense of life and individuality that your characters have. Do they ever seem to make unexpected decisions as you're writing them, or do they generally behave?

They really call the shots, I'd say. They aren't interested in being likable, which is one problem, or very communicative with each other, which is another. So while I get to be in charge of the plot and what happens when, they kick my ass when it comes to everything else.

They did, eh? And no, I don't mean in the pervy sense others might joke about. :P How was their RP relationship? good friends getting into trouble together? Brother/sister? Or, with the age difference, playful father figure, despite her Da'?

Ooooh, talking about this is going to make me miss RP dreadfully. I'm just gonna indulge. Duane and Sette were friends. Duane was always trying to teach her to read and better herself, and helping out when she needed it. Sette had a quota to meet every day - she had to bring home so much swag or she'd catch hell. Duane would leave money around for her to steal and pretend he didn't notice. He'd let her crash at his place when she got kicked out or beat up, and make sure she always had something to eat. Sette always pretended she couldn't stand him but she luffed him. Ahh, I miss it.

Does Sette sometimes stuff her tail into her pants so nobody knows she has a tail? Is that why she has baggy pants? (also probably for sweet loot)

You betcha. It's stuffed in her pants at the moment and tied to one leg so it doesn't wriggle free and give her away.

Were Duane and Sette traveling partners in your old RP as well, or is this a new thing for the characters?

It's a new thing. Sette and Duane quite loved each other in their RP relationship, believe it or not.

Does Sette ever have to worry about people accidentally stepping on her tail? I bet that'd get 'em chewed on fast.

Accidentally isn't so bad. It's when people do it intentionally, and grind their heel in, and they're too big to bite.

Ok, so Sette doesn't like veggies. What about fruits? They're sweet, usually! And does she only eat meat that's cooked, or does she/would she snack on something alive but small, like a mouse or something?

Haha, you're going to be able to write a treatise on Sette here shortly. Wait and see.

How many of your characters would slaughter you because of what you made them go through in life? And why?

They cannot slaughter me for I am their God. The more God makes you suffer the more pious you become. Suffer and amuse me, my little Job's.

So whoever did this to Duane must really, really hate him seeing as how his life has been reduced to being bits of leather and bone strung together by magic, right?

I wonder.

Isn't Duane's tongue all dried and stiff? In chapter 3, page 29 we see him stretching it out to reach the blood on his fingers, how is he able to do that without it breaking or something? And why hasn't it rotted away?

Made himself a new tongue. It looks tongue-like because his glamour's adhered to it, but it's really just a cleverly stuffed and stitched stiff pillow of leather. Pucker up, baby.

How does this idea of magic 'borrowing' interact with pymarics and First Materials?

Pymarics are simply enchanted items - they have some manner of spell permanently bound to them. Anyone can use them. First Materials are what pymarics are made from. Let's not get more detailed than that for now.

Do you take commissions? I love your art, and I'd love you to draw something for me!

I do take commissions! I'm pretty booked right now though. If you follow me on deviantArt you'll see when I open up slots and can claim one then. That's a few months off though.

... So why do zombies want to eat stuff if they've got no functioning intestines?

I wonder.

Does Sette ever eat any vegetables, or does she just nom cute little forest critters at mealtime?

Yech, vegetables. Only if there's nothing better around.

Are Duane's enchanted fake eyes now embedded in his skull like normal eyes should be, or could they be removed and still work? Like Ohgra's eye in The Dark Crystal, or the Eye of the Fates in Clash of the Titans?

They are removable and they continue to function :) Fun will be had with this, I assure you.

You mentioned that Duane like big-boobed blondes earlier. Was Duane something of a ladies man when he was alive? He seems like he could be pretty smooth. Also, if you could meet any Unsounded character IRL, which one would you choose?

Heh, let's not get into Duane while he was alive. The talking, I could do it all night. But hard to say which character I'd want to meet... They already room with me in my head and they're each jerks in some way, every one. Duane would be great to chat with but he's very biased and kind of scary. I might have to say Matty or Jivi. I'd take them out for ice cream.

It's a given that Sette needs a bath. But what about Duane? Would that even do anything for him, or just make him wet and stinkier? Does he use magic to stay clean?

Bite your tongue! You wanna ruin a perfectly good dead body? Introduce excessive moisture. Duane doesn't use magic to stay clean but he sure uses it to stay dry.

Does Duane still like "big boobs, big hips, blonde hair, and dancin' feet", or is that aspect of his personality completely killed due to his undeadness?

That's something we'll have to wait and see, hmm? Not too many lady-folk out in the woods.

Does Duane's magically-enhance vision work similar to Matty's? Also, is his vision better or worse?

No, Duane's vision works totally differently. Matty's toy vision is a hacked together mess, cheap and inefficient. Duane's glass eyes are expertly crafted and enchanted, were very expensive, and work almost as well as real eyes (so they are much, much better than Matty's toy but not as good as the real deal). They're only hindered by the way they interface with the enchantment that keeps him bound to his body. The nature of that hindrance you shall learn of later.

Zombies eat brains. But zombies don't have functioning organs cos they're dead, so why the heck do they need to eat brains? Do YOUR zombies eat brains? Like that plod that scared the little girl? Did he want to eat her brain?

It wanted to eat all of her, man. The brain thing is just a stereotype from our world that I decided to hang on to, because it makes me giggle.

Did the terms "gruftrammer", "mmatont" or "black tongue" have any meaning to Sette? (Ch 3, p. 22)

Gruftgrammer and Black Tongue are common phrases but she dunno Mmatont. A gruftgrammer is a wright who uses gruftgramary. Gruftgramary, opposed to pymary, is a spell syntax not sanctioned by the state. It's like they're hacking into the system and using it without a license, generally to do nefarious things. Quigley is a gruftgrammer.

Black Tongues are the inventors of gruftgramary. They're like a group of necromantic spell hackers. They are some of my favourite things and I love them but I don't want to talk about them too much yet. In general though, common people think they are scary and always up to horrible things.

What would Duane do if a man slapped him on the ass? Not that any normal person would molest a corpse, but let's just pretend this guy happened to be a homosexual necrophile and really liked the look of Duane's grayish, leathery skin. Oh yeah.

A friend made this for me once. Perhaps you would like to subscribe? http://www.casualvillain.com/murk/play_dead_by_Teri.jpg

Is there going to be any homosexual characters in your story?

Might could be.

So what exactly IS Sette? Rather, are there more people like her? (tail, pointed teeth etc.) or is she unique?

I wonder.

So all of Duane's senses must be the result of complex magic, then, if all his sensory organs have rotted away into dust? Did he have to work those spells himself or are they part and parcel of being the Undead?

His hearing is part of the enchantment that keeps him going, but he had to organise a solution for his vision himself. Otherwise Duane has no sense of smell or taste, and doesn't have much sense of touch. He does have an odd sensitivity to temperature, probably because he's overall so frigid, making the slightest warmth pretty keenly felt.

Isn't Sette ever afraid of Duane?

When she can see his face, you betcha. She was pretty quick to lose her shirt at the end of the first chapter just to get his head covered, hmm?

When will we see Duane in all his zombie glory?

At a dramatically appropriate moment, of course.

Wait, Duane and Sette have the same eye color? Is Duane Sette's real father? Maybe his tail just rotted and fell off.

This is an awesome theory. Fox, write this.

Duane is more decayed, then, than I realized. At some point in the comic, will we ever see him completely glamour & glass eye free? And couldn't he use that to hide from the guards? Just lay still, unglamoured, and play dead?

Theoretically but then someone is likely to haul him off to be burned or buried. BAD END.

And that leads to another question, were Duane's eyes originally green or did he change his eye colour when he had to put those fake ones in? I would've changed mine, just for fun. But I guess Duane isn't like that?

His fleshly eyes were green too, yeah. Most guys I know aren't all that concerned with their eye colour :)

If someone would touch Duane's face while the glamour is on, would they feel his dry zombie skin or some kind of physical illusion? I guess the glamour is just there to fool people visionary, but I just felt like asking a stupid question, lol XD

Nah, that's a good question. It's purely a trick of the light, so your fingers would sink through the illusion and you'd feel coarse bone and crinkly dead stuff. The only bits that are what they appear to be (not that he lets you see them anyway) are his eyes. They're quality glass facsimiles.

As a fellow artist myself (and aspiring webcomic-er) I have a wonderful respect for the detail you've put into your world and characters. About how long does it take you to do a page, from start to finish? (it's probably been asked, but too lazy to look)

Unless there's something crazy going on, like a big painted panel or a really detailed cityscape, I can do a page from thumbnail to finish in a day - ten or twelve hours. Inking always takes me longest 'cause I'm a lazy penciler, and I leave boring things to figure out later.

What are your thoughts on formspring and the questions people have asked you so far?

Very positive! There's a joker or two with a penis fascination but hey, it's the internet, and it only takes one mouse-click to delete the dumb stuff. This formspring thing is a terrific interactive medium.

But I say that now. Tomorrow people will be C&Ping Mein Kampf passages and links to their frosted bedside moe figurines. Every site on the internet is only One Bad Day away from 4chan.

Duane got such a nice, slim figure. What's his secret?

Eating light, lots of fibre, vigourous exercise, extensive putrefaction and carefully monitored desiccation! Cutting carbs? Counting calories? You need not! Just rot! Rot! Rot! Call now, necromancers are standing by.

Like Sette didn't see Duane walking away like a bitch comin', why didn't her Da find her a companion that didn't hate the destination of their little trip? XD

Perhaps there is more going on here than we have been told.

Wait, Duane sitting on the shore sketching while Sette is bathing naked? HE ACTUALLY IS A CHILDLOVER, I KNEW IT!

Duane likes big boobs, big hips, blonde hair, and dancin' feet. Prepubescent girls do nothing for him. In many parts of the world, you know, children swimming or running around naked is an adorable, innocent thing :3

Point. But isn't that a technicality, using a female animal to play a male role? So much transgendered acting amongst animals. I hear some dogs playing Lassie were neutered males. Such extremes just to get into acting!

I like you.

Babe didn't have tits. :P

Untrue. In the first movie when Mrs. Hoggett is measuring Babe to see if he's big enough to eat on Christmas, he's flipped over on his back and you can see lines of tits on his belly :3

I dunno... I'd rather it be pasteurized. You have any idea what pigs lie in? I have no desire to wrap my lips around that!

Aww, pig hate. Someone hasn't seen Babe enough times. Babe was so clean!

Could Duane uglify someone instantaneously by using their youth and beauty to power his glamour? Could he use his magic to "trade" his zombie status with someone else?

Astute questions. You get an A.

Yes, he could drain someone of their beauty for a time and if he kept it up for long enough they'd probably get stuck that way. Sette should be nicer to him.

Trading zombieness though, that wouldn't work in the way you're thinking. For starters there's no spell to do it, and Duane doesn't have the kind of access to the world's magic system necessary to craft and insert new spells. Even if he did, and he was able to leech life and try to apply it to his body, it'd be like pouring water onto a pane of glass. The one element has no way to interface with the other, and something would just blow up or melt or conjure a tepid mug of vole bile.

Y'see, Duane's zombieness isn't a status effect that can be inflicted on someone else. If he bites you, you won't catch it. And he's not like some vampire who could one day lose his bloodlust, pinken up, and be okay again. Beneath his clothes and his bandages his body is bones and leather and braces. How do you make that live again? His heart shriveled up into a little black pit and was shed like an eyelash. There's nothing to pump the blood he doesn't have, no brain to sort out and operate systems missing their organs, no bowels to churn, no nerves to fire, no muscles to clench. He's magic, mechanics, and taxidermy. There's no going back for him just like there's no going back for your great-great-great grandfather.

Does Sette ever bathe? I mean, hanging around a zombie and all, I figure she'd be tempted.

Since they've been traveling I don't think she's done much bathing. A dip in a pond sounds like a fun sketch idea though, with Duane on the shore sketching or something. You can't draw kids shirtless these days without the world accusing you of pedophilia though.

What's you're favorite part of the comic process (writing/ pencils/ inks/ colors/ etc)

Pencils. Pencils are when you're bringing Frankenstein's monster to life. The inks, the colours, everything else is just putting make-up and a tiara on him.

I think my second favourite part is the weeks of loathing I experience towards a page after I finish it. It's like post-partum depression.

Or just straight up bacon! Has anyone ever really tried pig milk? Goat & cow milk are often heard of. Sheep too, rarely. I mean, if we drink milk from animals we butcher and eat, why not try pig milk? & is pig milk non-kosher?

You just want me to give you an excuse to go suck on a pig teat. Well, go ahead. I'll wait.

So, they have soy beans... No, wait, SOW milk? Mmmm-MMM!. This milk is bacon-y good! :D

I would drink bacon-milk so hard.

Fish may be her favorite, but it seems she'd take anything, both in the form of theft, and any animal for food. Is there anything, animal wise, she wouldn't eat?

An odd question. I think she'd eat anything presented to her as food. People who have known hard times are seldom picky eaters, in my experience.

Wait, what sort of milk were those milk vendors selling if there's no cows in the Unsounded world? Or is that better off being un-asked?

Sow milk. You haven't seen pigs yet. They're big and furry and lovely :3

Better to be bitten by a human than by Sette! <.<;


How do you feel about whales? Which is the best kind of whale?

Only Alan Davies knows the answer.

"There Leviathan, hugest of living creatures, in the deep stretched like a promontory sleeps or swims, and seems a moving land; and at his gills draws in, and at his breath spouts out a sea."

Though I am fond of the spermacetti as well for obvious reasons.

If she never brushes, seems likely ta make her bites very dangerous.Forget bleedin' & whatnot; the bacteria alone would be dangerous! Like a komodo dragon, or sumthin'!

They do say that we have far dirtier mouths than most animals. Better to be bitten by a dog than a human.

Eww, unbrushed fish breath! Yeah, with all her insults, one could just focus on that & tease her right back.

Sure, but I doubt she'd be offended. With her peculiarly potent proboscis she could take a whiff of your breath and tell you what you'd eaten last too :) And then want to know where she could get her own. And then possibly bite you.

Lack of cows does not make a bad steak. I'll bet any of those animals, even if their flavor isn't comparable to anything from earth, would make tasty meat foods. And now Sette can be teased for having fish breath. Doesn't seem like she'd brush much.

Interesting fact: giant tortoises apparently have some of the most delectable flesh on earth. When I heard that I knew I had to stock the larders of Kasslyne with them. But yeah, Sette doesn't brush. Only rich people brush and use toothpowder.

What is Sette's favorite food? And, if he can/does still eat, what is Duane's? If he cannot, what was it when he was still alive?

Sette likes seafood. Sharteshane is mostly coastal so fish is cheaper than bread. Duane doesn't eat anymore but he probably enjoyed a good steak dinner when he was alive. No cows in this world though so it was either monny, hog, grebber, or tortoise steak. And potatoes. And much wine.

Is Duane crazy?

He certainly doesn't seem the model of sanity from time to time, does he. You will shortly learn one reason he is so twitchy and uptight, if you've not figured it out already.

What was your favorite meal?

2009, Thanksgiving dinner, Isabella's, NYC. The pumpkin ravioli, man, you have no idea.

What is your quest?

To seek the Holy Grail! Or to get through the rest of this crap day/week/life without snapping.

Ah, makes sense. it didn't look like they could digest anything still live when we saw what it's like inside of one. Must make handy weapons if that world ever faced a zombie apocalypse. ;)

Indeed they might have if Duane hadn't toasted the last one :D

Can you draw a walking root with a shirt on? I have a thing for shirted masses of rock, dirt and foliage.

