No, don’t be afraid, we’re not going to suddenly start missing updates! Dex is a art making MACHINE, folks. He truly rocks.

HOWEVER, that said, we want to get a good buffer going, as we have eaten up a bit of it with other, cool SUPER SECRET stuff Dex has coming out elsewhere, and more power to him for his industry, his skill, and his ambition!

He said to me that he could knock out the buffer and kick his own ass and do it, and by God, he would have, because I’ve never met more of a workaholic artist than Dex, but my response, as should be yours, is “NO!” Don’t kill yourself, buddy. I told him that I was sure all of you fine folks would understand if he took it easy catching up, especially given our SECRET POSTERS.

Ah-whah, you say?

Well, Dex, about a year ago, did five truly awesome posters. Some of you may have seen one of them in color if you bought the second trade. The others, you haven’t seen, and they give you a bit of a tease as to what’s coming, along with a compelling image. They will be what you see Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, with perhaps a special surprise or three on Tuesdays and Thursdays, to thank you for your patience in a break in story, but no break in content. This will last from page 151 on June 15th, a Friday, the last page of the third trade, through when we return with new story pages on July 2nd, a Monday.

Anyone out there who wants to do a guest piece is more than welcome to contact me. We have planned material, but I’d love to see stuff others might want to put together. Doesn’t matter if you’re five and it’s your first drawing or if you’re Adam Hughes. And if you are Adam Hughes and you want to do a piece, I will gladly dress up in leather and model. Or, alternatively, agree not to dress up in leather in exchange for the piece. Atsa good deal for independent art! The only important thing, and this is absolutely essential, please only send in existing Charlies/Charlenes/characters. While I’m sure your Charlie ideas would be wonderful, there’s a legal issue there, and I’d have to delete them unseen, which would make me sad. I wish we lived in a world where I could say “Come up with crazy Charlie ideas, and we’ll showcase the best ones!” and could just trust the world to be cool, but then I run the risk of someone saying I stole an idea from them, and I gotta protect Charlie and company.

Beyond that, we will also use the buffer to design our new trade, volume three, and figure out how we’re going to want to knock it out. We have an image selected, pages in the can, and I should have prices soon. Speaking of prices…

Here’s a reality I’ve had to come to terms with. When I published the first trade, the cost per copy was substantially lower than it is now. Paper prices have gone up, as have shipping prices, so I’m in an odd position. I don’t WANT to raise prices, but I may have to. I’m not sure what it will be, I’m guessing 12 bucks a copy instead of ten, but it may be 14, depending on what the prices are in the intervening six months since we made the last trade. Question, and feel free to comment, if I have to raise prices, will anyone then NOT be able to buy? This is very important to me, not for profit purposes (HAHAHAHAH, profit? Pfft!), more for sustainability. Profitability is a word that hangs around Penny Arcade, and more power to them, but we’re not there yet.

I am thinking I will tell you guys now, so anyone who wants to buy 1 and 2 at the old price can, before prices potentially rise.

Also, I am considering putting together a YEAR ONE trade, in paperback. That might be more spendy, I don’t know… is twenty-five dollars insane for a year one trade? Thirty? Twenty? What is reasonable for a full year under one cover (provided you don’t have it already). I need your input, folks.

All that said, I will soon post something on Comic Rocket, a site I am digging that I am remiss in telling you guys about. Expect a post some time soon! We are also two pages away from another issue of Cura in color!