This is the thing I do:

My notable achievements include living with two dogs and being very, very depressed.

I feel a little greedy because this is technically my second AMA (the first one was three years ago), but I do a lot of slightly greedy things, so I figured that I shouldn't let feeling a little greedy stop me. Also, I needed to find some way to trick everyone into knowing that I wrote a book, and this seemed like one of the sneakiest and least obnoxious options. (If you do not wish to be tricked into knowing that I wrote a book, please look at this extremely confusing picture I drew to help distract you from being aware of the book:

This is already pushing the outer limit of my book promotion comfort level, so if you need a link, you're going to have to work for it. This isn't one of those "I'll spoon-feed you a link to my thing and then half-heartedly answer questions for an hour" AMAs.

You may now ask me anything you want about anything you can think of.

Be as greedy as you want. It would be hypocritical of me to judge you.


Actual proof:

Comments: 4484 • Responses: 71  • Date: 

kevinday2963 karma

I pre-ordered your book on Amazon, then Amazon suggested that people who bought your book also bought spice graters. Are there any suggested spices that go well with your book? Should I practice grating stuff until your book arrives?

Edit: Okay, I gave in and bought the grater. Will report back on Thursday with a full review.

Edit 2: Grater arrived today. Did some amateur testing with nutmeg and came away very pleased. Now to wait for the book for the real test.

Tubemonster2579 karma

I don't know why this happened to you, but I like that it did.

As for spices, I feel like my book would pair well with cumin.

I am eagerly awaiting your review of both the spice grater and the cumin suggestion.

theNYEHHH2641 karma

Now people are going to buy alot of cumin.

Tubemonster1809 karma

I hope the president of the cumin industry gives me an award or something.

theNYEHHH346 karma

He may get around to it but I hear he's very busy around this time of year specifically with cumin related business and other shady things he does in his free time that he wont discuss without a lawyer present.

Tubemonster274 karma

Yeah, I'm probably pretty low on his priority list with all the spice mongering that's been going on. If I wanted an award, I should have put my support behind a less prominent spice, like celery seed.

vendetta211587 karma

Wasn't he indicted for cumin rights violations?

I'm sorry, I had to

Tubemonster63 karma

That's it. The award now belongs to vendetta2115. I'll contact the relevant authorities who will then contact the cumin president.

spokesthebrony83 karma

If Amazon were to pair your book with a kitchen appliance/utensil, what would you have it be? Or did they do good and there can be no better pairing than the Hyperbole and a Spice Grater combo pack?

Tubemonster82 karma

To be honest, I'm pretty opposed to graters of any kind. I feel they are not advancing as fast as the rest of the kitchen gadgets, and I have spent too many angry, bloody-knuckled minutes attempting to use them.

RoyBiggins2408 karma

There's actually a decent chance this is my fault. I have ordered both items, probably within a day or two of each other.

Tubemonster2670 karma


You'll never get away with this!

kronicfeld2540 karma

Did you receive any royalties for this advertisement on a bus in Charlottesville, Virginia and, if not, what kind of finder's fee will I get for helping you collect?

Tubemonster2958 karma

Oh my...

No I did not.

saintlawrence2346 karma

Hi Allie,

When my girlfriend and I broke up during my second year of med school, when I was getting shitty grades and test scores, likely spurring my spiralling into depression and suicidality, I saw your comic. It was exactly how I had felt at that time, and at times earlier in my life. It was amazing to have a comrade, someone who knew exactly how it felt. The pain of existing, feeling like you wanted to cry in front of patients, friends, attendings, everyone. Being a zombie, putting on a mask just to get by each day. Feeling actual physical pain despite feeling numb to everything around you. Amotivation, insomnia, the works. I eventually started taking antidepressants after my psych rotation, when I realized how bad things had gotten. I had plans.

About a month ago, I had a middle-aged patient come into the Emergency Dept. I was working at. On our tracking board he was billed as "Anxiety," which is unusual for a high-volume, trauma-heavy ED. I went in to see him, a former paratrooper from the Gulf War (he said he couldn't tell me about his missions) whose PTSD, anxiety and depression led to his wife and kids leaving him earlier that week, multiple hospitalizations, and multiple suicide attempts. I saw a lot of myself in him, and the first thing I did was to tell him that I take Wellbutrin 300 SR, I know how it feels to want to cry in front of people for no goddamn reason. He told me, "You're the first doc that really understands." Your example, baring your heart to a world full of strangers, helped me to connect with this patient and get him the help he needed. Just like you did with me, despite having never met me.

As a future doctor (8 months!), I just wanted to say thanks for helping me become better at helping others, and for keeping me sane as a comrade in spirit during the worst time of my life.

I hope you're feeling wonderful.

