Archives For Mockingbird Comic

ComixologyI know you will find this hard to believe, so prepare your ears and brain for processing hard to believe stuff. But Comixology – the digital comics download people, covering all devices – has accepted your favourite comic book into its virtual ranks!

“What? Asterix and the Funny Foreigners?”

No, your other favourite, Mockingbird: Nightmare on Another Planet, and for a cool £5.49 ($7.99) depending on your currency choice.

As I mentioned when Sequential took on the comic, this is a remarkable encouragement because Comixology don’t accept any old tat! You have to have top quality tat to get the double thumbs up from them. Which is what I imagine happened when they took one look at my seemingly random arrangement of squiggles and natter. “Send that limey kid an electronic mail expressing our interest in his quaint British doodles.” Probably said by a cigar-chewing Texan gent, as he steps into a pink limo, packed full of loose notes, open bottles of Frizzante spilling across the white suede upholstery and a boot/trunk overflowing with Quality Street’s purple ones… ah, the high life!

What are you waiting for? 128 pages of sci-fi perils and futuristic adventure are only a button press (and small transaction) away! See you in the funny pages.

All in Sequence

August 21, 2015 — Leave a comment

Sequential Logo 2Them lovely folk at Sequential have only gone and released Mockingbird: Nightmare on Another Planet through their app for iPads, and at the best price too, £4.99 ($6.99)!

The great thing about Sequential taking the comic is this: they didn’t have to! I’m super chuffed that they felt it was of sufficient quality to sit on their digital shelves, rubbing virtual shoulders with the likes of Love & Rockets, Torpedo and Rainbow Orchid. Super. Chuffed.

If you’ve been holding back then hold back no longer, my friend, cos’ this is the best price, for 128 pages of space action, adventure and jeopardy! All within the safe confines of your iPad. High fives all round!

M2a-printW3AIt’s finally here! Mockingbird: Nightmare on Another Planet the graphic novel is on the electronic book shelves! A space adventure for all ages – 128 pages of aliens, monsters, robots, suspense, mystery, character-driven plot, even a feral egg-dog with big teeth (whatever that is)! Available now on Comixology, Sequential or as a Kindle or iBook for less than six quid! (Sample pages are viewable here and here, if you’re hitching a lift on the cart of curiosity.) What are you waiting for? Buy buy buy! Er… no pressure of course.

(Soz, that’s a lot of exclamation marks for one fairly short paragraph.)

It was 1996 when I first put pencil to paper (ha, remember when we used to use paper, old timers?) and drew those big round specs. It’s certainly been a long journey in literal time and space; a muddled summary of which you can read here. A quest that started with the self-publishing of three separate comics and ending with the collecting together of those very same publications, with 36 extra pages, to self-publish again, but in a far more contemporary format – one with no physical pages! It feels like I’m living in a world of real-life science fiction! How apt.

So this is where we are: announcement announced. What else is there to say but ‘enjoy’! If you’re still hesitant, gentle reader, I’ve included some kindly quotes from a selection of comic reviewers below, received when Mockingbird was first released:

‘A charming, funny SF comic which allows the story to unfold through character rather than laboured exposition. This is a nice antidote to the grimness of most essays in this genre… It’s nice to read a character-driven comic in which the characters actually are interesting… Fans of good old-fashioned, tongue in cheek science fiction should give it a try.’
Mike Kidson (Comics International)

‘A nice return to good fun comics with a very British sensibility.’
Pete Ashton (The Review Sheet)

‘Science fiction comics are a dime a dozen, delightful ones are rarer. And this one, with a truly charming heroine and original art, is so full of promise one can only pray it will last’
Fabio P Barbieri (Comics International)

‘A cute romp of a comic.’
Terry Wiley (Sleaze Castle)

Of course, I will keep you informed of any further developments, Mock-fans! But let me know what you think, all feedback welcome! (What am I letting myself in for? Smiley face.)

Love & biscuits,


butlins_skegness_picturesAs the soft strains of Agadoo waft gently across the air ways of Radio One, and we all find ourselves instinctively pushing pineapples and shaking trees like Pavlov’s pop-influenced canine automata, it can only serve as a subtle indication that summer has indeed finally arrived!

The time is right for darncing in the street, as David and Sir Mick would claim. I’m still trying to find the actual street to which this song refers, as my neighbours always insist on remaining behind their net curtains whilst I Hammer Time it up in the road on my lonesome! (The baggy trousers are actually surprisingly cooling, AND back in fashion… for ladies.)

