JEFBOT: Phase Newon November 2, 2012 at 10:37 am
Some of you know that in addition to working on JEFbot and my occasional acting gigs, I have a full-time job as a multimedia designer for a big corporation. Well, I suppose I should amend that to had since, as of this week, I’m out of a job. Apparently, the company I worked for thinks it wise to dismantle the skilled, tight knit and well-oiled team (10 years in the making) and replace us with an outsourced group to cut some costs. Or something. It wasn’t really explained to us all that well. Anyway, that sucks big time, and while I won’t miss the corporate mentality, the long drive (70 miles there and back), and some of the more tedious projects, I will miss the people in my department, as they were some of the smartest, most talented and straight-up coolest people I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with. Oh, and I’ll miss the steady paycheck, of course.
The silver lining to all this suckiness, however, is that I can now devote much more energy and time to JEFbot, which should mean more strips on a more consistent schedule, a new BOTshop stocked with all kinds of BOTgoodies, more intricate storylines and artwork, more blogs, vids and social stuff, and basically just more JEFbot for your entertainment!
I’ve been wondering for a long time now just what would happen to my little ol’ webcomic if I could devote some real, full-time attention to it, and now – while the circumstances are unfortunate – I’ll get a chance to find out. While I’m kind of in a state of shock at the moment, and can’t help but be anxious about things like rent, health insurance and car payments, I also feel tremendously excited about what happens next. How can I not? You readers have already given me a strong foundation with which to make JEFbot even bigger and better; without the enthusiasm and support you’ve shown over the past few years, I don’t think I’d even give this crazy plan a try. But, you know what? I’ve been given this opportunity, so I’m going to take it. And while I can’t say I won’t be spending time working on auditions or finding another job, I will say that, for the time being, JEFbot is my job.
With the worldwide recession going strong, I know a lot of you out there can relate to my situation, so know that I feel very fortunate to have such an outstanding group of readers keeping me passionate and hopeful about the future. Having a supportive group of family and friends is also something I’m thankful for every day. So with your readership and support, let’s see what can happen! I have a few things to settle over the next week before I can start going 100%, but know that this is an exciting time to be a BOTreader, and you should hold onto your butts and get ready for the next phase of JEFbot!
Sucks to hear about the job, Jeff, but as an ardent believer of things happening for a reason, you have my best wishes and my optimism that things will get better for you. Here’s hoping you find some greener pastures in the future.
thanks, Striker. i can use all the best wishes, optimism and green pastures i can get!
sorry to hear about your job dude!! Door closes, window opens, etc. xoxo cinister.
thanks, cin! i guess i’ll just have to smash through that window if it doesn’t open fast enough.
Sorry to hear you lost your job brother, but always keep your head up high and I’m glad to see you’re not getting stuck cursing the heavens but deciding to move on to bigger and better things! Best of luck with all your future plans!
Also, really excited for this new era of the Bot saga!
many thanks for the empathy, f_f! and yeah, i went through a brief, concentrated bout of cursing and fist-shaking, but it’s just exhausting and not very productive. onward!
Don’t despair! Been out of a job myself for a few months, and while it’s hard, it also gives you the opportunity to find something new to do. Stay positive!
true that, Eric. while i’m sure i’m not done fretting quite yet, i do feel tremendously excited about having the time to work on all the projects i’ve been putting off due to having no time!
Hey, where one door closes, another opens. The best thing to do is take an unfortunate circumstance and turn it into an opportunity. Good luck to you and keep up the great laughs.
thanks, DaHoboJoe! i’m absolutely planning on making the most of this opportunity. new adventures await!
We love you bot!
awwww. thanks, dj! i appreciate that more than you know. 🙂
Good luck, man.
(Unemployed for a while, looking for things to be good for other people.)
thanks for the luck, Mephron! and i bounce a bunch of luck back to you, too!
Sometimes we have to get kicked in the butt in order to take the chance/risk that leads us to bigger and better things. Certainly happened with me way back when I was 24 & working at Egghead Software. That lead to my great career as a programmer!
Give yourself a day to be mad/pissed/etc. Then get up the next day shaking your fist in the air & say, “Give me your worst! You can’t defeat me!!!” 😉
Best of luck, I know only great things are gonna happen! 🙂
very true, Richtpt: as my mom and friends could tell you – i’ve been wanting to take JEFbot full-time for years, but just couldn’t let go of the steady paycheck, especially since the recession hit. now that i’ve been laid off, i’ll get a severance and unemployment, which will make the change easier. it’ll at least give me some serious time to build on JEFbot and look for a new job!
and glad to hear your success story! needed that. 🙂
I am really sorry to hear about your job- But that’s their folly AND their loss. I’m sure that the future will bring nothing but awesomeness for you on this next part of your journey!
yes – i crave the awesomeness of the future, Steve Z! thanks!
