OK, so I got some artist's tape in 1/4 inch (Suzi bought it for me) and tried again. They came out MUCH better! These ones are watercolor:
These are alcohol inks:
The only problem now is I don't really like trying to FORCE myself to use them. It feels like what I was doing with cartooning. I know a lot of artists say that they had to force themselves to sketch every day before it became fun. (OK, most of them say "a joy", which is something I will NEVER say.) But I already have to force myself to do things. Study. Cook. Clean. How many things in a day should I hate and make myself do anyway? And should art be one of them? I guess it should if it's something I want to get better at, but for now I'm just going to hang on to these pages and maybe use them when I go to Florida as a travel journal.