ratcreature: reading RatCreature (reading)
I currently use Calibre to organize my ebooks, and I wonder if it would work out to use it to backup and keep track of the fanfic I downloaded on my tablet as well.

I do not want both mixed up, because the fanfic would totally drown out the books by an order of magnitude, and also the tags I want to use for both are very different. I've seen an option in Calibre to create virtual "libraries", but I wonder whether that is really good for keeping things separate. Has anyone experience with using Calibre for both? Or a better system?

I'm a bit wary to import hundreds of stories into my Calibre Library only to find out it would be a mess I'd have to clean up manually...
ratcreature: RatCreature as a sloth (sloth)
My output this year is barely worth summarizing as I don't even need one full hand to count, but I've indexed every year since 2006.

This year there was only one piece of art, two drawbles/doodles, one icon and eight months entirely without art, compared to 2012's three pieces of art, nine drawbles/doodles, no icons and nine months entirely without art. 2011 it was six pieces of art, 36 drawbles/doodles, seven icons, and three months entirely without art. Not a good trend. Well, maybe 2014 will be better.

January
a fashion meme drawble (XMFC)

February
a doodle for Beth H's Third Time's...the Charm? (Avengers)

March-October
Nothing :(

November
an Iron Man ratcreature icon

December
Steampunk Maria Hill/Steve Rogers (Avengers), my Yuletart drawing
ratcreature: RatCreature as a sloth (sloth)
2012 saw a plunge in art production (insofar as you can "plunge" from a not very high previous level). It started out fairly well in January, and December was good, but nothing in-between. I even failed with the fashion meme sketches I had offered.

It's almost too depressing to index, but I've indexed every year since 2006, so: This year there were three pieces of art, nine drawbles/doodles, no icons and nine months entirely without art, compared to 2011's six pieces of art, 36 drawbles/doodles, seven icons, and three months entirely without art. 2010 it was four pieces of art, 28 doodles/drawbles, one icon, and also three months without art; 2009 five pieces of art, 20 doodles/drawbles, three icons and six months without art.

January
I posted the 2011 Secret Mutant XMFC/HP art, Learned Trust, to my journal (linked in this roundup because it wasn't yet revealed in last year's)
Illustration for Best Laid Plans (Pinky & Brain)
Seven More Joy Day drawbles five here, one here, and one illustrating Basingstoke's duck!John Watson

February - May
Nothing :(

June
Hulk with a lead binkie (Avengers/Peanuts fusion doodle)

July - November
Nothing :(

December
Solace (Captain America/Spider-Man), my Yuletart painting
Christmas Bakery (XMFC), my Secret Mutant painting
Logan as fluffy wolverine doodle (X-Men)
ratcreature: grumpy (grumpy)
Like many people I collect some pieces of fanworks as chapters of a single work, to avoid horrible, horrible clutter on my works page. In my case it is drawbles and doodles, but others do it with written snippets. That is of course due to the lack of a Scraps feature like dA has, where you can separate less polished stuff from the rest, which I bemoaned here before. Unfortunately you can't mark chapters as gifts to someone to let them get a notification either.

And before anyone points to the series feature, I already collect drawbles in a twenty part series, with the works being divided by fandoms, and some of these have over 40 chapters. If I made each picture a "work" these would totally swamp the art I want people to notice in any fandom.

I have just doodled something that originally I wanted to post for the Secret Mutant Madness, but didn't get around to before Christmas, even though I liked my idea for the prompt. So now I just wanted to post it anyway, and alert the prompter. But I can't do that and put it with the other Marvel sketches.

So now I have a dilemma, in that I can either mess up my whole organization by posting a sketch as a work, or I can't let the prompter know.
ratcreature: RatCreature as a sloth (sloth)
Compared to 2010 there was a slight uptick in productiveness. This year I made six pieces of art, 36 drawbles/doodles, and seven icons, though depressingly there were three months entirely without art. In comparison 2010 it was four pieces of art, 28 doodles/drawbles, one icon, and also three months without art; 2009 five pieces of art, 20 doodles/drawbles, three icons and six months without art. Maybe at some point I'll have a year where I can do one of those memes where you need to put in one preview picture for every month.