It is going to suck so much that you are not here to hang with anymore. Guess I will just have to show up at your door now… While it sucks that you are not here anymore, I am totally stoked to see what happens with JB now! Maybe a new supervillan or something 😉
heheh. we’ll see about that supervillain, Nathan, and thanks for the support! hope your department weathers this firing storm.
I’m sorry, Jeff. That sucks.
Think you might consider going freelance?
i hate most freelance work, Sarah W, but if some comes my way that looks good, i’ll probably take it. i have some time to pick and choose though, which is nice. 🙂
Wow. That’s some major news. Sorry that things went kablooey with the job, but I’m glad you have other options. I hope Jefbot = job works out fabulously for you. And it is kinda interesting timing…
Last night I had a dream about you. It is the second time I’ve dreamed that I met you (the first was long ago, and you may remember I dreamed you were a rock star). This time, you were you, but you were a FAMOUS web comic artist. Like big time famous. There were tons of people waiting in line to meet you. I was trying to identify people I know from the comments here (that’s where it got weird because there was some crossover with people I know from elsewhere online, but that’s irrelevant).
Prophetic? You tell me. Or better yet, You Show Us. I’m behind you 100%, and I know there are lots of others who are regulars here who are too. You are hugely talented – both with drawing and with the story lines. You are totally going to ROCK this opportunity!
“and you should hold onto your butts…”
Does it have to be OUR OWN butt that we hold onto? Cause that isn’t nearly as much fun.
heheh. nope, grab any butt at will, Shanna!
😀 Duly noted…I’ll go find some butts to grab. 😉
do it, T! ;D
see, this is why i love knowing you, Shanna: your prophetic visions are always awesome!!! and, yes: i will be interpreting your dream as a true glimpse into the future. and when it happens and you’re hanging with me at a con, we’ll have a laugh about how prescient you were. 😀
(i also wouldn’t mind being a rock star, so hopefully that’s in an alt-future.)
Sorry to hear about the job Jeff, whereas I am excited to see more Jeffbot I hope you can either make a living off it (which is the best case) or get another job really soon. Either way I’m looking forward to more strips and good news in the future!
One more thing, is the jeffbot shop open? I would totally buy a shirt, or a hat, or a book if you had one since I don’t think I’ll ever get to a con you’re at (although I’m shooting for ComiCon in San Diego next year!)
now that i have the time, i’m hoping to have the BOTshop open with a bunch of new merch (including shirts and books) within the next couple of weeks!
and while it’s not guaranteed i’ll be at San Diego Comic-Con 2013, i’m crossing my fingers that i’ll be able to be there in the Small Press section again. i’ll be sure and post the news if i hear anything.
thanks, TPC! yes: best case scenario is that i can make a great living off of JEFbot, and 2nd best is that it keeps me afloat until i find a great job. really, i’ll take either at this point, but i’m leaning toward the former. 🙂
Hey Jeff, Sorry to hear about your job. And, welcome to the club of those whom strive to make their webcomics their jobs. 🙂 Always looking forward to seeing more Jefbot.
Hope to see you at WonderCon, next year, in Anaheim
while it sucks to have lost my job, i must say that i’m pretty excited to join the club, Carl! and i just got the application for the next Anaheim WonderCon but gotta check the funds now to make sure it makes sense to get a table.
Neil Gaiman said it best; life is hard – make good art. Good luck in the next phase of your careers.
since i’ve been a fan of Neil’s work since i was a kid, i think it makes sense to follow his advice, DD! thanks for the quote. 🙂
I’ve just picked up the first three volumes of Sandman, after hearing for ages how good they are. I was startled when flipping through to realize the Dream King looks an awfully lot like Neil Gaiman himself…
Yeah I know the feeling of suddenly being out of work. I work as security, so this thing can just happen anytime if the account holder decides to use another security company that hires less. I was working graveyard for a construction site once, and I got a call the next day that the site doing the construction company (not the hospital) had decided to use another, cheaper security team. Welp, so much for that…
Luckily I’m in a stable site now, but who knows how long that will last? Good luck Jeffman.
thanks for the luck, Steve, and sorry to hear about the insecurities of security work. funny – the company i worked for is an international security company. hopefully we weren’t employed by the same business. 😛
Damn, sucks about your job Jefbot, but as they say, “No matter what happens, just keep moving forward.” It is awesome to hear that you’ll be doing a big story arch soon. Hope you find a way to make ends meet.
that’s pretty much been my thinking when i’ve gotten out of bed the past few days, Noramil – just keep moving! fortunately, it’s much easier to be motivated about my own business than someone else’s, so it hasn’t been a problem. 🙂
I hear you! (Although it’s not me who has the job prob.)
