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Digital Divide; The Basics and General Questions
Topic Started: Aug 18 2012, 03:20 PM (7,879 Views)
Otter
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I've been getting a lot of emails asking questions about Digital Divide. Most of these I've addressed in the comic notes at some point, but I try to update the notes daily and this information has probably gotten lost in the chatter, so here goes.

Format
The book is serialized. Each section will contain a full revision to typos or content errors for the previous section, plus the new section. I will delete Part I from the store when I upload Part II, but since Part II contains Part I, this ain't a thing. (However, there is a code unique to each section; codes will be addressed later in this post.) If you purchase Part II and you already own Part I, don't worry when you open Part II and see that the first thing in your new digital purchase is something you already own. Part II is snug in that same file, right where it should be. Adding each new section to the last helps improve continuity and readability, and is a better alternative than requiring you to locate and open multiple files if you wanted to re-read the older content.

The first section was approx. 9000 words. Sections two and three were approx. 30,000 words each, and Section four will be approx. 32,000-40,000 words.

Pricing and Marketing
Many of the emails I'm receiving are versions of Hey ripoff artist, there's no way I'm paying $20 for a book that doesn't even come printed on paper. I've also gotten some criticisms of my marketing strategy, where I should give the first section away as a tease and then require people to buy the rest.

The purpose of pricing each section at $5 is not to charge $20 for the complete book. It is to keep the comic going. I have tried everything to keep my life financially stable while still doing the comic; AGAHF has a lot of generous, supportive readers, and I would easily be able to live on the profits from product sales alone if I didn't have a mortgage and debt. But I do, and the comic takes an enormous amount of my time. So last spring, I sat down with my husband and we did some Life Math, and I realized the comic might have to go. Digital Divide was something I was kicking around in clunky draft form for a few years since Rachel Peng first showed up, so I decided to test the waters by doing a clean edit and putting Part I up for sale. It did much better than I had anticipated, and I no longer have plans to shutter the comic as long as the rest of the serialized sales do reasonably well.

If your goal is to read the finished copy of a book and pay as little as possible for it, please just wait a few months until all four sections have been edited and I release them as a single document. Thank you in advance for your support at that time.

But if you are a fan of the comic and are okay with slipping me $5 every two months to help me pay my bills, I will give you a big chunk of story to say thanks.

That's that.

Printing
The book will be printed when it's in final form. I'm probably going to send a few queries to agents first, just to see what happens. Probably nothing will come of it, but slush piles get so hungry when they aren't fed.

Other Digital Formats
The book will likely be released on Kindle and ereader formats before I put the final version up for sale in the store as a PDF. I'd love to get some of that sweet, sweet Amazon traffic.

I have had many requests to release the serialized versions on ereader formats. It is available on Kindle and I am still working out iPad and Nook formats.

Bonus Content
As an incentive for purchasing Digital Divide, I'll work on other projects. Consider it a Kickstarter where each purchase helps unlock bonus content. The bonus content is: (1) revised strips; (2) the adventures of Speedy's kids; and (3) Hope and Pat's wedding shenanigans. These are all comic-related content that I really want to do, but haven't had the time to do properly. As of 2/14, I owe you guys 5 revised comics. Speedy's Kids and the wedding story have not yet been unlocked.

Bonus Codes
The bonus code are on the front page of each serial release, and are changed with each new section release. There will be four in total and they will form a phrase that can be entered at checkout as a coupon code (NOTE: this coupon code will not be active until Part IV is released). This is meant to be an extra incentive for readers to purchase the serials as they are released.

I intended to offer a free printed copy of the book to anyone who had collected all four codes. Then a friend reminded me that this is the Internet, and that many people are dicks, and I would definitely give away a lot more books than downloads purchased. So I'm thinking a free upgrade to an autographed copy, plus a print. We'll see. It'll still be something nice.

Timeline
Depends on how fast the editing process goes. Some chunks of the novel are fairly fleshed out, others read like... let's see, where's my draft...

Santino looked at her, and that fingerpainty swirl of anxiety and confusion appeared. Her partner was a damned smart man, and she could practically hear his mind bounce between two different sets of evidence. She kicked his butt at the shooting range; they spent their lunch hour girl-watching; she had helped him pick out the fabric for his couch. Then again, she refused to drive, and she was alone among the three hundred agents in her need to wear sunglasses. You said this already + this is shit writing + it is all shit. Why more stuff about Santino being smart? This should go. Better than original? “Going to ask you to let me tell you on my time, okay? Please let us keep some things private.” Rachel sounds like Hope in this entire chapter, wtf, burn all of this shit.

