I’m seeing a lot of the same questions in the comments of DM of the Rings. Rather than answering the same question in the comments of a dozen threads, I’m going to gather it all up here and deal with it in one post so that I can link back to it as the need arises.
Q: Are you ever going to publish this?
A: Obviously I’m using images from a major motion picture, which means this work can never be for sale. My current plan is to finish this story and then gather up all of the strips, plus a few extras, and put them into a single PDF freely available for download. The versions you’ve been looking at are cropped and reduced and then abused by JPEG compression. I do this to save precious bandwidth, which has gotten scarce lately. When I make the PDF version I’ll use the crisp, high-resolution originals.
Q: Do you have paypal / a wishlist / a way to give money?
A: Thanks, but no. I’m not doing this for money. Partly because of the legal and copyright issues, but mostly because then I would feel obligated to do it, and this would start to feel like a job and not a hobby. The best way to support the comic is to click on the ads whenever you see something you like. That pays for the bandwidth, which is all I ask.
Q: Can I take one of your comics and put it on my website / print it on a poster / tattoo it on my butt / make a commemorative plate / engrave it into a fine mahogany tabletop?
A: Knock yourself out. You’re free to take as much liberty with it as I took with the original source material. I’d appreciate a link back here, but do what you will.
Q: How long will the comic run? When will it end?
A: Good question. Since the beginning I’ve said that I’ll make these until I get sick of them. That seems like a good policy. I’ll make these strips until I get tired of them, or I reach some sort of ending.
Originally I made 22 comics. Buy the time I posted the third strip, I had 22 of them written. The series was supposed to end on strip #22, when the players rebelled and left to go play Mechwarrior. I didn’t think the strips were very funny, and I was mostly just making them to amuse myself.
Then I realized I wanted to make more, and a lot of my friends (both my gaming friends and the friends over in my blogroll) said they enjoyed them and thought they were funny. Thanks guys, seriously.
So, I started inserting new strips into the story I’d already written. For example, in the original run I spent 5 strips in moria: Teamwork, Of Dubious Value, Cartographer’s Lament, The Epic Sounds of Battle, and Our Dearly Discarded. I managed to insert 7 more strips in there, so in the final run we were in Moria for 12 strips. I noticed the added strips were better than the original ones. I was getting better and having fun and attracting a lot of readers. Only a fool walks away from a deal like that, so I scrapped the original ending and opened it up so that I could keep going if I wanted to.
Q: What do you use to make the comic?
A: I write up the dialog in Wordpad. I own all three of the LOTR movies, and I use Cyberlink DVD to nab the screencaps I’ll need. I put them together using Comic Book Creator. I use Paint Shop Pro 8 to edit the comics afterwards and do the things you can’t do in CBC. That’s it.
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