Fedora on an Asus C201P Chromebook

So as soon as I came up with a plan for a game this month I got distracted trying to install Fedora on the chromebook I have.
It took me 4 days to come to the conclusion that I wasn’t failing, it’s just that no documentation on how to install Fedora/other linux systems exist for my computer.
My mission in life now is to get Fedora installed and write some killer documentation for it just so that exists. We’ll see if this ends up working or not.
So far I’ve mostly become extremely good at using the terminal and watching my attempts to get to a BIOS screen and boot from a usb drive fail miserably.
I need to figure out if this even has BIOS and what it does have so I can get to an option screen at the startup, and then we’ll go from there I guess.

Github Game Jam

Long story short I quit my dayjob. So I’m looking for work and freelancing again, but also participating in the Github Game Jam. It’s like NaNoWriMo but for game devs, and with a loose topic. This year it’s Hacking/modding/augmenting.
So I’m going to do a game based off the little women retelling I want to do. It’ll be put together sort of like making a movie, in the sense of, this is my very vague, very loose series of steps:

  • reread little women
  • take notes
  • outline story plot & dialogue
  • make sprites
  • game mechanics
  • mush them together into something
  • port

If I remember I’ll update here with progress as this continues.

The Sims4 Series

I’ve decided that it would be really fun to do a series of videos or maybe even livestreams (depending on how well my laptop can hold up to it) of the Sims4. It’s been done before, but I’m going to put a new twist on it. We’ll start by building up Newcrest (the blank Sims4 world) from scratch, filling the town with NPC’s – some of which patrons will have the opportunity to name – and lastly, creating a sim/household and playing through the game itself.
Fridays are the days I’m free and don’t have classes, so the video will likely go up between Friday and Sunday night, posted to youtube and patreon.
I haven’t been able to make all of the things as frequently as I want to with school (looking at you, E.R.A.) but I’m excited about the play through videos and they should be fun and easy enough to make between life and everything else.
So, if you want to follow along – subscribe to the youtube channel and follow my patreon page – if you’d like to be able to name a sim (and maybe other things), you can do that at the $10/mo tier!

Ruby Thursdays

I’ve already done a little bit with Ruby. But I figured it’d be a good idea to start at the beginning. So I switched program trees and started Ruby Basics.
I can’t even begin to tell you how much I like Ruby better than PHP, but anyway.
I made some strings and learned about whitespace and gets.
And then a work project came up so I went back into WordPress mode, because that’s what I do. ūüôā

WordPress on Tuesdays

Today I learned how to make custom page templates in WordPress and how to get navigation to work.
I also started on the Custom Post Types section and took some notes for the comic theme I have in my future.
One assuring thing is that as I look at the old notes that I have tacked on to my wall, and the notes/ideas I’m jotting down today, they’re both basically the same and line up. Which means I was on the right track to start with, and now I know (or will know) exactly how to get it to do the thing.
I’ll be utilizing custom post types and custom page templates to showcase the comic, and maybe using WP_query date parameters to loop through and show any blog posts written after the comic has been published. But I need to finish the “How WP_Query Works” section first, probably…

on Windows 10, Art Work, and Self Care

I was apprehensive about updating my laptop to Windows 10, especially after getting it and needing to wait for patches for games to work on Windows 8. Since the entire reason I have a windows laptop is to play PC games, it seemed like a good idea to not rush into upgrading until I knew I would still be able to play something.
But the other thing I was waiting for was the roll-out, because Win10 launches on a rollout so the other day I got the notification that it was ready (and that I could switch back) so I thought I’d give it a try.
First of all, everything still seems to run – Guild Wars2, Origin, Minecraft, Steam. And Secondly, my laptop has finally come to grips with it being a laptop and gotten rid of the tablet interface and strange outside-of-desktop fullscreen apps. Which means, there’s a twitter client, and I’m not accidentally popping out to the start screen at random, and the UI is generally nicer and easier to use because it’s in laptop mode. Of course, if you have one of those “it’s a laptop! it’s a tablet! what is it even!” computers, there is a tablet mode for you.
So, I like it, and I can play my games, and have twitter open on the desktop instead of in browser, and Microsoft Edge is actually a pretty nice browser.


