You know, there’s nothing like a good homecoming.
I’d like to start off by welcoming everyone to the new site. Elfquest.com v4.0 is finally here and ready for your enjoyment.
For those of you that don’t know me, my name is Timothy Georgi. Most people will know me by my online persona, Skyfall. In the past, I’ve been the graphic designer for Elfquest.com as well as the colorist for most of issues of the European versions of Dreamtime.
Now I’m stepping up to the plate as designer and webmaster. As I try to take some of the pressures off Richard, I hope that I can help take the site to the next level. There are bunches of improvements to the old site and a few new things in the works that will be coming out in the months ahead. I’ll be talking about a few of those here and then we’ll have more things to talk about as time goes on. And we always have suggestions and comments coming in from you, the visitors of Elfquest.com, on how to make the site better. We never let suggestions go unread and we’ll do our best to implement as many things as we can to make the site better than ever!
It’s been quite a while since I’ve been here. Somewhere in the middle of my moves from Chicago to Los Angeles, back to Chicago and then back here to Utah, Elfquest dropped off my radar for a time. I’m not exactly sure how it happened, but as life started to take control of everything, it just happened. As I’ve been working on the redesign of the site, I’ve had a long time to ponder the last few years and my time away from Elfquest and the website. After we busted our backsides to finish EQ.com v2.0, everyone involved got to a point where we were bombarded with other things. It happens every once in a while. “Real life” takes over and you lose the time to do some of the things you really enjoy doing.
I had kept in touch with Richard off and on over that time (probably more off as I look back on it now), though I knew he was busy with all that was going on in the World of Warp. High Ones know that I was busy. But as the downturn in the economy took its swipe at me, I landed in a place where I had a ton of spare time on my hands, unemployed, with no prospects in sight. Job searching was fairly fruitless, and I hate not having something to work on.
Around that time, the next phase in the evolution of Elfquest was happening. Enter DC Comics. With the new DC deal signed, sealed and delivered, I knew that Richard and Wendy’s time was heading into the world of ambitious release schedules and strict publication deadlines. More time would need to be spent making sure that the DC projects were coming in on time. I figured, the last thing Richard needed to worry about was wrestling with the website.
I had “officially” landed back on Abode after San Diego Comic Con 2003. Comic Con by itself is a great reason to head to San Diego, but seeing as this was the 25th Anniversary of Elfquest, I just had to find a way down there, even if I had to start walking in May to get there in time for July. It was quite the scramble to get things planned for the trip and I was in the midst of my bout with unemployment, but I knew I had to get down there. I was fortunate enough to have a group of friends coming down there from Chicago, so things were set.
SDCC is always a great time to be in Southern California. The weather was beautiful all weekend. (Which really helped since my hotel wasn’t anywhere near the convention center.) Before the con, I hadn’t seen Wendy and Richard since Comic Con 1998 for the 20th Anniversary. It was great to catch back up a bit with Richard and to say hi to Wendy. I was also able to see a few people I hadn’t seen in quite a while, like Joellyn Auklandus and Brandon McKinney, which made my con experience more than worth it.
It was some follow up emails after the con that got things with the website rolling again. I tossed out the idea to Richard that I could take over the webmastering duties as well as do a bit of redesigning and cleaning of the website. After hearing the tales of all the deadlines and knowing how strict an outfit like DC can be with making sure said deadlines are met, I knew that Richard would need as much time as possible to devote to the “real” work of Elfquest. The last thing he’d need is to have to administer the website on top of all the rest of everything that he has to do. So, I offered to take things over on the website. Four months of planning and redesigning, we arrive at our launch today.
So, what does this mean for Elfquest.com?
Well, as you take a look at the new site, you can see the most obvious part, the visual overhaul. Everything on the site has been cleaned and polished, with new formatting and graphics in most places. The navigation has been programmed so we can easily incorporate new things to the list as we add new and exciting things to the site. We hope things will be easier to use and will load a bit faster.
The next major thing we’ve done is moved The Scroll of Colors, the official EQ Forums, off of ezBoard and onto the Elfquest.com server. This will allow us greater control over the customization of the forum system as well as helping us eliminate the need for external resources. That and the new board system helps us cut some costs. The new forum system is completely FREE. Open source technologies, aren’t they wonderful?
Probably the biggest item is a new addition to the site. It’s something that people have been begging and pleading to see for years now. We’ve added the new postcard system, EQCard, to the site. You can now send your friends, family or heck, even yourself, an electronic Elfquest postcard. We’re starting out with a small handful of images, but we’ll be adding more to the list as time goes on.
Then, we’ve heard the pleas of many of you asking about the clean up of theFan Links section. Well, we’ve done just that. All the dead links have been trimmed off from the list. We’ve also added a Link Submission form so you can send in new links easily. So if you have a link that you want us to add to the page, head over to the form and send us the info. The more links we have, the more Elfquest love we can share with everyone.
But, I can hear you saying, “Yes, that’s good and all Tim, but what about the future? Are we going to see updates more frequently?”
It’s one of the most frequently asked questions for webmasters. The answer is definitely YES! There are a bunch of things that I have in the works for future updates to the site. Let me go ahead and list a few things that you can look forward to in the coming months…
Updates to the Who’s Who Section. It’s one of the requests that we see the most, so I’ll be working through the piles and piles of comics, books and any other materials I can get my hands on and we’ll be making some updates and additions to the Who’s Who. Not sure on the timing (researching some of this can take some time), but there will be updates coming here as we go along.
Official Elfquest Wallpapers. We’re going to be working on adding some ways for you to dress up your computer’s desktop, Elfquest style! We have some ideas floating around and as soon as we have some good stuff for this section, we’ll add it to the site.
Rescanning and adding images to the Online Gallery. It’s amazing how much scanning and image compression technology has changed in 10 years. And if you’ve ever messed around with saving graphics for the web, you can probably tell what I mean. We’ll be rescanning all the covers that are currently in gallery as well as adding any of the covers that may have been left off the list.
More fun stuff. We’re working on getting things like games and fun little interactive pieces for everyone to play with. We like to have people playing around on the site (visitors are good).
Wendy’s EQ Sketchbook. Yes, plenty of people have been staring at the “Under Construction” line there and wondering “Where in the name of the High Ones is it?” I’ll be working with Richard and Wendy to get this section up and running. Since deadlines are tight right now, it may take a bit to get this going, but it will happen. Patience little grasshopper, patience.
There you have it, a few of the things that you can look forward to in the coming months. It’s going to be a fun year as Elfquest heads into Year 26 with a bang! I hope everyone enjoys the new site. As always, if any of you ever have suggestions or comments, good or bad, please send them on in to us. You can send them to email@example.com. As you all know, nothing grows without nurturing.
It’s nurturing time!
Shade and sweet water,