I have a close friend who used to work as a DJ for a radio station. It was actually the classiest of all the radio stations here.
But then his boss probably realized that not everyone is listening to their station. Why? They were too good.
Ratings show that you’re popular if you’re either a loudmouth chunking ridiculous “humour” to the public, or you have the pre-pubescent girl’s taste… (One Direction, J. Bieber)
Genres like Alternative Rock or New Wave are forgotten in the general public, and so a bunch of DJ’s got kicked out of the station!
So my friend is now jobless… (he’s one of the better DJ’s)
His timeslot got replaced with what sounds like fresh college grads who don’t know what they’re doing that much. (Which is probably true.)
My Dad even shared that timeslot with him! (Guest Radio host)
Well, we must always move on… There’s probably something better for my friend out there.
Looking forward to the new jefbot sched! How does M-W-F sound? 😀 😀 😀
ugh. that sucks about your friend, ROM! – i hope he can find a new, better job doing what he loves to do.
and, yes: while it’s hard to get out of the mindset of going to my regular job nearly every weekday, i’m sure i’ll get over it, wrap up a few things, and then go full steam ahead with JEFbot! and – while it’s not set in stone yet – you’ll be happy to hear that a MWF schedule is what i’m mulling at the moment. 🙂
Was that 70 miles each way or round trip? Either way, wow… and terribly sorry you got cut like that. But hey, you’ve already got a big fanbase here, and making full-time job pay off of it isn’t unheard of. The guys that run Least I Could Do, Looking For Group, and The Gutters have done it. The guys that run Penny Arcade have done it. The man behind Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal did it. I hear this Schuetze dude has a shot at it, too.
Plus, I’ll bet if you and Cornfather got some Kickstarter action going on, you could invest in broader distribution for Grey Skies or your next indy movie project. Just a thought.
70 miles round trip, E.A.. i definitely got a lot of podcasts, music and audiobooks listened to during that trip over the years. i’ll kinda miss that. 🙂
and thanks for the support and confidence! i’ve pretty much been following the webcomics you mentioned for years now, studying how they’ve made their creations so successful. now i’m going to put that study to the test!
as far as a new indy movie project – if the Cornfather and i find one that looks good (and profitable!), i’m sure we’ll jump at the chance. 🙂
Don’t forget, consultation gigs get 10x or more, plus per diems and all that other plushie stuff. Maybe next Halloween, you can have a dog with your adventure time costume. . .
we’ll see, W.D. Pat – i really hate freelance and consultation work. not to say that i won’t be taking odd jobs here and there, but basically, i’d rather just work for myself!
I feel for ya. I used to fix Apple Phones before our entire department was laid off. They didn’t calculate how many people they’d need to fix the new Verizon phones, and they didn’t realize Verizon people actually KNOW WHAT THEY’RE DOIN… (not that their service is better, the people are given extra training ^^d)
So, now I work in a stockroom for a Macy’s, doing crappy hours for crappy pay, and mah nerdy pudgy body hurts like the dickins XP.
You have two things I don’t: a preexisting reputation for bein an awesome artist, and the actual gumption and dedication to keep updating XD
If anybody could become a self sufficient webartist, you’ve definitely got it. That, and if you could run this comic this well while doing actor gigs AND a fulltime job, you’ve got the stamina to do just about anything ^^
sorry to hear about your phone job, JR. sounds like it was mismanaged and your department paid the price. ugh. and i worked a mall job for a year or so as one of my first jobs and it was hard, boring work for peanuts, so i can relate to your Macy’s job.
and thanks for that last statement! after five years of doing JEFbot, i definitely have the dedication and the gumption (something that you can generate, too!) – now i just need some time, smart business decisions and a little luck! 😀
Don’t worry jef, we got your back. And heck if you miss working as a graphics designer you can just turn that around and offer your services online at least that’s what my fiancee is doing
nice to hear you guys have my back, Jiro Maeda! also good to hear your fiancee is making money offering her graphics services online.