January
I posted the 2010 Yuletart Merlin art, Fealty, to my journal (linked in this roundup because it wasn't yet in last year's)
Aragorn ratcreature icon
eight drawbles (DC, Merlin, SGA, SPN, original)

February
Nothing. :(

March
Nothing. :(
(Though I did make a baby quilt for my second niece that month.)

April
a Duncan ratcreature icon

May
another Duncan ratcreature icon

June
two Erik Lehnsherr/Magneto ratcreature icons
a sketch for snowynight's prompt Colleen Wing & Kendo

July
a Methos ratcreature icon
a Neal ratcreature icon
X-Men/Calvin & Hobbes fanfic illustration

August
XMFC art meme
three drawbles (ATLA, Iron Man, X-Men)
two more X-Men/Calvin & Hobbes fanfic illustrations
Gnome & Horklumps HP fanart

September
three X-Men/Sesame Street doodles: "Magneto and Super Grover explain the letter M", "Erik visits Oscar's trash can" and "Hank and Kermit sing a duet"

October
Highlander/X-Men fanfic illustration
an Elmo birthday card for my niece
eight drawbles: seven here and one (Edward Scissorhands, Harry Potter, Muppets, SGA, Star Trek, Terminator, original)
four Halloween drawbles (SGA, X-Men, original)

November
Nothing :(

December
six drawbles: two here and four (Merlin, SG-1, SGA, original)
a Cookie Monster Christmas card
my yet to be revealed Secret Mutant artwork
ratcreature: RatCreature is conflicted, and ponders under the influence of hovering angel- and devil-RatCreatures. (conflicted)
I've started to post a bunch of my fanart on AO3 even though sadly you can still only embed art, not upload it, so it's not truly archiving yet. But the advantage is that many of the stories I've illustrated are there and thus I could take advantage of the associations, and also I like having tagging options.

Anyway, I've wondered what to do about drawbles, which for me outnumber "regular" fanart more than 2:1. On dA I put them in the scrapbook so they don't swamp the rest of my gallery, on my website they are in a different section, and in my fanart blog and journals are mostly bundled in a couple of drawble posts after the prompt rounds. But what do you do in an archive like AO3?

On the one hand I'm a completist in the sense that I want to have all my stuff in the places I pick (my personal website shows drawings I did in elementary school -- it's a thing), OTOH I naturally want the art that took a lot of effort to be somewhat more prominent, so that the first impression for visitors is not that I do only sloppy, quick doodles, when they browse my works in a fandom.

So how do you resolve that problem? I assume writers must have similar issues when deciding how to archive quick prompt response fic, drabbles, meme fic and the like. Do you bundle several into a single work? If so by which method? All of one fandom? Or maybe bundle chronologically somehow, like all you did for a prompt post? Some other solution? Or do you just let your other stuff get swamped and trust the audience will sort it out via tags? What's your presentation strategy?
ratcreature: RatCreature as a sloth (sloth)
I thought 2009 was a low point in productiveness, but this year wasn't any better. Back in 2009 I made five pieces of art, 20 doodles/drawbles, and three icons, and in 2010 it was four pieces of art, 28 doodles/drawbles and one icon. Though I also created [community profile] fanart_recs, so that led to me reccing fanart at least.

January
Nothing. :(
though I posted the 2009 Yuletart SGA art, Offworld Team Camping to my journal (linked in this roundup because it wasn't yet in last year's)

February
creature doodle: a valentine's card of a sort

March
Nothing. :(

April
an Easter doodle: Infiltration

May
a Sherlock Holmes doodle that I did in response to a request in [community profile] artondemand
Trek Reverse Bang fanart

June
Nothing. :(

July
a Kirk/Spock mindmeld ratcreature icon

August
eleven drawbles: ten here, and a straggler here

September
eleven drawbles for the character roulette meme

October
a comment doodle I did for Te (DCU crack)

November
Graphorn (HP fanart)

December
Dresden Files doodle
Santa Claus with dragon
Dragon bookmark doodle
and the not yet revealed [livejournal.com profile] yuletart art.
ratcreature: RatCreature as a sloth (sloth)
There wasn't a lot this year, not even if I count all drawbles and icons and such, i.e. I can't even do the meme thing with the squares of one preview picture for every month.

