Yesterday Was Weird: The Death & Life of a Dog Named Benny.

Created by John Pointer

An illustrated version of "Yesterday was Weird..." Benny's viral post about his own death, and the love that conquered it.

Latest Updates from Our Project:

Sketches
almost 2 years ago – Mon, Jan 02, 2017 at 01:54:50 PM

If you haven't seen yet, I'm working with the illustrator on the first set of images! I want the book to feel like a brand new thing when you get it, so I don't want to share *too* much, but I do want you to feel the excitement with me!

These images have been posted to Benny's facebook page, and that's a great place to follow the progress in a more interactive way if you want to jump into the community there:
https://www.facebook.com/pg/benny.pointer/photos/?tab=album&album_id=935324453265976

If you don't have a facebook account... Here is the first set of sketches! He sends them to me, we refine them, and then he does an ink version and colors each one in.

First sketch of the opening scene:
First sketch of the opening scene:

This was the first sketch he sent for the scene "Yesterday was weird. I couldn't get myself out of bed." I loved it as an image, but I felt like the story needed to start with Benny on his side, looking confused, like he really couldn't get out of bed.  This is what he sent back:

Can't get up...
Can't get up...

We'll use this one, and tweak it a little more to make his expression a little more confused and his head a little more awkwardly placed... like he's surveying a body that won't cooperate.

The guy I live with lifted me up...
The guy I live with lifted me up...

We'll modify this one just a little to make his tail shorter and his face a little more square, but this will be very close to the second scene, "The guy I live with lifted me up. I tried to get my legs under me, but they wouldn't cooperate."

Don't worry, buddy.
Don't worry, buddy.

We'll make his face a little more square, and this will be the scene for, "He said, 'Don't worry, I gotcha buddy,' carried me downstairs, and out the front door. That was so nice of him."

Feeling shaky...
Feeling shaky...

We'll use this somewhere to show him trying to sit up, but feeling a little shaky.

Legs won't work...
Legs won't work...

This is a sketch Lucas did for the scene in the parking lot where Benny's legs are dragging behind him.

More scenery...
More scenery...

He added some scenery...

Composite image.
Composite image.

 I used photoshop to compose a scene from several sketches. This one shows the condo complex in the back, to give the readers a reference when he comes back and the door suddenly seems like an impossible distance away. Lucas will render this into the final scene for, "I felt my paws dragging on the ground. 'How strange,' I thought."

Feeling dizzy...
Feeling dizzy...

This is the initial scene for, "By the time we reached the end of the parking lot, my head was spinning." We may use this, or we may make a new scene and use this for the part later in the story when he has collapsed in the park and is spinning into darkness...

That felt good...
That felt good...

This is the sketch for, "He reached down again, and ran his hands over me. That felt good."

Initial return home...
Initial return home...

 This was his first sketch for, "He picked me up, and carried me home. I was still confused, and my head was light, but I was glad not to have to walk all the way back. It suddenly seemed like an impossible distance." I sent him photos of the actual condo, and asked him to make the building stretch off to the horizon, so the door looked really far away. He sent this:

Returning to the condo...
Returning to the condo...

I took several images and made this composite, which he'll use to draw the scene you'll see in the book:

Composite sketch...
Composite sketch...

 

"I gotcha buddy."
"I gotcha buddy."

This is one of my favorites so far, and we'll use this face and its proportions as a model for all the other faces in the story. This is for the scene, "I was so glad to lay down on my bed. My person petted me, saying, 'I gotcha covered, buddy. I gotcha.' I love the way that makes me feel. I know he does. He makes everything better."

"Oh buddy, are you cold?"
"Oh buddy, are you cold?"

This is another one that I really love. It's for the scene, "He felt my paws, and pulled up my lip. He said, 'Oh buddy, are you cold?' I was. My face was cold, my paws were cold."

This is where we are right now. I'm expecting the finished images back soon, at which point I'll lay out the text and he'll start on the next set of scenes. As we move forward, I'll make sure everything is in a format that we can send to you, and to the printer, as soon as all the scenes are done.

Book Delivery Update:

As we approach the holidays, I'm really trying to get the electronic version finished in time to send it to you all, but I don't see any way to get the physical books printed in time. I'm really sorry about that.

When I projected the August delivery date, I was thinking, "I have the story finished. All I have to do is get the art made." If I had known then what I know now, I would have projected a very different date of completion.

That said, we are quickly approaching the one year anniversary of Benny's weird day – January 28th. I have been shy about projecting specific dates for delivery since I was so far off on the first one, but my unflinching goal is to have these books in your hands by then, no matter what.

Thanks again for your support and your patience through all of this. It has been a really "weird year" – in what turned out to be a good way – and you have been a very large part of it!

We did it!!!
over 2 years ago – Thu, Jun 02, 2016 at 01:11:41 PM

We did it!!!
We did it!!!

 This has been nothing short of amazing!  Thank you all so much for helping to make this happen!!!  I'm adding everyone's names to the thank-you page on http://BennyPointer.com, and on his Facebook page right now!  I had a level called "Benny's Better Angels," but you are all the Benny's Better Angel Brigade.

Thank you so much.  I need to take a few minutes and let this sink in.  And then... the next steps!

  • I'll send your questionnaire in which you'll give me your shipping address and other pertinent package information (preferred tee shirt design, size, etc.)
  • We'll pour the coal on the artist selection process.  I can't *wait* to show you the various takes I've seen so far, and I'll still take submissions.  Spread the word if you know an exceptional illustrator.  I want to see how they see Benny!

And now... a couple of minutes of deep breathing, and up go your names on the sites!!!  I'll send a message when they're up.

Thank you all.  This has been an amazing journey so far, and I can't wait to see what comes next!

How to pay, when you'll be charged, and what happens next...
over 2 years ago – Sat, May 28, 2016 at 10:13:54 PM

I've had a number of people ask where they were supposed to put in their payment information.  Please follow these steps to make sure you're all set for tomorrow's campaign closing:

  • Log in to http://kickstarter.com
  • Click on your small profile image in the upper right-hand corner
  • Click on the "Account" link under the "Settings" group (bottom left area of menu)
  • Click on the "Payment Methods" link in the navigation area, just above the horizontal line in the page
  • If you need to add, update, or remove a card or payment method, that's where you do it.

Having studied the Kickstarter system, the most surprising thing I learned was that you can count on 10% of the pledges to have billing problems.  That's a lot!  Hopefully taking this step will reduce that number.

Next steps:
When the campaign closes, Kickstarter will charge your card.  After that, the site will allow me to send you a questionnaire where you'll respond with your shipping address, tee shirt design and size preferences, and any other reward-based information.

I'm really looking forward to this, and can't tell you how grateful I am to each and every one of you!

I'm here if you have any questions.  Just reach out, Benny and I gotcha covered. :)

Please share this video!
over 2 years ago – Fri, May 27, 2016 at 06:52:45 PM

We're closing in on the deadline, and once the campaign closes, I'll know how many books, tee shirts, airt prints, and posters to order.  Thank you so much for your support, and please share this video with anyone in your circle of friends who wanted to back the project, but didn't hear about it.