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Delicate situation with a friend.

Hi, this is not exactly a beware, I'm looking for advice to try and gracefully deal with a friend of mine. For her birthday a month or so ago I said I'd draw her a picture, now I wasn't planning on color or anything, more of a sketch with her favourite fandom couple. The thing is since then I've been approached to be in and art show, an art book and collab on one of the quarterly indie comics in my area.

Now I'd be ok telling another friend that I simply don't have time to do this soon, and to stop asking about when it will be done and details ext. But the thing is this friend has huge rejection issues and we're semi booked (once the script is finished on her end) to do a comic.

What the hell do I do? I mean I've understood her not being able to finish the script for almost 4 months, I can deal with that, she works and does school, but then to get pushy about something I have to put on the back burner every time we talk is not only aggravating but in my mind really hypocritical, especially when I'm illustrating her comic script for FREE and then just taking a cut if it gets published.

Any advice on dealing with this kind of situation? Should I just say that her pushiness is really not helping me want to collab and just deal with the damages to our friendship.

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Comments

( 18 comments — Leave a comment )
hellebore
Mar. 2nd, 2011 08:16 pm (UTC)
Get assertive and explain it. Don't be ubersoft because she's a friend, but also don't be a jerk. Stand your grounds. Once the ball is in her court, it's up to her to decide how she'll react to it. Her reaction is not your fault.
dripbat
Mar. 2nd, 2011 08:47 pm (UTC)
I'd have to agree with this one.
mrst4nkr
Mar. 2nd, 2011 08:18 pm (UTC)
o.<

How long do you think this sketch would take, exactly? Birthdays are pretty special. I would try to do something for her- at least a little something of her character, minimally.

On the other hand, she doesn't need to be pushy about something you're making for her as a gift. It should go without saying that she should be pleased to receive a "happy birthday" from you. No one should expect a gift. People should just be pleased that you remembered~!
suewithers
Mar. 2nd, 2011 08:37 pm (UTC)
She wants something complex involving 2 character.
mrst4nkr
Mar. 2nd, 2011 08:51 pm (UTC)
Yeah, but a gift is a gift. Do what you can, and acknowledge her birthday. She should be grateful for whatever she receives. If not, she's a child. Simply.
megumi_kitten
Mar. 3rd, 2011 12:17 am (UTC)
This. Sketch something cute with the two chars she wants, and if she bitches?

She bitched about a GIFT. Tell her if her heart is set on the other idea, she COULD commision you.
suewithers
Mar. 3rd, 2011 03:26 pm (UTC)
Already got her a gift and went to her part despite a violent allergic reaction I was having to the food.
lurkerwisp
Mar. 3rd, 2011 07:29 am (UTC)
This exactly.

OP, why not do something small that you can fit in your schedule to celebrate her birthday - like a doodle birthday card or something. You can still do the drawing you said you'd give her when you're not so busy if you want, but that way you'd still be acknowledging her birthday at the right time.
suewithers
Mar. 3rd, 2011 03:26 pm (UTC)
Already got her a gift and went to her part despite a violent allergic reaction I was having to the food.
lurkerwisp
Mar. 3rd, 2011 09:35 pm (UTC)
Then you're off the hook on the birthday celebrating. I thought the birthday was yet to happen?

If you did promise, then just tell her you'll do it when you've got time. Gifts, in etiquette terms, are always the choice of the giver. You can take as long as you want, and she doesn't really have any room to complain. Though it's probably a good idea for you to be sure you get to it before her birthday comes around again.
megumi_kitten
Mar. 2nd, 2011 08:19 pm (UTC)
I would honestly put it to her like this:
Work comes first. It's sad but it's true. You need money to get your supplies so you can keep working, right?

Well, tell her that while her project is imporatnt to you, these jobs are concrete in giving you moeny.

And you need to work on them first. If she balks, then I'd just get a bit firm and go "Well, I waited this long on your script because I understood YOU had to work. So please respect that for me."

jadinerhine
Mar. 3rd, 2011 07:17 am (UTC)
^ This.
neive
Mar. 3rd, 2011 07:01 pm (UTC)
Gonna have to agree with this as well. :>
anjel_kitty
Mar. 2nd, 2011 09:52 pm (UTC)
Its a good thing here to reiterate not to mix business with pleasure. I think you friends is projecting some of her own insecurities on you, and expecting you to finish a huge project when you have more viable and paying commissions is rather discourtous and not very friend like. I would express to her that you will try to get back to her project when you have time, but right now you have to take care of things that are actually paying you, and that you hopes she understands why that is important. If she has a hard time trying to understand that perhaps her friendship is based on the service you provide and is something you should re-examine. And while rejection can be hard, learning to deal with it gracefully is a very important skill, as well as learning how to take critical feedback. I'm not sure how you could convey this to your friend, but it is something someone should talk to her about if she is having serious issues with it.
zackfig
Mar. 3rd, 2011 12:24 am (UTC)
No money was exchanged, right? How bout goods? Did your friend gave you goods in order to entice you to keep your part of the deal?

I'm speaking of experience relating to two different friends. One, I commissioned thru the exchange of goods; the other, was a monetary commission -- On both cases, both friends actually failed me and have not delivered anything to this date (in part because I'm their friend and as such, they don't feel as obligated to fulfill their dues)

That being said, if nothing was exchanged -- then it's your right to choose how to proceed her, and I agree with the others in that it's a gift and your friend should understand.



dinogrrl
Mar. 3rd, 2011 12:56 am (UTC)
Like others have said--explain to her in no uncertain terms that you feel bad you haven't been able to finish her project(s) sooner, but Real Life comes before Fun Life. And ask her to please stop bugging you about it, you know you need to do it and her nagging you is not helping the situation. If she has issues with that, that's her problem, and she needs to learn to deal with it because it won't be the last time Real Life deals such hands to her.

I mean really, complaining about gift art is tacky, to say the least.
neolucky
Mar. 3rd, 2011 03:29 am (UTC)
"...but then to get pushy about something I have to put on the back burner every time we talk is not only aggravating but in my mind really hypocritical, especially when I'm illustrating her comic script for FREE and then just taking a cut if it gets published."

Tell her that exactly. You answered your own question, honestly. Just talk to her honestly and openly about it, rejection issues or not. they are her issues, not your own.
lilenth
Mar. 4th, 2011 02:56 pm (UTC)

Your friend's issue are not yours and you should not feel obligated to cater to her simply because of them. Understanding her issues is one thing, hurting yourself because of them is quite another.

I'd simply politely tell her that you have had to put her gift on the backburner for now since your work has become too busy for you to work on it. If she doesn't understand that when you've been patient with her for the same reasons then I'd reconsider the friendship if I was you.

Not to mention, if she's like this over a simple sketch, how will she be over the comic? I'm not exactly great at social interaction but I'd think it's likely that your friendship with this person will not survive a collab project like a comic if it's this stressed and fraught over a gift piece.
( 18 comments — Leave a comment )

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