I swear at myself a lot. And every three pages I find something in the margins about how I'd freaking stab someone for a brownie. So sometimes it goes quickly and sometimes I need to go make brownies to stay out of prison. It's a process. I'll keep you updated on status in the comic notes as I go.

Thanks for reading!

Did you need that link to Digital Divide again? It's right here.


Edited, probably frequently, for clarity
Edited by Otter, Feb 16 2013, 03:18 AM.
- Never send a ferret to do a weasel's work.

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galadriel
Rookie
Bah. Sorry to hear that people are harassing you over this. It seems like a fair deal to me.

The longer my husband and I pull ourselves out of student and health-related debt, the more money we have for spending on things we just plain like; webcomics are one of those. But it's hard to get over the tight-fisted times, and so it's helpful to have a reminder, from time to time, that I haven't contributed to X webcomic in a while.

This seems like a good way. Some webcomics, all I get is the artist's promise that if he gets enough in donations, he might be able to make more of the webcomic. Not regular installments, not extra content, not promises, just a hope; but if you like the comic enough, will you please donate? And if I like the comic enough, I do.

And I did very much like part I--and the various side story PDF's--so hey, you're even giving us something for our money. I don't need more stuff; I am in serious need of decluttering. But I love having things to read. This works out great for me. I hope more of your readers will feel the same way.
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ViciousBits
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Quote:
 
slush piles get so hungry when they aren't Fed.

Fixed that for you. :)

Love the story; looking forward to more!
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yfnsa
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galadriel
Aug 20 2012, 12:19 PM
Bah. Sorry to hear that people are harassing you over this. It seems like a fair deal to me.
Likewise.

Welcome to the forums Galadriel.

I'm looking forward to the next instalment!
YFNSA - Your Friendly Neighborhood System Administrator

My Lone Ranger Speedy icon is courtesy of Otter.
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Matdredalia
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Screw anyone who is harassing you about this. I've been excited as hell about Digital Divide and have went on and on about it to anyone in my immediate family/friends who will listen, lol. But then again they're used to me griping at them to go read AGAHF so I think they just see it as an extension of that. I'm MORE than willing to pay for each chunk, as to me, it is MORE than worth it. I have read the living hell out of the first section and just love, love, LOVE it. But then again, to me it's like AGAHF meeting a Noire-style book, and I'm a Noire-Whore (ha ha) and AGAHF is my absolute favorite comic soo....*cough* I'm an addict.

Anyways....just a heads up for other Digital Divide junkies, if you're looking to read the story on a handheld device like iOS/Kindle, there's a program called Calibre for organizing eBooks that also converts them to various other formats (like .ePub & .Mobi), and also is absolutely epic for organizing your eBook library. :)

Otter - keep up the amazing work. You are awesome, DD is worth every single penny I plan on spending on it (which is quite a few pennies, I tell ye'), and there is absolutely NO reason to let the naysayers get to you. You're an amazing author, a fantastic artist, and a creative genius.

In the immortal words of Speedy (which should totally be on a button!!!): "F*ck 'em all and let chlamydia sort 'em out."
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jackie31337
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I haven't been able to keep up with the comic or the forum as much lately due to various voluntary and involuntary web filters, so I've been a little slow to show my love and appreciation for the comic and all the work Otter has put into it. I don't have much of a background in writing fiction, but I do write for a living. If you'd like another pair of eyes to help with the editing process, I'd be happy to help. Just let me know.
Sorry, this is my first conspiracy so I'm a little slow.
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demonhunter
The Aussie Bloke
Just bought my copy of part 2. Looking forward to reading it!

Happy Birthday to me...
Have you ever... Ever felt like this? How strange things happen, are you going Round the Twist
Who's afraid of the big bad wolf? (Note: I have no involvement with the series, I just think it looks awesome)
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jadagul
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Hi Otter! I've been a fan of the comic for a couple years now, but I finally had to register to tell you how much I'm loving Digital Divide--I read part 2 today and wound up rereading like half the comic to staunch my "But I want to read the rest NOOOOW" urgings.

I do have one very silly nitpick, though. As a Caltech student I find it really disconcerting to see the school's name spelled "Cal-Tech" (first page of Chapter III).
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WuseMajor
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I've been enjoying the comic for awhile now too. I signed up because I wanted to let you know that I bought a copy of Digital Divide part 2 when the comic went up

...and finished it before 4 am this last Monday.

