Open call for all artists! Leif & Thorn is taking submissions for guest strips!
All ideas and art styles welcome
Draw your favorite characters, explore any era or any AU, show the world your secret headcanons
Only limit on the content is “keep it PG-13”! Basically, no more sex or violence than the regular strip, okay? Otherwise, go wild and have fun with it
Format: PNG, GIF, or JPG
Size: up to 900 x 900 pixels
You can send in multiple pages/strips, if you have an idea that’s too big for just one
Submissions deadline: August 12, 2023
(I previously took these a few months ago, and got a couple amazing strips — but I would like enough to fill a whole week! So we’re opening this up again, with the plan to post all the submissions in a row.)
I’ve been invited to the closed beta of Crowdfunding by BackerKit!Not much on my creator profile yet, but more about Leif & Thorn Volume 6 will be there…soonish.
I’ve also been presented with a “fill your site with low-quality SEO-spam glurge articles faster by using an LLM” limited-trial feature. Now I just have to figure out the 20 funniest possible things to use it on.
Did not want that to become a fulfilled prediction! Really hope this doesn’t become a trend. (Both the “putting people’s lives in the hands of chatbots” part, and the “hyperbolic comedy skeeviness coming true” part.)
To keep life simple, I’m giving the same recs, in the same order, on both sites. So far they’re keeping pace with each other — but maybe one will pull ahead? Reblog/share/boost/etc your favorite to keep the links flowing.
The last one had a theme of “Structure.” Most of the respondents talked about the structure of things like “plot outlines” and “worldbuilding notes”…I took it more in a direction of “how do you organize your files?”
For a fun time, I decided to ask the new “Bing Search” chatbot what it knows about Leif & Thorn.
It started off by almost directly quoting the “About” page on the site here…then it suggested follow-up questions. I didn’t make up any of the rest of them, just picked from the suggestions.
By the second answer, the bot had made up a whole nonexistent storyline. The rest of the chat was a mix of accurate details and elaborate headcanons. It decides Pascentia and Leif both have ice magic! (I’m 90% sure it thinks Pascentia is Elsa.) It calls Kale a vampire expert who is Leif’s boyfriend and also roommate! It writes multiple paragraphs about the benefits of Thorn and Leif’s psychic soulbond!
Many sentences in these answers have a link to a “citation.” Some of the links back up the text of the sentence. Others are about the right character or theme, but don’t back up the specific detail at all. Still others are wildly off-base.
Y’all, one of the bot’s “sources” for explaining Leif and Thorn’s “magic soulbond” is a financial article about fixed-income bond investing.
The whole thing was extremely funny — so I’m just going to copy-and-paste the full unedited text here.
The bot is guessing wildly about pronouns, and gets some of them wrong. (It does the same with familial relationships…and nationalities…and species.)
There’s a line about a character self-harming, and a list of ways in which he does it. That is not canon! Please don’t worry about him on that account.
It’s close enough to springtime that I’m doing my seasonal switch of the Leif & Thorn site theme, from the polar Northern Lights to the floral Rose Garden! (If you prefer reading in Dark Mode, the buttons in the site menu will switch you back.)
We had a poll about favorite themes a while ago, in which Rose Garden was the winner by a mile:
You can use any characters, visit any AU, explore any era, include any headcanons. When you send them in, include whatever name you want to be credited by. And, if you like, a link to your gallery/blog/fanfiction account/webcomic/Etsy store.
Format: PNG, GIF, or JPG Size: up to 825×825 pixels Rating: up to PG-13 (basically, match the tone of the strip) Submissions deadline: January 31, 2023
Turning young readers loose on the whole unfiltered internet is…not always the greatest idea. If there’s a kid in your life that you want to indoctrinate into webcomics, here are a couple family-friendly options to start them with.
If you buy the paperback versions, even better! You get all the fun content of the comics, with no danger of clicking a dodgy banner ad.
The Tea Dragon Society: Soft picture-book-style fantasy about two retired-adventurer husbands, their shop full of cuddly pet-sized dragons, and two girls who make friends there.
The art is enchanting, the friendships are adorable, and the tea dragons will make you want plushies. Multi-Eisner winner, and well-deserved.
Check, Please!: A video-blogging, stress-baking, figure-skating champion finds himself a little out-of-place on…the college hockey team. Lots of wholesome sitcom humor, and cute m/m romance.
In spite of its intense fandom with plenty of adult-content fic, the actual comic here is downright chaste. Which earned it some criticism, perhaps not unfairly (you get a sense the author intended to make it steamier at one point, then pulled back). But it does make the series a good fit for this list.
Cucumber Quest: Two adorable bunny children, living in a fantasy world where every setting has an adorable theme, get sent on a quest to save the world. Using the power of magic, friendship, swordfighting, and catchphrases from their favorite magical-girl shows.
…This series got through several books’ worth of subquests before going on indefinite hiatus, so it’s also a way to introduce young readers to the downsides of webcomics.
Softies: The Earth gets blown up, and young survivor Kay gets swept up by a space-junk collector just in time — she couldn’t hold her breath for much longer.
Charming sci-fi comedy. It’s not clear if we’ll ever find out why the planet exploded. Co-starring some alien pets that will, again, make you want plushies.
Breaking Cat News: Intrepid cat reporters bring you the latest headlines, from all the news that matters to cats!
…Seriously, that’s it, that’s the whole strip. The artist has a perfect eye for capturing Cat Shenanigans, the watercolors give it a classy handcrafted touch, and a good time is had by all.
A cut of Bookshop’s profits goes to local bookstores — you can even pick a specific favorite store to support. If you buy through one of these links, I get a cut as the referrer, so it supports this comic too.
Have a favorite kid-friendly webcomic that isn’t on this list? Got a request for a future rec theme? Drop a comment and share!