Four years have come and gone since we tossed out our first blog and staked a claim on the Martian frontiers of the WordPress.com platform. Since 2011, our informal quarterly reports gathered our thoughts on this off-beat hobby of comic book and art blogging. This year, we’re going to close the book on the quarterly reports with this fourth anniversary post. We’ve got a pretty massive Archive page on the top menu of pages now, so lose yourself in our virtual bookshelves any time you want.

Our four years here on Mars have helped us get back in touch with all the things we loved about comic books. By connecting with others, we’ve gained context about the books and art we love, and discovered new things. By focusing on the work of other artists, sharing it, discussing it, we’ve gained a clearer sense of just what it is that moves us when we experience art. And that has opened up some doors to creative expression that had long been closed to us due to our exclusive focus on guitar.

Mars Will Send No More has been an outstanding vehicle for learning. As a vehicle for expressing our unbridled enthusiasm for comic books and related art, it has been a fun and stress-free way to keep current on social media and web trends that matter in our professional life. You have no idea how many times we have tried to explain what makes our post about Wolverine getting his adamantium ripped out so popular, but it makes a prime example for explaining SEO and content basics to people with questions.

We still don’t make a dime off this website. We probably spend 120 bucks every year to keep it ad-free, have extra storage for all our images, register the domain and email address, and tweak the basic “Grunge” theme with a few customizations. We might consider granting ad space to a sponsor who wanted to cover that annual cost this year. But who in their right mind would want their site advertised next to our maniacal, Kirby-Krackle-drenched, utterly unhinged ravings about the glory of sequential art?

Our affiliate relationship with Amazon doesn’t generate many free books for us, maybe $20 in store credit in four years. The affiliate relationship with MyComicShop is a better bonus for us. Since June 2010, when we were on Blogspot in embryonic form, we have referred $5,840.53 in sales to MyComicShop. This earned us store credit of $876.08 over four and a half years. Much of what we pick up there gets blogged about here. Now, due to desperate personal circumstances since Fall 2013, we’ve sold many of those books on eBay. That might be the one exception to “not making a dime off this website,” but it wasn’t an exception we were thrilled to make.

Regardless, life marches on, and comic books remain stunningly awesome! We have some favorites to share with you this year, including scans we made of some cherished books before selling them. We have bi-weekly posts scheduled for the next couple of months and enough in the drafts folder to indulge in weekly comic books obsessions for most of the year. Thank you for dropping by and indulging with us.

Tomorrow the world.