Good luck. That’s all I can say.
that’s all that needs to be said, jesternario! thanks.
The comic is important, but so are you. *hug* I’m sorry you lost your job, that really sucks. I’m glad that you’ll be able to devote more time to the comic, however I can’t help but wish you the best of luck in getting a new job, because that’ll mean a steady paycheck, which is much more important.
awww… thanks for the hug, clockworkAngel. *hugs back* a steady paycheck is definitely important (which is why i didn’t quit a long time ago) but now that the opportunity’s here, i’m going to seize it! while, yes, still keeping my eye out for a job that’s worth it.
Aww thanks for returning the hug, and yeah, true. I’m glad you’ve got the opportunity to seek a new and better job, while also having the opportunity to work more on the comic. I promise to be here for you every step of the way. You’re awesome, and we care about you. Or, at least I know I do.
in a non-stalkery way. lol.
Damn, that came right out of nowhere. Shame about the job loss.
while i can’t say it was a *complete* surprise, it was still pretty shocking, Edd. now i just hope the rest of my department is able to bounce back.
Wow, that’s huge news. I’m truly sorry to hear about your job being idiotic; how could they think outsiders will be better than you and the team you work with? But I’m psyched to hear that you’ll be going full time with Jefbot! I’m sure it’ll be nice to not have your creativity tied to the corporate mentality and the small-mindedness of others.
We’ve got your back, bud! I can’t wait to see what the new phase of Jefbot looks like! (And if there’s anything I can do, just say the word.)
yeah, i suppose there’s no lack of idiocy in corporate America these days, T! but, like you, i’m pretty psyched to be going full-time with JEFbot! i’ve had a ton of ideas over the past years that i just haven’t had time for, so now i’ll get the chance to get them out there. 😀
thanks for having my back – if i can ask any favors of you, i definitely will!
Can’t wait to see what the new ideas are; I’ll be sure and send people your way whenever I can.
(Oh, and re: your question on the last strip, yes, I’m planning to make L.A. my home after my road trip, if things work out the way I’d like them to. Though if the job situation is tight enough that someone as skilled as you is getting laid off…eugh)
I saw the ASR come through and I came straight to your sight. It sucks that they let all of you go. Leukena and I hope that Jefbot can be a greater success for you. We’ll see you at Comic Con next year and support Jefbot!
thanks for coming by and voicing your support, Byron! yeah, the department was pretty shaken up over it – as much as we could be since we pretty much had to vacate our offices by the end of the day. anyway, yes! will hopefully have another table at Comic-Con next year and see you and Leukena there!
Awww, man, shucks for you. Not that I wouldnt enjoy some quality Jefbot, but I realy hope you will find steady job soon, with people at least as good as you had pleasure to work with until now.
that’s while i’ll take my time picking my next job (if full-time JEFbotting doesn’t work out), Maryz – i want to make sure i’m working with creative, awesome people and that the job is worth it, as well. look for some more, quality JEFbot soon!
Ah, another triumph for short term thinking over common sense.
At some point your former employer will need something doing urgently and get the “We can schedule a meeting with our planning team manager for three weeks on Thursday” response from the outsourced team.
Best wishes to you and the new, enhanced Jefbot (out of beta?) – from the right hand side of the pond.
yes, i think “short term thinking” is an apt description for what happened, Blofeld’s Cat. it wouldn’t be the first time, either, sadly. and i think the realization of their error will come sooner rather than later. ah, well. *washes hands of it*
thanks for the best wishes and, yes – i believe the “beta” tag will be lifted shortly!
Know the feeling, this is my third job in three years… So all I can say: Good luck with other project. 🙂
ooh, third job in three years, Formel? that’s rough. hope you keep the one you have for as long as you want it. and thanks for the luck – hopefully my new boss (uh, me) will be satisfied with my work. 😉
I know the feeling all too well. I was recently let go and thought I would use my extra time to devote to my webcomic. All I really did was build my buffer back up. While I know I could have done more, I know now isn’t the time to fully dive into my site as a temporary full time thing. Maybe in a year or two when I have a larger audience I can take an opportunity like this more seriously.
