Your telling of BatB is amazing! And it is so inspiring that you consistently kept up with it for so many years. How much of the story did you know when you first started inking/publishing online? Did you know the dialog? The nuances of the "tale of two mothers" backstory? How much changed as you progressed in the telling? I'm curious because my own stories are constantly evolving through the writing process. Was it the same for you?
Hi Narnia4Aslan! Thanks you so much!
I had maybe 60% of the story hashed out, some scenes more or less as they appeared, dialogue and all, others in rough form and a few just “something here to connect these bits” (like…uh…most of Act Two…). The B-plot of the mothers developed as I drew the story. I knew I wanted to do something with the archetype of the Good Mother and the Bad Mother, and that the original fairy tale has no shortage of extra maternal figures (The Prince’s warrior queen mother, his predatory godmother, beauty’s fairy-shepherdess mother, etc.) and I thought I would condense them down. The details of it sort of emerged slowly. A lot changed in the telling of this story. Originally I envisioned it as an opulent, mysterious, slightly seductive sort of story but what I produced is far more of a grounded, tender self-discovery thing, I think. My tastes and my abilities don’t quite match up!
One of the tricky things about writing is that when a project is long-running, we outgrow its original intent. This can be a real problem with serialized things like fanfiction and webcomics. There’s growing with one’s audience, and there’s departing from the promise you made when you began your story (I always remember my fanfic-reading days, going “Oh. So here’s where the writer abruptly hit puberty…aaaand I’m out.”) . Anyway. The story twenty-something me needed to tell is not at all the one thirty-something me would, and it’s hard to keep yourself in the right mindset for such a sustained period.