Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Short stories

I wanted to write briefly about why I break up the long Bad Machinery stories with shorter stories now. I'm sure there are Bad Machinery fans who want the stories to run on straight away, one after another (how times change!) and fair enough. But these six month yarns are epic, tiring and laborious undertakings and I need space in between to experiment with other characters and settings, different artistic techniques, and situations that aren't about youngsters.

Giant Days was an interesting experiment that people enjoyed, but the set-up involved so many central characters that you almost couldn't write a satisfying short story. It begged for continuity, and after that first story I didn't have a lot else I could say without using material that would eventually be useful for Bad Machinery. So I put those characters away.

Murder She Writes and THAT are ways for me try things that can feed back into the main comic, while trying to write things that don't rely on continuity. Scary Go Round was 7 years of experimentation, but I can't just derail stories any more while I wedge myself up a chimney or down a rabbit hole. I know most people don't mind these interruptions, but if you do find them an obstruction to the main event, please see it this way - from my point of view, without them, there is no main event.

A bit of a dry old post but there you are.

10 comments:

BradyDale said...

I have no problem with them! They are cool!

Jeremy the Dog said...

As long as there is a John Allison comic every week, the world is a better place.

Also: who doesn't want more Shelley? But maybe a Ryan story. I would not say 'no' to that.

captainsharmie said...

i enjoy the breaks, but i can see how some people would prefer to see bad machinery continue without interruption.

however, you are making this available for free, speedier than getting a comic book completed. i hope other people understand that!

Mike Speegle said...

Anything John A. creates is solid gold. You know...besides the whole "bobblehead" phase he went through way back when.
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OK so I even liked the bobbleheads.

Matt Nelson said...

Frankly, the short stories often become minicomics which I can purchase with John Allison doodles in. And that is justification enough, as far as I'm concerned.

Yttrovorsk said...

Kind of a shame that Giant Days has been laid to rest, given how hilarious it was all the way through(though "Octopus Plough" and "sinning competition" get me every time). But I suppose it was stepping on Bad Machinery's toes too much.


Personally, I've only been reading Mr Allison's work for a few years, so when I started reading SGR I always knew it had an end date.

But I've really come to enjoy the deeper characters and tighter narratives of the BM stories. I hadn't really expected another Shelley spin-off so soon, but if we get the occasional caper with older characters in the new style, in between longer periods of Bad Machinery stories, then as far as I'm concerned it's a win-win.

Richard Bensam said...

If you're spending any time anticipating complaints or demands hypothetical readers might have, please don't. Your readers love and trust you and only want to see whatever you want to share with us. If you decide to draw a succession of three-panel gag strips for the next break, we'll be there for that. We know you know what you're doing, and we merely feel glad to be taken along for the ride.

anothercasey said...

Like Jeremy said, as long as I see a John A. comic each week, I'm good. I have grown to love Bad Machinery as much as I loved SGR, and probably a lot of people feel the same way. So it's a win-win when we get Bad Machinery regularly, and then these shorter stories featuring the old SGR characters.

rainycity1 said...

I took this most recent hiatus (the one *before* the new Shelly Winters story as a chance to re-read the Scary-Go-Round archives for a second time. What joy; I catch more with each reading. But the best part was stumbling across your Bobbins archive. I really enjoyed getting the original back story on the SGR characters.

Elizabeth Priest said...

I'm happy enough to have more of Shelley : )