Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Bench press a million

Idea for a rap:

"Driving in my Volvo
Listening to Polvo"

It's currently a very short rap.


Yesterday on Radio 4 there was a programme about comics. I was very disappointed not to be asked, since after all I am the great white hope of British comics, also extremely erudite, and a show-off. My head is enormous, both physically and figuratively. Adding insult to injury, he show was presented by Michael Rosen, whose books of poetry fostered in the young me my fierce love of rhyme and the deathless drive to make things scan at all costs. So, BBC, next time you want to speak to the "next generation of British comics artists", just call me up, I have all the answers (none of the answers) and I never mark a pause with a long, drawn out "urrrrrr" because I was trained by the best.

My disappointment at not being fêted by your network will not stop me listening to the Today programme, as I find the sound of John Humphreys shouting at people an excellent alarm clock.

Yours sincerely,
John Allison

Tuesday, April 29, 2008


I have finished fooling with my yaks and wendigos, it now says a nice legible oh no.

The bearded model is kind of an indie rock tramp I gave 50p to in Chorlton.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Oh no

I designed a Yak-Wendigo war shirt but it might be a bit crazy. Have a look!

Given that the above took me more than two hours, I am reluctant to post the five minute wonder I followed it up with. It was probably closer to four minutes.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

A to-do

During most years of Scary Go Round, I manage maybe two stories that I'm proud of, one that was all right, and the other 25 or so weeks of the year show off my well-developed skills in the field of wheelspinning. Most creative endeavours - especially those mounted alone - are patchy. But I think the two stories I started the year with this year were some of my best work, getting away from the sicklier aspects of the "old" comic that I've definitely outgrown. However, by the law of averages, that means... the worst is yet to come. I do have a particularly good yarn with which to finish the year, but what do I do until October?

Here are the creatively mundane storylines currently on the table.

1. (Note: I started writing stupid fake storylines and the first one I came up with was brilliant, I am a genius).
2. Melanie buys some chairs, has to return them because they are an inch too short for the table in question
3. Amy and the ingrown toenail
4. (Number four also bordered on sublime in its idiocy)

In conclusion, I am the king of comics, I am best, I ♥ me.

I saw a girl with a bag that said 'I ♥ me' yesterday and I was furious that I did not make it to the screenprinter's first.

Monday, April 21, 2008

He is the smallest

Sometimes I have a tshirt design idea and it doesn't really work but it makes a nice drawing. For some reason I pictured a cat litter tray as a superhero chest emblem (I don't really know why). Then I put a little cat in it. Then I named it 'Brian, The Smallest Cat In The World'. Now I will close the file and never look at it again.

Monday, April 14, 2008


I changed "boobi3s" to "hello" on my Maths Is Easy shirt because when it came down to it, I would not wear a shirt with "boobies" written on it and if I won't wear it, I won't make it any more.

Self-respect is a party that I am holding at my house and to which I have invited myself.

Shirt on sale now y'all!

Saturday, April 12, 2008


Today I purchased the new record by Times New Viking. Now I have been in the trenches of rock for a long time, but never have I heard so good a record recorded so badly. Bands like No Age and Times New Viking certainly have a way with ear-shredding feedback. Doubtless* this is some kind of sonic comment on today's super-compressed, unlistenable mainstream albums.

I am sure you have heard of the loudness war. What, you haven't? Then click the link! I couldn't tell why modern major label albums were giving me a headache but this explained it to me.

Times New Viking gave me a headache for a completely different reason. But I kind of liked it! Now, the most ferocious squall of feedback I have ever had to suffer was when I listened to the entire ouevre of So So Many White White Tigers all the way through, twice, on their Myspace page. It was the same thrill of pure, adrenalised terror I used to get listening to John Peel back in the day.

I must warn you that the link above is not for weak minds, and that I found the band when investigating the mercifully brief musical career of "No Condom? Whatever". You have been warned &etc

*By "doubtless" I mean "wouldn't it be nice if".

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Hey Boffins Listen Up

Here's a question to tax the smartest mind. Ten years ago, you never saw a "surge protector" on sale in the UK. Given the nature of UK 240AC home wiring, and that all plugs are fused, aren't surge protectors completely unnecessary for a home computer? To the best of my understanding, the only way you could fry your computer with a surge was via a phone line plugged into an old school modem. And that could only happen if lightning struck something (I don't know, the postman? I'm not a scientist.)

Who will answer my parochial surge question?

Who will be a hero?

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Time tunnel

I designed this last week after making today's comic. It seemed the right thing to do! That first sentence makes it sound like I can travel in time, which I can, but only forward (like every other stumblebum).

I am going to begin a gradual cull of a lot of the long-in-the-tooth designs in the tshirt store. It appears to be time for a new broom!

ADDENDUM: Somehow I typed an "E" when I was meant to type a number 3. Should I leave it in for the sake of serendipity? Or might I drive the obsessive compulsive off a cliff like lemmings?

Monday, April 07, 2008


Working on the repeatedly requested Easter Bell shirt today.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

The magic hour

I can't believe it's April already. Everything I do seems to take ages and yet the months are whipping by so quickly. Soon I will be trying to eat steak with one tooth and riding around in a bathchair with a blanket over my knees, steering with a kind of front-mounted wheel-rudder. by George, that day can't come fast enough! Apart from the tooth thing, brush your teeth everybody and don't eat too many sweets.

Hm now, what news what news.

Adding the comments feature to the Scary Go Round site was very dangerous for me, I have thin skin and hate criticism. After all, when you have buried your neuroses good and deep in the pit of your stomach, it's not fair of people to dig them up, print them on a tshirt and dance in front of your weeping eyes. But I have been pleased with the good manners and lack of bad language among the commenters. Maybe society will be okay for a little while yet!

That said, almost every day, someone will write a question about Erin Winters. Here's an exclusive for blog readers: that is a character who is never, ever, coming back. I have written why at length in Scary Go Round book 6 (in which she features prominently) so I guess you'll have to read it to discover my tedious thoughts on the matter.

On the subject of book 6, hopefully the wait won't be much longer. I have made it to 240/400 in my postcard project but my lord, what a slog. I have drawn a lot of Shelleys now. An AWFUL lot of Shelleys.

An awful awful lot of Shelleys.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Small hobbies: "wrong video"

Pop videos are thought to be a noble art, but I find that you can play almost any, unrelated performance (muted, obviously) in accompaniment to a song and create an eerily accurate promo clip. It doesn't really matter if the words and singing are wrong so long as the instruments are about right.

I was listening to the new (amazingly not awful at all) REM record while watching this with the sound down and it seemed right!

In my defence, I had to draw something very complicated this morning so my mind might not be firing on all (or any) cylinders.