I wish you the best of luck to you, Jeff.
hope you find a great new job soon, Saeed! and thanks for the luck – i’ve never had a buffer so building one would at least be something new for me. heheh. but some of the other aspects of the site will have to take precedence, for now. 🙂
Sorry about the job but I do like the ‘one door closing, another door opening’ attitude. Also, I like the idea of The Greater Botness – that rocks! Best of luck and I am sure your readership will continue to support you.
i think losing my job is the only way i would’ve gone on the path to “The Greater Botness,” rodlane, so the door metaphor is apt! thanks for the support. 🙂
Jeff, if you’re worried about health insurance… I’m sure you already have a business license to cover the BotShop and other activities. Get an executive membership at Costco ($110 a year, includes 2% cash back on your annual purchases). As an executive member, you can get insurance through their small business group health plan. It’s generally WAY cheaper than trying to buy a personal plan through the major insurers.
big thanks, Greg Bulmash! health insurance is one of the things i’m worried about most, so thanks for the info. i have an exec membership at Costco already, so i’ll be looking into their health plan. most of the other options i’ve been looking at (Cobra) are expensive.
Sorry about the job loss. That sucks.
I don’t know if this is a possibility, but do you think your team might be able to reincorporate as its own business? It sounds like you already have a good team set up, so you might be able to talk your fellow unemployed teammates into trying it out as another potential option.
In any case, I hope things work out for you. 🙂
yeah, it sucks, HiEv, but hopefully this just means new opportunities!
and, i think your suggestion is good – my department and i have met a couple times now to discuss what to do next. making our own business is on the table, and a few of us might do that, but until plans like that solidify, i figured i’d work on my own business. we’ll see. thanks for the support!
Sorry to hear the bad news. On the upside, you get to relax for a bit (I hope you are still job-hunting) and do more Jefbot. Don’t give up hope, and don’t despair. I haven’t given up hope of a better future, so don’t you do it either.
i’ll do a little bit of relaxing this week, KB, while i wrap things up with my unemployment paperwork, doctor/dentist/vision visits, etc. and then kick JEFbot into full gear over the next couple weeks while i figure out what to do next, but job searching will still be a priority. here’s to a better future! 😀
Sorry about the bad news! But don’t feel down, you’ll always know you have a group of fans here to back you up, no matter what. And who knows, maybe this is the build up to a HUGE acting job!
still feeling up, GeekGirl11! especially ‘cuz of you fans. and i like the way you think re: HUGE acting job!
You’re not the only one here that’s had experience with corporate corruption, Jeff. Sorry about the job, but here’s to new opportunity!
sad to hear you’ve had experience with this kind of thing, Soul Man. unfortunately, i don’t think it’s due to corporate corruption. sadly, getting rid of entire departments and outsourcing is just business as usual for this company.
to new opportunity!
u have my best wishes on ur future advens. i hope u make it alrite i know how much it sucks not to have a job but i am excited for more bot
thanks for the wishes, MrSnow! and, yes: the next couple months should be pretty exciting here!
SO much to say about this…..later.
*falls over sleeping*
rest up, Pix! i don’t want you getting ill. 🙂
Plus you have more time to game now! /,,/ Good luck.
it’s true, TWB – and i can legitimately play games as “research” for new strips!
I would love to see another story arc featuring “the scarf”. 🙂
you might just get what you desire, Marcus. 🙂
I have no doubt that you’ll find a way to make this an amazing transition to the next stage in life. Holler if you need anything… including a friend to shoot things with when Halo 4 comes out (tomorrow).
For serious, let me know if there’s any way to be of help.
thanks, man – your support and confidence in me is much appreciated. i’ll be sure and call if i need anything, including another plasma rifle at my side. 🙂
Jeff: your fans’ comments are an inspiration for me. You know I’ve always thought you were way too talented to be working for that f’ed up company, whose only feature was that it was so easy to make fun of. But I sure enjoyed having you to talk with about Cylons, Game of Thrones and bad scifi all those years. And really who else could I have worked with to come up with a Che Guevara line of baby clothes, training material featuring marauding meerkats, fake excuses for system glitches taken from Star Trek dialog, and a Halloween pumpkin laden with what looked like explosives? You’re on your way to far greater things.
yay for making a positive out of a negative. this will all work out for the better. it’s just gonna take some perspective!and yay jurassic park!
So, next week it’ll have been a month since the comic was posted. Hope things are going well.
Holy crap, you’ve been publishing this whole time while I’ve been checking this spot for a “next” link. Way back when, I was reading along in the comics, I hit “next”, I came here. I expected the next comic to come after this. Cheese. For all those people like me, the next comic after this one starts here: http://jefbot.com/2012/11/06/jefbot-469_wish-upon-a-death-star/
Hmmm do you know how to do animation? I bet a good Jefbot pilot would launch something good for you. You have some great stories and I could totally see it on Adult Swim.