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Good at witchcraft. Bad at evil. Updates Fridays.


Where Did The Updates Go?

Hey guys,

We want to thank everyone who's been reading, those of you who keep coming by, and those of you who have reached out to ask, "Where did the updates go?"

Well, near the middle of April, we came into a big studio project that, without breaking our NDA, has us very excited- like geeking out every morning kind of excited. At the same time, it's the most labor and love we've ever tried to squeeze into 3 minutes of run time.

We haven't stopped working on Melissandre; it's one of our favorite stories to tell each other. We just don't have the same time to sit down and draw that we did before we needed to make very complicated 4D animations work.

Please bear with us, and we promise to do our best to give ourselves a better buffer when we come back later this summer.


Posted by TheNerdyDuo @ May 20th, 2014, 10:05 pm
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Double Strips Running for the Rest of April!

Due to a scheduling error and wanting to run a particular strip on 4/29 (Mel's mom's birthday), Melissandre will be running 2 strips a week for remainder of April.

Bonus strips will run on Tuesdays, update times are still around 8:30 AM (We're not always exact with the drop down box. Sorry.)

Posted by TheNerdyDuo @ April 12th, 2014, 5:10 pm
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3/1 - Shameless Saturday Promotions

So here we are in week three!

There's not a lot for us to share this week. We've been wrapped up in tangling with termites, webservers, and family stuff.

If you missed it, we'll be running a double strip on Mel's birthday.

Our cafepress store will hopefully have more than apology cards in it next week.

In our artistic neighborhood, the world is 30% of the way to the sonorous melodies of a new album from Eli August and the Abandoned Buildings.
If everybody who’s been by the page since we started it gave $10, they’d be at their goal today. That’s pretty impressive-- you guys aren't that many people.

Another friend of ours is">getting back into music after life got in the way for a while.

And finally, the convention to be at this weekend is Quinnicon. If you're there, do be sure to visit our fine friends at Big Bear Trading Company. Each and every of their wares has a story and they'll be happy to share it with you.

Posted by TheNerdyDuo @ March 1st, 2014, 11:12 am
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2/27 - State of the Duo News

Hey, folks!

Thanks to everybody who came by this week. We were surprised to see that the stats were higher this week-- and Mel didn't even have to write another heart-rending essay!

While this week wasn't much better than last week in terms of scheduling more time to draw, we were better and managed to get more than one strip done. We'd like to pay that forward to you guys, so on Mel's birthday, we will run a double strip.

Let me type that bigger so you can hear us properly:

On Mel's Birthday - 3/21/2014 - we will run two strips.

That is all.

Posted by TheNerdyDuo @ February 27th, 2014, 7:31 am
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2/22 - Shameless Saturday Promotions

This first week with you guys has gone really, really well. We definitely did not expect so many readers with so little content!

First off, here's what's new with us:

We're putting a time capsule into a hole we found in the walls of our studio! What would you cram into a pill-bottle-sized space before you seal it up? Give us your answer in a comment/e-mail/facebook message/smoke signals.

If you missed last week's post on music videos and grief, it's here. That campaign continues for the next month or so.

And as of this morning, we now sell snarky non-apology cards on cafepress.

If you'd like to support someone working with more traditional artistry, you should check out our friend's endeavor: Stormworlf Studios. You can find them on Etsy, Storenvy, and Society6.

If you need more hot, discreet infosecs in your life, follow JohnnyXmas on twitter: @j0hnnyxm4s If you don't know what infosecs means-- it's okay, just read the feed and learn. We promise it's safe for work.

Finally, if you're in the Somerset, NJ area and have nothing fun going on this weekend, you may want to check out Wicked Faire. It's what a lot of our friends are up to this weekend.

Happy Saturday, folks! Thanks for coming by.


Posted by TheNerdyDuo @ February 22nd, 2014, 8:34 am
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New Post Tomorrow - Running on Schedule

Tomorrow's new comic will post at 8:30 A.M. and won't deplete our buffer of finished strips in any way.

That may not sound like a big deal to finish one strip this week, but this week was the kind of week that we set up a buffer for. So, that we got through it and still managed to finish a strip is good news for everyone.

Looking over the site stats for this week, we were truly amazed. Thanks so much for stopping by! We'd like to thank everyone who came by to read the piece about Angela and why we did the video for Where No One Knows. This Wednesday was the day, and it warmed our hearts to see so many of you came by and read it.

So, thanks again for coming by. New comic tomorrow on schedule. New Shameless Saturday post whenever we get to it on Saturday.

Posted by TheNerdyDuo @ February 20th, 2014, 4:44 pm
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Why We Did A Music Video From The Kindness of our Hearts

Some of you who read the 2/15 Shameless Saturday News post have since spoken to me about the Eli August campaign, in which Mr. August states:

“We will be shooting another music video with my friends The Nerdy Duo. They shot and edited the video below out of the kindness of their hearts.”

“Mel,” you say, “You guys just shared a post on FB about Rhythm and Hues two days ago. Why would you do a video for anyone for free? Isn’t that a huge part of the problem?”

In most circumstances, you’d be 100% right and we would be contributing negatively to problems in the production industry. But our relationship with Mr. August and some of the circumstances of the past year deserve closer inspection than that.

We first became aware of Eli August & the Abandoned Buildings in a tiny rotunda at TempleCon a few years back. I have been a tremendous fan of them all since the first moment the soundwaves reached my ears. Have you heard their music? There’s a lot of really interesting stuff going on there-- starting with some very unique instrumentation (When I become Evil Dictator of the World, all musical ensembles will be required to consider how they sound with the addition of a cello, a clarinet, and an upright bass).