You perverted dendrophile.

Why didn't Duane just find a way to kill himself instead of living through the horror of his own body rotting and breaking apart? I personally would've let a truck run me over the moment I started to smell like shit <.<

I wonder.

So, walky roots wouldn't eat a live person harassing them? Just beat the tar out of them?

Beat the tar out of them, then eat the resulting corpse.

What was a Crescian soldier doing in the tummy of a walky-root anyway? Aren't they peaceful creatures unless provoked? Do Crescians like to tease walky-roots in their spare time?

The story I made up in mah own head was that the soldier went AWOL and got pneumonia or something while tromping through the wilds to flee his command. Then he died in the walky-root's valley. The critters eat corpses, absorbing their nutrients into the roots in their bellies, and that's why this one ate the soldier. And why it saw fit to gobble up Duane.

Did Duane lie to Sette about the identity of the corpse in the walking root?

Duane didn't know the identity of the corpse, only that it was dressed as a Crescian soldier and sporting a Crescian cloak badge.

That old person who was selling those figurines. Male of female? I thought that person was an old granny, but now I'm not sure...

I was thinking old granny but it could just as easily be an old man :D Ye olde androgynous knick-knack merchant.

Do you have any concept art of Sette and/or Matty as adults? (Might make a good vote incentive thingy, hint hint. ;-) )

Nah, they're much cuter in kid form :)

What does fashion favour in the world of Unsounded? Any prominent regional differences? Does Duane get mocked for going about in a frumpy hood all the time?

Yeah, there are differences from country to country. Ulestry is rural and mountainous, and its people largely ascetic so clothes are pretty plain and uniform. Cresce and Alderode will look a bit more "modern." Duane gets made fun of for all kinds of things, clothing included. He's used to it.

What's the worst experience you've had with RP?

Wow, a very difficult question. I think the answer definitely revolves around dealing with OOC matters. Overseeing a game sometimes puts one in the role of babysitter and referee. If two of your players are having issues with each other, it's often up to the GM to walk them both through their grievances and resolve them. Sometimes the grievances aren't about anything unfair in play though. Sometimes someone is just being a jerkhole. There were a few situations like this in RP that were very, very not fun to deal with, but they had to be resolved before the game ground to a halt. I don't want to be too specific or name names (friends read this formspring), but that OOC drama crap is my least favourite part of running an adventure.

So, do you think you might ever create some form of tutorial, step-by-step thing for how you make pages for Unsounded? Or have you already and this is a horribly redundant, possibly irritating question?

If I had any tips or tricks I certainly would share them with the world. Alas, my methods are painfully straightforward, and in some cases even very ill-advised. Next time I start a page though, I'll keep all the sketches and then post them together or something, so you can see how it goes from thumbnail to finish. Normally I delete sketch layers as I finish with them, to keep down file sizes.

To that previous question to which you responded "You are the meanest." Did that person mean "junk" in an inappropriate way?

I fear it is so. People are making fun of me. I can't blame 'em.

The person who wrote 'proses' would like to apologize for the typo.

Never apologise for a typo. Act like you meant it and then put on some sunglasses and look cool as you saunter away.

So Duane is undead. I guess that means he might have lived for a long time. Collected a lot of stuff. He'd probably have a lot of junk. Where does he keep his junk? Can you answer my questions about all the junk Duane is packing? His huge junk package?

You are the meanest. SO MEAN.

I once came across your Amazon wishlist while looking for more information on Unsounded, which I admit is kind of creepy. Pertinent to the donations question, however, would you accept a gift from there as a show of support?

Aww, that's kind of you. That wishlist is really just to remind me of things to look for at the library though. Spend your money on yourself!

Can Duane have sex?

I really don't like questions related to Duane and sex, or Duane and Duane's junk. I shan't answer them.

Some kids play with toys, most play with video games. -I- still buy, and play with, toys. He-Man is one example, amongst many others. You?

Well, I'm no kid. But I do buy stuff I absolutely adore, if it's not too expensive. My last purchase was a Subject Delta figure from Bioshock 2. He sits up on my bookshelf among a motley collection of action figures and sculpts. I really, really wanted the Sculpture Arts Gabranth and Balthier & Fran from FFXII, but they are hundreds of dollars.

Batman has a thing for turtle chicks? LOVE your imagination!

Well, my friend had a Batman action figure, so romance was inevitable. Do kids even play with action figures anymore? I weep for this generation.

I think the person who said "proses" meant process. I don't know if you were being facetious in your response though.

Ooooh, I thought they might mean prose's, like the script. I have no interesting process though. Sketch, draw, ink, flat, shade. Nothing special.

Who was Molly married to?

Batman :3 I was like, nine, dude.

Who and what was the first character you ever created?

Probably... Molly the self-insert Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle. When the neighbourhood boys and I would play action figures in the drainage ditch down the street I had a TMNT figure I'd modified into a girl by painting a Mikey figure's mask pink with nail polish. Ross Campbell blew my mind by doodling her on LJ for me once http://mooncalfe.livejournal.com/92102.html?thread=1709766#t1709766

Awesome comic. I was interested in the characters from the very first page, Sette is hilarious. The world is big and captivating, and unique at least from my experience. Tis my new favorite.

Thanks so much!

If Duane eat some flesh or taste some blood, will that only make him hungrier and maybe even lose control?

I wonder.

What happened with Cara's body? Did they bury it somewhere? <.<

Wait for it.

Do you still have all the information from your roleplaying days, or did it get lost or deleted?

It's hidden away on a private BBS.

Could you show us the proses you use to make comic pages?

"Proses?" I do not understand.

Do you like Batman?

I freakin' love Batman.

Your comic is amazing -- the artwork, the story, and the fact that you update so regularly. I'd actually like to donate to support the site -- why no donate button?

It's... complicated. I really hate money. Money ruins everything. It's one of the most horrible things we've managed to come up with yet. My comic is my reason for being, and adhering dirty money to it grosses me out. I know I have to get over this someday because I am very poor but I'm not quite over it yet. Soon.

That's really sweet of you to want to donate though, and I thank you.

You have a bit of a dark side, don't you?

No darker than yours, Bruce.

Is the magic of reanimation concentrated in the bones, then?

This stuff all gets explained later, I promise.

Wait...can Duane feel pain? I mean, he kinda got STABBED, back in chapter 2. Didn't that hurt like crap?

Physically Duane can most keenly feel crushing blows, blows that rattle or break bones. The sword slipped between some ribs and did no real damage - you'll notice it came out totally clean, confusing Toma - so it didn't slow the zombie down much. The best way to hurt him is with the intangible.

You said Sette was a character in your D&D games..a devious NPC. Are any of the plots and/or characters you have planned taken from actual played D&D sessions? No detais or examples needed. Not looking for spoilers. ;)

Ah, it was not D&D that we played. It was freeform bbs-based RP with no play mechanics other than Make Us Believe In It. Sometimes this is better described as Cooperative Fiction. But sure, lots of my characters were party developed in those games, I found it very useful for working out personality kinks. So far Duane, Sette, and the Quigleys all were RP characters at one point.

Story-wise, Unsounded takes little from RP except some setting stuff. But since I was GM and made up most of the setting it probably doesn't count :)

Does Unsounded have a happy ending?

Is the grimdark wigging you out? It'll lighten up next chapter a bit, I promise.

How about a shirtless Starfish Play-Doh adventure kit?

I don't think I get it. You mean like, because the surfeit of fatty flesh demands recreational extrusion through plastic molds?

With previous questions asking what would happen to your comic if you 'passed on' before you finish, I have a less morbid question; what if you finish and you're still as active an artist as you are now? Would we ever see a sequel series?

As long as my hands aren't so crippled by arthritis that I can't hold a stylus anymore, sure. I have enough stories in this universe to keep me busy until the end of the century. Unsounded is an epic story though, very long, and the fates of most of the characters are pretty tidily wrapped up by the end of it.

So how are you feeling after your hospital visit? Was it serious? Is it recurring? Is there a chance you might pop your clogs on us before Unsounded is finished? I will pay for the cryonics if the latter is a possibility.

Death is always a possibility. I have a friend who knows how it all ends though. If I kick-off she can write a summary and then maybe someone can take that and finish Unsounded as a sprite comic. I recommend Disgaea sprites.

Will you ever make Unsounded merchandise? Maybe some posters or something? Not now, but... sometime?

It could happen. It's just such a pain to do by yourself, and cuts into actual comic-producin' time.

I'm assuming that from your answer to the fave color question that you're a bit of a Monty Python fan?

Who isn't? Actually, the quality of my primary school education was such that we watched Monty Python & the Holy Grail in class when we were studying King Arthur lore. I think as an adult I prefer Life of Brian and the sketches. All-time favourite British comedy? Fawlty Towers.

Tirna's depicted holding a centipede with her right hand, and some roses on the left. In Chapter 2, we see Duane crush a centipede with his right hand, and a couple of pages later a flashback depicting a battle in a field of roses. Coincidence? Symbolism?

Mm, could be.

Could you draw a pic of Sette offering Starfish a pouch of money in exchange for taking off his shirt? That would be a little less creepy than the alternative you had suggested, as well as satisfy my Starfish craving.

I will think up some way to show Starfish shirtless in an incentive, I promise. Sette has no interest in seeing anyone without their shirt off though. Well, maybe Duane. So she could hide stolen goods in his ribcage.

Why do Yerta's nipples droop? (Sorry for the, er, vulgar? question)

Different depicitions of the Gefendur gods all have a few things in common (though you'll see every culture and country in the comic tends to depict them in their own fashion). Fat Yerta always has her funny little cap, she's always got the big belly, she almost always has that little fawn somewhere about her person, and she's always got either giant boobs or long, droopy nipples. She's the mother and provider of all the world. That's a lotta babies to suckle.

Your sense of humor greatly amuses me; as such I find it nesessary to ask you what your favorite joke is.

Oh, surely something blasphemous that I shouldn't repeat in uncertain company. Always glad to amuse, my dear.

Does your mom read your comic? Or anyone in your family? What do they think about your art in general?

I'm a grown-up lady. My family doesn't really know what I do with my free time. It wouldn't interest them anyway, they're not comic people.
Do you have any theme songs for your characters? Have you ever made a soundtrack for Unsounded? I think I want to.

I made a soundtrack for Murkoph a few years ago. My friend Fox makes character soundtracks all the time, she's brilliant at them. I do have a few hard and fast song selections for certain characters. Duane's theme has for a long time been "Un Dernier Verre Pour la Route" by Beirut. The music video in my head features him stalking autumnal forests under a moody twilight sky. Very faggy.

You should make a soundtrack, anonymous! I'd love to see what you come up with.

Liam Nee-san?

That's right, my big sister Liam. Do you know her?

I was knocked out for an hour today! Things were prodded that should never be prodded! There are still powerful drugs in my system! You're lucky I'm communicating in English and not Klingon or pig-Latin or i can has kitten-burger.

What do you imagine Duane's voice sounding like?

I used to describe it as the voice of a Croatian boy who grew up constantly moving from place to place in the UK, always speaking Croatian at home but trying to get rid of the accent as much as he could in secondary school and university. Multiple people have suggested Liam Neesan to me but that doesn't really jive to my ear. Whatever works for you though.

Do irrelevant questions annoy you?

Not at all. I think it is important to note, however, that I am much, much less interesting than my comic or artwork might lead you to believe. I'm also inclined to lecture, troll, or be very crude - sometimes all at once!

Unsounded is awesome. You are awesome. There is no question about it. So this is not a question.

I wish people would sign their random praise comments. You could be my mom! Thanks though (mom).

I looked up "vliegeng" on google and got a link to a watercolor you'd done. Your output is insanely impressive, and every time I think I've leveled out in my appreciation of your work something else comes along to blow me away. Never stop, please?

Oh, p'shaw.

What is your favourite color?

"Blue. No yel-- Auuuuuuuugh!"

How did you come up with the idea of making Duane be a zombie?

Originally he was a ghost! Hard to be a badass ghost though. A ghost punching someone in the face, it just lacks proper oomph.

I'm planning on making a web comic in about a year or so and I'm wondering, what web hosting service do you use?

I use phpwebhosting.com - I've used them for my art site for like a decade and they've never given me any grief. They're a bit more expensive than a lot of hosts out there and you won't find all those control panel bells and whistles. They're really for if you know what you're doing, at least a little. But if that's the case I do recommend them. Good luck with your comic!

What is your favourite Charles Addams strip?

I appreciate Addams as a cartooning stepping stone and I appreciate the concept of the Addams Family (the original class-conscious concept, though I don't think the two Raul Julia movies entirely lost this), but I don't guess I love him enough to have a favourite strip. Enh.

Be there dragons in the Unsounded universe?

There are vliegeng. They're kind've dragonish, but not. You can see pictures of a few if you snoop my dA.

Do you like pokemon?

Can't say that I have much experience with it. I do like when I'm linked to scenes of James with breasts that I guess were cut from the anime. That's all I got, really.

If you were stranded in the wilderness with only a backpack of 'stuff,' what would be in the backpack? (it is NOT big enough to hold a small hotel)

Well, if I'm stranded in the wilderness I'll want tools for survival, no? So a good knife, a fire kit, a flare gun, and a roll of toilet paper. I used to think toilet paper was a luxury but apparently even bears use it.

Does Matty have any arts yet, or is he too young to have learned any?

He doesn't know any.

Can you please, please put the old vote incentives in the miscellany section? Pretty please? With sugar on top?

You know, you COULD save them to your harddrive when you vote and then you'd always have them :) I will put them up in a few weeks. I am too lazy to bother with it right now.

In one of the questions below you said Duane has indeed rotted and now reached that lovely leathery stage...but unlike the zombies from this last chapter, he's sentient. Did his brain, unlike the rest of him, just not decay...?

I explain much of the logistics of his existence later. Rest assured I've thought about it all.

With all the requests for shirtless people, maybe you should just throw out all the pages you have now and redo the comic with everyone naked.

Or have a chapter where everyone's naked throughout. Maybe stage it entirely in a whorehouse (lol that actually will happen).

Do zombies in your world eat brains?

Zombies in my world do have a habit of desiring to eat the flesh of living creatures - skin, muscle, organs, brains, whatever's in clawing distance. I kept the brain-eating stereotype because having Sette suggest Duane wants to eat brains all the time appeals to my infantile sense of humour.

What are Duane and Sette's favorite colors?

Sette wears her favourite colours - red and dark blue. Duane really doesn't have any - he's a grown-up person and much too serious for silly things like favourite colours - but I would bet you it's green.

Okay, if you were to publish Unsounded, how many chapters would you have in each book? Would you just do one chapter per book, or three, or six, or what?

I'm a fan of big, thick trades that take an hour or three to get through. So I suppose I'd collect a few chapters at a time. Pamplets/floppies don't make much sense anymore. Four dollars a pop for a stapled together stack of papers you can't put on a bookshelf or store in any convenient way? They were cool when they were cheap and seemed more disposable but nowadays I don't buy them at all. I wait for trades.

Does Duane know the person who turned him into a zombie? Was it consentual? (...sorry if this is a spoiler?)

Good rule of thumb: if you think it's too spoilery, it's too spoilery :)

Will we ever get to see a shirtless Duane? (I ask not because I think he's sexy, but because I'm curious about the extent of his decay. His muscles have sloughed off, but he seems to fill in his shirt well.)

If you were a rickety, leathery corpse who was still a bit too self-righteous and arrogant would you very easily lose your shirt? Allow a cadaver some dignity, please :3

Could you do a vote incentive with Duane being crushed by a mob of fans trying to hug him? I've lost count of the people who've said they want to.