So, yes, I'm enjoying the book. Though, I thought Rachel had white hair, not black? Or did she start dying it later on?

I'm also speculating like mad about the ending (which will be confined to spoiler tags, don't worry).

Spoiler: click to toggle


I'm very much looking forward to part 3.

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yfnsa
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WuseMajor
Sep 5 2012, 03:49 AM

I'm also speculating like mad about the ending (which will be confined to spoiler tags, don't worry).
...
I'm very much looking forward to part 3.

Welcome WuseMajor!

Need to remember this happened in the past compared to where the comic is now.

Pat + Hope were not married yet, Mako + Carlotta were just expecting.

(chanted) Section 3! Section 3! (lather, rinse, repeat)
YFNSA - Your Friendly Neighborhood System Administrator

My Lone Ranger Speedy icon is courtesy of Otter.
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phyzome
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I absolutely loved the "reveal" of Peng being blind. (I knew it from elsewhere, but I completely forgot after the first few pages of DD.) Well done.
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dktsang
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WuseMajor
Sep 5 2012, 03:49 AM
I'm very much looking forward to part 3.
Me too. Just downloaded and read Part 2 yesterday (and finished it this morning, on the bus). Wow. :clap: :clap:

Spoiler: click to toggle
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galadriel
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More! More! More!

(please)
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yfnsa
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galadriel
Oct 18 2012, 02:16 PM
If you are going to ask for more but be polite about it you end up here.

Go ahead and ask for it ALL! (first 10 seconds of the clip is enough)

Hmmm...,
  • pop culture reference - check
  • arena rock reference - check
what else am I missing for a good post? Ah yes, a dick joke and poetry:

  • dick joke: coming soon
  • poetry, haiku
    rigid form, quick to pop off
    friend of Doggerel
basement, crazed cyborgs
hollow eyes from ceiling stare
what next: trick or treat?

@dktsang: Welcome to the forums.

YFNSA - Your Friendly Neighborhood System Administrator

My Lone Ranger Speedy icon is courtesy of Otter.
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Otter
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galadriel
Oct 18 2012, 02:16 PM
Sorry, everything is dead on the page lately. :(
- Never send a ferret to do a weasel's work.

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yfnsa
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Otter
Oct 25 2012, 03:10 PM
Sorry, everything is dead on the page lately. :(
As much as I look forward to the next instalment I'd rather it be good than fast.

I've been here for five and a half years. I'm sticking around. Good luck on the completion backwards principle.
YFNSA - Your Friendly Neighborhood System Administrator

My Lone Ranger Speedy icon is courtesy of Otter.
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jackie31337
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A question for Otter: I am basically a professional nitpicker. I can't seem to suppress my reflex to find typos, etc. even when I am reading for fun. Would a list of slips that passed into type be appreciated or should I keep my nitpicks to myself?
Edited by jackie31337, Oct 30 2012, 02:47 PM.
Sorry, this is my first conspiracy so I'm a little slow.
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Otter
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jackie31337
Oct 30 2012, 02:46 PM
A question for Otter: I am basically a professional nitpicker. I can't seem to suppress my reflex to find typos, etc. even when I am reading for fun. Would a list of slips that passed into type be appreciated or should I keep my nitpicks to myself?
Not appreciated. I'm an editor myself. I know typos happen, and that it's practically impossible to catch them all. It's even worse when it's your own work and you're so familiar with the words that your eyes run past the errors. But I can't crowdsource editing.

Also, while I do genuinely respect the good intentions from people who email me Digital Divide typos, I have a hard time separating the side of my brain that knows it's meant to be helpful from the side that governs my emotions and takes it as a smack across the face. It's like handing someone a painting of a forest you've worked on for years, and they look at the whole but they say, "You know what? That leaf right there? I can't look past that leaf. That leaf ruins the whole thing."

edited for clarity.


Edited by Otter, Oct 30 2012, 06:27 PM.
- Never send a ferret to do a weasel's work.

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jackie31337
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Otter
Oct 30 2012, 03:12 PM
Not appreciated. I'm an editor myself. I know typos happen, and that it's practically impossible to catch them all. It's even worse when it's your own work and you're so familiar with the words that your eyes run past the errors. But I can't crowdsource editing.

Also, while I do genuinely respect the good intentions from people who email me Digital Divide typos, I have a hard time separating the side of my brain that knows it's meant to be helpful from the side that governs my emotions and takes it as a smack across the face.
I completely understand - I know the feeling.

