We are, of course, towards the end of 2015 and there are plenty of holidays and general festivities going on if you hadn’t noticed. There are uncomfortable office parties, taking your kids to see holiday icons at the mall, travel to see Aunt Bethel who you really didn’t want to see but your sister guilted you into because she’s really old and this may be the last time she’ll be able to see the family, extra long lines to wait in at the post office, and then the actual holidays themselves. Even if you take those last seven days of vacation that you didn’t take earlier because you were super-busy at work since they won’t backfill that other roll and your vacation time won’t roll over into next year, you’ll likely find much of your time in a half-crazed frenzy until you wake up mid-afternoon on January 1 with a roaring headache and a sudden feeling of dread as you realize you have to go back to work on Monday, and you not only are exhausted but you feel like you got run over by a bus.

You know what I’m talking about, right?

Of course you do! Because this is the 21st century America, and that’s how things work these days! All fired up and going full throttle even when you’re supposed to be relaxing and enjoying some quality time with your friends and family. The Norman Rockwell scenes of quiet Americana are a thing of the past.

Now, I don’t mean to complain. Seriously. I’ve figured out how to navigate the holiday season for myself so it’s not a frenetic nightmare. But, in my experience, that’s uncommon. And not just for you, but also for webcomic creators.

See, that was the point I was driving at above. Most of your favorite webcomic creators are already putting long hours into your favorite strips, and that’s after a day job and around whatever family obligations they have. By and large, they’re not making nearly enough on their comics to have them be anything other than a side gig. Which means that, this time of year, life has a habit of catching up with them.

Some creators have done this long enough to realize it’s coming and deliberately schedule a hiatus towards the end of the year. They can time their updates so there’s a good, natural break in the story and then they announce there won’t be any new updates until a week or two into the new year. Other creators just get caught up in the hustle and bustle of the season, and inadvertently miss updates. Their regular strip post becomes an apology , and a promise that things will return to normal shortly.

But here’s the part I really want to emphasize in this week’s column: THAT’S OKAY!

These webcomic creators are doing what they do largely out of passion for the material, and it absolutely kills them that they can’t devote more time to their creative darlings. So make sure that you cut them a bit of slack this time of year, as updates slip and mea culpas are uttered. They’re running ragged, just like you are. So take advantage of their break (whether intentional or not) to get caught up yourself on all the stuff that’s got you going as fast as you can just to stay in place!