That's not a half bad idea. You're right though, he's a hug magnet. I can't wait until he starts being a super ass and everyone takes their love back.

If Unsounded were a movie, who would you cast for the characters?

Ugh, no one! Unsounded has to be traditionally animated :3

Hey, I can't help but notice that the colouring style you used at the start of the comic is quite different than the one you use now. Do you plan to ever change, or are you fine with it being different? Would this change if Unsounded were to be published?

It changes all the time. I colour and draw to suit the mood of the narrative. Chapter 4 lightens back up and I go back to cell-shading, like in the first chapter.

Are the giant dogs in this universe descended from giant wolves? If so, will we be seeing any in the comic?

Naw. The giant dogs are giant due to centuries of selective breeding by humans. Giant wolves have been done already and by much better artists than me.

That's pretty early for a Japanese earthquake joke. What is your sense of humour like in general? Favourite comedians?

Was it too early? I did hesitate for a minute, but I find it hard to repress testicular humour. My sense of humour is black, black and bleak and cynical with a dash of lol look what that baby/squirrel/puppy did on youtube. My favourite comedian was probably George Carlin. Comedy with a healthy dose of social commentary for me, please.

If you could be granted one wish, what would it be?

The end of human greed.

How much can you bench? Could you crush a man's skull with one hand?

Lemme just put it this way: when someone in my household needs a pickle jar opened or a lame horse shot, they come to me. The earthquake in Japan? That was my bad. I took my underwear off too fast and my balls struck the ground with the fury and momentum of lava planets.

Will we ever get to know more of Sette's ancestry? (She doesn't seem to be completely human, unlike her Da.)

Eventually :)

Will there be guns in your comic? Or nuclear bombs (I doubt this, but still...)

That avenue of technology hasn't been explored in Kasslyne. Pymary makes such things unnecessary.

My friends and I would like to start a role-playing group; however, we have no idea where to begin. Any advice for the woefully uneducated?

Depends. I'm a freeform roleplayer so I don't know anything about different game mechanics. Never used them. If you want to do freeform RP I'd say pick a genre, then a setting, figure out everyone's narrative strengths, and then come up with characters. Ah, and make sure you have a DM right from the start. Without someone in charge and telling a story, the game will just wander around for a while and then fall apart.

Did Duane ask to be made a zombie or why am I even asking this is so clearly a terrible spoiler.

You silly face.

How long until we get to see Starfish take a bath?

As soon as you get over here with a rag on a stick and some flea shampoo.

Was Duane able to feel himself rotting?


Two questions: 1) Do galits smell bad? I guess Duane must smell okay since the milk vendors didn't mind him, but the cart-pulling galits seem to attract flies. 2) Has Sette ever seen Duane in his full zombie glory (as seen on Ch. 2, p. 32)?

1) Duane doesn't smell much because he's been dead a long time. Not much active rot left, just general mustiness, like an old leather book. Them recycled labour zombies probably smell pretty ripe though, particularly if they've been rained on. Phew!
2) She's seen his real face a few times, briefly. It's pretty ugly and freaky though and she much prefers he keep it covered up.

I had earlier recognized that Duane's face was much more human-hued in the first chapter than it does as the story progresses - is this, too, because of his failing glamour? I absolutely love how well you've thought out every little detail!

You got it :3

Duane's pectoral muscles sloughed off? What's holding that man together?

Paste, twine, and stubbornness!

So how does Matty's "vision" from his little toy work? Does he just see light and shadows? Does he see blurry outlines of his surroundings? Does he see in Predator-vision? Because that would be awesome.

Predator vision WOULD be awesome. It's kind of an echolocation deal though. The little toy on his shoulder sends out a signal that bounces off stuff and comes back. The interpretation's then fed to Matty; kind of a featureless, colourless, plastic wireframe view of the world... as though it had been manufactured by Apple's industrial designers.

Nice job on Quigley. Now do Starfish! He's a sexy bad boy who plays by his own rules......his own SEXY rules.

You make me think of that famous portrait of sexy George Costanza from Seinfeld.

Will there be a break after chapter 3?

If there is, it'll be very short - one or two weeks. I really want to get into chapter 4 because it sets the stage for much fun and then ends in mayhem and explosions. Two explosions! Eat it, Michael Bay.

Thanks for the shirtless Quigley! Now I'm curious about the scar on his chest. I expected some sort of disfigurement, but I was afraid you'd make it something like Kuato from Total Recall.

Well, Matty is rather like a little Kuato, isn't he? He's just detachable. The scar has to do with a wright's rite of passage. Duane used to have one too before his pectorals sloughed off.

Adding to the question on Duane's glamour: Does he keep an object to "leech" from? Or is it a small enough magic that, for example, the leaves he passes turn a bit brown? (If it's not just exterior prettiness, there's no hope for Sette's manners...)

You are so spot on it hurts me. Being in the wilds and in the woods, Duane has been leeching the very beauty of nature itself for his glamour. But it's autumn, that nature is giving way to winter, and that's why his face is grey and liney now even with the glamour. If he wants a perfect living face he'll have to find a source other than the woods.

But, Duane isn't so keen on having that living face. He can't feel it, it's a lie, and it reminds him too sharply of what he no longer has. So the glamour is psychologically a very complicated thing for him, and that's why looking him in the eye will break it.

Do you mind if I ask, how many pages is chapter 3?

It is 52 pages. Friday we'll be at the halfway point. I will be so glad for I loathe this chapter.

Will the supplement page links over the index be back soon? (I only noticed them on my second read through.)

I need to post more, you are right! I will somehow announce when I do this.

A question on Duane's face - does he use a spell to keep his "real face" (shown on ch2 p.32) concealed? Assuming that he uses one, that is O: Does this mean there are magics beyond elemental and sealing magics?

Yes, he wears a glamour, but there are complications to it. It will for instance break if you see his eyes - thus the hood - and it relies on leeching some manner of attractiveness from something else. All magic relies on taking an aspect from something and moving it somewhere else, to the caster's benefit. Therefore one can theoretically do almost anything with magic as long as one has access to the aspects required, and sufficient knowledge and acumen.

"The Brave Little Toaster?" Haven't seen that movie in ages. Are you an animation buff, and if so, what are your favorite animated films?

When I was in school it was generally accepted that you couldn't be an animation buff unless you'd seen all of The Thief and the Cobbler (in some form or another), you'd animated a walk cycle from three angles, you knew who Gertie the Dinosaur was, and you could explain rotoscoping. So I guess I'm an animation buff.

I quite enjoy Ghibli and Satoshi Kon (RIP, bro) films, the first Fantasia, Rescuers Down Under, Coraline, How to Train Your Dragon, and a smattering of Bluth films (An American Tail & NIMH specifically).

What kind of food do you like to eat?

Baby, I like it all. I'm an American. It is my patriotic duty to eat as much bullshit in large quantities as I can shove down my gelatinous yawp.

Really though I like seafood a lot.

As a male reader, I feel you should add more female characters so we can ask for topless pics of them. Right now we're pretty much limited to Sette and Elka. (We got one of Cara, I guess, but we saw how well that turned out.)

There are some smokin' babes in the story but you won't see them for quite a while. Funny how it worked out that way, it wasn't intentional. I will draw you a topless Sette if you like.

Will there be any shirtless Starfish pics? (I have a thing for chubsters....)

You have gone too far! But if you're still jonesing after shirtless Quigley you might like Wednesday's vote incentive. You're going to make me lose my male readers D:

I'm betting the handcuffs are there to make Quigley look even hotter when he makes his shirtless reappearance.


"Like Mrs. Roosevelt loves her husband?"

Aww, c'mon! "The Brave Little Toaster" reference! No one gets me.

You mentioned and explained Strawberry Fish already, which makes me wonder if you have thought up special cuisines for all the regions of Unsounded along with everything else. Have you? Can you share more information with us if you have?

I do have a nebulous menu in my head but it's really too much to get into. I've always loved to watch travelogues and exotic food programmes and I think coming up with unique dishes and foodstuffs for one's setting can really help bring it to life. Anyway, one example that I used to gross out characters and players with is monny pudding from Alderode. The monny is in some senses a unicorn - it looks just like those goatish old unicorns you'd see on medieval tapestries - and they eat them extensively up north. They also boil their blood, mix it with spices and gelatin, and concoct a lovely savoury pudding that used to be one of Duane's favourite things to eat at 3am after a bender.

\/ I had assumed the handcuffs were there to arrest Sette's cousin if it came to that. You mean they have a different purpose?

Yep. Don't ask what though.

Since a "shart" is a fart that turns into a shit, I always mentally associate "Sharteshane" with "Shitsville" or "Shittsburgh", which seems to be an accurate description given the high crime rate. No actual question, I just wanted to point that out. :-)

My life is richer, fuller now that I know that.

Did you name Alderode after Alderaan from Star Wars?

I DID NOT but there was this lovely woman I used to roleplay with who was really into Star Wars and gave me much grief about the similar names. I do like Star Wars - who doesn't - and it's entirely possible my subconscious just ganked the beginning of the name from the movies, but this was not an intentional thing. Years after I'd been using the name and someone pointed out the similarities I thought I should change it, but damned if it wasn't already cemented in my brain. Nothing else sounded right.

Are you religious?

I am the very antithesis.

Are there any questions you wish people would ask that they haven't yet?

I'm honestly shocked no one has asked about the handcuffs in chapter 2. Not that I would explain, but it does surprise me.

Would you say Sette is the main character of the comic, or Duane?

I would say they are tied for importance. There are other characters just as important but they don't get introduced until later. The narrative won't always be about the zombie and thief; we're just following them as they lead us into more interesting waters.

Are their different breeds of work dog in unsounded?

There are. You see the heavier bulldogs in Ulestry but when we get out of the mountains you'll see some slimmer breeds. The saddle hounds which you will see in a dozen pages or so are totally different looking.

Why do you have Murkoph as your avatar? Is he the character you most closely resemble?

Not at all, but visually he's my favourite. I like his design best and some of my favourite art of mine has him in it.

Will we ever see Quigley shirtless in the comic? Inquiring minds MUST know.

I promise it will be so. But you won't see Quigley again at all until next chapter, so bide, child, bide.

Is that why you decided to incorporate giant dogs in the comic? Or do you just like drawing them?

I guess it's part of the reason they're there. One generally should not include things in a comic one cannot stand drawing. There's no deep reason for the dogs though, I just think they're more fun than the same old horses and cows :)

I love you.

Like Mrs. Roosevelt loves her husband?

What are the things growing out the back of Cutter's head? Are they horns of some kind? And why are Cutter's long, yet the unnamed NPC guy's were seemingly cut off?

Those are fleshy, floppy growths that most Two-toes sport. They help to differentiate them. I'm honestly not sure why that lizard's were cut off. Maybe they got infected, or frostbitten, and had to be removed. Maybe he pissed off his clan and they cut them off and banished him.

Since you have such a large buffer, do you think that you will increase the frequency of updates once you finish making the comic? Also, I would totally buy a little model of Uaid. Just sayin'.

I suppose that's in the realm of possibilities but I won't be finishing the comic for a very long time. It's a long story with three different books to it that heads in directions I doubt anyone could at this point predict.

I don't want a little model of Uaid. I want a life-size replica that I can ride around in and use to crush the homes and cars of people that aggravate me.

What is your most favourite animal?

Dogs, definitely. Big, rowdy, lick-your-face, knock-you-over, fetches, chases squirrels, pees on fire hydrants dogs.

What is your least favorite animal?


Where the heck does Sette hide all that stuff she steals/keeps on her person? Her clothes aren't THAT baggy enough to hide all that stuff!

Her pants sport an elabourate system of self-sewn pockets :D Also, she's got Duane's bag with her. The thing is bottomless and she's put herself in charge of inventory for the duration of their journey.

Wait, Matty used to be a dog? Holy crap.

Hahaha, nope XD

So what is that glowing moth thing those kids were chasing? Is it a common pet in Ulestry?

That's a starfly! They're the cheapest (albeit least effective) means of nighttime illumination around. Most families have a few so yeah, kind of like pets.

Wait, Quigley turned Matty's dog into a giant ogre construct? Holy crap.


Are we going to hear any more about M.A. and her quest to authenticate and publish those strange documents?

I should add some more to that, thanks for reminding me! Maybe in a few weeks. Those letters don't have much to do with the main comic plot but I'm told they are fun.

Does this mean I'm never going to get my glorious hard copy collection of Unsounded books?

Probably :( Tell ya what: If the comic ever gets really popular I'll put up a poll and see how many people would actually buy a hardcopy. If it's a fair amount, I'll make it happen via Ka-blam or some other digital printer.

How do you pronounce Uaid? Is it "you aid?" And who named him that?

I personally pronounce it Wade, but there's an argument to be made for "you-aid." Matty named him, but that was back when he was a dog. It's a long story.

How long do you think it will be until Unsounded is finished?

Years and years. It's one of those obnoxious epic things.

Do you have anything against publishing Unsounded in a physical format?

I do not. Print comics make no money though, so there's not much incentive to bother with it.

How do you feel about shota?

I have no problem with anything that does no actual harm to anyone. Drawn and written fictional shotacon hurts no one. It's not a favourite of mine but I'd bite my tongue off before I judged anyone else for it.

When you speak out loud, do you say "um," "like," oh mi gosh," "ya know," or other things like that in between your words? (I think they're called verbal parasites?)

Even the best of us have a few verbal parasites infesting our diction. I probably don't have as many as some people however for I have a bit of a speech impediment. I have to concentrate to speak clearly, when I choose to speak at all.

The worst verbal parasite? "Ya know." I used to be acquainted with someone whose every third sentence fragment was "ya know." I wanted to cut him on his face with a knife.

Ever lived in the UK? "Wanker" is a very, very British swear word.

You hear it in the US occasionally too, but no, I've never lived in the UK.

No I need to know this! The penis thing I mean.

I understand. However, such discussion (by the creator, anyway) stands to harm the dignity of the character. That's the only reason I prefer not to talk about Duane's junk. It's not that I have anything against penises. I think penises are nice.

Does Duane still have his sexual organs intact? If so, if he were to attempt sexual intercourse (though I doubt many would want to do it with a zombie) would it work, partially work, or would his "luggage" fall off?

Oh, my God! I'm acknowledging this question only to shout: "Oh, my God!" (I would wonder the same thing honestly but I'm not answering this.)

Wait, an illness you catch by looking someone in the eyes? How does that work?

*wriggles fingers* Magic.

Not really a question but I've had an amazing vision of Sette and Duane in the middle of a battleground, army guys all around them, magic missiles flying everywhere and Duane having to put the epic smack on thousands of soldiers.

Fund it!

Sette has flaws but at least she doesn't really swear. Why is that?

You let a few f-bombs come out of your underaged character's mouth and you rob them of almost all likability, in my opinion. There's just something about kids swearing that sets my teeth on edge. It's entirely possible that I'm just a cranky old woman.

In chapter 2 pg. 17 we see a memory from Sette's past, is the hand clutching her face what really happened and the grainy portion just how she wants to remember it?

That's up to you to interpret how you will, dear reader.

Those are some pretty snazzy platform shoes that lizard-guy NPC was sporting. Is that a standard footwear among his people?

Yeah, typically when they're interacting with humans. Two-toes are pretty short and have problems reaching countertops and shelves otherwise.

What do you think are the BEST web comics? (other than unsounded)

Hahaha! Unsounded is not the best anything. The best at giving me a headache maybe.