I haven’t drawn a proper E.R.A. comic in a couple weeks and I’ve been feeling guilty. It’s not that I don’t want to or I’m lacking motivation (it’s not), it’s just that the last couple weeks have been intense. I don’t want to apologize for not drawing because of exhaustion or need to self-care, but I did realize something – a couple things actually.

1. I make my best art when my physical and mental health is taken care of. Depressed Kiery’s art is still (pretty decent) art but it’s not as good as the things I’m capable of making when I’m actually doing okay.

Which, has what to do with E.R.A., exactly? I draw when I’m not okay all the time, in fact I make a lot of angsty comics because they’re important for my mental health and they’re great – I often keep coming back to reference the comics I made out of frustration because they’re powerful and they stick. But unlike the one-shots I usually do, E.R.A. is a story with a lot of arcs and… I’m going to be honest here – it terrifies me.
I’m not used to writing long stories that don’t end after 10 panels or go on longer than the length of a children’s book. I don’t even think I’ve successfully written anything longer than a short story for NaNoWriMo.
E.R.A. is a story that I feel like needs to be written regardless of how much it terrifies me and makes me stare at my insecurities about my ability to write interesting fiction. I think about it all the time, I have pages of notes that are arcs ahead of where we are right now that are constantly be added to and revised and the world is growing. It’s really magical and amazing and scary.
So sometimes, if I am as utterly exhausted as I have been, and it’s all I can manage to doodle to a prompt…..I don’t end up sitting down for hours to draw E.R.A. because I know I’ll scrap it. I’ll be spending energy becoming frustrated because it’s not what I know I could make it be if I only just let myself rest. So instead, I rest, and come back to it stronger and better and prettier, and make something I’m at least a little more proud of than I would have been if I had made it when I was burnt out, just to say that I¬†had made it that week. I really want E.R.A. to take off massively and my theory is that it has to be consistent in order for that to happen, but sometimes, I just can’t.
And I think that’s okay. Because I make the rules for this particular comic, and I want it to be as amazing as I imagine it. It’s a process and I’m not there yet, but I know the days I’m incapable of even coming close and those are the days when everything else is telling me that I need to rest.

2. My health and sanity is more important than my productivity.

It feels scary to be writing that professionally, but it’s true. If I want to keep making art (and writing code) I need to remember that productivity shouldn’t come at the expense of my health and calm, because I need both of those in order to make anything and be able to actually live. That I make cool things is just a perk of me being me, it’s not my point or value. I’m saying this just as much for myself (and for coming back and reminding later) as anything. My value is inherent and it’s not based on what I make even though what I make has the potential to be really amazing (and I hope it is).
So at like 4 this morning I finally reached a point where I was calm, and I’m just going to spend the rest of the day trying to stay in that zone and have some Kiery chill time.

Games I'm Looking Forward To From PAXPrime 2015

So I wandered a lot around the indie game area of PAX and played some games, talked to some devs, and generally found some really cool things that I’m looking forward to and ended up getting beta keys, or put on email lists, and little cards about to follow along.

WP_20150911_004
The games I’m watching

Creativerse¬†– it’s really fun, think minecraft but with PVP built in, blueprints, and teleporting, and super immersive.
Necropolis – The art is what really captured me. I didn’t end up playing this one, but damn is it gorgeous. Talked to one of the people at the booths and it sounds fantastical.
Gigantic – this was huge at PAX, and it looks super fun – the art is really interesting to me.
Infinifactory – SUPER FUN LOOKING PUZZLE GAME OF BUILDING THINGS, available on steam, coming to PS4. Found this entirely by accident in the indie megabooth trying to get out of people’s way, so happy I did.
Sword Coast Legends – this one I think has been getting the most press, because it’s Dungeons and Dragons. Dungeons and Dragons games are The Games I Stand In Line For At PAX apparently, annnnnd playing it was really fun. It’d be a great way to play D&D long distance since one player can be a DM and then you have 4 others in the party. I was a dwarf paladin, and I was the only one in my party who didn’t wipe. ahahaha. Seriously, fun shit though.
And lastly,
Commander Kamala – surprisingly enough, may be the one I’m looking forward to the most. I usually SUCK at space-shooters but I tried this one, and talked to the sole(!!!!!!!) developer on the project and I’m actually super excited about it. It’s really fun, and for someone who sucks at these kinds of games, being actually able to PLAY it is really rad. Plans are to release it in 2016, and I really really want to stream it, so maybe. Also there’s a dog. Also female protagonist. Anyway, it’s rad.