January
a Numb3rs Don and Charlie ratcreature icon

February
Nothing. :(

March
Diricawl (Harry Potter fanart)

April
a fail! ratcreature icon

May
Five drawbles: 1-3, 4, 5
Robin (DC fanart)
Nightwing (DC fanart)

June
an Uhura ratcreature icon
a weird comment doodle for Kass' story Zygote (SGA/Everything You Wanted to Know About Sex* (but were afraid to ask) fusion fanart)
Star Trek Reboot art meme (Star Trek: Reboot fanart)

July
Nothing. :(

August
Nothing. :(

September
Nothing. :(

October
Nothing. :(

November
Nothing. :(
(I did work on my Yuletart assignment that month, though I only finished in December with an extension)

December
Twelve drawbles: 1-6, 7-10, 11-12
Santa!Cthulhu
and the not yet revealed [livejournal.com profile] yuletart art.

This is even less than 2008, and it's not like I was prolific then. I suck. :(
ratcreature: RatCreature as a sloth (sloth)
January
a dragon (original fantasy art)
February
Iskierka's hatching (Temeraire fanart)
illustration for Beth's In From the Cold (Snape/Shacklebolt, HP fanart)
a Sarah Connor ratcreature icon
March
illustration for Trinityofone's Dæmonology (SGA/His Dark Materials fanart)
April
Junkie!Roy (DCU fanart)
May
Sheppard & Steampunk!Puddlejumper (SGA fanart, done for the paintedspires fest)
Bowtruckle (HP fanart)
Teyla as Waterbender (SGA/Avatar: The Last Airbender fanart, done for the paintedspires fest)
June
Nothing. :(
July
Nothing. :(
August
Nothing. :(
September
a tentacle rape and a steampunk ratcreature icon
various drawbles based on prompts, some fannish, some not
October
a Linus ratcreature icon
November
John Sheppard Halloween '75 (SGA fanart, done for the paintedspires Halloween challenge)
Matthew sketch (DCU fanart)
Red Cap (HP fanart)
some doodles (an US election themed doodle, a werewolf, a dinosaur with a raygun, a baby cthulhu, a monster, a vengeful teddy bear)
a Minbari ratcreature icon and a nitpicking ratcreature icon
December
some sketches based on prompts (Travolta!furry, steampunk!Batmobile, dragons, Sheppard, 'cheese eats mouse')
Merlin and Arthur ratcreature icons
Christmas doodle (SGA/Merlin/Numb3rs fanart)
and finally the not yet revealed Yuletart art.

There was a sad lack of any art production for several months in summer, however overall I posted more fanart than in 2007, especially when just counting the fully fledged art. Also I started using acrylic paint to color, and found it much easier (and more error tolerant) than my sad attempts to use watercolors ages ago. And while messy and somewhat time intensive, I think my attempts with that look better than my digital coloring.

I tried doing this meme where you list your favorite work, your most surprising work and so on, but I couldn't come up with any answers for half the things, so I gave up.
ratcreature: RatCreature is thinking: hmm...? (hmm...?)
Though I don't draw professionally or even all that often, I still have a habit of collecting interesting visual things for reference or inspiration. Even with libraries and these days internet image searches it is not easy to find the exact kind of interesting picture you need when you need it, or sometimes you don't even know what exactly it would be you need to realize some vague idea. Or at least it is like that for me, so if I come across something that is visually stunning, unusual, interesting, seems like a good inspiration, or a possible reference for something I might draw some day I keep it.

Like, if I'm at a used book store, I habitually look if there's a bin of old cheap National Geographic or other travel magazines and leaf through them to see whether any have cool photographs, if I see an interesting picture on the internet I will safe it, and so on.

Obviously after a time this results in an organizational problem if you ever want to find anything again. So I'm wondering how others deal with this.