What is the best webcomic? Man, art is art, art is subjective, putting it on a hierarchy is gay (I can call things gay, my brother is gay and I would bang Mila Kunis like a screen door on a windy day). You know what webcomics I think fucking rock though? Lackadaisy Cats. That thing is amazing and I feel like I'm stealing when I'm reading it without having to pay for it. You know what else is awesome but not quite as awesome? Shadoweyes. It's so unique and well-executed and unpredictable. You know what gag comic I always laugh at? Nedroid. That comic's goddamned hilarious, forever.

I assumed it was him. All I know is you said they were pointy from being filed. Make that question, "Will we find out WHO filed them to be all pointy & why?' at some point in the comic? I still imagine it's uncomfortable, even now.

Unsounded is a very, very long tale. All (important) questions will be answered in the story in due course. And I consider the matter of Sette's teeth to be fairly important D:

And yeah, it hurts sometimes. And it hurts when she steps barefoot on a pine cone or sits wrong on a chair, kinking her tail. But Sette is tough, even if gods and the dark and jars full of guts freak her out from time to time.

Duane referred to Alderode as a cooperative. Is their society structured along communist lines?

Much more Fascist than Communist but Alderode doesn't fit all that neatly into a mold. The country terms itself a "Cooperative" because that best suits the philosophy that it's long drilled into its citizens' heads. I'd rather not go into that philosophy just yet though.

Does Duane have any living relatives?


Are there special places to purchase pymarics or do wrights generally have to make their own?

Wrights who rely on pymarics are frequently made fun of. Pymarics exist to aid laymen, are manufactured by specialists, and sold in most major retailers.

Where do wrights learn their craft? Duane made a comparison between Bett with his book and the "true schooled" wright he must have stolen it from.

This answer varies depending on what country you're talking about, but generally a wright is supposed to attend a specialized University and be licensed as a professional afterwards. As with most things however, there is a black market for wrights and spellwork, and sometimes wizards go rogue. From the way Bett was flailing energies about, Duane assumed him some self-taught dabbler with no real foundational knowledge, and a spellbook he certainly must have stolen (acquired on one's own spellbooks are prohibitively expensive).

Can anyone learn magic in Unsounded?

Can anyone become a Nuclear Physicist in Our World?

What kind of thing gets you in trouble in Alderode?

Question's a bit vague, hmm?

Will it ever be revealed in the comic why Sette's dad filed her teeth down? And wouldn't that have hurt her, and make eating, let alone biting, rather painful, or at least uncomfortable?

Sette's Da filed her teeth? You sure, bro?

Will there be any panels featuring Quigley without a shirt, preferably while wet with perspiration?

I will make certain of it. For you.

Any ideas on where to find Sanctuary? I noticed you liked it in one of your responses and have always wanted to check it out but it seems to be out of print.

I bet someone's scanned it, if you check around for torrents. I bought my copies about a decade ago :)

What kind of currency do they have in Unsounded?

Everyone but Cresce uses sem, reds, and greens. Sem are square coinage - either gold or bronze - and used for smaller day-to-day transactions. Reds and greens are engraved treasury-issued jewels, much more valuable and used for larger transactions (animals, vessels, land, high-end pymarics, etc).

Do you read manga? If so, what kind of manga do you like?

I like manga! But I haven't read anything new in a while. Blade of the Immortal is a favourite as well as the 3 volume Gankutsuou adaptation, Monster, Tegami Bachi, Sanctuary, and Nausicaa.

Will you tell us later on in Unsounded what the beef is between Alderode and Cresce?


Do you read more fiction or non-fiction?

I go through spurts. Right now I'm in a fiction spurt and actually reading novels again, stop the presses. Before that I spent a few months listening to a lot of philosophical and religious audiobooks while I worked.

Do you have a favourite TV series?

Of all time, probably, but the only television I watch these days is kids programming when my nephew is here during the day. It's a sad truth that comickers have little time for much beyond comicking. Although, television is a dreadful mind-destroying waste of time and attention anyway, so nothing of value is lost.

When you were creating the political background for Unsounded, were there particular periods of history that inspired you?

Yes. Our current one. In chapter 4 Unsounded becomes the only swords 'n sorcery comic I know of with a Glenn Beck cameo.

How far are you in Tactics Ogre? Beat it yet? I'm stuck and I think I need to restart Y_Y

Aww, did you save unwisely during a multi-part battle? I haven't had a chance to play as often as I'd like. I'm only half way through Chapter 2. Just recruited a cool archer chick whose name I pronounce about as well as Catiua's.

Who/what is your Formspring icon?

That would be Murkoph.

Where do you pick names for your characters?

I don't, really. They usually come into my head with their names already attached :)

How did you get the idea for Uaid?

Well, Quigley used to be a birddog for the government. It required he have a hardy means of transport that had room for prisoners. Uaid fit the bill.

How common are constructs like Uaid? Are they relatively common, or is he unique?

They're not very common because the materials required to construct them are either expensive or rare. Constructs are essentially giant pymarics (pymarics just being the word for enchanted artifacts). Pymarics have to be made out of First Materials - these are the only materials in the world that will permanently bond to a spell so they are the only materials that can be enchanted. First Materials are expensive and increasingly rare so gathering enough for a construct is a project usually reserved for governments - or slobs fortunate enough to happen upon the body of a senet ogre.

Does Dwayne actually care about accomplishing Sette's mission? If I were him, I would've let that walky-root eat her and set up shop in a different city... (Not that I'm a Sette hater--I actually think she's an awesome character.)

He doesn't care about the "mission" much. He doesn't even think the mission is what he's been told it is, and fully expects this is all some ploy of Sette's father to get rid of her. All he really cares about is keeping the kid from getting herself killed and, if she lets him, being there and offering guidance when she realises this is all a farce.

Hmm, lots of people have been all "Duane should kick her ass! Duane should let so and so kill her!" But really, who would do that? Who would wallop a skinny little girl? I think if Duane's shown anything at this point it's that he really cares a lot about kids. I'm sure there is a type of person who would revel in Sette's destruction, but the zombie's not that type.

Is the dude on p16, Chapter 1 important to the plot, or is he just some random soldier?

Blondie? He's important to Duane.

What's your favourite novel?

It is Moby-Dick by Herman Melville.

Does Matty know how long Plats live for?


Do you have a favourite character in Unsounded? (Whether they've appeared yet or not.)

I'm not sure I do honestly. I like everyone in different ways. If you twisted my arm though, I think I'd have to choose Bastion. There are a lot of things only he can say. You won't meet him for a little while though.

Is Quigley at all concerned that he's got so little time left? He sure doesn't look it.

Ah, but how well do you know Quigley? You don't, not yet. If you did you'd realise how very concerned he is.

Can you remember when you started drawing?

I was a toddler, so I'm afraid not :)

What's your favourite Ghibli film and what do you like about it?

A tie between Porco Rosso and Tenku no Shiro Laputa! As much as I love when Miyazaki gets philosophical and environmental, I love his adorable action-adventure films best. Laputa and Porco Rosso are each so perfect in their every aspect: beautiful craftsmanship, extreme attention to detail, tightly written, original, lovable characters, great madcap action, funny, exciting, poignant, awesome settings... aaarrgh, so amazing.

Starfish doesn't strike me as the kind of person to let Quigley's magical backhand go unpunished. Should we expect some sort of treachery from him before long?

Want me to just go ahead and email you the script? :3

What would you say are your biggest artistic influences?

I suck at these kinds of questions. Everything is an influence. Everyone. When I want to feel bad about myself I go watch a Ghibli movie or browse James Gurney's blog or read something Glenn Fabry has drawn. The world is bursting with awesome artists and I can't stands it!

Are we gonna meet the person who made Duane into a zombie? I'm assuming it's not something you can do to yourself...

Yep, he's a major character.

So how many pages are in the backlog you keep?

I'm about eighty pages ahead right now. 3/4 of the way done with chapter 4. Big chase scene. Very fun.

Was Duane well off growing up?

Middle-class. His father was a printer.

Could Duane die if he actually decided to hang himself like he complained he was tempted to in Chapter 2?

Nah. His head might pop off though! Totally inconvenient.

Phrasing this so it's easy not to give away any real info: is it a difficult thing to become a galit?

"Galit" is nothing more than the Tainish word for animated corpse. It's a zombie, and anyone with sufficient necromantic knowledge can create one from a corpse. They're mindless, mute, and menacing monsters though. Why does Duane want to be called a galit instead of a zombie? Why does my aunt want to be called a personal assistant instead of a secretary? Conceit, insecurity, shame, embarrassment.

Is living in Alderode more akin to living in Nazi Germany or Stalinist Russia d'ya think?

Or China or North Korea or Imperial Japan. It's a very xenophobic place and everything is rigidly controlled.

How long does it take you to produce a page of Unsounded? The pages are so complexly illustrated, yet you're a lot faster than artists who have less complicated backgrounds.

It's important to know that I was working on Unsounded for nearly a year and a half before I started posting pages, so I had lots of time to take things to the level that I wanted them to be at. Nowadays I can produce three pages a week to keep up with what I post, but if I have to take breaks in-between chapters to build up my pagecount again, I do. With a few exceptions, artists that post pages as they finish them are robbing themselves of an opportunity to go back, correct, and edit. It's kind of goofy and doesn't much help the overall quality of webcomics.

Is Duane's loyalty to the Aldish view of Cresce the result of naivety or really, really bad experiences?

The latter is a factor - Duane was a soldier when he was a younger man. The former I would not term naivety but rather the result of extreme patriotism, cultural bias, and propaganda.

Is Quigley's pretty dagger a wright thing? I noticed the wright that Murkoph had a fight with is carrying a similar one.

Nope, it's just a dagger. It's pretty but he mostly uses it for trimming his nails and cutting meat :D

Was Duane a Plat before he "died"?

I was waiting for someone to ask this. I choose not to answer :3

How much preparation do you do beforehand to put all the tiny details in Unsounded that make the readers look back and go, "Oh! Now I know what that means." ?

Nothing specific. It just comes of knowing what's going to happen to whom, where, and how, and knowing the setting really well. Which I should after how much time I've spent developing it and writing in it. Assuming I don't die before it's finished, when the story's done you'll be able to go right back to the first chapter and see foreshadowing.

So it's not just Alderode which has a dammakhert then?

There's a khert, or ethereal network, or leylines, or Lifestream (this is not a novel concept) over the entire planet. Alderode's is just very unique and isolated from the rest of the world.

Are we gonna see Quigley's intentions for the children he just conned out of Starfish?

Eventually, sure. Though I had thought they were rather apparent already.

So the eels and the masked people are just Cara's near-death hallucinations and nothing to do with why she's been carved up?

Quite so. Her plague-murdered family was there to usher her into death. Her parents and the "doctor" who pulled her from the fires and got her out of Fachlyne all wanted her to survive, but fate itself seems to have conspired to end her, and Cara was ultimately fine with that. She just wanted to be with her mom and dad, and they were the last people on her mind as she died.

I'm guessing the Aldish don't do any fighting themselves if they can keep anyone from invading them?

Eight times out of ten, Alderode are the aggressors. It's the rest of the continent that worries about being invaded by THEM. Alderode isn't impregnable though. It has the advantage of its potent and twisted Dammakhert but there are those who have learned to bypass and even disable it.

Are those horrifying things in the hoods that appeared with the smoke eels to do with the bad guys' plans? They really freak me out.

Aren't they scary looking? They're just the ghostly images of people infected with the Stricks plague. The plague spreads via eye contact, so when you come down with it they lock your face and eyes behind one of those masks, and you spend the rest of your (albeit short) life inside.

Is there spoilery significance to the word Kussen?

It's just the Tainish/Aldish term for slave. Slaves in Alderode aren't like slaves in the rest of Kasslyne though. They're used for a different, rather more sinister purpose.

How long have Alderode and Cresce been squabbling?

Actively? Weeks. Long-term? Centuries.

Are the Frummagems really the kings of nickery and pimpery in Sharteshane, or is that just idle braggery?

They have complete control of two of the country's five most populous and wealthy cities. There are a few different criminal syndicates (this phrase seems too fancy, more like rogues' guilds) that all vie to lobby His Majesty and the Cabinet and the Frummagems are indeed a powerful player among them. An important thing to know though is that Sharteshane itself is not a very rich or powerful country. It's small, it's reliant on imports, it's a bit backwards, and large parts of it are hindered from progress by sects of extreme Gefendur zealotry. So bragging you're a powerful player in Sharteshane is like bragging you're a powerful player in Zimbabwe.

Is Sharteshane as scummy a place as it sounds?

Pretty much. The capital city is nice enough but most of the country is run by corrupt politicians answering to the whims of criminal lords.

How old is Sette?

Sette would say that's none've your affair.

How did you get the idea for Unsounded?

Unsounded was once a comic of mine called Tanners, but I never liked how the story of Tanners was structured. Over the course of a decade I was constantly rewriting it, restarting it, drawing pages and scrapping them.

One day while just playing around I doodled a little comic with some more minor Tanners characters in it. I liked it so much that I decided I needed to totally rework the story to make these minor characters more like main characters, and completely restructure everything. So I did, and that's Unsounded. You won't actually meet the main character from the old version of Tanners for another seven chapters or so.

Does Sette have any siblings?

Sette says she does not.

Does Duane need to eat?

You'll know soon.

Completely unrelated to the plot question - What's Sette's favourite food?

Tinned sardines or kippers on toast.

LOL the massive lighting-round attack questions was hilarious to read through right now. So here's a non-Unsounded related question. Will you be watching the Academy Awards show this Sunday? Do you want anyone/movie in particular to win?

Not really into the Oscars, honestly. The stuff I like never wins. This year, for instance, I'd love How To Train Your Dragon to take Best Animated but I'm sure it'll go to Toy Story 3. Otherwise, I really liked The King's Speech.

What's that lizard-like creature we see clinging to the top of the wagon at the beginning of the chapter?

That would be a lizard-like creature named Cutter, part of the gang. You'll meet him properly later.

Is the Aldish caste system in "This Shining" applicable to Unsounded?

I can't remember if Fox got all the details right, but probably. C'mon, man, no more questions! Enjoy the mystery for now :)

Did Duane leave Alderode before or after he became a galit?

Too spoilery.

Is it spoilery why Sette has a tail and her Da apparently doesn't?

So very.

So why doesn't Quigley go back to Alderode if nothing bad will happen to him if he does?

I wonder.

Not asking directly, but is the dammakhert the same thing as it was in "This Shaking" and the Sharteshane roleplaying bit on your website?

Curse your Google-fu! Yes.

How old was Duane when he died?

I'd rather not say.

What will happen to Quigley if he sets foot in Alderode again?

Nothing in particular. He's a dissident who despises the country but he never broke any law in it (though he breaks plenty of laws outside of it).

Do Toma and the Peaceguard know what Starfish is doing or do they just think he's trafficking slaves?

No one really knows what Starfish is ultimately doing - not even the other fellows in his gang. But Toma is no fool and realises there is something sacrificial and black magicky about hollowing out people. He's just not one to needlessly alarm the population by calling this more than human trafficking - yet.

Is Matty's blindness related to his father leaving Alderode as a dissident?

It is related to the reason for his leaving, yes.

First off I'd like to say that Unsounded is awesome. I'd be hard pressed to find something as well done at a comic book store! So now for the question: are we ever going to get to see what Duane's face looks like? Do you maybe want to tell us right now??

Oh, you saw it back in chapter 2, no? A bit bandaged, but you can more or less make out that it's decomposed and undead when he takes down his hood on that one splash page. A face only a mother could love, alas.

So whatever made Quigley leave Alderode must be pretty huge since he would normally raise Matty in a community who'd take over after he himself is gone, right?

