Some Work-Specific Resolutions

I’ve been musing upon resolutions for a couple of weeks now, and came up with the following work-specific goals for 2007. But before I list ’em, let me reiterate that for me a goal is not the same as a resolution. A goal is a way to measure resolve, certainly, but resolve (the root of the word “resolution”) is something that transcends mere benchmarks.

I resolve to be industrious. I also resolve to be a number of other things, but for the purposes of this post that’s the resolution that matters.

If I really AM industrious certain things will happen. By setting goals around those things I am more likely to remain unshaken in my resolve. So… here they are:

1) I will grow the inked Schlock Mercenary buffer by one week per month, so that by the end of 2007 I have around 100 days of strips inked in advance of the current day. That means that on December 31st, 2007, I should have already inked a little past April Fools Day of 2008.

2) I will publish two volumes of Schlock Mercenary comics in time for the Christmas shopping season. This one’s pretty important for the old “bottom line,” since book sales account for something like 80% of my family’s income.

3) I will grow the “colored-and-uploaded” buffer in concert with the inked buffer, such that it never lags more than two weeks behind, and occasionally is equal to the inked buffer.

4) I will draw at least one non-strip picture each week, and put it into the blog. Lately my art has been stagnating, and only regular warm-up sketches and concept pieces will snap me into a new groove.

Aaand that’s about it. Lots of other things need to be done, obviously, but these are the places where I can tell I’ll be stretching myself the most.

10 thoughts on “Some Work-Specific Resolutions”

  1. Sounds like a sensible set of resolutions to me! Among mine are:

    1) Lose 40 (or more) pounds,
    2) Save at least 20% of each paycheck.
    3) NOT to start a new project when one is already in the works.

    1. For the weight loss goal, I like to recommend The Hacker’s Diet. It’s more or less the straight dope, calories in – calories out = excess stored on your body. If you have a calorie defecit, the excess stored on your body will go away. There are also spreadsheets to help you keep track of where you are, and it’ll make pretty graphs too.

      Saving 20% per paycheck is an excellent goal. If your company has some form of retirement matching, that’s where to start saving first, and when you hit the amount you need to put in to get all the free money (or a higher amount that you’re happier with), start contributing to a good savings account. You should be able to get at least 4.5% interest on your savings these days, but you may need to sign up with an internet bank to do it. If you can setup automatic transfers into savings, or split your direct deposit, that’s the easiest way to make sure you save how much you want. Otherwise, stay disciplined, and eventually it’ll become a habit.

      Hope this helps.

      1. I’ll take a look at the Hacker’s diet, thanks for the advice. Currently, I’m on what my friend once referred to as ‘the Neanderthal diet’ consisting mostly of meats, vegetables, and a small amount of fruits, while avoiding both foods that have been heavily processed and heavy in grains/flour/etc. because despite millions of years of evolution the human body still does not process them all that efficiently.

        As to the saving: The 20% saving is after 16% of my pretax pay gets sucked off for my 401k, this geek aint no fool 🙂 And as to intrest, I’ve found a bank that pays a mind-blowing THIRTY percent intrest on their savings accounts. You can find the info for them at

        1. 30%? This strikes me as absurdly high. As in high enough that the bank may be a scam. There is no fiscal incentive for them to pay 30% interest, especially when the prime rate is somewhere around 8%.

          Ah, that’s why — it’s not FDIC insured, nor is it a real bank. So this isn’t a savings account, it’s investment. Rather more to the point, the information available as to *why* they can offer such an absurd rate is absent. It’s also in lindenbucks, which — while second life may be a “real” economy, is not something that you’d want to “save” in. Invest, certainly, but not save.

          Wow, and they’re also processing something on the order of a third of their money every week.

          Caveat emptor.

          1. Heh, that’s why I only put maybe US$5-10 in there every month or so. The rest of the L$ that goes into the account comes from activities inworld, where I’ve got the formula for ‘professional chair camping’ pretty much nailed (it nets me about L$200-500 a day) all of which go into my ginko account.
            And every other month I cash it out and pay rent or something silly like that. An investment it may be, but it pays better than any other investments I’ve tried 😉

          2. Oh, very nicely done. And in terms of investing time for real money, I don’t see any problem with it. (And, hey — if it takes off like Stephenson’s metaverse, you have my permission to mock me with your found riches…)

            It’s mainly calling it a savings account that worries me, since that terms has some *very* specific meanings in the states, and in the world. Of course, that begs the question of what one *does* call it, but luckly my degree doesn’t say semiotics expert. (Of course it doesn’t *say* anything, but I digress.)

            ::shrugs:: My main concern was with anything that claimed a 30% interest rate. Do you know what inflation is like in Lindenland?

          3. If you’re defining ‘inflation’ as the fluctuation in trading rates between the L$ and the US$, as a matter of fact, I do 🙂 From a low of about L$310 to the buck in June of last year (which was a really good time to buy L$, which I foolishly didn’t) It’s stabilized a bunch, to the point that it’s stayed between L$270-265 for the past few months and is slowly getting stronger. What’s amazing is that The amount of money that’s getting passed around inside the SL economy: According to their resident economist the velocity of the economy is literally outpacing the money supply (of which there is a finite amount.) So I don’t see the L$ taking a dive in the near or semi-near future…

            …Oh, I almost forgot: Everyone likes charts, yes? You can see them at this location:

            And data about exchange rates cen be seen here:

            Economic geeks rock!

          4. I’m currently getting 3% MONTHLY, compounded monthly, on investments in an equity real-estate fund, and I know folks who are getting 5% monthly because they’re trained agents who help locate eligible properties.

            My point? There are relatively safe investments that will yield 50% or more per year, but you have to work for them. If you can find someone who is able to get 50% returns on their money year-after-year, and who only lacks capital in order to scale,they may be willing to invest your money for a lesser return.

            And Caveat Emptor applies better here than almost anywhere else.

  2. “100 days of buffer”?

    You shouldn’t have said that. You really shouldn’t have said that. Now you’ll have desperate fans raiding your house to feed their Schlock addiction, secure in the knowledge that there’s a huge supply of the pure stuff there!

    (It’s a good plan. Just not one to admit to in public, a little like revealing that you plan to save 20% of your income under the mattress.)

  3. How many months of work go into one volume of Schlock? If it’s more than 6 months, will the wall you hit when you reach Current Date be a financial problem? (If it’s 6 months or less, flame on!)

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