EDIT: Thank you to the kind redditor who gave me reddit gold! I'm very appreciative.

Tubemonster1626 karma

I don't even know what to say, aside from telling you that this made me feel really good and I'm so glad that you (and your patient) were able to find some comfort.

Depression is such an isolating experience, but no matter how far out in space you feel, there's always a tiny amount of comfort from knowing that someone else has been out there too (I mean, I never thought that writing about my depression would circle back around and make me feel less isolated, but in a strange way, it has).

TheBear881958 karma

Book link for the lazy.

Sorry, I don't have any questions. I don't know much about you or what you do. But, hi! Thanks for doing an AMA and have a fantastic day!

Fine, that's kind of a cop out. Uhhh, what slightly greedy thing do you do most often?

Tubemonster2635 karma

I do nice things so I can feel good about how nice I'm being.

TinyCactus1132 karma

Now that's a cop out.

Tubemonster3035 karma

Your face is a cop out.

TinyCactus590 karma

Ah... well shit.

Tubemonster959 karma

It's okay. Everyone's face is a cop out sometimes.

davey_darling794 karma

That's a step up from Louis C.K. who just thinks about doing nice things so he can then think about how nice of a guy he would be if he did those nice things.

Tubemonster881 karma

I do that a lot. But then I found out about it, so I had to actually start doing nice things every now and then to disguise the fact that I wouldn't normally be doing them from myself.

Simzter71 karma

Are you disguising the facts from yourself or from everyone else or from both? 'Cause it takes way more effort to disguise stuff from yourself, but on the other hand it's not that bad if you get caught.

Edit - scratch that, it just might be worse getting caught disguising stuff from yourself. It's awfully hard getting away from yourself.

Tubemonster170 karma

Yeah. I'm always trying to pull one over on myself. I want to be a genuinely good person so that I can have the satisfaction of knowing that I'm like that, but there are too many slightly shitty parts, so I have to pretend so I'll believe myself.

beevbo1869 karma

When you draw do you:

  • a) Use a mouse with great difficulty.
  • b) Use a pen tablet.
  • c) Scream at your monitor until art oozes out the USB ports.

Tubemonster2243 karma

I use a Wacom Bamboo tablet, but I used to just use my track pad. It was a dark time.

I've never been able to make option C work for me.

ShamelessKarmaWhore690 karma

Have you tried screaming in a different pitch? That usually does the trick for my USB ports.

Tubemonster312 karma

I fixed my refrigerator like that once. It was making this horrible screeching sound, so I figured I would try to play its game.

ForgettableUsername104 karma

That's a classic tactical blunder. According to Sun Tzu, one should never allow a kitchen appliance to choose the battlefield.

Tubemonster154 karma

So I should have taken it into the bathroom before beginning to yell at it.

ItWillBeMine277 karma

Would you like to come give us a try in /r/redditgetsdrawn with your wacom tablet? Maybe? Maaaaaaaaybe?

Tubemonster107 karma

Oh my, I could spend entirely too much time there.

youlivewithapes1860 karma

Allie, does being objectively awesome help alleviate your depression?

You're about to publish a highly anticipated book, you have a Wikipedia page about you / your blog that is viewed and edited by people other than yourself, and you painted a portrait of depression that has profoundly resonated with too many people to count. Do you think that having more tangible, external successes like these makes it easier to avoid being sad? Are those things any better at battling unhappiness than your friends just telling you you're a swell gal, or are all weapons equally futile against the sneaky self-hate spiral?

Also, I want to try to impress upon you how much I've been anticipating your book. I pre-ordered it TWO HOUSES ago. That's right, I have moved TWICE since preordering your book (and thankfully remembered to change my shipping address both times). I don't know how long a house is in minutes, but I have lived in three of them while looking forward to your book, and that's a lot of looking-forward-to.

Tubemonster2086 karma

By my calculations, that would be about nine hundred million house minutes. I'm thoroughly impressed!

In the first stages of my depression (several years ago), there was a bit of self loathing involved, but anymore, it's just an emptiness and inability to engage with things. In other words, I have everything to be happy about, but when I'm very depressed, I'm far too detached to enjoy anything.

As for the self loathing, I definitely used to be a lot more anxious than I am now. And in a way, I think my depression cured my anxiety. I might be an emotionless wasteland inside, but it's really hard to upset me!

Anmorata1509 karma

How has Simple Dog adjusted to the move? It's been a few years, I can only assume that there's no need for foot booties unless it snows..

Tubemonster1792 karma

It seems that she finally accepts this as her home. She still runs in crazy circles on the wood floors sometimes, but it's because she's feeling crazy, not because she's struggling to cope with change.

2BNamedLater1035 karma

I think you're one of the first/only complete strangers that I actively worried about for an extended period of time and I just wanted to say that I'm so happy you're back.