It's not so bad with the books, I just have a shelf with books I got for their pictures, like for example collections of photographs from the 1920s, 30s and so on, books of animals, places, people, cars, design... It's harder for the magazines because things like National Geographic aren't topic specific, so I never know whether I decided to keep some issue for pictures of some place or some animal, or even whether it was in the title article. Which makes finding things again a bit harder.

Digital stuff is the least problematic in some respects, because I have created a bunch of folders labeled by topic for photos (reference for buildings & cityscapes, landscapes, actions, clothing, animals, plants, objects, symbols, textures,... with some having subfolders) and some other folders for art by other people, and yet another set of folders for fandom character reference, so it's not hard to find which folders to browse. The main problem is that I don't always know where I got some image from, because it's so much easier to just save a picture than to save it and add something to its meta-info field. That isn't a big problem if I just use it as inspiration or reference some parts of it, but if say a landscape photo was to serve as main reference for a drawn background I might want to acknowledge that, yet often by the time I use something I have no idea where it came from anymore.

Photos I've taken myself before having a digital camera are more of a mess, because those are mostly in big boxes, and most are kind of boring holiday photos with some cool landscapes and animals scattered inbetween. But the worst are the boxes of, well I guess "junk" fits, i.e. stuff I've kept for because it seemed like a good idea at the time. Much of that is also paper, like exhibition catalogs, flyers that looked interesting, clippings from newspapers or magazines, posters, but there's also stuff like feathers with a nice pattern, stones, tins, even some bit of metal that rusted in an interesting way, and so on. I mean, I try to keep the non-paper junk down to one box or so, because I really don't need to go down the road of people who end up smothered by their packrat piles collapsing on them, but well, I'm not a very tidy person to begin with, so it's an uphill battle. I guess what I really need would be del.icio.us tagging for RL objects and/or a physical search engine, but I fear that level of virtual home and computer merging is still a way off into the future.

So, how do you deal with organizing your reference and inspirational collection so that is actually useful for you rather than a pile of messy clutter? Do you have some kind of system? Or just really good spatial memory?
ratcreature: navel-gazing RatCreature (navel-gazing)
I'm at home rather than at a party, mostly because I'm not much of a party person but it also has the advantage that I can soothe my rats through their first New Year's Eve explosions experience. So far they seem thoroughly unconcerned with all the loud noises and flashes outside, but then they usually are pretty good about distinguishing sounds outside that don't bother them and ones coming from the inside, that may pose a threat. Actually I'm wincing far more often than they at some of the sudden really loud fireworks.

So I thought I'd occupy myself with listing the stuff I drew this past year. Overall I have posted even less art in 2007 than in 2006, especially full fledged artwork. However I managed to draw a bunch of drawbles and such on request, and also did some drawing exercises, though the latter not as regularly as I intended to. I guess my New Year's resolution will be to restart posting exercise suggestions to slothsdraw, and to actually do them regularly myself this time around, rather than just one or two in a haphazard fashion.

Anyway, here's a chronological list of all things I've drawn this year:

list of all fanart, drawbles, icon creature doodles, and exercises I drew and posted this year )

So in conclusion, if I extend "drawing" to include all doodles, icon sketches and drawing exercises, no matter how quick or lame, I have drawn and posted something almost every month. If I only count "proper" artwork, my output was far less, but at least I tried a couple of new things, especially digitally, and I made an attempt to practice more regularly, even if my slackerdom caught up with me again quickly.
ratcreature: Procrastination is a Lifestyle. RatCreature in a hammock doing nothing. (procrastination)
Since I am now crossposting on three sites, and have already backed my old entries up to GJ and intend to do the same to IJ eventually, it is a real hassle to update the SGA thematic list I maintain (the one listing stories with alien Pegasus cultures and new non-human aliens) directly as journal post, so the thematic list itself is now on a separate webpage. It's very bare bones, because it was annoying enough already to reformat it and to convert all the lj-shortcuts. I didn't even bother to replace them with "proper" author names if the pseuds differ, because there's well over a hundred stories on that list by now. But it should be serviceable enough, and I'll have to add stories in one place only instead of two or eventually three. Of course the original LJ entry is still there and now links to the webpage, so if you have for some reason linked my thematic list, your link won't be broken, though people have to follow an extra click.

