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iProng Magazine talks with Krishna Sadasivam, creator of the PC Weenies comic strip, and author of the new PC Weenies book entitled Rebootus Maximus…
interview by Bill Palmer
Krishna Sadasivam has been publishing the popular PC Weenies comic strip online for a decade, and it’s been syndicated in various publications (including this one). Now the strip, which follows the travails of IT geek Bob Weiner at work and at home, has evolved into book form. Krishna fills us in on the evolution of the strip and more…
What led you to create PC Weenies ten years ago?
I initially started The PC Weenies as an online comic to counter the rapidly negative attacks Mac users were receiving from PC users at the time. Thankfully, it quickly evolved into a comic that poked fun of ALL aspects of technology on our lives, not just Mac vs. PC. The first comic was posted online on October 21st, 1998 – this October marks 11 years of publication online!
Are any of the characters based on people you’ve known or met over the years?
Bob was initially based on a friend of mine from college (at least personality-wise), but his personality and attitude have grown beyond his initial character concept. Many of the characters that I draw in the comics are based on composites of people I have met or trouble-shooted computers for, back in my days as a Macintosh systems administrator.
The internet was still wearing diapers back in 1998. How has the evolution of the internet over the past decade affected the evolution of PC Weenies?
When I first started writing and drawing the comic, I had just purchased my first scanner and Photoshop. I had never used Photoshop before – and my results painfully demonstrated that. Over the years, I’ve developed a sense of proficiency in Photoshop, thanks to constant practice. Within the last 4 years I have added Corel Painter to my arsenal. My art style has evolved considerably since the first comic. Having the Internet certainly makes it easier for me to research ideas for upcoming comics. The advantage of having an online comic is that I can make comics that are topical to technology news, within a few hours of reading it.
You’ve never been afraid to integrate real-world tech industry news into your storylines. Do you ever feel like you have to be careful when dealing with something like Steve Jobs’ illness, or is everything fair game?
Handling Steve Jobs’ health would be in poor taste for me. I like to keep my comics family friendly and accessible to readers of all ages. The underlying theme of my comics is “There’s more to life than technology” – so I’m basically poking fun of how dependent we’ve become to tech, along with the frustrations that go along with it. In my current storyline, the main protagonist, Bob, has found his “dream” job at Footle (which rhymes with a certain large search engine company), only things inside the company are not exactly what he expects.
What were the biggest challenges in putting the book together?
The biggest challenge for me was overcoming the initial fear of exploring print. Prior to making the book, I was not versed in pre-press, printing paper types, etc. I had to do a lot of research to find the right printing company. I also had to teach myself a lot about paper types, and offset printing methodologies. Thankfully, several webcartoonists I know were more than happy to share their methodologies with me.
Once I had the resolve to make a book, it was just a matter of doing it. I’m very pleased with how the book came out, and I’m receiving a steady stream of e-mails from readers who are enjoying the book. It’s a gratifying feeling for me to know that the book has found a home both within the US and internationally. My long standing dream of publishing a book has finally been fulfilled!