Question: Does the "all the things" meme bug you or are you okay that it gets used for .. uh .. all the things?

Tubemonster1139 karma

The meme doesn't bug me. I'm happy that people are having fun with it.

It does bug me when it's used to endorse products or to promote causes I don't agree with (I don't mind people having different opinions from the ones I have, but I certainly don't want my artwork being used to promote, for example, pro-life or anti-gay viewpoints).

bevisvs1028 karma

Dear Allie, I just woke up at 5:50am (my time) in order to ask you a question but I can't think of anything funny / original / brilliant enough to ask you to ensure that you'll want to answer me / notice who I am / say something that makes me feel special and loved.

What should I ask you so that your answer will hit all of the above points?

Your friend and mine, Bevis.

Tubemonster1346 karma

Perhaps you could ask me to post the picture I drew of you as a starfish. I mean, if you want everyone to see it.

shanty_pants665 karma


Tubemonster1074 karma

As you wish:

(Black bar to protect Bevis's wretched privacy)

IAWPS1011 karma

Hi Allie! I have a close friend who is depressed right now, and I don't know what to do! From the perspective of someone who has dealt with depression, what can I do to help her?

ninja edit: Oh oh I have another question. When is the last time you've had chocolate milk? Did you enjoy it?

Tubemonster2235 karma

The best thing I can say is don't try to fix it for them. That can be hard because it's natural to want to help, but clinical depression doesn't really have a reason behind it or a clear solution, and all the helpful advice almost makes the depressed person feel pressured to pretend they feel better so they don't frustrate the people trying to help them.

It was incredibly relieving for me to know that I could just sit next to someone and watch a movie or eat dinner or whatever, and not have to worry about making them feel like everything was okay. Because it wasn't. And I didn't know when it would be again. But it felt nice to not have to pretend.

Rock_Me-Amadeus2257 karma

I feel this fits well here:

Tubemonster1655 karma

This is probably the most helpful thing that could have happened short of spontaneously not feeling depressed anymore.

pepperman7554 karma

We will never know about the chocolate milk.

Tubemonster811 karma

Shit! Sorry!

I haven't had chocolate milk in probably too long. Perhaps I shall remedy that today, and then my answer to the question will be "right now."

tubernonster770 karma

Dear Allie Brosh,

I am a HUGE fan. I am sure you hear that like all the time, and I won't claim to be your biggest fan, because that gives off a psycho stalker vibe, and I'm not that, even though right now, I bet it seems a little creepy that my username references you. Probably should have created a throwaway, huh?

I have two H&aH t-shirts: The Alot and Clean All the Things!/Clean all the things? When I wear them in public, I make friends with anyone who gets them. My fiance pre-ordered your book for me as a surprise one day because he knew it would make me happy. It did.

I'm babbling! Questions: 1) You have almost a cult like following. Have you ever considered using your powers for evil?

2) Are you accepting applications for an online BFF?

3) [serious] Do lots of people just randomly ask you about your depression after your two poignant posts about the topic?

4) In your long absences where the internet worries and frets about you, do you still check sites like reddit under a secret, incognito identity? (You don't have to tell us what it is, obviously.)

5) I'm a reasonably good cook and an out-of-this-world dessert maker. If, for some obviously horrible reason, you were stuck in South Dakota, what could I make you that would make you happy? (besides corn.)

6) On a scale from the most painful level on your pain scale to riding a pterodactyl into battle, where would you rate your book?

Tubemonster971 karma

1) The evilest thing I've considered doing is asking all of my readers to send weird things to one of my friends.

2) Yes. Please describe for me your attributes and shortcomings.

3) I wouldn't say randomly, but people do ask me about it. I don't mind at all. If anything, I like that they are willing to talk about it with me.

4) I was pretty shut off from the internet during most of that time, but I do have an incognito Reddit account.

5) My favorite food is definitely nachos. I also enjoy guacamole.

6) 16.154 pliestocenes.

MsWhatsit769 karma

Hi, Allie - my question is about Internet fame. How has it impacted your work/creative process, if at all? It seems that having the huge pressure of having tons of adoring fans all waiting anxiously for your next update could either be gratifying (yay, fans!) or terrifying (OMG, fans) or somewhere in between. And were you surprised at how popular you became and how quickly?

Thanks for doing this AMA, btw.

Tubemonster1232 karma

It was definitely surprising when things started taking off.

I'm a bit reclusive, so I don't think I'll ever be one of those people who's constantly present on social media, but I'm also pretty emotionally stable (doubly so ever since most of my feelings melded into a single, flat anti-feeling), and that makes it easier to just take things in stride and have fun.

