During my lunch break today I wandered the grounds of the Strang Institute where I caught sight of our two cloned mastodons. Betsy and Violet are pretty elusive, so if you spot them then you’re pretty lucky. I ran across them goofing around in the relatively warm January sun and did some quick sketches. Violet even came right up to me to see what I was doing.
I’ve posted about Mission Control from time to time, but I’ve never said much about the amazing people who work here. So I drew up a little chart of the people who I interact with the most when I’m volunteering here at the Strang Institute (a couple of which appeared here too). Note how I conveniently put myself right at center stage.
Among Planet X’s more obnoxious denizens is the Familiar Pinching Flit (seen here actual size). Sure, they might look all fuzzy and cute, but behind that big puppy-dog eye that melts your heart lies a critter so annoying, it drives both quadrapus and marf mad.
This particular species of flit spends its days sucking the juicy interiors out of a variety of jelly grasses. Once it’s had its fill, it quickly grows bored. And a bored flit is a flit looking for trouble. It then meets up with other bored flits and they start buzzing around, looking for a victim.
Then the pinching starts. This is where it helps to have a titanium alloy shell.
Happy New Year! 2011 was our first full year here at Mission Control and it was a lot of fun. So, you might be asking, what’s coming up this year for Ellie on Planet X?
Oh, we got stuff planned.
First, because we at Mission Control get to see Ellie’s transmissions before all of you, we know that the “shrubbery” from Monday’s installment might just be playing a bigger role in the story we see unfolding. As for her name and what and who she is, you’ll have to tune in to find out!
B) I’ve mentioned Tom Dell’Aringa’s awesome all ages comic Marooned several times. He’s got a new project coming up called Dr. Ugofandian’s Unbelievable Adventures and we’re excited to be a part. We’re still working out exactly what it will be, but expect it to be a Marooned/Ellie crossover!
Thirdly: Potentially good for everyone, though not as much fun, we may be adding some advertising to the site. Nothing super in-your-face, just some small ads to help Ellie pay her way in the world. We just wanted to give you a heads up on that.
Now for the fun things that we want to happen (if all goes well):
We’ve never done any conventions before, so I’d like to do some this year. Which ones? Where? We’re not entirely sure. They’re likely to be local at this point. Ann Arbor, Michigan has Kids Read Comics in the summer and that seems a good place to start.
Merchandise! We’ve got some fun ideas in mind. Each item will be carefully selected and designed with its own original art to make it special. We’ll keep you updated as to what we’ve got planned as time goes on, but it’s sure to include t-shirts! We’re in the early phases of pricing out some nice, full-color, silk-screened tees that everyone would be proud to wear. We will probably sell these initially as pre-orders to cover printing and shipping costs. This is the design we’re going with – simple and fun!
Books! I’ve had a lot of people ask if and when there will be an Ellie on Planet X book available. Certainly there will be, but we’re not really sure when. We’re shooting for the end of the year. Why so long a wait? We’d like to see the current plot play out first. And any book won’t just reprint what’s been on the site, it’ll include original, never-seen-before stuff too. We want it to be really something special.
There’s a few other ideas we have tucked away too that I’d love to share but not just yet. We have to keep some things under our hats. And please, let us know what you’d like to see on the site and in the store. This is all for you, dear readers! We want to keep you happy and entertained in 2012!