This is not exactly why we did the video, but it is why we made an aggressive effort to get to know Eli, who, we came to find out in the years we’ve spent talking to him between to-do's at conventions, is an utterly lovely person. And that’s why I’m a little ashamed to make this confession--

A year ago, practically to the day of us posting this (and the day after we’d returned from a convention where we had enjoyed far more time than usual with Eli), one of my closest friends, died suddenly and unexpectedly. I have yet to find enough of the right words to accurately express how much this has affected me-- all the way down to the fundamental core of my being. In some ways, it’s affected me more strongly than my own mother’s death fifteen years ago, but that was neither sudden nor a surprise. I may have met Angela because she was dating (and later engaged to, and even later, cohabitating with) Erin’s best friend (Those two have been friends so long, I often joke that I am the interloper to their hetero-lifemate situation). But she pursued my friendship like it was a personal mission. You can’t replace the kind of friend that she was-- she was our biggest fan. If we were making it, doing it, or going to it, she wanted to see it, buy it, be there, and tell everyone. She was my script editor, my confidant, and in some ways, the only equal friendship I’ve ever had in my life. Utterly irreplaceable and gone now. C'est ça la vie, c'est ça l'amour.

So within 12 hours of her passing we were there, hundreds of miles from home (and away from our new puppy!) in the thick of the mourning and living like highly functional zombies.

I could not find comfort in any of the things I usually use to self-soothe in times of trouble-- not in making art, or in work, or in movies, or video games. Music was almost letting me sleep at night, and that was something. The album of Eli’s I had on my iPhone had a song or two that let me cry one night, and that was actually a little bit better. So, on the third or fourth day of feeling like someone had ripped all of my internal organs out through my chest, I sent Eli an e-mail:

“Hey! Just a friendly reminder to send us the new album so we can talk video concepts!”

It’s not that the pretenses were entirely false. We had talked about exactly that the previous weekend. Except lying awake all those nights, I wasn’t thinking about videos. I was thinking about how I was going to put one foot in front of the other to help dress the house for people after the funeral and how I was going to bother feeding everyone. I was thinking about how we were all going to put our lives back together after this, and the most horrifying thought of all-- what was the point if this could happen again to any one of us tomorrow?

“If I could only forgive myself you say.
Just bear the burden now, there’s no one here to blame.
And time won’t ever be outgrown.
I fear these old regrets are the marrow of my bones--
How my mistakes and indiscretions crept into the darker part of me.
They haven’t gotten to you yet.

There’s no redemption from the way that we were.
I couldn’t bring them back. You could not bring her.
There’s something here that you need to know--
Won’t you just let them go?

There’s no redemption from the way that we were.
You couldn’t bring them back. I could not bring her.
There’s something here that you need to know--
Won’t you just let them go?”

-- Petals, To the Weak and the Weary

The chorus on that repeats forever, a personal message at the moment that I happened to need it. We might have all been heading into the dark, but at least going was starting to seem possible. And just maybe, once we got moving along the path, there might be some really sweet clarinet riffs or one of those cello chords that makes you weep with joy. I’m using those things as a metaphor now, but clarinet riffs and cello chords and beautiful music are actually pretty awesome things worth pressing on through hardship to experience. The first thing we really left our Cave of Mourning for was Eli’s NYC concert/release party. Which, as lackluster and mopey as we were, was worth doing.

“An age old phrase or a dead man’s saying
You’re better off doing than at home praying.
Maybe I’m not long for the living world.
But the time I’ve got, I vow to be less unsure.”

--The Living World, To the Weak and the Weary

Eli is mistaken about our motives in his summary: it’s not really the kindness of our hearts. Helping someone who helped you through hardship is enlightened self-interest, the stuff that friendships are made of. We’re proud and happy to count Eli among our friends and we’re very excited for the new campaign, because the world absolutely needs another album from Eli August and the Abandoned Buildings.

Less than three,
The Nerdy Mel

Posted by TheNerdyDuo @ February 16th, 2014, 6:53 pm
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Shameless Saturday - Promotions for What's Going on In Our World

Happy Saturday! Here's what's happening in our artistic neighborhood this week.

First off, Melissandre's started up here at Smack Jeeves. Recursive!

The Masters of Melancholia-- Mr. Eli August & the Abandoned Buildings-- have launched an IndieGoGo Campaign for 20 minutes of new music. If you enjoyed our video for Where No One Knows, please consider making a donation. Eli's music is excellent and includes a wide variety of instrumentation, from the classic drum and guitar to incredible cello and jazzy clarinet.

Attempt to embed video from YouTube:

The fabulous and talented Leanna Renee Hieber, author of Darker Still and other supernatural delights, is up for a Nebula Award! If you're a member of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, you can read and vote here. The rest of us will just have to wait with baited breath for the results.

Extremely talented artist, Noah Xifr, only has a day or two left in his Kickstarter Campaign for his graphic novel entitled Welcome to the Pain Full Ness. The art is absolutely incredible. Even if you can't donate, click on over just for the eye candy.

The action crime thriller Dishonorable Vendetta produced by a friend of ours, AJ Epyx Productions, is finally available to stream as part of the Goliath Movie Channel over at

Posted by TheNerdyDuo @ February 15th, 2014, 11:40 am
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