In the world of writing internet content, there's all this talk of "maintaining an audience" and "staying on the radar," but I'd rather just work really hard for a really long time on one thing that I feel really good about publishing. I know how much work I put into the things I publish, and I suppose that makes it easier to feel confident.

hulachan734 karma

I know you are against the idea of a donation button, but it feels a bit unfair that I've both laughed and been brought to tears by your writing and can't pay you directly for it. Especially since I actually paid money to watch a film starring a car tire once. I'll continue to buy stuff, but are there other ways we can say thank you? Causes you'd like us to donate to on your behalf, maybe?

Tubemonster735 karma

Was it the horror movie about the car tire? (I mean, there could be more than one...) I keep meaning to watch that.

As for causes, if you really want to give money to something, perhaps endometriosis research? It's pretty poorly understood, and it's hella painful and horrible. (I feel sufficiently thanked already, though!)

NotLostOnAnAdventure291 karma

Thank you for giving a shout out to endometriosis research! It's painful and debilitating, and not many people know about it. The more awareness (and research!) the better.

Sincerely~ Hater of Endo/Lover of Hyperbole and a Half

Tubemonster669 karma

Solidarity fist.

I had everything except my right ovary taken out in September. Everything was all scarred together with my other organs, and my cysts were massive. The years before I was diagnosed were so frustrating and painful. I can't even tell you how many times I got the ol' "Oh, we all get cramps, honey. Just take an Advil." It's like they thought I was lying about how much pain I was in. It was so bad I would pass out and throw up! Morphine didn't even put a dent in it.

Anyway, it was really hard for me to find anyone who would take me seriously, and for a condition as serious as this, that seems unacceptable. I have permanent internal damage from going un-diagnosed for so long.

atxav664 karma

Allie, everyone I know is over the moon about your work. Like, nearly literally everyone.

Are there any interesting or surprising times when you've heard something along the lines of "[do] ALL THE THINGS!"? 'cause it's become part of our common language.

Thank you for making yourself vulnerable in public. Supah Brave, IMO.

Tubemonster1071 karma

I hear it every now and again, and it surprises me every time it happens.

For example, I watch a lot of videos of people playing Magic: The Gathering (because some horribly delusional part of me thinks maybe I can be really good at this!), and I've heard the phrase a couple times during games ("Tap ALL the mana!" "Counter ALL the spells!" etc.)

oh_jonas249 karma

/r/magicTCG in case you weren't aware. Have you seen Sean Plott's Spellslinger videos? They're great.

Tubemonster395 karma

I'm well aware ;) (but I haven't watched those videos yet).

I almost always post under my incognito account these days, though.

egometry91 karma

Wow, cool. Do you prefer Draft or Constructed?

Drafting Magic has gotten me through my worst periods of life. I find it lets me have social activity when the rest of my brain rebels against the concept.

Tubemonster237 karma

Modern is my favorite format right now, but I LOVED DGM draft. I haven't quite warmed up to Theros yet (it's hard readjusting after the smorgasbord that RTR block was), but I'll get there.

And Magic has definitely seen me through some rough patches. It reminds me of my childhood, and it's a great way to get lost in thought!

Erra08 karma

You totally could be really good at MTG! You just need somebody willing to show you the ropes. I'm sure there are plenty of people who would be eager to do so.

Be warned, its a time and money sink though.

Tubemonster9 karma

I mean, I'm good-ish at it (I win 8-4s on Modo with some regularity, but I'm not, like, on the pro-tour or anything), but I'm nowhere near good enough to justify how much time and money I spend on it, haha.

constantlybothered650 karma

are you a trained artist? can you create art in formats other than ms paint? and can we see?

Tubemonster1788 karma

I haven't had any formal training aside taking art classes in school, but I've always enjoyed drawing.

Here's a digital painting I did of one of my dogs when I was trying to get used to using my new tablet:

etherealclarity602 karma

ALLIE ALLIE ALLIE So glad to see you back with your comic and general internet presence! (I hope the depression continues to be beaten back by random pieces of corn everywhere.)

My question is this: what is your everyday life like these days?

Random addendum: I actually pre-ordered your book TWICE because I forgot that I pre-ordered the first time, and rather than cancel one of them I'm just excited that I'll be getting two copies.

Tubemonster1403 karma

My everyday life goes something like:

9:00 AM: Wake up, then lie in bed for several minutes, staring at the ceiling and thinking morning thoughts (the weird thoughts you have when you aren't fully awake yet).

9:10 AM Get up, stumble downstairs, make Irish breakfast tea with ludicrous amounts of cream. Walk back upstairs, probably dribbling tea everywhere because I filled the cup way too full and I never learn, and then lie in bed and drink tea and surf the internet.

Several hours later: need to take shit. Sit on toilet and read for half an hour.

Noon-ish: Feeling inspired by my bathroom reading session, decide to write.

