Make a pledge to be there for Sluggy every update, and choose your rewards:
You get: ad free website while logged in, access to the Sluggy Compendium info, even larger archives of the comic, and a Defenders 20+ bookmark
You get: all previous tier rewards + every new Pawnz as they are released, every new bookmark as they are released, plus Defenders-exclusive Pawnz of the Month and Bookmark of the Month releases
You get: all previous tier rewards + color prints of the Bookmark of the Month and Pawnz of the month mailed to you
You get: all previous tier rewards + future printed Sluggy books will be mailed to you, as they are published
You get: all previous tier rewards + Pete will sign your printed Sluggy books, and send you extra signed and printed copies of the Pawnz of the Month and Bookmark of the Month
You get: all previous tier rewards + Pete will sign your printed Sluggy books, and doodle a character of your choice inside. If you remain pledged at this level for 1 year, Pete will contact you about a super secret reward
Okayyyy... I have no idea what is going on here
Hiya, this is Pete! I make Sluggy Freelance.
As of August 25th, 2017 I've been writing and drawing this webcomic continuously for twenty years. I've drawn over 6000 strips, all free to read.
That's been possible only because of the generosity and support of our readers. Back in 2003, I asked Sluggy readers to pledge every year to keep the comic going. We called the program (and the supporters) "Defenders of the Nifty." Because of the Sluggites who responded, and kept pledging every year, drawing a daily comic has been my job ever since.
The problem is, I can't do it on a daily schedule anymore.
So Defenders of the Nifty has ended. We're taking no new yearly subscriptions. Instead, we're going to try it a different way.
With "Defenders 20+" the update schedule will be "whenever." Instead of accepting your pledge a year in advance for all the daily strips I'm going to post, I'm just asking you to keep Sluggy going on a per-strip basis.
Pledge a little bit to support Sluggy Freelance whenever I post a strip. Your pledges will be collected at the end of the month, based on how many strips I posted, up to a maximum of 12. (Filler and guest artist strips will NOT count as pledged strips.)
Honestly? Because I needed to slay the Schedule Beast before it killed me.
That's all. I'm not burned out. I'm not bored. I know where the story is going. I still love Sluggy, I still love all of you. I just can't play Beat the Clock every school night anymore.
When I started in 1997, I said "I'm going to post new content every day at midnight, no matter what." But posting on schedule takes up all the time I have. We're actually six books behind because I haven't had enough open blocks of time to do all the bonus content and lay out the books for the printer. And I've had ideas for Sluggy things along the way that would have been pretty cool. They just didn't get done, because "when would they?"
I really don't like rushing the art to make the midnight deadline. And when life stuff happens, I'd rather not post a filler strip and explain that my video card died or my kids are sick or my arm stopped working and I'm in screaming agony, I just wanna be able to properly focus on screaming in agony.
So, I'm stepping off that treadmill for good. Twenty's plenty.
Yeah, didn't you mention "retirement?"
I did seriously plan to retire. The 20th anniversary seemed like a nice big round number to call it a career.
But the readers really didn't want that, and I didn't either. Perhaps most important of all, Bun-bun didn't want that. And 20 years is also a nice round number to celebrate and make a big change and a milestone out of. So let's do that instead!
I've pulled together a new web team. Over the last year or so these guys have been working their tails off, and I've been working every extra hour I could squeeze in. We built the kind of website I always wanted for the comic and the readers.
So what did you do to the website?
I mainly wanted to make Sluggy easier and more fun to read. So first, the archives are all remastered. You'll see bigger, nicer strips going back to the dawn of Sluggy (and Larger or WAY BIGGER strips if you pledge to D20+).
I've also been able to do a lot of book-by-book art, to get across the look and feel I had in mind for each book, chapter, and era of the comic. The site keeps track of your progress through the archives, and you can unlock and place multiple bookmarks to save your spots. Every time you finish reading a book of Sluggy, you'll unlock the book art as a playset background for your Pawnz™ collection.
Also, we've got Pawnz™!
Pawnz™! In 2012, I started posting Pawnz as cut-fold-print-and-glue gamepieces.
At the time, I didn't picture them as 3D virtual models on the site, that you could collect without gluing your fingers together.
But here we are in 2017. My daughter Leah is heading off to college to become a 3D designer. For me, 3D is the future in more ways than one.
So that's the whole deal. The "whenever" schedule is because I've gotta start doing Sluggy at a sane pace. There will be new Sluggy strips in the future, but I make EXACTLY ZERO PROMISES about how many and when, and I will feel EXACTLY ZERO GUILT about not posting for any length of time.
That said, I probably won't be able to ignore the fact that people have pledged. If I'm thinking, "hm, that's a nice dinner out with the family" or "hm, that's a new graphics card" or "hm, my car needs a new transmission, but drawing a week of Sluggy will cover it" then I might just find I am a little more productive than I thought in my "retirement."
And if you feel like you get, say, a dollar's worth of joy when you see a new one is up, then maybe you'd be kind enough to pledge $1 an update.
Well, whatever happens with Defenders 20+, I want you all to know that your love and support for Sluggy Freelance over the years means the multiverse to me. This new website is for Sluggites even more than it's for me, and I hope you love it as much as I do. You can be proud of it too, since you all helped me get here.
And whether you pledge or not, thanks for being around to celebrate our Niftieth Anniversary!
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