ProTips with Kiery

    1. If you only shampoo your hair once a week (but condition as much as you like) and use cool water, it’ll keep your color intact a lot longer.
    2. If you have a 500 drawing prompts book and you do one prompt a day, you’ll have made 500 drawings. If you use a 500 drawing prompts book every day as a way to get your juices flowing, you’ll have made…a lot more than that.
    3. the Streaks app is a pretty decent way to remember to take care of yourself every day (or achieve other goals). Mine includes: Drinking water, meditating, making art, going up stairs, yoga, and 50 jumping jacks.
    4. Meditating is good. I’ve been using Stop, Breathe, and Think¬†because sometimes it’s hard to do by myself.
    5. Don’t fall down.

I’m currently still trying to decide if I’m going to brunch tomorrow, wondering if I have any¬†cosplay¬†I can put together for PAX next week (nope, I do not), feeling a little bad because my vlogs are probably REALLY boring (but maybe PAX vlogs will close it on a good note?), and wishing my body would stop hurting from that time I fell like two days ago.

Recalculating

WP_20150609_001 (2)I’ve been planning to make a Ruby app for hosting web comics – I still kind of am – but then I realized that as cool as a Ruby App is for me, personally, it might not be as accessible as I want to make it. I thought about maybe making my own blog hosting back-end, and quickly remembered how much I hate having to deal with hosting complications. I thought maybe I could just give detailed instructions for installing it to a handful of specific hosts¬†– but then I remembered how some hosts don’t work well with Ruby and running it may require having to retrofit the app. Which still isn’t accessible to artists who don’t know how to code, and is kind of a nightmare in general.
 
So then I thought, if accessibility is my goal (yes), then maybe what I should do instead of moving artists off of WordPress is make a theme with all the features I want for WordPress. But not just WordPress, if I’m feeling extra ambitious, I’ll also make a theme for Ghost, maybe something for Tumblr, and finally, actually make my Ruby app for the other unicorns, or people with friends who they can convince to set it up for them.
 
Today I started using Team Treehouse¬†to get a primer on making WordPress themes and PHP (because my resistance to not just starting with WordPress is that PHP and I don’t get along), drafted out the priorities for the design, what features I want users to be able to customize, and some of the things I want to integrate. I don’t want this to be complicated, I want a clean and responsive design that features the comic, with plenty of space in the margins so nothing looks busy or squished. I want to optionally be able to associate blog posts to the comic by time (still sketchy on exactly how I’m going to do it. Think recent posts, but stuck by date?) for those comics with writers, or comics who don’t want to cloud the comic post area with a general post but still want it to be somewhat associated. While also still leaving a spot for a comic post/description and comments.

If you were (or are) an artist looking for a new theme to showcase your work, what would you want it to have?

Hand Fish

I’ve been watching nature documentaries lately.¬†The Blue Planet: A Natural History of the Oceans, to be specific. Because I like water, and whoever the standard BBC narrator is has a soothing voice. I’ve been learning a lot about fishes, interestingly enough, and how life in the ocean works, which isn’t surprising as it is a documentary series, but it’s left me fascinated.
I wish my actual “education” had embodied a sort of holistic approach to understanding the natural world. I love how everything is so connected….how one fish being hunted and eaten and the rest discarded is used by other fish to continue to live and every bit of every creature is as useful in death as it is in life. Their deaths aren’t nothing, they’re just a part of enabling others to survive.
Even coral reef erosion by being eaten goes on to create sand, which later, eventually creates islands, which then goes on to house birds and other animals. Land and sea animals depend on each-other to survive in a way I didn’t realize before. Also, did you know, Polar bears eat whales? If they can catch them…
Just…nothing is wasted (even in death), and that’s beautiful¬†to me. Everything is connected and everything needs each-other to continue. I think sometimes we forget that – or sometimes, you end up having gone out of your way to not know that – but we are and it’s kinda magical.
Also hand fish.
HAND. FISH.

WHY DID MY SCIENCE BOOK NOT TELL ME ABOUT THIS.
Oh wait, it would be harder to sell evolution not being a thing with a fish with arms, wouldn’t it be?