I don't think I've told you yet how much I enjoyed parts 1 and 2. Your writing was so vivid that I feel like I've actually been in the places where the story happens, and I can't wait to go back and visit them again.
Sorry, this is my first conspiracy so I'm a little slow.
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WuseMajor
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I reread bit of parts 1 and 2 recently and it reminded me of something I'd been wanting to ask. Rachel now seems much less uptight than she was five years ago. She dyes her hair and wears clothing that doesn't include body armor concealment options and all that sort of thing. I'm curious what happened. Was it that the public has become more used to cyborgs, finding Becca, just life continuing, or something else?

(For the record, I'll be very interested in seeing how Rachel meets Becca. Which means that, if it's not in this book, I hope you do sequels)
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Otter
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jackie31337
Nov 10 2012, 08:16 AM
I don't think I've told you yet how much I enjoyed parts 1 and 2. Your writing was so vivid that I feel like I've actually been in the places where the story happens, and I can't wait to go back and visit them again.
Thank you! I love how places can be characters, and I research the hell out of them because the history is often better than fiction. In Part 3 they spend some time at the Metro police station (the following section is not actually a spoiler but is just a paragraph from Part 3):

Spoiler: click to toggle


Except for the character bits (Rachel and OACET), all of this is absolutely true.

WuseMajor
Nov 10 2012, 08:16 AM

I reread bit of parts 1 and 2 recently and it reminded me of something I'd been wanting to ask. Rachel now seems much less uptight than she was five years ago. She dyes her hair and wears clothing that doesn't include body armor concealment options and all that sort of thing. I'm curious what happened. Was it that the public has become more used to cyborgs, finding Becca, just life continuing, or something else?

(For the record, I'll be very interested in seeing how Rachel meets Becca. Which means that, if it's not in this book, I hope you do sequels)
Hi WuseMajor! There are five books planned. Rachel starts out as someone who would love to erase the last five years of her life and go back to the military, and gradually grows out of that. She meets Becca in the sequel to Digital Divide.

Spoiler: click to toggle


Edited for formatting.
Edited by Otter, Nov 26 2012, 03:03 PM.
- Never send a ferret to do a weasel's work.

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Jordan
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Otter
Nov 26 2012, 02:58 PM
Spoiler: click to toggle
Oh, holy heck, I want someone to solve this little riddle soooo bad…
Edited by Jordan, Dec 3 2012, 11:58 PM.
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demonhunter
The Aussie Bloke
Okay, now I *really* want you to hurry up and release them all, so we can find out what the spoiler is/was.

Well played, Otter.
Have you ever... Ever felt like this? How strange things happen, are you going Round the Twist
Who's afraid of the big bad wolf? (Note: I have no involvement with the series, I just think it looks awesome)
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catnipsandwich
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Well, I spent the afternoon reading the archives up to the end of chapter 5, and I've got nothing so far.

Then again, I'm not brilliant at faces, so if someone in there was being Rachel but wasn't explicitly named as being her, I've missed her. I shall get some work done, then reread chapter 6 tonight.

For science. Not for plot-spoliers, oh no... :D
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Minivet
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catnipsandwich
Dec 10 2012, 05:51 PM
Well, I spent the afternoon reading the archives up to the end of chapter 5, and I've got nothing so far.

Then again, I'm not brilliant at faces, so if someone in there was being Rachel but wasn't explicitly named as being her, I've missed her. I shall get some work done, then reread chapter 6 tonight.

For science. Not for plot-spoliers, oh no... :D
I suspect it might have been a passing reference to an unnamed agent, rather than an actual appearance by Rachel.
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catnipsandwich
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Minivet
Dec 10 2012, 06:38 PM
I suspect it might have been a passing reference to an unnamed agent, rather than an actual appearance by Rachel.
Still nothing so far, the other agents are... Not unmentioned, but the only ones with any detail are Josh and Clarice.

But I've seen no references to any agents being blind, white haired (or any reasons for going white haired, beyond stress), personality shifted (beyond the whole "coming off a ton of medication"), etc etc etc... (So far)
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catnipsandwich
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Ok. No idea if any of these are the sooperbigsekrit.

Spoiler: click to toggle

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Jordan
Special Agent
Okay; there's a small chance this is what Otter was talking about—in which case it's a major spoiler—and a much bigger chance that it's not and thus totally misleading. Caveat emptor!

Spoiler: click to toggle
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Minivet
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Question for Otter, and possible match, below.

Spoiler: click to toggle
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Minivet
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And another thought:

Spoiler: click to toggle
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