But here we are, sun sun sun. What a choice of season to reinstate my regular visits to the blogospear! I should be outside headbutting beach balls and kicking sand into my own face. Instead I sit at this keyboard machine, my sweaty fingers slipping across the keys like a greasy spider trying to stand ten greasy sausages vertically in a greasy frying pan.

(Yes, I know, that simile makes absolutely no sense, but I found its obtuse absurdity rather pleasing, so I left it in. “Isn’t that how you normally write?” Yeah, ha ha.. hang on!)

Essentially this is now the run up to the end of the year, isn’t it? We’re halfway through number fifteen and any of them New Year resolution thingies that you haven’t followed through on yet (e.g. gym membership, love life, diet, regular blog posting, publishing your graphic novel, writing better constructed sentences) – well, you’ve got less than half a year to go; just under six months; no more than twenty six weeks; round about 332 days (enough days to go round the world 4.15 times, to be fair to the Fogg-meister).

In short, I am aiming to blog more frequently, whether you like it or not. And by ‘like’ I mean a Facebook Like. (Oh yes, that’s the sort of quality topical references you can look forward to. Whaaasssuuup!)

Obviously, I appreciate none of you are demanding I post more frequently, but here’s why I’m revving up the ol’ Blogley Davidson again: exciting terrific news is just around the corner! I can’t say too much other than, get your brain apparatus and eye units in active mode because a riot of incredible visual stimuli is teetering just on edge of the digital horizon, soonly to land in your comic strip welcoming lap*.

AND THEN you’ll be darncing in the street, my friend! Push pineapples, shake the tree. Stop… Hammer Time!

* Next week.

Previews of Previews V

January 28, 2015 — Leave a comment

DocA copyOkay, so let’s get back to what this website was set up to do: to bring the wonders and pleasure of reading ‘Mockingbird: Nightmare on Another Planet’ the graphic novel to a watching (possibly) and waiting (unlikely) world!

And for those who are struggling to contain their anticipation and excitement (all of you!) I will be announcing some smilesome news very soon. Consider this a teaser, if you will. Or even if you won’t. Either way: high fives for everyone!

Watch the Birdie

January 20, 2015 — 6 Comments

untitledIt’s important to enjoy this moment, my friends. This time next year we’ll look back and smile as we recall this period of digital tranquillity when it was just you, me and the three other regular readers of this blog, sitting here shooting the virtual breeze.

Oh yes, this time next year small children across the globe will be rushing into their nearest toy emporium, knocking cheap plastic Mockingbird action figures off the shelves – because they’re in the way of the loom band display – ha ha, no, because they want to get the latest Mockingbird-related product of course. If there’s one thing I’ve learnt from watching Wars in Space (or whatever that film’s called) it’s this (a) makes lots of toys of your thing, (b) make more lots of toys of your thing, (c) don’t stop making lots of toys of your thing.

I’ve done the maths and the math (depending on whether the Atlantic Ocean is on your left or right) and I’ve systematically calculated that the world of media is ready for a bird-based fictional character.

Think about it: Sir Walter Disney had Mickey the Mouse, Stanley Lee had the Spiderman, and Bob Kane and his mate had Mr Batman… you can see where this is going can’t you? Mice, spiders, bats… it’s now the turn of the birds!

Not in the Hitchcockian type way obviously (sorry, Daphne), where you can’t leave the house for fear of having your eyes poked out like two tasty balls of suet by a horde of mad crazed feathered rascals.

Look, people clearly love cartoons and comics that are associated with a furry or creepy-crawly creature. We’re a nation of animal lovers, as the parrots are fond of parroting. I could cite many white-glove-wearing animal folk who have won the hearts of the worldwide population, and so I will: Bugs Bunny, Pink Panther, The Green Hornet, Spit the Dog, Roland Rat, Bear Grylls, Russell Crowe, that cat in the funny video. And some of them weren’t even wearing gloves! How many more Dalmations do you need to convince you?

Do not be surprised if by the end of the year, whilst sitting quietly in line in Specsavers, you find your suet eyes focussing on a poster for the latest optical insurance being advertised by a small cartoon girl in a yellow jumper!

Enjoy this non-Mockingbird world we live in while there’s still time. You have been warned.

Previews of Previews IV

December 17, 2014 — Leave a comment

Doc14 copyDon’t be alarmed, gentle viewer, some of these panels show scenes of peril and potential emotions. The full picture (literally) will be displayed in the future, maybe sooner if I manage to wheel this Kindle thing out of the shed. Smiley face.

More terrific fun and perilous tension here.

