Comic 1283 - Lilith 2020

10th Sep 2020, 10:08 AM in Quarantine Hiatus 2020
Lilith 2020
Average Rating: 5 (9 votes)
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Author Notes:

Jocelyn 10th Sep 2020, 10:08 AM edit delete
Earlier in the year (like the beginning of quarantine), I stumbled upon a bunch of my old sketchbooks. And this character, Lilith, can be spotted pretty frequently across like ten books. Once upon a time - probably circa very late 90s or very early 2000s - I already knew I wanted to devote myself to writing/drawing. And Lilith here, was kinda the face of that. She was the main character of her own story, and I made sure she always had at least a cameo in every single other idea I had for other stories.

Weirdly, for as obsessed with her character as I was for a while, I never really went anywhere with Lilith. As was common for me back then (and I think a lot of budding authors) I had a lot of potentially clever ideas, but never really a cohesive plan to tie them all together into an actual story. Then I'd come up with a new idea, hyperfocus on that, and get nowhere with it. Rinse and repeat. So eventually, Lilith just kinda fell by the wayside.

So I was really, really into this character - enough to fill multiple sketchbooks - but also, the time I spent working with her was technically very short. Even if you go WAY back into my DeviantArt gallery (which I think I started in like 2005), I can probably count the number of Lilith's public appearances on one hand (and mostly just in sketches, a random in-joke with a friend, and funny enough, a short comic about my dropping story ideas), meaning I'd pretty much already moved on by then. I think, at that point, the original fantasy concept for Rain was the new face of my writing.

And considering the tenth anniversary of Rain as we know now is coming up pretty soon, I guess that worked out pretty well for me, after all. ^_^


Anyway, enough reminiscing.

Somewhat recently, I had to reset my computer and in turn, redownload Photoshop. And apparently, I hadn't been updating it. So cut to me redoing my settings in the program like three versions after what I was previously using, and feeling just a little lost. XD

I figured I should whip up some quick doodle to make sure I still knew how to use the program after that. One of those old sketchbooks caught my eye, so Lilith ended up being the subject. And I drew her for probably the first time in like 15-16 years.

I admit this was drawn kind of a while ago now, and I wasn't even originally planning to share this (today or maybe ever), but I woke up feeling like I wanted to post something today, and this was available. So I hope you enjoy this new art for what is actually one of my very oldest characters. ^_^


Finally, I'll just leave off by saying I guess it's good I've got that posting itch again, because Rain is returning next week. (This might even be the last non-comic post I make before then.)

So, quick recap on Monday the 14th. First page on Wednesday the 16th. New pages every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. The next chapter deals with some heavy stuff (but because people keep asking, I promise nobody dies). I also promise it's not ALL going to be doom and gloom (I think it's actually pretty fun overall), but I do think some of the subject matter will hit some readers pretty hard.

And with that, thanks for sticking with me through the hiatus. The state of the world has been hard on all of us (and sometimes, doesn't ever feel like it's gonna let up), but I'm still here, so I'm gonna do my best to do what I love. And if, through Rain or any of my other work, I can offer a little distraction from everything (for all y'all and for myself), then I want to keep doing what I can.

I love you all, stay safe, wear a mask, and all around take care. And I'll see you next week!
Jocelyn 13th Sep 2020, 4:36 PM edit delete
One last friendly reminder to everyone that while regular pages return on Wednesday, the 16th, there is also a recap going up tomorrow, the 14th. It's strongly suggested reading, especially if you're not interested in or don't have time to go back and reread everything before Wednesday. This will at least highlight the main thing I want you to remember going in to Chapter 40.

The recap is fairly short, but the blurb will also contain links if you require further context for anything.

If you choose not to read the recap, that's of course, entirely up to you. But if, come Wednesday, you don't know what's going and you didn't read the recap, please go back and read it before asking me to go over anything in case I already answered it.

Thank you, and please look forward to and enjoy the emotional roller coaster that is Rain, Chapter 40. ^_^
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bgb16999 10th Sep 2020, 11:46 AM edit delete reply
Well I appreciate seeing one of your earliest characters.
Catlife333 10th Sep 2020, 12:17 PM edit delete reply
Hm, I wonder, how did you finally break from going-nowhere rinse-repeat to full actual stories? I’ve been trying to get into writing for a while but I’m stuck in a similar situation haha
Jocelyn 10th Sep 2020, 2:30 PM edit delete reply
@Catlife333 (and any other aspiring writers who might get something out of this)

I hope you're ready for a huge wall of text of an answer! XD

The truth is, I don't really know. I have a couple theories, but I confess I just don't know for sure what made Rain hold my attention, and not all the others before it. But here's what I think (and this is purely in my experience, and may vary from yours or anyone else's).

See, a lot of my early story ideas were just... ideas. I'd be like, "Oh, it'd be cool to write an [insert random genre] story." But I wouldn't really know how or have much interest in writing something in that genre. Or like, "I wanna write a story kinda like [this thing I enjoy], but instead of [tired old trope], I'll do [slightly unusual trope]. It's totally original!" They sort of didn't mean too much to me, and even if they could make for a good story, the ideas themselves were just kinda shallow, and literally couldn't hold my attention.