9:00 PM: Entire day has been lost to an uncontrollable writing binge. Realize that I haven't eaten all day. Go downstairs, make nachos. Go back upstairs, continue binge-writing until too tired.

Rinse and repeat.

Of course, there are days thrown in where I do different things, like going outside. I like the days that I go outside.

NoTimeForInfinity454 karma

What are you poop reading lately?

Tubemonster419 karma

Fierce Pajamas.

TheRainMonster389 karma

If you add a little coconut oil to your tea it takes the cream thing to a whole new level.

Tubemonster598 karma

Holy shit — really?

Where do I get coconut oil?

CollinMcCollin986 karma


Tubemonster738 karma

Far out.

strangeplace4snow416 karma

Hey Allie! Thank you for being you, and sharing the results with us. I've been following your blog for years and can't wait to get my grubby hands on your book.

I don't know if you realize it, but having someone with your talent and unique voice express what it means to have depression has helped me and others a lot with talking to other people about it, especially to those who haven't experienced it themselves. Keep being awesome, and good luck with that book launch!

Oh, question! Right. So… would you rather fight a shark bear-sized alot, or a hundred alot-sized shark bears?

Tubemonster590 karma

I'm glad that it made it easier to talk about!

As for the question, I'm going to choose the one shark bear sized Alot because shark-bears and Alots are roughly the same size, and fighting one of them sounds much easier than fighting a hundred of them.

strangeplace4snow287 karma

My bad. I was imagining an alot being more along the size of a capybara for some reason, but upon revisiting this, it's clear I was mistaken.

NotADayGoesBy648 karma

Well it's certainly not alittle...

Tubemonster501 karma

Oh goodness.

busterbrother412 karma


I just wanted to share a story about how your story has effected people. I work as a child psychologist currently in school for a masters in Counseling and Psychology. I mostly work with kids who are 13 to 18. In my school, a good deal of people have no experience with depression, and often come from a well to do background and have not had struggles with depression. When the subject of depression is brought up with my fellow students, they will often assume that it is something that needs fixing, or not fully grasping why people can't just "pull themselves out." I myself have never gone through depression, but had several close friends go through and often still battle with depression. Luckily, I had one of my friends explain it to me in a way that made sense, and I just sat with them for a day and was pissed and sad at things with them. It suddenly just made sense, how one can be therapeutic by simply admitting that they don't get it, and by allowing someone to just be depressed at things, and be there with them. It's hard to describe what depression is like for people having not experienced it (myself included.) I decided to post your blog entries about depression in the school, and did a whole presentation on the. The professor said that this is the best way that he has ever seen someone talk about depression to someone who has never experienced it, and has now incorporated it into his class!

But it doesn't end there. I had a client who was suffering from depression (whose story will be changed slightly here to protect their identity and maintain confidentiality). He/she was suffering from depression, and was annoyed because they said that they knew that I couldn't "fix it" and that I didn't understand "how it was" and that "no one understands it who hasn't been through it." I told them that they were right, that I didn't understand, and asked if they could teach me how it was. They told me that there was no way, and that this is something "no one can get." He/she was contemplating suicide, and truly believed no one could relate to her/him. I printed out your blog a second time, and gave it to her/him the next session. They read it, teared up while reading it, and hugged me after, saying that whoever wrote this gets it, and that he/she felt that if someone could make it, then so could she. I silently told myself if I ever met you, that I would let you know what a great thing this has been for someone you don't know. They processed through it, and terminated sessions with hope.

I don't know. Maybe this is a stupid story, but I really wanted you to know this. You have helped lots of future practicing counselors better understand depression, and gave a small kid hope.

TLDR: Allie, your awesome and have helped people with your blog. Good job. Have a cookie.

Tubemonster310 karma

Thank you for sharing this. I always have a harder time responding to the really meaningful stories (I feel like anything I could say wouldn't accurately reflect how much I appreciate them), but I wanted to say thank you.

buntysoap409 karma

Do you still run? Competitively? Or maybe a friendly 5k on occasion?

Tubemonster700 karma

I had surgery in September, so I just started running again a couple days ago. I really missed it.

In an ideal world, I'd love to take another stab at running competitively, but right now I'm just trying to build back up to running regularly again.

stellaluna29392 karma

Allie, you are one of the most entertaining writers I've ever read. Thank you for making me laugh until I cry! That said, what are your top 3 favorite books?

Tubemonster747 karma

Thank you very much!

It's hard to pick favorites, but here are three books that made big impressions on me:

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adadams

Rally Round the Flag, Boys by Max Shulman

The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien

I also read a lot of Dave Barry and Calvin and Hobbes when I was growing up, but I wouldn't be able to single out just one of the books.

joabaldwin314 karma

Hey Allie, I made this horrifyingly NSFW alot of genitalia for my boyfriend some years ago, for Valentine's day. I just wanted you to be aware that you inspired me to draw that many penises:

Keep inspiring people to draw penises, please.