Exactly. Matty and Quigley's situation is very unique among Plats. White-haired children aren't supposed to spend so much time with just one parent or even their own set of parents. It's culturally discouraged for hopefully obvious reasons.
So what the Red Berry Boys are selling isn't merely slaves but people who are carrying something surgically put into their chest cavities?

That stands to reason.

Is the reduced lifespan of Plats linked to their magic?

Sort of. Plats generally have a closer connection to the Dammakhert (don't ask about this, it gets explained in the comic later) which means they have a reputation for excellence with pymary and the arts. But there are some Plats that are rubbish at magic and they live no longer than others.

At what age are Plats considered adults?

Adults in what sense?

Since the Red Berry Boys are discarding the organs that they remove from the people they're cutting up, they must be putting something inside the slaves to replace what's been lost or the slaves would just die, right?

That train of reasoning seems on track, yes.

Do Plats age quicker than normal? If Starfish is right that Quigley only has five years left, that makes him about twenty five (?) so he'd have to have had Matty really young.

Plats marry and have kids and do pretty much everything else at a young age. They don't have much choice. In Alderode most people of this class/caste live in communities together, raising each other's kids and providing support to "older" neighbours. Plats begin to age very quickly once they're out of their teens, but much of it is internal. Their hearts begin to wear out, their organs go south, their eyes and hearing go bad. Most die of heart failure.

How long do Plats live if they have such a reduced lifespan? Quigley looks pretty young.

Plats can live up to 30 years, but most get very ill and die by 27 or so.

Has Duane ever met Quigley before?


Is Murkoph the same kind of being as Duane?

Definitely maybe but possibly not.

I don't know why people are hating on Sette so much. The reason I started reading the comic was BECAUSE she's a foul-mouthed, irreverent, fiendishly clever little imp - because we need more protagonists who aren't teary and sickly sweet. Don't you agree?

Well, I don't wanna come off arrogant by declaring boldly What We Need, but I would say there are already many very entertaining and easy to read adventure stories in existence. Their characters are designed to be likable and relatable. Those heroes get out of your way, intellectually, and you don't have to think about them. Maybe this is one reason why villains so often seem to be more popular and interesting than the protagonists.

I guess a lot of people really prefer this, and that's cool. But with Unsounded I wanted protagonists that get under your skin; ones that could be greedy, profane, haughty, prejudiced, even cruel. Characters that don't always act rationally because people so seldom act rationally. I also wanted a female lead whose female-ness was absolutely irrelevant. Sette's not in the story in order to hook up with a boy. She doesn't need anyone else.

Anyway, look at all the Sette questions on this formspring, it's nuts! I can't wait until focus shifts to other characters in coming chapters :)

That co thread was brutal on Sette. I tried defending her but I guess the cause is lost. Do you think you might ever go back and tone her down or start writing her diffrent? I want Unsounded to be popular.

It's one thing to improve one's craft as one goes along, or go back and edit old pages to reflect new skills. It's another to purposefully change your vision of a work because it pisses some people off for entirely subjective reasons. That's being a tool.

I can't change Sette. She can develop, but right now she is what she is.

Fiction is a place you go to in order to escape reality. If there's a person in that fiction you can't stand, one who reminds you of someone in your real life, one who displays traits you cannot deal with, or one who has you convinced the author is behind the scenes rubbing her hands together and cackling at some assumed cleverness - I can understand wanting nothing to do with that fiction. Art is, at the end of the day, the most subjective thing in the world, and I don't have any interest in being Easy To Read. I've known from the beginning that Unsounded would never be hugely popular. It requires too much patience, too much reading between the lines, too much trust. The internet is bursting with comic creators who want you to trust them and follow their work with the assurance that it will all be awesome in the end. A lot of readers are running low on that trust.

I don't mean to sound like some kind of weepy martyr or anything, but I don't want anyone to think I'm over here suffering under any delusions. I am cool. You should be cool too. If Unsounded continues to interest you, continue to read it. Don't worry about what other people are reading or saying. And remember always, please, that Biblical phrase: Haters gonna hate.

Okay, I'll bite. What are strawberry fish?

Strawberry fish are rotund little mud-coloured freshwater fish specially raised and bred. They have strawberry red-coloured flesh and are infected with tiny white parasites that look like sesame seeds and taste of mild nuttiness. When you break these fish open it looks like you have a palmful of mushy strawberries, but the taste is like a mild tuna sashimi with the occasional nutty parasite crunch. MMM-MMM GOOD.

So, why are the Red Berry Boys called Red Berry Boys? (If it's not to spoilery.)

I originally had Petr (the big guard that lost his arm) explain this in ch02 but didn't think it was important so I cut it. The first jar of organs was found in the Madishanian town of Redbury a few months earlier, right before the beginning of Harvest. Redbury is pretty known for its fruit and berry crops. When a few transients went missing and guts showed up in a barn just outside town, the local paper thought CACHE OF GRISLY RED BERRIES FOUND IN REDBURY was a clever headline. They've been called the Red Berry Boys since. Starfish thinks it's funny.

When is Murkoph going to show up?

During a moment of maximum carnage.

So wait, if Bett got arrested, then who put the seal on the crypt?

The seal was old and Bett had put it in place when the RBBs started using it. Ephsephin entered a different way (Duane himself said "I doubt he came this way"). Think about it. If the RBBs have two dogs and those carts there must be a larger exit from the crypt somewhere, and they must have fled through it only minutes before Duane and Sette arrived.

Does ice cream exist in the Unsounded universe? And if so, what is Sette's favourite flavour? (Also, what was Dwayne's favourite flavour when he was still alive?)

You have asked me something I don't immediately know. Congratulations. Hmm... I don't see why there wouldn't be ice cream. There are a lot of things In the Unsounded universe that are surprising to people, like canning technology and carbonation. Sette likes apple pastries enormously so I'm going to say she likes a good apple pastry vanilla iced cream. Duane was never one for sweets though, and Alderode is pretty cold nine months out of the year. I don't think he digs frozen treats.

I really don't like your comic. The art's nice enough but that little bitch lead character is a real dealbreaker. Do you have any other comic ideas you might make later?

I do, but I wanna focus on Unsounded for a while. I'll have to muddle through without you somehow.

Are Smoke Eels real, or more of a metaphorical concept of illness?

Both, I'd say.

When you create stories (whether prose or your comic/screenplay) do you find yourself planning the story ahead of time before writing it, or does it sort of come spontaneously to you and you edit it later on? Thanks again for sharing your comic!

This is going to sound strange and schizophrenic, but my characters tell me the story. The Starfish story down there is a great example. When I came to a point in Unsounded where I needed a man who was willing to incarcerate and mutilate adults and children alike in the name of money, Starfish popped into my head. I knew he was fat because he had an inflated opinion of himself and I knew he was a bastard because he was obsessed with being in control and making other people feel small. And I knew his name was Starfish because...

Well, I didn't know. But it wasn't important. He'd told me that was his name and I believed him. I drew him Starfishy - orangey colours, freckles, that bulbous core with the tapered limbs and head - but it turns out his name was Starfish for a different reason. When I needed to write down his story, it popped into my brain and it just worked.

That's how a good ninety percent of my stories come about. I have the characters, I know their motivations, and if I just let them live their lives out on a page they'll naturally create a plot and reveal more about themselves.

That plot does generally have to be tweaked and edited afterwards though. There's not a lot of original content left in fiction so worrying too much about that is a waste of time. What makes stories fresh is shifting perspectives around, misdirecting the reader and playing with expectations, figuring out new ways of contrasting old things. Et cetera :)

I'm wondering whether we'll learn anything about Matty's mother and what her relationship was like with Mathis.

Of course. But the characters were only introduced a few pages ago. You'll have to be patient.

how long will chapter 3 be?

52 pages

Do people of Aldish and Crescian descent really look younger than they are? After all, Jivi does look at least a couple years shy of 14.

It was a bad joke of Starfish's that fell flat. If you don't get it, please pay it no mind.

In addition to her heightened sense of smell, I would think Sette would also have excellent balance because of her tail. Might it also be strong enough for her to lift (small) things with? Jail cell keys, wallets, etc.?

Sette does have excellent balance! She's very good at climbing trees and buildings and tall people. Her tail isn't prehensile however, so it's not much use in thieving. In fact it can be a liability when pursuers manage to snag it or the cops get a glimpse of it when she's trying to blend. If someone back home says THE GIRL WITH THE TAIL DID IT, that really narrows down the line-up :3

Can I marry Murkoph?

You could try. It'd be quite an endeavour distracting him long enough to recite vows and slip a ring on your finger. He's much more likely to just eat the eyes out of your head and see if he can fit your severed feet down the vicar's throat.

Ask him out for coffee instead.

Have you ever read Problem Sleuth? Are you reading Homestuck?

Nope and nope.

You seem to get compared a lot to The Meek. Is it a big influence?

Not at all. I think The Meek is fantastic - chapter 2 is some of the best stuff in webcomics - but Unsounded is its own thing and I've been drawing the way I draw for rather a long time.

You've mentioned having a dictionary of common Aldish words. Any chance of translating Matty's dialogue with Jivi?

"Vhefhen kakhtimun vil dan efhim tookim vil saba." Father said I'm not allowed to talk to any of you.

That little Starfish story was awesome. You should write a book or something. Have you written any books?

Sweet of you to say. I have not written any books. A modicum of writing ability is really not a rare thing among those who enjoy reading and roleplaying - the ability to edit yourself is much more valuable and I, unfortunately, do not possess that ability.

Wow! No question, just thank you for telling Starfish's story. That was chilling. I'm glad I asked.

Sure, man.

So, how does magic (or Arts or whatever) work? Are there definite laws, or is it Harry-Potter-esque slot-machine magic?

There are definite laws. You'll find 'em out when it's more important.

Why is Starfish called Starfish? The resemblance is not that striking. ;-)

This isn't likely to come up in the story so I'll go ahead and answer. When Starfish was a younger man, his name was Arctrit and he worked for a certain disreputable gentleman in one of his warehouses. Being rude, not all that bright, fat, freckled, and pretty greasy, Arctrit was the least popular among his coworkers, and they picked on him endlessly. One day, Arctrit had had enough. He took a swing at the worst of his tormentors, a tall, thick brute who was in charge of record-keeping. Well, the brute wasn't going to be having any of that from this young, fat, and freckled son of a bitch, so he had two of his friends pin him to the ground. Arctrit's boots were removed and the brute took out a knife. He proceeded to very slowly carve the skin from the bottoms of the fat boy's feet, all the while whispering that if Arctrit dared make a peep and bring their supervisor out to investigate, he'd have his throat cut.

The impromptu surgery took a long time. Arctrit flopped and spit and twitched and struggled spread-eagled on the warehouse floor. The bullies thought he looked like a starfish washed up on the beach, and they chanted the name uproariously once they let him go, watching him bloodily drag his way out into the street.

They thought that was the end of him. He couldn't work on his feet all day now, could he? He'd have to get another job and leave them the hell alone.

But next morning at the crack of dawn, Arctrit was there with his boots on, ready to work. He hobbled for a few weeks but he showed up for every shift. His stubbornness - his batshit craziness - slowly won over the respect of everyone else in the warehouse. Everyone but the brute. The brute was enraged that his little gag had fallen flat and insisted on calling the fat boy starfish starfish starfish you feeling alright?

One day, the brute didn't show up for work. A week passed and still no one had seen him. Enraged and never one to be walked out on, the warehouse's supervisor went to the fellow's house. He was met by the landlord who had a lot of questions because he hadn't seen the family who lived inside for days either. Together they broke open the door.

There was no one inside; not the old man who lived there, not his wife, not their grandson who worked at the warehouse, not even the brute's seven year old little brother who was going to apprentice to a nereid hunter and set to sea in the spring. None were ever seen again.

The authorities tried to question Arctrit about the disappearances but there was no hard evidence to charge him with a crime. Arctrit started using the nickname Starfish soon after. He joked with his coworkers that he really was just like a starfish - you can cut the leg off a starfish fine and it'll grow back in a year or so. The bottoms of his own feet had grown back just fine and were tougher than ever. Of course, he mused, it's not like you could cut off his leg and have it regrow. Or either of his arms. Or his head.

No. Humans just weren't designed that way. Cut them into pieces and throw them in the sea if you like - they don't come back.

My guess is that the Plat are for some reason shortlived - or at least do have a very definite lifespan. This is why Starfish is so sure that Quigley will be dead in 5 years and also why the Plat usually don't worry much about the future. Care to comment?

Nothing to comment on. You have it exactly.

May've been answered before, but I'm too lazy to sort through all the previous questions: How big a role with Toma have? I thought he was a pretty cool dude in the brief time we saw him, but his lack of an entry on the Characters page worries me.

Duane chopped the arm off one of Toma's boys. Captain Toma is very interested in discussing this with him, if you know what I mean.

The current vote incentive, from ch4. WHAT IS THIS, are you teasing your formspring? XD

Oh, that was an incentive I put up for Valentine's Day on Monday. I guess I should take it down... but yes, it's actually from chapter 4. You'll hate me when you see it in context :3

$5 words? that can add up fast! Let no one ever tell you talk is cheap. You've proven otherwise. ;)

If only I could translate that into some form of currency accepted at major retailers.

What does execrable mean?

It means I use too many five-dollar words.

Do you still RP, or do you not have time anymore? (Random aside, much love for Uaid in the latest few pages)

It's a combination of not having time and of the storyline I was GMing kind of reaching a stopping point. Running a game properly is a full-time hobby, and it's something I refuse to ever half-ass.

Sette seems to have heightened agility, and you explained how/why she has a heightened sense of smell. Does she have superior hearing and/or sight as well? Is her tongue longer than average, and does it have heightened senses? A rough texture like a cats?

Sette has heightened agility in that she's an athletic and spry kid who has had to learn how to thieve and steal and get away really quickly afterwards. She's fast and clever on her feet but not inhumanly so. Aside from her sense of smell her other senses are all very average. So is her tongue, though I imagine it's pretty scarred from her teeth. Why do you want to know about her tongue? Are you over there fapping?

You have good taste in Pizza!

It's taken years of practise.

As an aside, I had always mentally pronounced Sette's name as 'Set' - although in Gaeilge it's 'Shecha'. From an etymological point of view - why is the final e in her name pronounced 'Ee' as opposed to an unstressed 'e', a schwa, or not at all?

This borders on a spoiler but the Frummagems don't pronounce Sette's name properly. It SHOULD be said with an unstressed final e. It's a name no one in her family had seen or heard before though, and was quickly corrupted to a pronunciation easier on their ears and their tongues. I could have probably spared the world a lot of confusion by changing the spelling of her name to Settee, but then she'd be furniture :)

Any chance of seeing reference pics of Sette up close, showing her differences? Like a cutaway medical pic to show said nasal passages, and dental work. Things that make her stand out, with just enough info to educate, yet not spoil the plot?

Nah, it's not really that important. If it interests you though you should try your hand at it!

Filed? So..her teeth aren't naturally that way? Did she file them, or her dad? Or...is this info that will be explained, visually, at some point in the comic? I presume, outside of those sharp teefs, her oral anatomy is more or less the same as ours?

Ah, can't talk about why her teeth are filed or who did it, but eventually someone's going to ask her about it and you'll find out then. The rest of her mouth is decidedly human, though her nasal passages curve around three times longer inside her head than ours do, accommodating five times more scent receptors than other people have. This is the reason for her very keen sense of smell.

What is, in your opinion, the best pizza topping about?

Ham and pineapple, baby! Though chicken and pineapple is pretty win too.