Space Available

December 8, 2014 — 1 Comment

Space 1There was once a street urchin. Every night he looked up from the gutter to the sparkling sky, dreaming of a life covered in stardust than actual dust. But he wasn’t an astronaut or cosmonaut, invariably he had naught. How would he achieve this wish of tissue-like vulnerability?

He chose the unexpected route; he gathered bottle tops and empty milk cartons. From these he built the most remarkable inventions and artful objects that sent the buying public rushing to drag their bank managers out of their beds to empty the vaults and shower the street urchin in mint.

Deals were struck, contracts signed and handshakes shaken. The civilised world fawned over him and his bottle top masterpieces, the uncivilised world toasted his health as ‘one of their own’ made good. The street urchin was a footstep nearer his goal.

Amongst the plethora of celebrities and influential faces that sought to sun in his growing radiance as the World’s Greatest Artist, he inevitably found himself in conversation with the World’s Richest Man; a shadowy character who stood in no one’s shadow, who left no stone or leaf unturned; the inviting stench of wealth followed him like a wet papery smell, and his hands felt like the hands of a man who has been counting old coppers and coins whilst inexplicably failing to wash them. They got on like a house with a fire; warm and cosy.

The World’s Richest Man introduced him to sailors, gymnasts, lion tamers, call centre workers, popular singers, air stewardesses, au pairs, oil tycoons, diplomats, ambassadors, TV quiz show hosts, racing drivers, baseball players, women footballers, chocolatiers, biologists, optometrists, out-of-work actors, generals and of course, spacemen.

Conversations always turned to space and travel, but it was the last of these people groups that gave the least quizzical looks.

The spacemen admired the street urchin and his roughshod journey from the gutter to the front page of the weekend supplements; riding the back of his bottle top and milk carton creations. They felt an unexpected affinity with him as rockets can look a bit like bottles and are the same colour as milk.

Strings were pulled as backs were scratched, so the time finally came when our street urchin found himself stood on a set of steel steps in the Florida breeze, his tiny tired fingers resting on the cold metal handrail, looking up at his giant cylindrical dream. But as he placed that first tentative step towards the small open door above, that beckoned him to his destiny…

I guess what I’m trying to say is, I’ve recently negotiated the end of my contract with my old publisher, so I’m looking at self-publishing the graphic novel as an eBook now. I’ll keep you updated. Sorry, I could have said that at the beginning.

Previews of Previews III

November 20, 2014 — Leave a comment

Doc54More doodles from the past that will be seen in the future (if that isn’t too confusing). I drew most of these back in 1997; ancient times! Back then everyone thought 2014 would be all intelligent computers, flying cars and hilarious footage of cats playing the piano. I guess, one out of three isn’t bad.

P.S. For more regular comic doodling look here. No presh.

Showing Your Age

November 3, 2014 — 2 Comments

globalAThem kids today don’t know how good they’ve got it. And when I say kids, I mean kids of the Digital Age (should that be capitalised? I’ll check my History of Man wall chart later).

I remember, last century, when drawing comics was a lonely affair. Scrawling away, locked in a darkened room. Well, not locked, that’d be strange – and not darkened either (“Exactly, how would you draw?” Okay okay!). Sitting in a well-lit unlocked room. But definitely on your own. And far more on your own that we would even imagine today!

When I first started writing and drawing comics, I didn’t know anyone else who did (discounting my older brother). I knew SOME other children who read comics, but actually writing and drawing them, there was no one to my knowledge within a reachable vicinity who did such a thing. I’m sure they were there, but I didn’t know them (probably locked in darkened rooms somewhere).

It’s incredible thinking about it today, that you can tap a few simple words into your lap tablet or talking/listening device and find a whole world of other creators, just a mouse ride away.

When I originally self-published my stuff I had no idea how to get it under people’s noses (the original comics had a scratch n’ sniff promo). So I put adverts into the main UK comics journal at the time, Comics International. I sent some copies to reviewers that I’d seen in the main UK comics journal at the time, Comics International. I sold them to my friends, family and people in my church, who religiously read the main UK comics journal at the time, Comics International (see what I did there?). I sat in the small press section at the UKCAC 1997 comic convention feeling way out of my depth and slightly perplexed as to how I was actually going to shift all these boxes of pristine and freshly printed comics, that I’d rammed between the shaky legs of my trestle table.

To be fair I’m still thinking that today, except the boxes are now in the garage.

Of course, I’m not saying things would’ve turned out differently if Mr Internet had invented his global communicating machine at a more convenient time for me.

Alright, maybe I am saying that! Things would’ve been SO different if the internet had been around earlier! 1995 to be exact. Them digital kids don’t know how good they’ve got it!

(Do you like the way I bookended that? Thanks.)