Episode 254 - Sexism in your OWN work?k

Jan 18, 2016

OMFG you sexist PIG! Heh… today we talk about trying to recognise sexism in your OWN work, what to do about it, and WHY. It turns out it can be very hard to do, and if you DO acknowledged it the instinct is to rationalise it away, justify it, or just try and brazen it out in some kind of old fashioned, largely embarrassing, display. I frequently do all three. How do we spot it? Well the Bechdel test isn't that useful, that's better for looking at broad trends not giving specific works a pass/fail - sexy outfits is one thing, if females are dressed minimally or in tight gear in CONTRAST to the males or vice versa - females ONLY having old stereotype roles (maiden/mother/whore archetypes, secretary, nurse, victim, maid etc), though this is context sensitive, i.e. it's more forgiveable if you're doing a historical story or something stylised like a fairytale or a noire story - Gender balance is another thing, it's context sensitive because certain stories will naturally have more of one gender (WW2 submarine crew, Girl's school, a prison story etc), and you don't have to have an exact balance anyway but it's definitely something to THINK about because there is no reason most stories should feature a majority of male characters and a minority of females. WHY should you think about it? Why should you care? Well the audience for almost ALL types of stories, be they action adventure, romance, Scifi, fantasy, historical, even porn, is getting close to 50/50 between men and women these days (maybe it always was?), it really doesn't make sense to alienate or belittle half your audience just because you like to cling to older ways of doing stuff. Gunwallace's theme this week reminds me of a cross between the Knightrider theme and Gunship- it's VERY retro-future. It's the theme to DDSR, a comic with cool custom “sprites”, AKA pixel-art.

Episode 246 - Characters: Fictional Love vs Real Life Hate

Nov 23, 2015

5 likes, 4 comments

Characters you would love in media but hate in real life! In this Quackcast, once again we have an ensemble cast of Banes, Ozone, Pitface, and Tantz Aerine, but THIS time we were also joined by the talented and studious kawaiidaigakusei! We wanted to talk about fictional characters we love in fiction but would hate if they were real. It was sort of an extension of last week's Quackcast topic, with that fiction VS reality vibe. Gunwallace's gospel themed theme for Jesus 2016 is hilariously great!

Episode 245 - fiction influencing reality and the myth of the friendzone

Nov 16, 2015

2 likes, 0 comments

In Quackcast 245 we TRY to talk about my idea that fictional characters, stereotypes, tropes and situations in media have influenced their counterparts in reality, and in a lot of ways helped to create them. Fictional stereotypes and tropes are made out of simplified models of things that happen in reality, usually by pulling together all the most dramatic, big, bold versions and then turning them up to 11 to make a new, more exciting fictional caricature, that NEW image is then spread far and wide and influences people to imitate it- a good example being the modern “cowboy”. This idea was kicked off by Pitface suggesting one of my characters looked like a douchey friendzoned character. I thought about it and realised that a real life version of this character (who's mooning over a girl in a relationship with another guy), WOULD be exactly as she described, also those characters are common to relationship comedies and so often friendzoned… SO that got me thinking: could the current crop of “nice guy” fedora friendzone exponents have based their crazy theories about relationships on images in the media? -since they don't have much relationship to reality yet they so closely match pre-existing tropes in movies and TV shows. Then we expanded the idea to other examples of media representations influencing reality. Pitface, Banes, and Tantz Aerine join me on the Quackcast. Gunwallace does a lovely theme for Entanglement.

Episode 236 - The Songcast/Drunkcast

Sep 14, 2015

4 likes, 0 comments

Pitface, Banes, Tantz Aerine and Ozoneocean reunited for a repeat of the legendary Drunkcast of Quackcast 137! Almost exactly 100 Quackcasts later we hit the booze again, but this time we had a goal to pursue with our drunken ramblings: music. We decided to talk about what themes inspire our comics, inspire us and represent our comic characters… and we came up with a LOT, too bloody much for me to link to dammit! We've also included all the links to the Quackcasts where themes for our comics appeared, AND Gunwallace has done the theme to Putrid Meat so it means ALL our comics have themes now!!! So enjoy our silly drunken chatting, this is who Drunk Duck Quackcasts are SUPPOSED to be!

Episode 232 - Creating a Rounded World

Aug 17, 2015

5 likes, 8 comments

Hello, hello, hello! This is the second part of our hugely long expose on the tricky art of WORLD BUILDING! And it really IS extra loooooooooooog… that's because we take so much time crafting the Quackcast world for you. To recap: world-building is a big part of ALL fiction from SciFi and fantasy to your common or garden police shows or even comic strips. You create locations that have relationships with each other, characters that have jobs, families, friends, histories etc, all that is just as much world building as a fantasy world with a specific style of magic and monsters or a SciFi world with aliens and a 1000 year war. Typically, if you do your homework and set up your world nicely then it makes it easier to write stories within it, but you also have to remember not to show all that research to people in the form of big long explanations. Banes and Bravo1102 join Ozoneocean to talk about it! Listen to Gunwallace's lovely theme for Regarding Dandelions!

Episode 230 - Getting the formula RIGHT

Aug 3, 2015

4 likes, 6 comments

We've talked about formulas before, but mostly in the context of escaping formulas and reinventing them. NOW however we're talking about using existing formulas to create a story, or creating new formulas and sticking to them to come up with your stories. Formulas can be a good tool to write with, along with their close sibling “the trope” they take elements that are proven to work and stick them on a solid framework for you to more easily create your story around. All you need to do is plug in your characters and situation and see how it all fits. Formulas are comfortable for people and make it easier for a writer to structure their story faster AND in a way they know should appeal to people. Enjoy Gunwallace's lovely theme for Rismo!

Episode 228 - Conflicting conflicts conflict

Jul 19, 2015

4 likes, 0 comments

This time we're talking about conflict in webcomic writing, and any writing in general really. Conflict is one of the main drivers of a story, so you pretty much have to have it in there somewhere! But how do you approach it? Do you set it up really carefully or just put a bunch of volatile characters together and see what happens? I think for a lot of us we don't think too much about the science of our conflicts, rather we approach it artistically and develop things by feel and instinct because conflict is such an intrinsic trait. But understanding how you use it can be very useful when you're writing satisfying resolutions and climaxes. A good understanding of the types of conflict in your story is also pretty essential when you're writing a good comedy (it's a great source of humour!), and also when you're explaining or selling your work to the public: It's all very well to chat about your clever setting and your funky characters, but conflict is the reason they're IN a story to begin with and that's really what will get people wanting to read out it. I hope you enjoy Gunwallace's great porn style music type theme for Tales of Two Tiny Titty bars!

Episode 219 - Sexy and attractive characters, Part 3

May 10, 2015

4 likes, 3 comments

And now for the last in our series of questioning just what makes characters sexy and/or attractive! We have more interesting contributions to read from and delve into but we thought we'd stop for now so we don't waste all our sexiness in one go. Banes and Ozoneocean are being attractive this time, while PitFace and Tantz Aerine are the sexy ones, a role which they approach with gusto. The subject of the essence of sexiness proved to be contentious and surprisingly complicated! The music we have by Gunwallace this week is the theme for Johnny Bullet- it's a sexy 1970s theme with lots of “chicka-wa” guitar.


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