When Sette bit Duane in chapter 1, her teeth looked all jagged, like a shark. Was that just a 'design for the moment' to show they're sharp, or does she really have jagged teeth? Human teeth, canine/feline... What's it like inside of there?

Her teeth are always drawn jagged, though I'll often downplay it so she doesn't lose too much cute factor. Each incisor has been filed to a point and the tops of her molars are pretty sharp too. They're indeed sharp enough to bite off a finger (though zombie fingers are pretty brittle and don't require too much effort :3 )

Noooo! You mean there's no chance I will ever see a livestream from you?! :C How about using a video-capture program, and you could upload the time-lapsed movie to youtube or something? Then you could also put it to awesome VGM in the background! :D

Maybe some day, I dunno. It's not high on the list of priorities :D

With Sette going around barefoot 24/7, she must have jet black, completely dirty soles.

Darker than the tops of her feet but jet black? The girl does bathe on occasion and she's not walking around on freshly poured tar.

Talk a little about your comic making process. How long does it generally take you to finish a page? What programs do you use? Do you thumbnail and/or write a panel-by-panel script that you follow? How large (in pixels) is the canvas before you resize it?

My process is so boring! And I totally don't do anything the way one is supposed to do it.

I do work from a script but it's not broken down into panels - it's written more like a stage or screen play. This could be one reason why my stories are so dialog-heavy. I'll take that script and then do very rough thumbnails in Photoshop, usually six to a dozen pages at a time. Then I go through a page at a time, blow up the thumbnail to working size - 3600 by 2400 - draw it, letter it, ink it, flat it, and shade it. Everything's in Photoshop from thumbnail to final colours.

I do almost no concepting. I have no character turn-arounds. I have no colour studies. I only use reference for when I need something really accurate, like the bones of an exposed human knee, or a wagon axle, or the zoomed-in head of a fly. If you flip around pages in the same scene you'll see where I can't decide if Sette has a patch on one knee or if Duane has belts or if the strap of his bag is over or under the shoulder of his cloak.

Take more care! Don't do as I do! :D

Do you think you'd ever consider Livestreaming your work sometime? I would kill to see some of your art process, even just a sketch!

I've tried to! The stream chokes and skips so badly that it's really unwatchable. I think my monitor might be too big and my computer just can't record it at any sort of reasonable frame rate.I did try though :(

Read your comic. It's great. Read your formspring.me questions. All of them. Been thru your deviantart gallery and your own art site. Googled your name. I've come to the concluson you're the coolest girl on the internet. Too cool. Prove you're a girl.

If you've stalked me that hard I'm surprised you haven't found evidence of my hidden girliness. I have drawn smushy, sappy pictures of hugs and feelings. I post pictures of my baby nephew and niece on Twitter. Sometimes I blog about cooking. I used to draw Vincent Valentine ALL THE TIME. And there was a period of my life wherein, to my great shame, I wrote fanfiction.

If that isn't proof of tits I don't know what is. All the same, it's cool if you wanna think I'm a guy. Or a futa!

How often do you come out with new pages?

Unless I've announced otherwise, new pages come out Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. It says so on the front page of the site but since I've been asked this a few times I'm thinking I need to make it bigger, haha.

Would you ever consider letting other people write stories in the world/universe you've created? Sort of "official fan-fiction" type productions, like the EU in Star Wars for example that with your approval would become 'canon'?

The only person I would allow to do this is my best friend because she knows the world about as well as me. Anyone else could certainly write fanfiction if they liked, but I wouldn't endorse it or call it official :)

Don't kill off Uaid and Mattie ok? but you can kill Sette. Duane and Quigly should fight. Who is stronger?

Tough call. Duane's power level is over nine-thousand but Quigley has white hair which probably means he knows special jutsu plus he has that giant mecha with the derp-face. The derp mecha could squish Duane's loli sidekick but that would fill Duane with Rage and he might channel it into massive speedlines that would vector towards Quigley and certainly make for his undoing.

Do you ever listen to OST VGMs while drawing your comic? If so, do any of the other tracks inspire you while writing the story?

I mostly watch stuff on Netflix when I'm comicking :D I have to have silence when I'm actually writing script, so I can reason out the plot and hear dialects better in my head. But I doooo have a (perhaps very girly?) habit of deciding what my characters' favourite VGM tracks are. Duane is very fond of the Bioshock albums. Sette likes anything headache-inducing - God of War, Devil May Cry 3, Crow's Claw. Pretty predictable I'd say.

Damn, that Monkey Island Pirate's Shout track off the Heroes VS Villains album is really kickass. I've had it repeating for half an hour.

Since I now know you like video game music, what are some of your favorite video game soundtracks, remixed & original both.

I listen to OSTs much more often than remixes. Often the OCRemix albums are too trance-y for me and lose the original melodies too much for my tastes but the DKC album and its sequel were pretty amazing. And then there's Relics of the Chozo but everyone likes that. The Bad Dude's Super Dodgeball album is EPIC and one of my favourites. If Dracula Battle counts, those. Most of what Crow's Claw and Magical Trick Society do is supremely listenable.

Top OSTs are sooo hard to choose, I like so many. I'm going to go with Vagrant Story, FFT, Symphony of the Night, Castlevania, Legend of Legaia, LUMINES, Super Metroid, FF7, FF8, Silent Hill 2... Every Ivalice game, the Castlevania series, and all of the Silent Hills - just loop those forever in my ears.

I hang out every night in a VGM chatroom/file-sharing hub. VGM is kind of a hobby for me, I guess.

I think the reason some of these folks are asking about her is they like her, but don't want her to be underaged, if that makes any sense. -.-; And yes, I know that's a statement, not a question.

You could be on to something. I judge no one!

Does that mean her 'Da' is only a foster parent? I think the main reason we ask her age is her taunting of Duane in chapter 1 would imply she's still a kid.

I think if it was a question I felt comfortable answering directly, I would have answered it by now :)

I think a better way to ask the person's previous question is- With all kinds of human-like races that have greatly varying lifespans and maturity ranges, and judging by how she acts, what would be the comparable age to a human?

If you were to ask Sette how old she is, and you managed to avoid her kick to the face, and then you scrounged up a few bucks to bribe her with, she would tell you she is older than the tides, more ancient than the moon, and was present when the Gods got the idea to split the human derriere into cheeks, allowing her to witness the very first Fart.

How old is Sette?

Good question.

How do you pronounce "Sette"?

Rhymes with Betty.

Who influenced you the most, art-wise? Do you have a list of your favorite artists?

I think my style is what you get after a childhood of too much Disney Afternoon and drawing out of Marvel comics, and an adolescence steeped in anime. Picking out just one name as an influence is pretty tough.

A list of favourite artists is easier. Japanese - Hayao Miyazaki, Range Murata, Mahiro Maeda, Kuniko Craft, Ayami Kojima, Gurihiru Studios. Otherwise - Jeff Smith, Ross Campbell, Glenn Fabry, Ted Naifeh, and a dozen others I'm sure I'm forgetting.

Do you have an image that I can use to make a link for you on my own lil branch of the web?

I don't have any banners made up, no. I keep meaning to do that but like so many other things, it never happens.

r u single?


I am very curious about the languages. Please do talk about them!

The Kasslyne continent has had societies on it for a very long time - the twelve countries are five-thousand years ancient, and in many ways they're pretty homogeneous. Their most useful shared feature is probably Kasslyne's predominant language, Continental, but there's a second major language spoken almost exclusively in Alderode that can be traced back to prehistoric times. That would be Tainish (or call it Aldish if you like). Tainish was the language of the Tains, the enlightened, secluded people who lived on the far northeastern coast of Kasslyne many millenia ago. Original, ancient, longform Tainish is the language that the aspects of Creation respond to - it's the language the Gods supposedly spoke when they created the world and, if a wright knows what they're doing, they can use that language to reshape and rearrange almost everything around them.

After the Tains were conquered and assimilated by the barbarians of the west, Tainish became the language of magick and scholarship in Alderode, something like how Latin was for so long the language of clergy and natural philosophers. Eventually the Aldish government wanted a tighter rein on who could work the arts, but Tainish had become wrapped up with the Ssaelit faith. A third of the country spoke it. So the bigwigs decided to commission a simplification of the language and begin teaching it in schools. In three generations Old Tainish was phased out and only available to learn in mageries and seminaries.

So! When you see an Aldish character speaking Tainish, unless they are working with pymary they are speaking the simplified version. Just over half of Aldishmen don't know Tainish at all. A third speak it as their first language. It all depends on what class you belong to and where you live. Duane's perfectly bilingual. The Quigleys are very nearly the same but Matty is a bit more comfortable with Tainish. Both Mathis and Duane also know Old Tainish because they are wrights, of course, but that's not a language you converse in. Telling someone you like their shirt in Old Tainish could very well result in you suddenly wearing their shirt, and the shirt's former owner imploding or turning into a cake.

Tainish has a phonetic alphabet I designed for it. It has all its phonemes defined, its grammar more or less nailed down, a healthy vocabulary. I'm not a linguist. Just an occasional conlang nerd.

What do you look like? I mean that in the non-creepiest way possible, I am just genuinely extremely curious what the person behind this quirky, wonderfully crafted world is like.

Well, I just got off Atkins so I'm down to five-hundred pounds. Now I just have to concentrate on maintenance. I have a luxurious goatee that I've allowed to grow down my seven chins and onto my neck. It is better than any scarf during this blizzardy, blustery season. My glasses have a thick rim which I've heard is pretty fashionable, ya know, in that old Lisa Loeb way. My nose is upturned and porcine but my mom says it makes me look cute, like a little piggy. I do have pretty extensive acne but I think it lends my complexion an unctuous texture pleasant to the touch, like an oily Hass avocado. An excavation of my naval crevice might produce Dorito fragments thought lost back during the Reagan administration. I stopped cutting my hair in protest when Quantum Leap went off the air. I won't cut it again until there's at least a movie made and Sam's allowed to go home. I think this shows that I care deeply about social issues and the arts.

I'm not much for yaoi - especially the kind that might involve an element of necrophilia (I don't know Duane? Are you technically dead, or just a bit... fermented?), but will there be any romance in this?

I'd rather not say.

Did you take the time to construct the languages of the Unsounded world or do you just write gibberish down for any non-Continental lines?

Ghutim pol Tairet mut llunsh tessiw, uulansshamin. Created the language a while ago, sunshine. I can talk about it, if you're curious.

Is there going to be yaoi romance between Mathis and Duane?

Hot, passionate, naked yaoi romance, and the children will watch every loving thrust.

What is the background behind your art skills?

Lifetime of drawing, 4 years of art college. I've never wanted to be anything but an artist (this is not really a good thing).

Please tell me about the castes in Alderode please Y_Y

Nuuu it's not important yet.

Does the name Sette have any significance? I'm pretty sure it means seven in Italian, but then again my Italian is limited to: CAFFE PER FAVORE?!!!, so you know - I could be wrong.

Sette has been "Sette" since I was a little kid. As with most of my characters, when I reached for a name, there it was. I do not question it. But yes, it does mean seven in Italian. One more E and it would be a piece of furniture.

How long did it take you to get to the mind-shatteringly epic level of art that you command in your comic? It makes me drool uncontrollably, so I should probably go find a tissue or something, but I figured I'd risk more exposure to ask this question.

Well, I'm 30. So 30 years. And yet what you see as epic art I see as amateur nonsense riddled with errors and poor choices. So I have concluded it is impossible to ever be as good as one wants to be, therefore be comfortable with where you are at now :D Unless you want to make money off your art in which case I exclaim ARE YOU MAD? Go be a nurse.

So Crescians are the baddies and they're predominately black? You have to see how that would worry me.

Who said Crescians are baddies? Duane? Do you believe everything you are told by zombies? If so I have an undead acquaintance who'd love to sell you some beachfront property in Utah.

I have problems making my panels intresting but yours are always really nice. How do you know what are good angles and crops??

I think plenty of my panels are boring, crowded, or awkward, but they get better with every page I do. So I would say you should practise. Theoretically you should use whatever panel composition makes the action inside read clearest but sometimes a scene is just a conversation. In that case it's probably good to focus on headshots and expressions. Sprinkle some over-the-shoulder shots in, upshots for dramatic statements, and ideally keep characters from ever looking "in the camera," as it's kind of a weird suspension of belief killer. That last one I figured out not that long ago.

I think a lot of comic panel rules and cinematography rules overlap, so if you got really desperate you could probably read a book on the latter. Or watch more movies :D

Are all Crescians black?

Most of the population, but not everyone.

You seem to be a major fan of Melville. Are there any influences prominently displayed in your work that you regard as coming from his? If so, what are they?

I guess there are overt influences, like the title of the comic itself (taken from one of Ahab's soliloquies) and some character names (Jivi's last name for instance) but I learned a lot of things from Melville. He gave me an obsession with metaphor, and made me willing to let the maniacally absurd sit alongside the tragic and the poignant. Moby-Dick taught me it's cool to mix it up! To have one chapter be written like a stage play while another is prose. Nothing is sacred. Rules should be broken. Haters gonna hate.

Melville was, in my opinion, unrivaled in his mastery of language - a regular prose poet, as purple as that prose could get. All you have to do is read Ahab's chapters aloud to hear the song in every line. So rhythmic and lovely! It's always made me try and pay close attention to how my writing flows. It's also always made me frustratingly loquacious :D

Are you considering any sort of merchandise at the moment? It would definitely be neato if you could get some money from this, so that you spend less time being a starving artist and more time being an artist. Maybe a map?

It's a good question. I'm bad at this stuff. I like to make the comic and post it - all the rest that one is supposed to do I have no interest in doing. I am a bad Capitalist. This is why I starve.

I do want to make an awesome old-fashioned illustrated map. I dunno about selling it though. Beauty is consolation for the proverbial Sea of Troubles. Art should be freeee!

Would you possibly be willing to post some chapters of your novel online in the future? I would DEFINITELY READ IT!! Can't get enough of your writing style ;___;

Perhaps some day in the future, my dear. Thanks for the writing compliment. I'm terrifically insecure in that department.

What's the novel you're working on like? Do you think you prefer comics or prose as a story-telling medium?

The novel I was working on (I haven't messed with it in a few months) is about the earlier years of a comic character you haven't met yet. It's kind of a family drama with supernatural elements and a roadtrip mixed in.

I prefer prose, always. It's so much faster. It can take months to get through one scene in comic form, and once you have you're locked into it with very little options when it comes to editing. Prose is much faster and more flexible. Unfortunately, the audience for amateur prose is small. "Webcomics" are a phenomenon. "Webfiction" is not. Without the allure of visuals most people aren't going to give a story a chance.

After reading your comic, is it bad that I really wish I could play in your D&D games? or whatever tabletop RPG that you used these characters in.

I dunno that it's a bad thing to wish. My players always told me I was pretty good at keeping them busy. I remember months of misleading my friend Steve and his characters so no one would realise that a certain event everyone was planning in game and out was a trap by one of my characters. When the trap was sprung and a bunch of NPCs and a few PCs were killed off, I was ready for player rage - but everyone was just too entertained.

But we were enormous writing snobs. If a person wasn't an amazing and creative writer, we wouldn't have anything to do with them :) Writing and puzzle-solving were the rules of the game and how one kept their characters alive, so we had to have standards.

When video games DO eat up your time, what genres of games catch your interest?

These days I'm mostly a PC gamer although if something worthwhile comes out for DS or PSP I'm all over that. I like trpgs, Squeenix titles that don't suck, first person sneakers, action games, whatever. I got a new GPU recently so I replayed Bioshock 2 on Pretty Mode, and now I'm working through Arkham Asylum, which I must say is utterly badass. It's like playing through an edgy episode of B:TAS but with ugly character designs.

