Comic name: How We Stay Sane @ Work
Creator: Sara Rude
Genre: Slice of Life
Synopsis: We’ve all had bad jobs. Stuffing envelopes, cleaning toilets, catering to arrogant customers… My goal with this webcomic is to collect work stories from all over the web so we can laugh at them instead of cry.
FB link: https://www.facebook.com/sara.rude.9
Patreon/Donation: Anyone wishing to support me can donate/commission my friend who is currently homeless: http://ask-a-den.tumblr.com/post/93013187417/commission-masterpost-updated
Please leave your critiques in the comments below!
And if you have fan art for the comic, you can upload it in our forums here!
An Interview with Sara Rude
1. When did you first come up with the idea for How We Stay Sane @ Work?
Sara: I once had a temp job where we were tasked with hand-writing envelopes. All. Day. I ended up chronicling stuff just to keep from going crazy, like all the weird last names I came across. It was just a one-off (which you can find in my DeviantArt gallery if you feel like hunting) and I never thought it would become anything. Over the years I realized I needed an idea for a webcomic that didn’t overwhelm me, and a gag strip seemed like the perfect opportunity to practice.
2. How We Stay Sane @ Work is all about the woes of bad work situations. We’re curious – what’s the worst job you’ve ever had?
Sara: The worst is probably the one with the handwritten envelopes. But I’ve already talked about that, so I’ll tell you about the 2nd worst! About 6 people and I were hired to go through 16 pallets of medical paperwork to prepare them to be scanned into a digital database. It was a grueling job checking every page for folds, staples, and rips. Another 6 or so people were hired to “sort” the scanned paperwork, which basically meant sitting in front of a monitor pressing the “next” key all day. Soon the 2nd round of employees got moved back to our department because we weren’t moving fast enough. And very soon after that half of us were let go. (Including yours truly.) I swear they had planned since the beginning to figure out who were the fastest workers and dump the rest of us.
3. What does your workspace look like? If you can add anything to it, what would it be?
Sara: I’d like to get a real slanted desk instead of using a dining room table, but otherwise it’s pretty boss.
4. And now a question by our last spotlightee, Melissa J. Massey of Vatican Assassins: Is there any recurring part of your comic you regret including because it’s a pain to draw? For me, it’s Fife’s weapon, a sickle and chain, because that chain is incredibly obnoxious to draw over and over again!
Sara: Backgrounds are the biggest pain. Not just thinking up products to fill all the store shelves, but drawing the same table/shelf over and over making sure they’re mostly straight. I finally decided to use Sketchup after I had the idea for an aerial shot of the Meat & Treat dining room in comic #57. Just learning the program was such a pain *on top of* drawing it I vowed never to draw that dining room ever again.
5 . Lord of the Rings or Star Wars?
Sara: Star Trek, petaQ!
6. It seems you have a special place in your heart for Corporate Radio. What song do you think should be banished from existence at this point?
Sara: You know, it’s really surprising how many songs on the radio are about adultery. In particular, “Your Love” by The Outfield should be shamed and exiled.
7. How We Stay Sane @ Work includes not only your work stories, but submissions from others. Have you ever had to turn down a submission for any reason?
Sara: I’ve had a few submissions that were either too vulgar or racist, but to be honest I’ve forgotten what they were. That’s probably for the best. XD
8. What’s your favorite time-sucking activity?
Sara: Playing with internet doll-makers. Sometimes you just have to make something pretty. Or badass. Or both.
9. You feature co-workers in many of your strips. Do they know about their respective cameos? How do they feel about being included in the comic?
Sara: I try to ask permission whenever I see or hear a story that I like. Everyone so far seems excited to have been drawn, even if I’ve forgotten a few details. Most of them don’t understand the concept of webcomics so I’m blessedly free from critique. XD
10. If you were writing a clever interview question for the next spotlight, what would it be? Feel free to answer this question for yourself if you’d like!
Sara: Do you ever fangirl/boy your own comic?
11. What’s next for your comic?
Sara: After 100 strips I want to collect the whole shebang into a book and Kickstart it. #90 just posted on the 7th, so it’s not far off! (I’m getting nervous ahhhh…) I have other longer-form ideas I’ve been eager to work on, and HWSS@W was always supposed to be an exercise for me. But there’s still tons of unused submissions, and I’m more than willing to hand over the reigns of the project if anyone’s interested. Perhaps some Kickstarter money can go to a new artist…