What's all this, then? Do you want to know? Do you care? More importantly, do I care?
I don't know. I know myself a little bit, and I always care. Well, it takes a lot to get me not to care. If I say I don't care it's because I've cared too much and I'm exhausted from caring. When I yell "I don't care!" and slam the door, wow, I really cared a lot. Anyway, I've been asked to write something describing my comics.
That paragraph was to see if you cared, by the way. If you're still reading, you might. Here we go.
Yes, Adult Children! This site is the site of, but not entirely consisting of, the comic strip Adult Children. It's a comic I've done for well over 100,000 years and has appeared in a handful of weekly newspapers. More importantly (although it isn't important), it's been on the web for a looooong time.
Just not on this site.
I had a site called Combly, then a site called ComicComics, then a site called Cheesebo (all of which are names that meant nothing) and finally landed here at my name, Stephen Beals, or StBeals for short.
Where did I get StBeals? Wow, that's a good question. I think it was an email account. I had already used SBeals, so in creating another account, I used StBeals. Then people thought I was Saint Beals, which I liked (who doesn't want to be sainted?). Finally, I noticed there are quite a few Stephen Beals' on the web. Shocking, I know, but there's a plastic surgeon in Arizona and some sort of social media guru that I get confused with a lot. There's very little on StBeals except me.
Now that I've lost most readers, I'll get to the actual comic description.
Adult Children was a comic I've done on and off forever after trying "Big Ideas" Sometimes "Big Ideas" would get happy notes from syndicates and sometimes they wouldn't. Obviously, this was back when newspaper syndication wasn't as rare as....hmmm, I don't seem to have anything to compare that to. There isn't anything as rare as newspaper syndication right now. There's more Snow Leopards.
But it is syndicated, digitally, by Universal UClick. So you can not only find it on GoComics, but on different websites that link to GoComics. I'm very proud of that, because some of the best comics ever made are on GoComics (none of them mine).
The idea for this strip is that it's all me divided up into different characters, and some are more reluctant adults than others. Eventually, the characters did stretch a bit, but this isn't long-form storytelling.
The three main characters are Penny, Berle, and Harvey (in order above). Berle has tried to take over the strip from the moment he appeared. Penny and Berle are brother and sister. Harvey has known them since they were kids, and has formed a long-term relationship with Penny. Yes, they live in SIN (right there, I'd be losing newspapers). This mimics my life in no way, except that my wife's sister (her twin, interestingly) is a lot like Berle. That's right, some of Berle's more extreme behavior is inspired by a GIRL. Or me. We're a lot alike.
Harvey is named after my grandfather, Harvey Breland, and why not? He had a funny name. Harvey. How many Harveys do you know? That's right. NONE! Harvey is kind of my straight man, but he's also the me you'll see if you happen to see me. My ego. His main character trait is sarcasm.
Penny is named Penny because she used to be named Steamboat Sally. Now, I like the name Steamboat Sally, because it's weird, but the dialog doesn't exactly flow when writing out Steamboat Sally all of the time. I wound up just calling her Sally. But comics are absolutely glutted with the name Sally. I think there's a waiting list for the name now. I asked my girlfriend (now wife) to give her a name. I don't think she was listening when I asked because she was counting change, but for whatever reason she liked the name Penny. Penny reads a lot and can be anxious. This is no way based on my wife, who likes to read and is anxious. Pure coincidence. I also like to read and am anxious, so it's all me.
Berle is everything bad I've ever done. He stays at Harvey and Penny's a lot because he's usually unemployed, and he's somewhat of a small-time con man. Berle's full name is Berle Finley. He's named after absolutely nobody. Sadly, Berle may be closer to my personality than Harvey. My hair is crazy. Berle's hair is crazy. When I eat to much, Berle gets wider and when I get back into exercising Berle gets thinner. Again, pure coincidence.
Ah, Claremont! Everyone loves Claremont. Claremont is a cat trapped in a dog's body. Not literally (that would be too interesting), but he's based on my cat. Originally, Claremont was a pig, but I changed him to a dog when I discovered Pearls Before Swine. Somewhere I have a stack of Claremont T-shirts. In real life I have a Black Lab who is similar to Claremont in disposition (not in size), so more dog traits have been added.
Todd! Todd is an extra. He's very stupid. He's also my oldest character. I created him as a kid when I was on the school bus. His main character trait is that he's very naive. This is also based on me, because I can be incredibly stupid. Or naive. Whatever.
Hmm, there was also Chester, who pops up here and there. He's just a dork. Based on me because....well, who knows.
So there you have it. The "cast", if you will. This strip is a labor of "man, I just want to draw something" and not one of a "big idea". I'm saving that for "MooMoo the Mars Monkey", which is a strip I just KNOW is going to be huge.