Can you spoil, who is the artist for the next story of Midnight Tea Party?

I'm afraid it's HABE's privilege to divulge that info. I can tell you she's pretty fantastic though.

What's your schedule like? Do you have a daily process you do to make your comics, or do you just haphazardly sit down and make one when the moment strikes you?

I mind a baby from 7am to 5:30 every day. When he naps (that's maybe an hour or two a day now since he's older) I try to squeeze in work, whether it's on my comic or on freelance jobs. Once he's gone home I then pretty much do art until I go to bed at 2am.

So my schedule is to hustle my ass and do art at all times until I fall over from exhaustion. When I'm diligent, don't have a vidya game eating my attention, don't have to babysit on the weekends too much, and don't have too much freelance work, I can keep up with my buffer and produce three pages a week.

Not a very interesting answer, I'm afraid.

Why does Sette always walk around barefoot everywhere she goes? One would think with rocks, and thorns and whatnot, he'd have very injured soles by now. Doesn't the lack of shoes hurt her? And if not, why not?

The main reason she doesn't wear shoes is because her Da never bought her any. The other children in their ah, social circle, haven't the money for luxuries like footware, and buying shoes for Sette might make her think she was better than she was. It wasn't much of a problem back on paved streets but I'm sure there are times out in the wilds where Sette finds pawing her way over rocks and brambles an uncomfortable enterprise. She learned a long time ago however that there's just no point in complaining about some things.

Of course, the bottoms of her feet at this point are a lot tougher than the bottoms of your feet or my feet, so don't worry about her too much.

Hmm.. this may be a spoilery question - but why was Duane drooling (if he was drooling, that is) at the end of Chapter 2? Clearly he became unhinged after Cara's demise, but... is something deeper happening than just rage?

You'll find out in the next chapter.

Do you attend any conventions? If you don't know, have you ever? It would be awesome to meet you and see your art in person somehow ; ^ ;

I'm not really a convention person. It may be because I'm stuck in Florida and the conventions down here aren't exactly internationally renowned. The only conventions I'm interested in someday attending are ComicCon and DragonCon but I've been in a pecuniary pickle for a while, and neither are likely any time soon.

Anyway, I'm quite introverted and you're not missing out on not meeting me :)

I was wondering if there ever will be romance in this comic, and if so will it ever be a major plot point?

Too spoilery.

Goddamnit I'm eating my arm off in suspense here! I can haz next pages? ;_;

Updates start again on Monday, kiddo. You can make it one more week.

Have any idea when the Midnight Tea Party will start up again?

I don't, unfortunately. I finished my pages for it a while ago but I hear the next story's main artist is still working on her pages. Hopefully it'll be up soon! I hear the next story is pretty intense.

I read your little treatise on gore and know you're a Moby-Dick fan, so I wonder, have you read Cormac McCarthy's Blood Meridian? I think you'd love it. McCarthy is in the same room with Melville when it comes to literary ability, I swear.

Haha, it WAS a treatise, wasn't it. I can blather up a storm. I haven't read any McCarthy but I really doubt he can touch Melville. I'll look for him at the library all the same.

Characterization in Unsounded has grown quite rich, and Dwayne and Sette's relationship is extremely compelling. It does not at all feel cliche or overly warm as I thought it might end up feeling when I first started the comic. So good work, keep it up.

Thanks, man. I detest cliches.

thanks for the thoughtful answer. gore in art has never seemed meaningful to me, but you've forced me to re-evaluate. now i'm curious, what are the philosophical ideas behind zombies and vampires that you miss in modern stories?

For vampires I very specifically think of The Vampire Chronicles. Don't laugh. Yes, the series fell apart in the second half but for a long time it was full of pretty profound ruminations on the meaning of life, on religion, death, and blood fascination. The Vampire Lestat is one of my favourite books and I recommend it to anyone.

Romero did a great job with zombies back in the day. What's really the difference between a living person and a reanimated corpse? There's even less difference between a crowd of the enraged alive and a crowd of zombies. It's fun stuff to think about. But then zombie movies got too involved in imposing realism on films and making zombies less like somnolent humans and more like these Other Creatures. Kind of boring to me.

your comic blew my wig off. why does the horror/blood/gore genre appeal to you?

It only appeals to me to a point, and as far as it takes the artistry of what it's doing seriously. I loathe modern "horror" like the terrible Saw movies, Scream, Hostel, The Hills Have Eyes, all that shit. It exists for purposes of titillation and Schadenfreude.

Movies that treat blood like paint however, those really do it for me. As mediocre as I found Burton's Sweeney Todd, he stylized the blood to a point where it became the vivid, glowing, scarlet heat of Sweeney's vengeance and rage against injustice and humanity. The viscera in Ichi the Killer is depicted absurdly, joyously, the way Kakihara must see it. I like gore that's more than gore. When it's so realistic that I can't appreciate what it's saying because I'm gagging at it, I lose interest.

Gore and violence that support an emotionally and intellectually broader narrative are my favourite. I feel Cronenberg achieves this in a lot of his films. Brundle's disgusting transformation in The Fly really dissects (literally and figuratively) what it means to be a human being (this is one of my fave films actually). The gore in Scanners is limited but it's intense and exquisite when it happens, perfectly portraying the power and focus of what the Scanners can do. A History of Violence contrasts subdued small town life with sudden, focused mob brutality.

In a more general sense, when you cut a person open on screen, or in print, you're splitting open the veneer of civility and reminding the audience that inside, we're all a bunch of animals parading around in designer shoes and lip gloss. Or you're reminding the audience that in the eyes of Nature, our young are just forgettable, expendable meat puppets. Blood is a reminder of mortality, of the great unknowable Blackness over which we've constructed our fragile civilisations. It's powerful stuff. When modern schlock horror uses violence and gore just to distract an audience - I have no interest in that. It's the same way modern lit and cinema have abandoned the philosophical ideas behind zombies and vampires that used to make them so interesting.

In short, I like movies with a lot to say and I've found that certain gory/horror movies just plain SHRIEK their ideas.

I hope you find your wig soon.

What 19th century stuff would you recommend ?

In a nutshell? Everything by Herman Melville, everything by Mark Twain, everything by Charles Dickens. Victor Hugo and Dumas are great if you're in the mood for French. Treasure Island and Two Years Before the Mast are essential if you crave saltier fare.

You have to really explore and find the good ones. What bout Gunnerkrig Court and Homestuck? READ THEM

I actually checked the first volume of Gunnerkrigg Court out of the public library. It made me sleepy! Someone described it once as Harry Potter meets Daria and that seems accurate. Anyway, it was legitimately published and in the frigging library so obviously a lot of people really like it - it's just not for me.

/co/ is in love with Homestuck which makes me wary of it.

There are lots of awesome comics out there that you have to actually pay for. RASL is amazing. Shadoweyes is definitely worth buying. I even read cape comics sometimes (lately I've been scarfing up old Shazam! comics and I even buy Bendis' horrible New Avengers just because the art is so good!). I have plenty to read, don't worry about me.

I think many of us just want a voice to play in our heads when we read her lines. Such an unconventional accent makes it hard for some to envision it, compared to various Earth accents we can hear any time.

But then it would be way too concrete what Sette sounds like. This would destroy the opportunity for readers to use their imagination and personalize her to their experiences and taste. If you think she sounds alternately Irish and English, let her sound that way in your head. Because she doesn't really speak english, and the dialog I write is an interpretation of what she sounds like speaking her actual language, there is technically no right or wrong way for her to sound.

I do apologise if it makes her difficult to read. It seems that people who read a fair amount of material outside of comics have an easier time reading characters with accents. I've always been a fan of nineteenth century American and English literature, among which are novels famous for their accented dialog and crazy dialects. I enjoy reading and writing such things, but I'm sure it's not for everyone.

Any chance in the world of you putting a sound byte on your comic site with someone speaking in Sette's accent? You, or anyone, really.

Haha, I wish I could understand why so many people are obsessed with Sette's accent. It's really not important enough to warrant such an action :)

Is Sette's accent meant to be English or Scottish? Because it seems to skip between the two~

If you read the FAQ, you'll see it's meant to be neither.

Hmmm. Five dollars, 100 scones, and 1000 apple pies.

I admire your persistence. You may gaze upon the underwhelming title page http://www.casualvillain.com/random/ch03_01.jpg

What if I send you one dollar, and 1000 hot apple pies?

Hmm. What about five-hundred dollars and a warmed scone?

Your comic is pretty damned awesome, is there any way that you would start the next chapter early?

Perhaps. I am a reasonable woman. Send me one-thousand dollars and a hot apple pie.

Well, I don't know about some of the people on these comments, but /I/ like Sette. I wouldn't want to be stuck in an adventuring party with her, but she's a brilliant character. : ) (For Christmas, she gets...money, of course. Duane gets a good book.)

Thanks! I have mixed feelings about Sette but she does make for interesting storyline twists and colourful dialog. Hope your Christmas was awesome :)

Merry Christmas! I've gotten Duane a new dictionary and I bought Sette a chainsaw. Will they like their presents?

Merry Christmas to you too! Sette cannot use her chainsaw as the world of Unsounded lacks both kerosene/gasoline and electricity but she can and will wave it threateningly at Duane! And Duane will use his new (English?) dictionary to come up with interesting ways to tell her to cut it the hell out.

So if undead dudes are not actually your fetish (which I have been told is something you've said), then how come all your undead dudes are hot?

You think my undead dudes are all hot? Perhaps it is YOU who has the undead dude fetish!

So if you're adding a place for fan stuff to the site, is that also a place for the creepy necropedo slashfics, or are you going to restrict the content there?

Since the comic is rated PG-13, I must restrict the fan content to PG-13 as well. I imagine if a reader is looking specifically for creepy necropedo slashfics they are aware of the resources available on the internet, and can find them on their own, elsewhere. Goofball.

Also is Duane a really awesome sorcerer or can most mages do the kind of stuff he does? Those guards knew they were dealing with a mage and still they went into the crypt all confident and seemed caught off guard when Duane got choppy-choppy.

Yeah, the Peaceguard made a mistake there and it's one their Captain feels bad about in the next chapter, but they were expecting a bullying highwayman with a few tricks up his sleeve, not a schooled, spellcasting prodigy. And that's what Duane is. He's a masterful wright - not only highly schooled in the Arts but naturally gifted as well. He's a skinny titan.

I really love your comic and I really love Duane. Is he secretly the real main character? Sette's just a distraction from his greatness right?

Thanks! Sette gets more story time than Duane but I hate calling anyone the Main Character, particularly someone who lacks almost all heroic qualities, haha.

Someone in the comments section mentioned some sketches about the comic? Where would I find these?

Not sure. You'd do best to ask the person who made the comment, I imagine.

Will we ever be able to buy a ligit, paper copy of Unsounded (Self Publish it, I mean)? THAT is something I would spend money on.

It's a lot of trouble to go to, ya know? The comic is really designed for the internet and reformatting the pages for print would take a lot of time. If a publisher approaches and does the actual printing and distributing chores, I might be convinced to do a print book but until then it doesn't seem likely.

What's much more likely are printed comics with side-stories and back-stories in them. I'd really like to do those someday :3

This Crypt will be Cara's TOMB! Noooo! Why not the annoying Oneeeeeee?!? Also; does Duane have an elemental affinity towards fire? Or is burning stuff just the best option most of the time?

The way magic works in Unsounded, fire is a cheap and plentiful resource during the day (when the sun is out). It's therefore a really good default offense.

Why is it that Cara speaks of herself in the third person? Is it just because she's a young child, is it a cultural thing or some other reason related to her upbringing?

In Alderode, where Cara and Duane are from, there are two major languages: regular Continental/Kasslynian, and Tainish. In Tainish territories most are bilingual but Cara is young and her Continental isn't that great. In the original draft her dialog was much more awkward and accented but I changed it for the sake of clarity and just retained the third person usage of her name. In Tainish, you refer to yourself by name instead of using a first person pronoun.

Unless it's too spoilery for Unsounded, would you ever consider giving us a detailed synopsis of the Sharteshane game? Maybe show any saved logs? It certainly sounds interesting, and we would get to see more of Sette and Duane in an alternate dimension.

A detailed synopsis is difficult because yes, it's probably too spoilery. There was a lot of stuff in the game that I introduced so I could work through it and see how it might fly later in my comic. But...

In the nuttiest of nutshells, the game took place in an ancient, ruined, coastal city that was in the middle of being rebuilt. It was called Hanghorse and it's Sette's hometown. A hundred years earlier, Hanghorse was the capital of Sharteshane and a technological marvel extending hundreds of feet into the earth. Shops, neighbourhoods and quarries had been dug beneath the city proper, all of it lit and mechanized by vast hydromechanical works. Alas, during a brutal war with a neighbouring country, the city was breached by terramancers and its foundations detonated. The upper layer of the city smashed into the lower and tens of thousands of people were killed. The city was abandoned.

Decades later however, pirates found the ruined city and its sheltered port a perfect sanctuary from the navy. They began to repopulate it, forcing the government to look into Tawhoque again, clear the pirates out, and begin their own rebuilding. Decades passed, people came back, shops and universities opened - but the dead did not appreciate it.

After Tawhoque fell, you see, the dead did not rest in peace. An extraordinarily powerful lich - mere legend to the living but undeniable to the thousands of corpses and spectres that found themselves suddenly under his thrall - along with his four vassalich sons, emerged to found their own subterranean kingdom out of the ruins of sunken Tawhoque. When the living intruded above, the sentient, despondent dead retaliated, forcing the founding of a holy Order to combat them. Time passed, the living pushed the bitter dead further below, the holy Order ruled with an iron fist, and a sort of normalcy seemed to flourish in the reborn city.

But you can only keep hatred like that buried for so long, and zealotry is a dangerous shield...

That was the backdrop of the game, more or less. Into that were spun pirate adventures, a plague that turned people to comatose dolls, an artefact that held the memories of all who ever died, and finally the secret of the Lich-King and his undead sons, and the nature of the world itself.

It was good times, but don't hold your breath waiting for any logs :)

How do you pronounce Sette's name? Is it "set-eh", like the identically-spelled Italian word for "seven"?

"Sette" rhymes with yeti, sweaty, and petty.
By what means did you roleplay your Sharteshane game online? Was it by message board, IM chat, or voicechat? Freeform, or with a roleplaying system like D&D?

Freeform on a BBS that I hosted. We had rules but you more or less won by outwriting everyone else. Cleverness and ingenuity ruled the day. Since we were all close friends and migrated to the BBS from a chat-based game run by someone else with whom we had problems, it all worked out very well and for a very long time.

It wasn't girly couples play, either. Most of the storylines revolved around political exploits in and around a city of undead ruled by an enigmatic lich. There's nothing wrong with couples play but I think that's what pops into most people's heads when they hear "freeform roleplay."

Is Duane in your comic a reference to the Vagrant Story character?

Not a reference so much but the character does have his roots there. He's so different now though it's kind of irrelevant.

So already there's been some implied child rape with the slave (although, since it was a slave, it's probably not legally rape). Will more gruesome stuff appear later in the comic, or will you continue to dance around the more unpleasant stuff?

I'll continue to try and tell the story to the best of my ability. Sometimes it will be zany and sometimes it will be dark. That's usually how life goes.

You are an awesome enigma and you should feel awesomely enigmatic! um. hm. ? Will cara be appearing again soon? [/token question]

I do feel awesomely enigmatic! Cara will appear again before chapter two ends.