But Rain changed something. The concept of Rain stemmed from my own personal struggles with being trans, and my wanting to transition but being very afraid of doing so (because at the time, I'd only ever heard horror stories from people who'd been through it). It was a story I mostly wanted to tell for me, to show that achieving the thing I wanted was possible and that I could be happy with that decision. Something that says, "It's going to be hard sometimes, but I promise you it doesn't always have to end badly!" Because nothing in my life ever told me it was okay to be trans, and I needed a story to tell me that... so I just ended up writing it myself!

And since Rain, my story ideas have continued to be very personal. Like, they're basically coping mechanisms for me. I struggle with something, so I write characters who struggle with it too. And then I have the characters conquer it, in the hopes to inspire me to do so myself. It's like how someone might be able to give advice to their friends, but never know how to deal with their own problems; well, I can't figure out how to overcome my problems, but I can write people who can overcome them, and this actually helps me. (In Rain's case, I have started and completed my transition over the course of the run of the comic, and it didn't end badly. So there's even precedent of it working for me!)

Regarding future stories, we also have Moonlight Wanderers which is inspired by my crippling inability to cope with and/or accept the permanent loss of loved ones. We have The Scars of Redemption which is about people trying not to be weighed down by the mistakes and regrets of their past. And there's also Save the Princess, which is about both accepting change and accepting what can't be changed.

These stories themselves may be comedic, or fantastical, and or presented in a surreal way, but they help me talk about very real things that I don't otherwise know how to communicate - and they help me think about them, help me accept them, or help me grow past them. And I think that once I started making every story kinda personal, it made it easier to want to follow through.

Because I need to know how it ends. I need that closure.

And of course, there's just the knowledge that other people are reading it and getting something out of it too. Like, I wrote Rain primarily for myself, yeah, but seeing other people get something out of it - hearing readers say "I came out to my folks" or "I start HRT next week" or even "I want to be a better ally now" and that Rain played a part in it somehow means the world to me! And it absolutely motivates me to keep going.

Again, this is just why I think I'm better at following through and sticking with things now than I've ever been before. I don't know if this is the answer every struggling author needs to hear, but I believe it's what's made the difference for me.

Thank you for coming to my Ted Talk.
Reimi 10th Sep 2020, 10:48 PM edit delete reply
When a story becomes personal to you, that certainly does help it become something you can be driven to finish. I've been writing a story for a bit over a year now, using it to teach myself how to be a better writer. I'm on the third draft so far and still love the characters and story I'm wanting to tell.

Rain has played a huge part in my life and helped me to find the courage to just be me. I'm hoping my stories will do the same for others.
Some Ed 11th Sep 2020, 11:38 AM edit delete reply
I'm really not an authority on this, because I've never gotten to the point of having something I felt might be something to publish, but...

Personally, I find having a character like Lilith involved to be very obstructing. Referencing my Lilith-like characters makes me feel like I need to properly *address* my Lilith-like characters. Where do they come from? What do they do? I feel like I have this whole story for them, and yet...

I understand it's just story pieces... which don't *actually* fit together, because supposedly earlier pieces that were written later invalidate the possibility of the later pieces by having character revelations too early. Their bio file is *bigger* than their story files, despite the fact that the bio is only a "summary", because it references so many other places they've been used.

It's a huge tangled mess that I can't imagine resolving. The thought of releasing something with them as a minor character makes me think about the need to fix that, and... I just can't go there.

I still sometimes include them as sideline characters in things. I still sometimes write work on their main stories. But I do understand they're probably never going to go anywhere.
Catlife333 12th Sep 2020, 2:55 PM edit delete reply
That’s a very interesting point, I appreciate your perspective on it. And I’m glad you’ve been so persistent about writing Rain!
Elfi 10th Sep 2020, 6:25 PM edit delete reply
ahhh, this is such a cute design! In truth, it's a funny coincidence, but a character design for a game I've been working on has a lot of the same aesthetic as Lilith--clearly it's a sign! Of what, I dunno, besides that it's a good aesthetic :'D
Syter 11th Sep 2020, 6:29 AM edit delete reply
i became a little bit(extremely) obsessed with the series the owl house, they also have a character named lilith so i kind expected to see her, haha
Amélie Laurent 12th Sep 2020, 10:04 AM edit delete reply
oh haha, i thought the exact same thing!
Couier-of-Yeets 11th Sep 2020, 6:58 PM edit delete reply
how did i binge through the entire comic in a week? Is this the power of free time?
Yuriko 13th Sep 2020, 7:53 AM edit delete reply
Cool old characters & Rain returns tomorrow? Hype!
Jax Rhapsody 14th Sep 2020, 4:55 AM edit delete reply
I hadn't read this since last august... but through determination I was able to catch up to the current hiatus.
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