On a slightly more fun note, I've posted another, slightly belated monster for [livejournal.com profile] amarin_rose, who asked for a "Purple People Eater":
beware of the monster lurking behind this cut )
ratcreature: RatCreature is thinking: hmm...? (hmm...?)
I try to tag every fanfic I read on del.icio.us so that I can find it again. Now I'm reading some post-DH stuff and naturally my regular tagging (which includes names for all characters in a story for example) as well as the summary blurbs (which I've tried to be better about including in my links), would contain spoilers for DH. I know some people subscribe to del.icio.us feeds or just browse there, and it's not like I can spoiler cut. I'd really like to keep with my bookmarking and tagging routine, but I wonder whether I'm going to get lynched for having tags with spoilery character names. I could make all my post-DH bookmarks private, and unlock them later, but that negates the point of using a social bookmarking site, and I may forget about the unlocking, because I tag a lot of stuff, and even if I have a post-DH tag to find them all again, there's afaik no mass action for making bookmarks not private, so this course of action is somewhat inconvenient. So how should I handle spoilers on a social bookmarking site? What are you doing about your spoilery bookmarks?

[Poll #1026237]
ratcreature: navel-gazing RatCreature (navel-gazing)
It surprised me that I've been quite productive fanart-wise by my (admittedly sloth-like) standards in 2006. Here's the complete list:

January
Tim as Avatar from Te's Intimates series (DCU - Batverse)
Platypus!Harry and Platypus!Harry fighting Voldemort, both drawn for Nimori's Animagus Challenge (Harry Potter)

February
Illustration for the epilogue of Beth's Snape/Kingsley story In From the Cold (Harry Potter)

March
Nightwing and Arsenal Show, an illustration for [livejournal.com profile] sister_wolf's Nightwing/Arsenal ficlet (DCU - Outsiders)
36 drawbles from the drawble meme I did, many of which are fannish (I should probably add a content warning here, because the drawbles were using the requesters' interests as prompts, so while most are harmless and just deserve a silliness warning, there's also stuff based on interests like "gay vampire snuff porn + zombies".)

April
Watership Down/SGA fusion crack (Watership Down/SGA)

May
illustration for Petra's Squandered my resistance, drawn for Comica Obscura (DCU - Batverse)
Storm (Ororo Munroe) (Marvel - X-Men)

June
Ginny Weasley (Harry Potter)

September
Tim in a visibly armored Robin costume, based on Te's request in [livejournal.com profile] illustrate_me (DCU - Batverse)
several Muppets/DCU fusion pieces, i.e. Kermit the Frog (as Superman) and Miss Piggy (as Lois Lane), Fozzie Bear (as Jimmy Olson), and Gonzo (as Nightwing) (DCU/Muppets)

December
Buddy Baker advertising Tofurky (DCU - Animal Man)

That's fourteen drawings, not counting the drawbles, which isn't too bad considering I only drew three in 2005 and none at all in 2004. Not exactly prolific, but at least I don't feel utterly ridiculous making a list.

Also, I tagged most of the fanart I've looked at on LJ this year, which isn't really production, but you can conveniently search and sort the links to over 2300 pieces of fanart by character and pairing (mostly comics and HP, though there's some other fandoms too), and I thought it can't hurt to mention my indexing effort again:
http://www.simpy.com/group/161
ratcreature: RatCreature is thinking: hmm...? (hmm...?)
Like, does Draco/Dementor count as slash? gen? het? See, I'm still tagging LJ art I come across for the LJ art link list, and you can't see the Dementor's private parts in the picture in question (whatever those may be--not that I particularly want to see Dementor genitalia). I went with slash in the end, but once again these categories show their drawbacks.