Tubemonster215 karma

My crowning achievement!

calai313 karma

Hi Allie. No questions, just really wanted to thank you for your posts about your battle with depression. I am going through it right now and it really helped me feel like I wasn't alone. I haven't found my kernel of corn under the fridge yet, but I feel like I'm getting there.

Tubemonster362 karma

Hey man, getting there is a good place to be (at least relatively speaking). And I hope you do find your corn kernel (whatever form it takes).

Polter-Cow307 karma

Thank you for sharing your honest and hilarious stories with us. You've given us words and pictures to express emotions we weren't able to express ourselves. I know it's weird to think about the impact you've had on the lives of people you've never even met or talked to, but you've done good work.

I try to do everything "like a motherfucking ADULT" but adulting is hard sometimes. What do you wish someone had told you when you were a kid about being an adult?

Tubemonster504 karma

Thank you!

I'm not sure I would have wanted to know much about adulthood as a child because I would have just spent the rest of my childhood being afraid of my impending adulthood, but one thing that I think I could have learned sooner is "some people are dicks. Leave them be and try not to take it personally."

SunshineSeeker271 karma

How are you?

No, really, how are you doing? Your comic about depression was really powerful, and it meant a lot to me and others who have experienced depression. Are you doing better now?

Also: pirate or ninja? Robot or monkey?

Tubemonster435 karma

I'm still depressed, but how depressed I am varies, which is good.

Much of the time, it's a comfortable numbness that just makes things feel muted. Other times, I'm standing in the shower or something and I can feel the nothingness hurtling toward me at eight thousand miles per hour and there's nothing I can really do aside from let it happen and wait until it goes away again.

I had some health problems recently that made things feel a lot worse, but I'm slowly rebounding from that and just trying to do the things that help keep my head above water in little ways (sleeping enough, eating enough, going for walks or runs, making sure to not overextend myself, etc.) I'm trying to be patient.

thesweats40 karma

About your health; did the surgery indeed scare the remaining one into behaving?

Tubemonster81 karma

I don't know yet. Its main blood supply was taken out with my uterus/tubes, so I was told that it will take a while for it to kick back on again.

I have some sweet scars, though. It looks like I was abducted by aliens and used for research.

RoarKitty271 karma

Hi Allie! I'm a huge fan. I was wondering what your usual process is for your entires. Do you have the details of the story in mind before you begin drawing or do you ever have the drawing visualized in your head and flesh out the written details later?

*edit to add: Will simple dog be making an appearance in your book?

Tubemonster614 karma

I've learned that I need to have the text of a post firmly in place before I start drawing or else I will end up being wildly inefficient and having to draw three hundred extra pictures because I decided to restructure the story eighteen times.

As I'm writing, though, I'll put in descriptions of the pictures I want to include. For example, here's a snippet from an early draft of my latest post:

I had never felt so powerful before. The feeling tingled at the base of my spine, slowly intensifying and spreading throughout my body. And as I stood there, the power surging through me like jolts of electricity, it became clear that I would need to find some way to use it. Any way. Immediately.

[Me, still standing there, looking sort of desperate] [Me, flipping out, other children running away] [One more frame with me throwing things, maybe?] [Standing in middle of room, looking crazed, teacher is saying "NO. This is not inside behavior!" I am not even aware she exists. I am a dinosaur]

I had completely lost control of my body. I was a mindless juggernaut, the puppet for a force greater than myself.

[Picture, me close up, looking over my shoulder as I'm scribbling on the walls with a giant handful of crayons. Crazed]

ninjalibrarian258 karma

Hi Allie, I don't actually have a question yet - I'm just relaying on a message.

A bunch of people from the forum want me to thank you for being awesome and creating it, so "Thanks for being awesome and creating the forum!"

Alot of them aren't redditors, so it took it upon myself to relay on their gratitude.

Edit: Apparently I lied, some are making accounts just for you.

Tubemonster280 karma

Hey! I'm glad to hear Very Serious is still out there, being anything but very serious. One of these days, I'm going to get on there again. I have such fond memories of the early days of that forum.

DvS21244 karma

Hi, fan of the simple dog here. How's it doing with stairs?

Tubemonster885 karma

Oh, she has her ups and downs, but one step at a time, right?

Yuoaman251 karma

Allie you are simultaneously the worst and also the best.

Tubemonster263 karma

The blorst?

How did that L get in there, though???

frumple314225 karma

Hi Allie, Wife and I have busted many a gut reading your stuff. Our daughter always asks to go the "parp."

FYI, here is the cake my wife did for her 1st birthday in 2011.

