Zubby Newsletter #18: Beware the Vultures

Over on my site I posted a new tutorial article called Predatory Publishing and You – A Tragedy in the Making with warning signs and advice to help you avoid intellectual property vultures who circle this business looking for their next victim. Read and share.

Social Media Suffocation

Everyone’s trying to get out from underneath the crushing annoyance of Twitter, but it’s anyone’s guess whether any of these platforms will emerge as a new market leader in the “time waster that might also be important or ruin your life and reputation forever” competition.

• On Twitter I’m still jimzub.
• On Bluesky I’m jimzub.
• On Hive I’m jimzub.
• On Instagram and Threads I’m jim_zub because someone squatted on jimzub without the underscore and is using my bio but they won’t remove it even when I complain.

Honestly, I don’t think I’ll be able to keep up with the stupidity of it all and, like so many other people, all this has broken many of my habits around social media, especially when these ridiculous platforms can’t deliver the most basic functionality – Show me posts from people I follow in the order it gets posted. That’s all I want.

Media algorithms have become painfully inconsistent in terms of what they show you and when. The solution, oddly enough, seems to be trusty ol’ email. That’s why I like getting back to this newsletter format. Sign up and Zubstack goes right to your inbox. Read or delete it as you’d like, but at least you get to choose instead of systems choosing for you.

My Summer Reading Pile

(I have all these and more as e-books, but it’s always nicer having the physical version in my hands, so when I saw these available at a good price I snapped them up.)

Robert E. Howard wrote over 300 stories during his 14-year writing career and there’s a lot of non-Conan material you might not be aware of – horror, noir, historical dramas, westerns, and a whole lot more.

I’m currently making my way through Kull: Exile of Atlantis and it’s interesting seeing similarities and differences between the King of Valusia and everyone’s favorite Cimmerian.

Reading for research is quite different from reading for fun but, thankfully, I’m enjoying the majority of it and it’s solid inspiration for future comic stories even if I’m not going to be adapting any of them directly any time soon.


The rest of my summer convention schedule has tightened up:

July 20-23, 2023 San Diego Comic Con
August 3-6, 2023 Gen Con Indy
August 24-27, 2023 Fan Expo Canada
Aug 31-Sept 4, 2023 Dragon Con
Sept 15-17, 2023 Edmonton Expo

More info on my SDCC schedule (booth #, panels, signings) next week.

As always, from the start of July through to the big show is just a blur of tasks that need to get checked off my To-Do List.

Links and Other Things

• This burger marinade is simple but really good. Had it last week and it’s flavorful.

• Want to check out a time capsule of pop culture from the late 80’s-early 90’s? There’s an archive of Prisoners of Gravity episodes.

• Ian McCaig’s classic expression-drawing tips are always good to add to your reference pool.


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