On another labelling issue: What is it with SGA RPS being simply categorized as SGA on rec and fiction pages and such? A couple of times now I've looked at SGA recs and the RPS was mixed among the SGA FPS as if it was the same fandom. I commented before that for me as a strict FPS fan it's inconvenient and counterintuitive when communities just mix the two categories like that there's plenty of SW fiction on [livejournal.com profile] ewan_hayden, even though I realize that it is convenient for people interested in both the actors and their shows/movies to combine the too when creating a forum, but on a recs or fiction site that has separate fandom sections I find it just wrong somehow that SGA and SGA RPS are put in the same section and that then is just labelled SGA not even "SGA & SGA RPS" or something.

Am I the only one who's so anal about such labels to be bugged by this? Also, I'm wondering whether this is like a growing trend in fandom, that the RPS and FPS for a group of actors are coming to be considered as the same fandom?
ratcreature: RL? What RL? RatCreature is a net addict.  (what rl?)
I've spent a couple of hours tagging fanart for the LJ fanart link sharing group [livejournal.com profile] brown_betty helpfully created at simpy.com. This method has the advantage over LJ memories that you can tag with more than five labels, also the tags of the group are searchable, and you can rather easily merge and edit them (something that turned out useful when you notice you tagged half the "Tim/Bart" "Bart/Tim"...). The only thing that bugs me is that with group tags is that there doesn't seem to be an option to just list all used tags, it just shows the most common.

Anyway, besides the fandom (mainly DC art so far) I tried to tag like the [livejournal.com profile] dcfic_index for characters, pairings, gen, slash, het, and femslash, sometimes team names in ensemble pictures, and in addition to that included tags like elseworld, and crossover, as well as "animated" if one or more characters were the toon versions. Also if the picture was labeled NWS or clearly showed a sex scene or character pin-up with nudity I tagged it NWS as well. So far there's 280 links, which should be enough for you to check out whether you find this system useful for searching for fanart:
http://www.simpy.com/group/161

Thoughts, opinions anyone?
ratcreature: RatCreature is thinking: hmm...? (hmm...?)
Some recent posts brought the really useful [livejournal.com profile] dcfic_index to my attention again, and I found myself wondering whether there are similar projects to collect links to the comic fanart posted on LJ? A while ago when I was looking for a piece of comic fanart I'd seen, I noticed that [livejournal.com profile] comics_fanart for example doesn't use memories or tags, which makes it much harder to find older fanart again compared to, say, find posted scans in [livejournal.com profile] scans_daily, which is fabulously organized btw (and I'm in awe that anyone can keep up with organizing it, considering that the really high post frequency is one reason I dropped the community from my default view, since at one point half of each flist view seemed to be [livejournal.com profile] scans_daily posts). I haven't seen any art indexes mentioned, though I guess I could just be unaware of it. Or maybe this is similar to fanart being even less consistently archived than fanfic and that there are fewer archives for art? If something like this doesn't already exist, do others think it would be useful to have a dcart_index comm? Not that I'm volunteering per se, I'm naturally lazy after all, but I find myself missing something more organized for finding fanart, and well, I could imagine to do at least part of the work and maintenance for such a project (though it would be much cooler if someone else had already done the work and I could just utilize *g*).
ratcreature: RatCreature as Batman (batman)
After over two months of not adding anything to my Batman site (yeah, I suck), I started writing the entry for Detective Comics #785 tonight. I like rereading the issues with an eye for detail and references. I like looking into other comics and to search the net to find references, contradictions, stuff in general. It's a fun (though fairly unproductive) way to spend many hours. You notice things like that Batman's statement in DET #785 that he never fought together with Green Lantern I in Gotham is contradicted by the backup story in Gotham Knights #10, Guardian, which tells a version of their first meeting that shows them fighting together in Gotham (although they are far from at ease with each other then). I learned that the guy in the background of the GL Grundy flashback is called the Fiddler and was a member of the second Injustice Society together with the Sportsmaster, however I couldn't find other references for if/when he worked with Grundy. I mean, I would have never noticed all that without indexing. (It's up to you to decide whether that's a good thing or a bad thing. *g*)
ratcreature: RatCreature as Batman (batman)
I'm sure it's not the only version of Oracle's origin story (I don't think anything is ever the only version of some important continuity with DC...), and I have no idea whether this one is the most recent that counts in current continuity either, but I enjoyed reading Oracle -- Year One: Born of Hope (writers John Ostrander and Kim Yale, artists Brian Stelfreeze and Karl Story, colorist Mark Chiarello) in Batman Chronicles #5 (from summer 1996). I liked the other two stories less -- Decoys offers an episode from Gordon's past, Of Mice and Men one from Bruce's childhood before his parents' murder -- still Batman Chronicles #5 is worth getting.