You've mentioned before about how you keep a large buffer between creating Unsounded pages and updating them onto your site. Have you been able to maintain it effectively? It'll be a damn shame if updates have to become less frequent in the future.

The last four weeks I've broken even, posting three pages and creating three new ones each week. But I don't get a chance to do that every week so the buffer IS gradually shrinking. If I do have to cut back to two pages a week it will certainly suck but it can't be helped. Sometimes I just have too much freelance or too many family obligations during the week to make enough comic pages. We'll see how it goes.

Your comic has a shockingly large following of pedophiles who seem to see some sort of romantic relationship blooming between Sette and Duane. Can you confirm this as untrue as soon as possible to set them straight. Please.

...really? Already? The internet is an amazing place.

Fiction is meant to entertain and I guess people should speculate on the comic in whatever way that amuses them. I don't want to be one of those killjoy dictatorial creators who tries to tell people in what ways they can or cannot enjoy her work. The best we can do is hope the actual plot picks up enough later for it to become more fun to talk about than uh, whatever gruesome things they're talking about now.

I have to ask' if Sette is an original character from your RPing days; how did your other players react to her? Did you voice her with her accent while playing her? And, any funny stories, comic canon or no, you'd like to share about any games with her in

I could talk about RP for hours. Don't tempt me :)

As you might well imagine, when Sette first was introduced a lot of players DESPISED HER. I had one good friend who couldn't separate RP from our friendship and thought Sette's constant insults were me personally insulting her, and not Sette insulting her character. It was actually kind of tense for a while. If you think Sette is a bitch to Duane, you should see how she is around actual useless, weak, and effeminate characters. Guh. But as adventures happened and characters got to know each other and adversity reared its head, everyone kind of came to understand where everyone else was coming from, and the group dynamic established itself. The thing with Sette, though, is she was only rarely a PC - she's clever and quick but doesn't have many martial abilities. In play she was usually a catalyst or a minor villain and stayed away from the really dangerous stuff. I ran the games so I tended to use her as a tool to push players in the directions I needed them to go. She'd steal and pawn their stuff, sell them bogus potions or maps, spy on them and sell their secrets to baddies and vice versa, etc.

The Sharteshane game was internet-based, not in-person, so I didn't have to attempt to speak like her, thank God. Her accent was actually written out much more abstruse than it is in the comic, with lots of thieves cant. I've toned her way down so she's actually coherent. All the Frummagems speak in cant though and I would use it more if I didn't think readers would cut out my spleen.

After almost a decade of play, Sette was in all kinds of adventures and stories... I don't think they'd make much sense out of context. Ahh, Sette did exist in my head before RP though. She was a character I made up when I was a little kid, and she used to have wings and wear a dress. Scary :)

So, were Duane and Sette your original characters in said roleplaying game or some other characters we already know?

Yes, Duane and Sette were both original characters in the Sharteshane roleplay. I had a lot of characters in that game, and you'll see some of them in the comic eventually.

Is Unsounded based on roleplay? Do you roleplay?

I've roleplayed in some form or another for over a decade. I used to eat, sleep, and breathe it, particularly the game I ran in an original setting for six or seven years. GMing though - real, quality GMing - takes an extraordinary amount of time and energy however, and when I decided to start a comic I knew I'd have to give up the gaming.

Unsounded does take a LOT from those years of RP. Sette's country of origin, Sharteshane, was the RP setting. The characters I played in that setting WERE my original comic characters, but years of play helped them develop even further and now I'm coming full-circle by tweaking them and putting them back in the graphic novel. It's an amazing sort of accidental technique that's worked well for me.

Anyway, RP is good and everyone should do it.

I have another question - where is the best place to start for photoshop illustrating? I'm still very much paper based

Well, you'll want some kind of tablet, first of all. Even if you don't have one though and have to start with a mouse, I'd begin with flat colouring and cell-shading some scanned, hand-done drawings. That's probably a good first project to begin familiarizing yourself with Photoshop and learning the tools and such. Just Google "photoshop coloring tutorial" and you'll find some walk-throughs.

Hello :) you work is so awesome that i have to ask...lol do you plan on making some tutorials for "noobs" like me? :D lol

Thanks! I'm glad you dig my work :) As for tutorials, there are only a few I'd ever consider making, and they're very specific for they'd address things that amateurs do that get on my nerves. I don't know how helpful they'd be to you but I may make them, someday. In the meantime, remember that the only real way to get better at art is to turn off the tv, get off the internet, and draw draw draw draw - preferably draw the world around you or photos, if that's all you have, but draw!

I can't say it is in fact. What's the hardware that you use for penning your creations? I usually just use a cheap Biro

Enh, my computer's about five years old at this point. I have a P4 in there, a 7900GT, and two gigs of RAM. The GPU is on its last legs and is scattering green and red pixels over everything. It's a BFG brand card and was supposed to have a lifetime warranty, but BFG went out of business. LOL on me. Tablet-wise I have a pretty respectable 6x11 Intuos 3.

What kinds of things do you do for your freelance work? Mainly character commissions, or other cool stuff? :)

Freelance work has actually been eluding me lately, but when I do find it it's usually graphic design work or illustrating corporate materials (I did a kid's coloring and activity book for the local news station last year). Sometimes I get cool commissions though, like character commissions from deviantArt or the opportunity to illustrate parts of The Midnight Tea Party comic (read it here - http://midnight-tea-party.smackjeeves.com/ ). What I pine for is an awesome, full-time art job that will pay me more than ten dollars an hour. Those are very difficult to find in Florida D:

Is your name Dave?

No. Is yours?

Whats the most inappropriate questions someone's asked you on here so far ? ;)

Man, I got one weird question I ignored but nothing really inappropriate so far. It's disappointing! I am the least prudish person evar.

Did you ever want to be something other than an artist?

No. When I was younger I did aspire to be a Disney animator, and when I was in college I started out in the 3D animation department thinking I'd go and make video games, but I've wanted to be an artist since the first time I picked up a crayon. Nowadays I wish that wasn't the case. Art doesn't pay. I should have been some flavour of programmer or Wall Street banker.

What are your two favorite songs? If you can't decide, what are your two current favorite songs?

I don't think I can pick my two favourites of ALL TIME-IME-IME-ime-ime (imagine a reverb), but currently it's probably Eli the Barrow-Boy by The Decemberists (my baby nephew likes me to sing it to him) and Coldplay's Amsterdam, which makes me think of angsty Duane.

I know you enjoy anime, do you also like to read manga? If so, which are some of your favorite series? Love how your comic is going btw : )

Glad you're enjoying it, man :3

Manga! My two favourite manga EVER are Blade of the Immortal and the 3-volume Gankutsuou manga by Maeda Mahiro. I think I actually love manga more than anime. I love Tegami Bachi, Hellsing, Le Chevalier d'Eon, the Devil May Cry 3 manga, CV: Curse of Darkness manga, Monster, 20th Century Boys, Ranma 1/2, and of course Akira. Manga is love. Manga is LOVE.

Manga in the west is in trouble though. The tankouban are and have always been priced too high, and the publishers are dragging their feet when it comes to digital distribution. I could whine about this for hours.

What resolution do you work in for your comic pages? Your lines are always so smooth yet very alive and energetic :)

I work at exactly four times the size of the web version. So that'd be 3600 by 2400, 300DPI. I keep six pages in every PSD file - just enough that my computer doesn't start chugging and choking on blood when I save, open, and close the file. Glad you like my lines :)

How do you like to spend your time when you're not doing art or freelance work?

I wish I did awesome things like compete in fencing tournaments or solve mysteries out've a groovy van with my dogs, but I don't. When I'm not working or making art I'm hanging out with my niece and nephew. My nephew is seven months old and my niece is almost three. They are pretty entertaining little bastards and I babysit them a lot. I also play video games, have a novel I peck away at occasionally, and chill in the public library listening to video game music and reading old National Geographics. This is my boring life.

What do you like to do, Anonymous?

What kind of books do you like to read?

Books are for people with free time! Back when I did have time for such frivolous pursuits though I read pretty much everything. Herman Melville is my favourite author but I love me some Dickens and Twain and Stevenson. Pulpy fantasy novels are good too. I'll never turn down Pratchett or Brust. Nowadays if I do squeeze in a book it's likely to be nonfiction. I have a fetish for occult history, weaponry, and the age of sail.

How did you come up with Sette an Duane's characters?

Sette is a character I've had in some form or another since I was a tiny little thing, making up stories about demon cats and people with wings. She's a part of everyone - that obnoxious, unlovable, blind, and ugly part that doesn't get shown much because then no one would want to be your friend. She's self-centred and scathingly honest and, in her own twisted way, impeccably pure. I came up with her by knowing a lot of children. She may not always talk like a kid - there are reasons for this - but she's just as stupid, just as hateful, and just as vulnerable as the most intolerable of twelve year olds.

Duane is everything that Sette's father is not. You don't really know much about Duane yet - Sette doesn't care to learn about him so she's not exactly grilling him for his history - but he's heroic, capable, intelligent, and deeply flawed. That's my idea of a good protagonist. Also, he's undead. And who doesn't love the undead? No one. Everyone loves the undead.

What happened to The Poetry in Blood?? Is there anywhere we can go to read it? ;_;

Nope! All the old fanfiction is dead and gone. Sorry, man, it was horrible.

How long have have you been drawing? c:

Since I could first hold a crayon. My first impressive drawing, my mom tells me, was a picture of Bert and Ernie I drew in preschool. The teacher liked it so much that she stole it D:

I'm thirty now so that's a lotta time drawing since then.

I know you have probably gotten this question before, but I have to ask-- have you ever thought about doing a walkthrough of your drawing/painting process? Your work is something I've always admired but can't wrap my brain around, haha.

I don't really have any tricks to show anyone so I can't imagine how a walk-through would be very helpful. I just, ya know, do it x_x

Just sell it, eh? with teeth like that, i thought she might have herself a snack. ;P

A bit of meat is an ephemeral satisfaction, quickly devoured and quickly digested. A purse full of coin, however, is the most steadfast of friends, and will stay with a miser as long as she can hold on to it :3

What would Settie do if she found a person about the size of a baby mouse or smaller?

Sell it and keep the money, naturally.

Why haven't you (been) published (more, since 2005)?

I'm not really sure. I guess... I don't really know how it works and I don't submit my art anywhere. I definitely don't want anyone else to have their hands, legally or creatively, in my stuff, which is why I never pursued anything with Tokyopop after the RSoM contest. I'm not keen on anyone else owning my soul.

Otherwise, I suppose if my stuff was any good a publisher would come to me. Maybe it'll happen some day, or maybe not. Either way, print is an ailing medium and I'm happy (if very poor) staying on the web for now :)

This might tread into spoiler territory, but why do you call the comic "Unsounded"?

"By heaven, man, we are turned round and round in this world like yonder windlass, and Fate is the handspike. And all the time, lo! that smiling sky, and this UNSOUNDED sea! Look! see yon Albicore! who put it into him to chase and fang that flying-fish? Where do murderers go, man! Who's to doom when the judge himself is dragged to the bar?"

From chapter 132 of Moby-Dick. It's a great chapter, and the sentiment of Ahab's whole soliloquy is very relevant to the eventual theme of the comic. Thanks for asking!

What kind of character is the easiest for you to write? What kind of character is the hardest? Why?

The easiest characters for me... are probably the angry ones. Characters with chips on their shoulders and a mistrust of the world and popular assumptions because honestly, that's just like writing myself.

The most difficult characters are the philanthropists and do-gooders - the selfless characters who don't need any motivation to help someone. I'm not sure I believe they exist in real life, so inserting them in fiction always feels like lying~

Why did you decide to make a web comic?

Well, I've always wanted to make a comic. Unsounded used to be called Tanners, and I'd worked on it off and on for almost a decade. I'm just not good enough nor is my stuff marketable enough for print though, so when I started really doing the finished version, I figured I should put it online or no one would ever see it otherwise :)

Right now I'm thinking I should just post what I have all up at once though. The typical page-at-a-time update format of webcomics isn't doing it for me :/

What's your nationality/ethnic background/thing? "Unsounded" almost has me convinced that you have an Irish ancestor. Love the comic btw. And I also wish I knew what you look like. I'm not shallow I swear. I'll shut up now.

Woohoo, my first creepy question! I'm a born-in-the-USA white Yank, but I'm also something of an Anglophile and a lover of classic literature from both sides of the Atlantic. So maybe that counts for something? As for looks, if I was a sexy, smoldering goddess don't you reckon I'd have photos of myself all over the internet? I'll leave you to draw your own conclusions ;)

How do you draw your comic?

From start to finish it's all drawn and coloured in Photoshop CS2 with an Intuos 3 tablet.

If you could go on vacation for the next month with an unlimited budget, where would you go?

I think I'd travel down the west coast of the United States. I've never been there and I'm mighty interested in California and the Seattle area. There'd be a tall ship voyage at some point. And some hiking.

Do you read this comic? http://hanna.aftertorque.com/ Do you have some favourite comics online that people who like your stuff might also like?

Cool art! I'm picky as a sonnuvabitch when it comes to comics, online or not. Right now I follow The Meek, Set To Sea, and that's pretty much it. Everything else I read comes from the store.

Do you like Buffy the Vampire Slayer? Which TV shows do you like?

I used to like Buffy a lot! I watched it every week back when it first aired. These days I don't watch actual television but I download shows sometimes. QI is pretty good, and The Daily Show.

Marry me?

Only if you're rich.

Where did the name GlassShard come from?

Years and years ago when my family first bought a computer and we got online via AOL, I had to pick a screenname for my account. Being an emo high school brat I was writing a Very Serious novel at the time, and decided to derive a handle for myself from some long ramble of one of the characters in that novel - something about the world being a globe of glass that is transparent but in a distorted way - until you break it open and can see clearly, but are then likely to cut yourself on the shards. Very pretentious. And I could make it work without having to add numbers to the end.

You think you really understand Vagrant Story?

My last name isn't Matsuno of course but I've studied Vagrant Story and its script like a bible. Every scene and every line of dialog serve a purpose and once you realise that everything is equally important and all frivolous details have been left out, the story and the characters' motivations become very clear. There is a reason The Duke waxes rhapsodic about Joshua and a reason he's shown meeting with Rosencrantz. There's a rhyme and a reason for every scene in the game. It has really a very concise, brilliantly told story unlike, say, almost every other game Square's done.

Wait, I missed the whole Snowfly Forest thing. What happened to Grissom?

Haha. Play the game, n00b.

Why did you lock your twitter? I liked to read it but I don't want to have to sign up :/

Oh, I locked it to keep family members from spying on me. Sorry about that.

What would you say to Grissom?

Depends on the time frame. If it was before the Snowfly Forest I'd say GOD TOLD ME TO TELL YOU TO STAY OUT OF THE SNOWFLY FOREST SRSLY! If it was after the Snowfly Forest I'd just tell him Gruhhhh in as encouraging a manner as I could manage. Then I'd probably try and collar him and take him home <3

What's cooler than bein cool?

Nothing. Coolness is the ultimate goal.


Why not?

Don't you get enough attention on DeviantArt?

"Enough attention" is a contradiction. I need validation. My parents ignored me as a child and I haven't had sex this millennium.

Do you still draw FFVII every now and then?

No, not really. Sometimes I'll feel like using black and red and will very rarely doodle a Vincent, but that's really it. Dirge of Cerberus and the other latter FFVII media wounded my FFVII love.

Can I snuggle with you in your snuggie?

Wait, isn't this you already-- oh, shi--!

Boxers or briefs?

Baby, I'm all bare down there. Nothing gets between my ass and my chair.