Scott Kurtz of webcomic powerhouse PvP is well known in the webcomic world, both for the quality and accomplishments of his comic, as well as for his willingness to speak his mind frankly on many different topics.
He recently had a story arc in his comic that was nearly a month long, dealing with several of main characters of the strip getting sent back through time and space to interact with the heroes of his previous gang, “Tales by Tavernlight.” It was an impressive attempt, though it came as a surprise when he said it was his first story arc that had lasted that long before.
Thinking back on it, it seems true – he has done a lot of lasting stories before, but they are usually broken up over numerous little arcs. This monthlong plot, in any case, was a good one – I enjoyed the concept, and liked several of the jokes worked into it.
It was only afterwards, when he posted his thoughts on the arc – talking about what he had hoped for it, and how he felt it fell short – that I noticed the ways it could be better. And they were there, sure – some parts of it moved a bit too fast, and left too little room to really see the full interactions between the different casts, or to really reveal the little twists behind it all.
But that said – I did not notice it at the time. I enjoyed the arc. I liked what it did. And for all that it had room to grow, I wouldn’t even have noticed it without Kurtz feeling free to give his thoughts on it and some of the things he cut out in order to get it finished quickly.
I don’t think Kurtz should feel bad about the way the story panned out – and I think, in the end, that sort of personal constructive criticism is a good thing, and is almost always an even more discerning eye than that of a reader.