Before Cake Smash: Imgur After Cake Smash: Imgur

Tubemonster139 karma

That is an extremely accurate re-creation of that drawing! Your wife is good at cakes.

AcesulfameZ201 karma

Hey Allie,

Big fan. Your perspective on depression really helped me get through some hard times, so thank you so much!

My question is: do you have a routine to get those "creative juices" flowing or help bring about inspiration?

Tubemonster376 karma

I seem to get the best ideas when I am nowhere near a writing surface (in the shower, when I'm on a ten mile run out in the desert, in the car going 80 miles per hour, etc), so sometimes I'll just go sit a long ways away from my paper and pens and see what happens.

Really, though, the best way I've found is to keep a collection of ideas and constantly revisit them. I'll often write something down that doesn't seem like it will go anywhere, then look at it three months later and suddenly know what to do because I have a different perspective on it.

KhalReesesPieces61 karma

You should invest in some shower crayons

Tubemonster80 karma

What? Get out of here — those are real???

Guysmiley777197 karma

I don't think I've ever laughed as hard at something as "Dogs don't understand basic concepts like moving".

So, um, thanks for that.

Tubemonster79 karma

Thank my dogs! We all suffered during that ordeal, but they suffered the most, I think.

mcjergal192 karma

Are you still with Boyfriend?

Tubemonster263 karma

I am!

(He was actually answering questions earlier, I think. I don't know what he said, though. Hopefully nothing embarrassing!)

dunchen22197 karma

Hopefully not! :)

Tubemonster325 karma

If you did, though, I'm going to make a really obnoxious beeping sound for the rest of the evening to spite you.

identity_no2184 karma

Hi Allie! First of all thank you so much. I study medicine, but there's no textbook in the world that could have explained better what depression actaully means than two dead fish. so THANK YOU! Question: are there any new stories about Simple Dog in the pipeline? if not: could you please just make something up :p

PS I already bought your book. So this drawing just confused me and gave me a headache.

Tubemonster32 karma

There are a couple new dog stories in the book, and I've got two I'm working on for the future (I don't know when they'll be done, but I know I want to do them at some point!)

quantumlevitation179 karma


I love your work and I'm going to buy your book.

My question is: are there stages that you go through when you find internet fame? What are the good parts? What are the bad parts?



Tubemonster354 karma

I can only speak for myself, but there were a few defined stages, yes.

In the first stage, I was just excited that people noticed me. Then I got really, really, really self conscious. Then there were several hundred mini-stages where I alternated between not letting it bother me and extremely letting it bother me. Then I became horribly, horribly depressed (for unrelated reasons, and possibly not reasons at all) and I got a taste of what it feels like to not give a fuck about anything, which helped me be less anxious about everything and eventually led to the state I'm currently in, which is giving the appropriate amount of fucks and not stressing out.

The main bad parts are the times where I end up hating whatever I'm working on because I've been working on it too long.

Conversely, a very good part is reading something I wrote that I thought I hated when I wrote it six months earlier and actually laughing out loud at myself.

Most of the parts are a mix of bad and good. Like, I thought the last big push of finishing my book was a bad part (I was working 14 to 18 hours a day, almost every day for two whole months), but, looking back at it, I have this weird, Stockholm Syndrome-like fondness for it, so maybe it was a good part. That whole stretch of time was surreal.

chemenger8177 karma

Hi Allie, I hope all is well.

We've seen at least a little bit from your side, but how did Boyfriend manage himself during your depression? Though I cannot fully understand the feelings of depression (having not personally experienced it), dating someone who is depressed can be an incredibly isolating experience. I'd be interested in hearing some of his feelings on the last ~2 years or how you felt about your impact on him.

I preordered your book in hardcover a few weeks ago as thanks for all the enjoyment you've given me as an artist. I cannot wait to read it. Thanks, Allie.

Tubemonster280 karma

When I'm depressed, I don't want to see anyone, but I still somehow like being around Duncan, so we watched a lot of movies and watched/played a lot of Magic: the Gathering online together. It's comforting when you can just be with someone and not have to pretend or feel pressured to feel better than you are able to feel.

It was a pretty dark time for both of us, though. I think he was also a bit depressed about things in his own life. We tried our best to be fair to each other and talk it through as much as possible. As long as you're being honest, fair, and communicating everything as clearly as you can, it's possible to make it through some very difficult things without putting too much strain on a relationship.

Maybe I can get him to give you a better answer from his perspective, though.

zellsbells118 karma

1) does it ever annoy you when people try to relate to your depression, yet they clearly have no idea what you're going through because they just having a bad hair day or something? Or do you just say "eh, they're trying" and shrug it off?

