Who makes The Meek?

The Meek is created by me, Der-shing Helmer. I write the story, draw the comic, created every single visual you see on the site (including the site itself), create ancillary content, and market the comic entirely on my own. As of 2017 I have also self-published one volume of The Meek book, with more to come.

Is anyone helping you?

Yes, absolutely! Every version of the site so far has been entirely coded for me by my incredible friend L. Chow based on the designs I gave him. My ad boxes are published by Hiveworks (they also do make and host sites, just not any of mine). The creation of the physical Volume 1 book was a joint effort between myself, my Kickstarter campaign manager Taneka Stotts, and the pre-production team of C. McKenzie and Rhiannon R.S. All other related content and offsite campaigns are run entirely by me.

When does the comic update?

The comic currently updates once or twice a week, supposedly on Weds and sometimes Friday. I do not keep a backlog so I post the pages in real time as I make them. Currently the amount of updates are set by my Patrons; right now I am creating a set number of updates per month spread across The Meek and my other webcomic Mare Internum.

For the most accurate notifications regarding updates or delays, feel free to follow the Twitter, subscribe to easy email notifications, or subscribe to the RSS feed. To contribute to a higher number of update per month, access bonus info, and possibly snag some cool rewards, you can hit up the Patreon.

Wow, I remember this comic from when I was college/ highschool/ the womb. Updates totally died off for a few years. What happened?

The comic was on extended hiatus for several years due legal issues related to the licensing of the comic. Those issues were eventually resolved and the comic resumed regular updates in May 2015.

What were you doing all that time? Why didn’t you just keep working on The Meek?

I wish more than anything that I had been able to continue work. The hiatus sucked major balls and I regret the circumstances surrounding it every day. To avoid this situation in the future The Meek will likely remain creator-owned for the rest of its life; thank you to everyone who stuck out the hiatus with me and came back to read the adventure.

What do you do for a living?

In the past I worked as a science teacher and then an art lead in the games industry, then transitioned to back freelance to work on comics, games and illustration for various clients. I currently make comics full-time webcomics thanks to my readers. If you have a buck or two to spare, you can definitely throw in and help us all to drown in comics.

What is Mare Internum? Is it related to The Meek?

Mare Internum is a comic I began working on in 2013 in order to vent frustration due to not being able to work on The Meek. It updates concurrently with The Meek, but the two stories are otherwise unrelated.

How long have you been working on this comic?

A long time. I had been thinking about the story and working out details since 1996, but it took me many years to figure out how to draw it. I began sketching the draft in mid-2007, and have been pretty much been working on it ever since. The comic began posting online in its current form in late 2008, so it’s been almost a decade since the site has been up.

Where did you learn how to make comics?

I am a self-taught artist and comics-maker with a background in biology. I have a degree from UC Berkeley in Integrative Biology, and a credential for high school–level science education. I learned how to make comics on my free time by reading a lot of books and comics in order to learn how to tell stories, and by practicing my drawing skills a little bit every day.

How long does it take to make a page?

A single page takes a minimum of 8-10 hours to complete. I am definitely destroying my body, haha (help)

How do you make your lines/colors?

I do all of my work digitally, on PhotoshopCC. I use a tablet to sketch, draw and color. My line quality and color are a product of years of practice! I had to keep trying out different methods until I found one that felt right. If you notice my art looks weird in the beginning, it’s because I continue to teach myself as time goes on. I’m not perfect, but I promise I always do the best I can and consider honest critiques carefully.

Is The Meek being published? Where can I buy The Meek in print?

The Meek is now self-published! You can buy it at the store page. I also offer limited-edition special bundles through my Gumroad, and wholesale prices to retailers.

Can I buy Meek stuff? Where is your merch?

All of my items are available at conventions, but I also list things from time to time in the store!

Is drawing this comic your full-time job? Are you fairly wallowing in cold hard webcomics cash?

At one point it was not! I used to make my living the old fashioned way, farming for snails. But I’ve sold my snail farm and now am doing art full-time, a mix of freelance and Patron-supported comics. I would very much like to be able to maximize my webcomic output since I would really like to get this story on paper before I die. But no, I am not wallowing in cash, but I have some leftover snails if you want one.

Will you link me/plug me/review my work?

Thanks for asking, but I don’t link on request. I do link quite often to comics that I find on my own or that are recommended to me, and I read a lot of webcomics. If you would like me to link you, just do a good job on your comic, as I will find it eventually :]

I love the way the site works and looks! How did you make it?

I have no idea!! I mocked it up in Photoshop and hired my genius friend L. Chow to code the entire thing for me. All I know is that 1. He is a genius, 2. He is not open to new clients at the present and 3. The comic runs on ComicEasel and is hosted by Dreamhost.

I am making a comic! Do you have any advice?

Plan ahead! You can never plan too far in advance. Put yourself into the comic; make it something nobody else but you could have written. Have a theme that matters to you. Give your readers something to discuss and think about. Make sure you love your characters, even when you hate them. Don’t skimp on stuff you’re not good at, do your research and practice every day to get to the results you want. When people describe their works as a labor of love, they really know what they’re talking about. Make sure you use equal parts labor and love in everything you do.

I have a question you didn’t cover here! How do I ask one?

Just message me wherever! There’s a bunch of social links on the front page you can reach me by.

When will Angora get some clothes?

Great question.