4 years! I know this isn’t the place for personal stories or serious stuff, but I’ll let the moderators make the call.
Four years ago today I was on a camping trip when my parents called to excitedly tell me that Nevermore had been printed, my first woot success after many attempts. Three hours later, they called again from a hospital, sobbing. My dad had just been diagnosed with terminal cancer, and had a few months to live. My wife and I immediately quit our jobs and moved back across the country to be with my family. My dad was always a numbers guy, and he distracted himself almost hourly by checking on Nevermore’s sales numbers, giving us regular updates on daily sales rates and trends. He was also lucid enough to celebrate my next print two months later, but not my third one. My wife and I were doing our best to emotionally support both our families through the cancer and some other issues, but it didn’t leave us time or energy to find work again. When our savings ran out, we literally lived off of the sales of Nevermore. As I see it, that’s a gift from God (I know the perceived irony, please take the debate elsewhere). I’m not an artist, and usually my designs do miserably. Even in that Text as Art derby, I spent all night on an entry that got 17 total votes, but made Nevermore in an hour. Since then, Woot has sold it as a tote bag, long sleeve shirt, and two kinds of hoodies. There’s an Old Testament prophet named Elijah, and the Bible records a rough time in his life where he had to hide in the wilderness during a famine. Elijah had no food and wasn’t a hunter, but God sent ravens to feed him every day (1 Kings 17). My wife and I half-joke that we are fed by Ravens. Nevermore is a crazy, bittersweet reminder of blessings and tragedy for me, it was an afterthought design that has become a significant factor in my life. Other than my wedding ring, there’s not a single item I own with as much emotion attached to it as this shirt; I tried it on when it came and haven’t worn it since. But I love that my friends and family wear it like some kind of family crest.
I understand that my relatives buy Nevermore to support me, creatively and financially. But I can only appreciatively marvel that ten of thousands of wooters also bought one. So thanks, wooters, for your purchases these four years, and thanks Woot, for being my Prints Charming.