In case you're interested in more details of what happens in Oracle -- Year One: Born of Hope, an entry cataloging that short story is the newest addition to the Batverse Resource. Despite recent lack of progress, I haven't abandoned that project, it just goes slooow (that I'm a slacker doesn't help...)
ratcreature: RatCreature as Batman (batman)
The last days I've managed to add about one comic a day to my detailed Batverse Resource site. So now you can look at detailed descriptions of Nightwing #1-8 in addition to details about Gotham Knights #14-21, if you're interested in where exactly we see Dick's Bat-Logo coffee mug and similar things.

So that now leaves 72 Nightwing issues, 4 Nightwing mini-series issues, three more Nightwing specials, 32 more Gotham Knights issues, about 210 Batman issues (with the, not totally arbitrary, cut-off point of the Year One storyline in 1987 for things relevant to current continuity), about the same number of Detective Comics, 94 Shadow of the Bat issues, 54 regular Birds of Prey issues, about ten more BOP in mini series and specials, 94 of the first regular Catwoman series, 18 in the current Catwoman series, 113 in the current Robin series, about 15 more in previous mini-series and such, 23 Batman Chronicles, 166 Legends of the Dark Knight issues (though I'm not sure whether all of those are part of the continuity), about 40 Batgirl issues, 100 Azrael issues, 30 Harley Quinn issues, Annuals and Secret Files issues for nearly all of the above, the Year One specials, and a couple of mini-series that are in continuity (like Long Halloween, Dark Victory, Family, Joker Last Laugh etc), i.e. easily more than 1200 comics, to go. Not counting the potentially relevant Titans, Teen Titans, and New Teen Titans issues. Those are probably in the hundreds too. *grin*

At least so far I only own about 250 of those comics...
ratcreature: RatCreature as Batman (batman)
[livejournal.com profile] cereta recently brought up the topic of Batman obsession. To that I can just say that buying strange looking merchandise is harmless. I just spend well over an hour tracking down the Romany dialogs in Gotham Knights #20 so that I could provide translations (though I don't speak Romany) for its entry in my Batverse resource site. Thankfully I was correct in my assumption that the writer used web resources so I didn't have much problem to find the phrases. It didn't help though that the comic made at least two typos (typos that are not due to different transcription systems) in the Romany parts... it's no wonder I don't have success in googling misspelled phrases.
ratcreature: RatCreature as Batman (batman)
In case anyone is interested in "beta-testing" the fledgling beginnings of the Batverse resource some more (any kinds of comments and suggestions are welcome), I used some of today for data entry (yay for public holidays *g*), and now have cataloged Gotham Knights #14, #15, #16, and #17, a page with all entries for that series is here.

ETA: I'm thinking that I maybe should add a "continuity references" section in each entry, to list specific references to previous events (those that I notice and can trace to their source anyway)...
ratcreature: RatCreature as Batman (batman)
I'm still testing the options for using Movable Type as a tool for managing a Batman resource site, and I have now an example entry to illustrate how I imagine the information on a comic to be organized. It's backdated so that the entry date matches the publishing date, and thus it doesn't appear in the main index, but for example an entry for the first Nightwing Annual might look like this.

Obviously the whole blog setup and design is still very much in the draft state, but I thought it might be useful to offer an entry with actual data to illustrate the concept some more.

Has anyone any opinions?
ratcreature: RatCreature as Batman (batman)
In a previous entry I noticed that I don't know any Batverse resource that cross-references character/canon details with the comic issues, or character biographies that cite the source for every fact they collect.