2) your art style looks like it's drawn in MS Paint and is really simple. Not judging, I swear to glob, I think it's great and fits your blog posts perfectly. But I have a sneaking suspicion that you have some other art talents that you're hiding. Just curious if that's true.

3) Will you be on my podcast? *the greedy question, but not too greedy, I won't post a link/the name unless you say it's ok.

Tubemonster167 karma

1) I wouldn't say it annoys me (I'm pretty difficult to annoy). I try not to judge because I never have all the information, and even if it sounds like someone doesn't understand, maybe they do and they just aren't explaining it well. Or maybe they don't, but it's really no harm to me either way.

2) I'm not the best artist in the world, but I can draw fairly well if I I'm trying. The crudeness of the drawings in my stories is purposeful. It's just the funniest way I could think of to draw things (funniest to me, that is). It actually takes a surprisingly long time to get even a crude drawing right, though. I usually have a very specific picture in my head of what I'm going for, and it can take a while to get there.

3) I'd need to have you go through my publisher for the official request ([email protected]), but depending on when you'd want me to do it (the next couple weeks are going to be unbelievably busy), I might be game.

hahaheeheehoho111 karma

We love you Allie! Question: What is one question you wish people asked but never do?

Tubemonster174 karma

I don't actually have one, but I suppose I enjoy answering questions about details of particular posts/stories. Writing them is such a solitary process, and there are all these decisions and breakthroughs that never leave my head aside from influencing what the story looks like. I love when someone notices some little detail that I was secretly hoping someone would notice.

trickycrayon103 karma

Will you be doing book signings on the east coast?!

Also, do you purposely try to make things as hilarious as possible, or do your retellings just sort of come out that way? I can't read most of your posts at work without risking people thinking I'm going insane because I can't not laugh.

Tubemonster143 karma

I'll be at WORD bookstore in New York on October 30th!

And whatever hilarity I manage to get across is almost definitely the byproduct of very purposeful struggling. I wish I could be accidentally funny more often.

Neuromaster98 karma

Hey Allie, what are the names of your dogs? Their real names?

Tubemonster164 karma

The simple dog is named Kellie, but I almost always call her Roo (it just fits better). The helper dog was named Nyah by one of the shelter workers, and because she was in the shelter for so long (months), she learned to respond to it. We kept it the same because we wanted to limit the number of new things she had to adjust to. She also usually gets called by a nickname, though ("Toady." We started calling her "Nyote" because she sort of looks like a coyote, then that evolved into "Nytote," then we shortened it and it ended up sounding like "Toady.")

Yuoaman84 karma

Hey, Allie! I don't know if you remember me, it's been a long time since you last swung by Very Serious, but I have the most important question you will probably ever receive:

How much wood would a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood?

Tubemonster136 karma


(And yes, I remember you!)

cunningest_stunt51 karma

Hi Allie,

Did your depression come out of the blue, or were you just really good at hiding it? I'm a huge fan, and I had no idea.

Thanks for being you, you are an inspiration.

P.s. I believed your first proof.

Tubemonster70 karma

I think I was really good at hiding it, even from myself. It took me a long time to figure out what was going on.

Even now, I feel like everyone can tell (mostly because I feel like I can't possibly be generating the correct facial expressions without the normal amount of enthusiasm behind them), but I'm told that I don't show it.

Thank you for believing me.

cauliflower8744 karma

Allie, HUGE fan. Your blog has helped me get through a lot of things, so thanks for that (damn that sounds trite but SRSLY THOUGH THANK YOU).

My question: why is it that you feel so uncomfortable promoting your book? I think it's great and I can't wait to get it and tell everyone about it.

Tubemonster90 karma

I think it's because it makes me feel insincere. On a cognitive level, I know that isn't true (it never bothers me when other people promote their things, and I know full well that I am being sincere), but I can't seem to shake the feeling of "everyone is going to think I've just been using them to make money this whole time!" I don't want to make anyone feel like that.

I guess it feels sort of like asking a friend for money. Even if you need to do it, you feel scummy about it.

VictoriousEgret43 karma

When did you discover you had such a talent for story telling?

Tubemonster89 karma

Haha, my mom would say it was when I started telling "Dark and Stormy Night" stories.

I was three, probably, and I would force my entire family (I lived with my mom, dad, sister, grandma, and aunt) to gather around and watch me act out stories with my toy dinosaurs. Most of them involved Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer in some way (I didn't have a Rudolph toy, so he had to be played by a dinosaur).

gotananswerforevery26 karma

I want to ask you prefer mayonnaise, or would rather that your local WNBA franchise were to build a Lego bedroom set for you.

Plus I echo the thanks for the forum, it really helped me while I was recovering from the bear mauling.

Edit: Also, edit.

Tubemonster55 karma

Lego bedroom set. All the way.

Does the mattress have to be made out of legos, though?