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I find it amusing when people begin a post online by apologising for a lack of recent activity. I imagine that most people wouldn’t even have noticed. In the rush of our everyday lives, and the constant stream of new content passing us by, does any of this really matter to you?

Probably not.

In keeping with that sense of existential nihilism here’s some things I’ve been up to recently and a look at what’s on the drafting table. Presented in typically chaotic fashion for your eyes to glaze over:

The Communication Comic over at The Conversation is going gangbusters with over 27 thousand views and 109 comments. This is a great outcome for a project that had its fair share of communication issues.

Semester Two of teaching wrapped at the end of May, and I very quickly hopped on a plane to Europe. Visiting friends and family in law. Tripping aimlessly around Paris. Riding a traditional Dutch bicycle complete with baby carriage in the Netherlands. Swimming in the North Sea. Visiting a comic university in Brussels. Driving on the wrong side of the road in four different countries. And all the while, working on a conference presentation for The International Graphic Novel and Comics Conference.

Obligatory travel pics

Looking forward

My presentation, Entwined: Reinterpreting Polytheistic Gods in Modern Comics was well received and I had the pleasure of meeting new friends and learning a thing or two along the way. It was a solid break, but now that I’m back I’ve got a lot to do, including:

ANI20004: Producing and Production Management for Animation– A unit I convene which I need to plan, organise guest lecturers, and prepare tutorial content for.

Entwined: Practice Based Research into Comics- Writing up my conference research delivered in Manchester, and then the fun of drafting and submitting to journals.

Death of the Dual Identity- A paper I’m co-writing with Senior lecturer at Bond University Darren Paul Fisher (I know) based on my presentation at the Superheroes Beyond Conference at ACMI in 2018.

Comics and illustrations for the Centre for Social Impact : one about the work of Regional Outreach Workers, another as an informational leaflet for At-home Palliative Care services in rural areas. This is a new collaboration and one that I’m really enjoying.

Distinguished Professor of Health Sciences and NHMRC Principal Research Fellow Richard Osborne has contacted me to produce images for a project to combat communicable diseases in Cambodia and Laos. This is something that will be extremely exciting with real benefits. It will be interesting to see how a multi disciplinary approach assists with funding and on the ground.

Still going…

In collaboration with some very clever people I’m planning workshops to provide storytelling tools and a platform for marginalised communities. We will kick off some pilot projects asap with an accompanying Ethics Clearance application (groan) to trial some ideas with students on campus.

I’ve got an abstract to write for The Fan Studies Network Australasia Conference. This will most likely be a good deadline for the workshop pilot. The presentation will focus on what makes people participate in drawing get togethers, and how fans (consumers) become practitioners (creators.

Entwined, A Recurrent Romance in its final pages. It is just about finished, and then it will be off to print, at last. A huge project, it will be awesome to see this go to the ‘finished’ pile. I could tinker around on it forever, but obviously I have other things to do…

I’ll be at Homecooked Comic Festival in August and flying to Adelaide in September for Papercuts Comic Festival. There I’ll join my partner in crime Dr Mike 2000. Slinging fat stacks of comics, and oscillating between the highs and lows of comic convention tabling.

And, most exciting of all:

I have been accepted into ABC Radio’s Top 5 Media Residency. As one of five Early Career Researchers in Humanities, I’ve been selected from more than 150 applicants to take part in an two-week residency at Radio National’s Sydney location in late September. This is a huge honour. I’m excited and humbled to have been recognised as an upcoming researcher and academic of interest.

IGNCC 2019 Sketchnotes