Now the scary thing is, that I'm seriously thinking about starting such a site, that is at least to give it a try. Obviously the site would start very small and not that useful, but on the other hand, because I've only begun to read and collect the Batman series it might continously grow as I read the issues, and I don't have a massive re-reading backlog yet that has to be entered, as long as I'd really update the site with any relevant Batman title I read. So at the beginning it would be very incomplete, but after all general character overviews and complete series and character appearance indexes already exist elsewhere, it's the connection between the character details and the comic issues that I'd like to see somewhere.

So last night I've pondered the best way to structure and maintain such a site to make it flexible, expandable, searchable and easy to update as it grows. I guess theoretically the best long term thing would be to create a customized database with a sound structure and then have php scripts that create and format whatever kind of output one wants from that database. However I have no time or inclination to write a sort of php/database application that is ideally suited for the task of organizing comic canon for the web. The other extreme, to create and update every page manually with each additional comic is also impractical. It might be the easiest for a few comics, but as soon as a few dozen comics are involved it would become unwieldy fast.

The main problem is that I know I won't update a site if each update has to be some massive effort in formatting and cross-linking, especially not if the aim is to simply sit down after each issue I read and compile some brief notes. That's why I'm so adverse to a completely manual site organization.

Then I thought that maybe a blog system with categories (and the potential for allowing more than one poster) like Movable Type could be set up in a way that was at least usable for such a purpose, perhaps every now and then enhanced by manual creation of some summary info pages. My basic idea so far is something like this:

Every comic would get an entry, all those entries formatted in the same way, with certain "sections" filled out for every comic (like a section for characters so that searches for minor characters for example give as results all entries and thus comics where they appear, though it obviously needs some thought of how to best organize the info), then all relevant categories would be assigned to the entry, for example categories like "Dick Grayson/Childhood" or "Batman/Origin Story", things like that. Categories that help to organize canon/character details in useful sub-sections. Then the blog archives would be set to be based on the categories, so that then someone could click "Batman/Origin Story" and all entries with comics that refer to that would be listed. That wouldn't be the best possible organization, because inside each category the comics would be listed based on the entry date, not based on any internal or publishing chronology, though it might be a possibility to give each entry the original publishing date of the comic, instead of the date the entry is created. OTOH the disadvantage of backdating is that at least in Movable Type the entry won't show up on the index page even if it is new. On yet another hand that way the index page would only show fairly recent comics, and the others would be only accessible through the archives, and the implemented calendar functions could be utilized for publishing date searches/browsing and such.

Still, even if I decided on creating "summary pages" manually every now and then to compile the data in more specific ways, it might still be useful that this way every comic had an entry in the archive, I could link to directly.

I think one kind of category should be the series title, and since for me the main characters of interest are Dick Grayson/Nightwing and Bruce Wayne/Batman, I'd like the categories "Childhood", "Origin Story", "Romances", "Trivia" and something like "Important Character Development/Turning Point" (to mark really central issues for the character arcs) for both of them, but I'm not sure what other categories ought to be there.

So now I'm wondering whether a site design like that would be usable... Obviously suggestions and advice are welcome.
ratcreature: RatCreature as Batman (batman)
As I research how to proceed with my plan towards world domination getting an overview of recent Batman canon and continuity (heh, the level of difficulty is about the same), I'm accumulating a lot of notes (both paper and electronic) on which stories are published where, what the main events are etc. And of course I continue to promptly misplace or loose them almost as soon as I gathered the information.

So I have decided to post this in my blog, sort of as a "note to self", well a rather public note, but after all there may be other people for whom such an overview might be interesting and more importantly it won't be some obscure text document lost in the unorganized mess that's my hard drive but neatly indexed and visibly posted in my blog, where I can find it.

I don't own most of these comics (yet), so I'm relying on information provided on web sites. My sources are the The Unofficial Guide to the DC Universe, this continuity page, this timeline, this German DC fan page, and information on issues and trade paperbacks provided by various online comic stores.

For now I started with the Cataclysm/No Man's Land time frame.

Corrections are very welcome.

Overview of how the TPB compare to the single issues. )

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