Zelkova's Journal

Jack!! Jack!! Jack!!! - 11/25/23

I finished the first part of Jack's comic. I spent like 200 hours on it; talking about it in excessive detail feels earned.

This has been a side-story idea I've had since 2020 but always felt intimidated by the size of it, combined with the worry that it was "unnecessary backstory" that couldn't stand on its own narratively. I've polished it enough that I no longer feel this is the case (for the latter anyway. It might still be too long for me to reasonably finish hahaha).

Comic thumbnail from early 2020. My pen pressure was broken on this particular day. My screen was also broken, but not just on this particular day. (2020!Me was built different).

There are a lot of parallels between the first and second sets of pages. ^This one in particular is my favorite, though I obviously didn't make them 1 for 1 the same. At the end of the day, Jay is still his own person and I wanted it to feel that way.

Idk I just really like this panel. Tinged with self-pity, but mostly angry at themself for even trying. I don't wanna tell people how to feel about my work, but I was aiming for an "aw :(" feeling in the moment, but one that leaves you a little bit angry with them by the time you actually get through the whole scene.

This is the exact moment Jay gives up and accepts his government-assigned nickname. Just so you know.


I was (probably) not exaggerating when I said I spent 200 hours on this. X_X It was mostly because of the bookcases. I think they turned out pretty well given my current skill level, though. I tried to work smarter rather than harder (did a lot of copypasting) but given how much cleaning I had to do towards the end it was really only helpful for consistency!!!

Sometimes drawing books was relaxing (like popping bubblewrap for hours). Other times, I Just Wanted To Scream.

I don't think the rest of the comic will be that dependent on "setting the mood" as the first pages were though, so hopefully future updates will be easier.


This was my first time posting the Maestro's original appearance in a public space. I feel the need to mention that this isn't their original hair color. I liked the idea of their hair gradually fading overtime, so theoretically in future updates you can look at their hair color and get a sense for the timeframe it took place in! Not hugely important, just a fun little detail. :)


I really enjoyed doing individualized background colors for the website aspect of it. Really helped set the mood. I'm very tempted to de-Rarebit my webcomic just so I can do the same thing with it. (If there's a simple way to make individual pages have different backgrounds through javascript someone please let me knowww).

If there's anyone here who reads my VN after reading this comic, I am like...excessively interested in your perception of Jack as a character. FEEL FREE TO GIVE ME YOUR THOUGHTS.

I have some big decisions to make about the next set of pages, so I'm going to switch over to working on my webcomic chapter I stalled out on earlier in the year to give myself some time to think about it!

Next time, Jack'll be reading The Velveteen Rabbit. Hope you enjoy.