Tag Archives: Tom Brown

Cover art reveal

Hello, people (and others)!

Sorry we’ve been a bit quiet. I’ve been working diligently on the page art for the next graphic novel volume and Nimue is doing roughly twelve thousand* things all at once.

*rough estimate, she is a blur, so it’s tricky to count.

Hopefully, this will make up for it, a bit. Here is the cover art for VICTIMS (Volume three of Hopeless, Maine) I gave a bit of background about the decision process on the subject matter when we posted the cover art at drawing stage, so I won’t get into that here. I *will* say, that this is the best, strangest, most touching, funniest script so far. You know when you are watching an anime series and the first season is all pretty straightforward and largely what you would expect and then the following seasons drops you into the deep end and play with all of your expectations and turn up the emotions and conflict? Yes, that. That’s pretty much what’s going on with the rest of the series.

Here is a thing wot I wrote to go to the distributor for the listing of Victims-

“Welcome back to the fog-shrouded island of Hopeless, Maine- an island cut off from the world and lost in time. It’s been busy here since you’ve been away! We all knew that werewolves would show up on the island eventually. I mean, there are vampires (that cough), ghosts and all manner of things that go bump in the night (and occasionally around noon, for no particular reason) well, they’re here now. Salamandra and Owen do their best to cope with this new danger to island residents while investigating a new rash of disappearances. Masked, cowled cultists have begun to make themselves known, and the vampires are about as much help as usual. Salamandra struggles with the disembodied presence that surrounds the island and continues to speak to her alone. Owen receives a new position (which he definitely does not want) and Drury the undead dog cavorts across the island. This is the most eventful volume yet, with greater insight into the main characters, and a generous helping of dark humor.”

Pretty good, huh?

So here, without further ado, is the cover art, hand coloured by Nimue. The text is a temporary version, our publisher will make the design all shiny and put the Sloth Logo on and such. Also-look closely and see if you can find the key in the image. That’s a thing that showed up in The Gathering, and we will have more to say about that soon… Hope you like!

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Organ Repair Appeal

The Organ

(Frampton Jones)

Yesterday Reverend Davies launched an appeal to do something about the dire state of his organ. The device, built thirty seven years ago by the infamous Testimony Albatross, is a remarkable feat of engineering and musical genius that Hopeless has perhaps taken for granted. In the many years since the demise of Albatross, the organ has gradually lost tone and some of its more creative functions no longer work. In the last few years, it has lost all semblance of tunefulness, and is consequently only used for funerals.

Inventor and repair expert Balthazar Lemon proposes an overhaul of the fabulous instrument. However, to fix the biggest organ in Hopeless, will require help from the whole community. Donations to the project much appreciated. Any small metal items, including wire, would be of great help. Balthazar Lemon requests any left handed sprockets, cat-stoppers and fids anyone happens to have spare. He would very much like some clewgarnets as well, and a selection of spoons in varying sizes, from teaspoons through to large serving spoons – metal, not wood. Donations can be left at the church or the lighthouse.

Ominous Silence

life continues.
life continues.

 

For days now there have been no crows, no shrieks. Somehow the silence is worse. Is it really over, or is it a matter of time before new horrors come? My mind invents fresh nightmares with each unfamiliar sound, sees danger in every shadow. I am not alone in this. I see the fear in people’s faces. On the streets, people tell me of their anxiety. The tales are dreadful and too numerous to repeat. There has been no other news. We wait, and we fear, and somehow ordinary life goes on. The Swann Bakery has a two for one offer on muffins this week.

The Horrors Continue

scenes worsen
scenes worsen

 

Last week I warned you of the giant slugs. They came up from beneath the ground, inevitably, eating everything in their path. To my certain knowledge, Mathias Smut, Dignity Possit and Lissa Gardens were all victims of these monstrosities. Witnesses say that they went too near the cracks, were smothered in slugs, and eaten alive. Nothing remained to be buried in any case. The good people of Hopeless armed themselves this week with clubs, pointed sticks and pitchforks, to good effect, keeping at bay these flesh eating nightmares.

                At last the weather broke, ending this unnatural heat and returning us to familiar fogs and drizzle. Then the birds came. Black as crows, but much larger. They ate the slugs, and at first this seemed like a good thing. Then we ran out of slugs and now the hungry predators sate themselves on livestock. As yet, no human inhabitants have suffered a bird attack, but it’s just a matter of time. Be vigilant dear readers, and do not leave your home without a large stick.

Shipwreck!

Shipwreck on the North Coast
Shipwreck on the North Coast

 

Last Friday, the evening tides carried in more debris than usual, including several dead bodies (unidentified and now buried). It appears that a small ship of unknown origin hit the rocks on our north coast. Various intrepid folk have been out to the wreck, bringing back all kinds of interesting goods. I remind all readers that scavenging rules are simple – finders keepers. Anything washed up on the beaches belongs to the person who manages to make off with it. Rumours of coffee and chocolate led to scenes of brawling over the weekend, but no lasting damage done. Mithra Stubbs at the Black Swann Bakery claims to have shipwreck coffee for sale, by the mug. Having sampled it myself, I can’t say that it tastes any different from the stuff she usually sells. Perhaps this means that Mithra’s ersatz coffee is especially convincing. I wouldn’t want to suggest outright that one of our fair citizens might be lying through her teeth, but there is scope for doubt here.

Why we do not need a council

bring your own tomatoes.
bring your own tomatoes.
Every few years it seems we go through this same pointless debate. Voting. Councils. Mayors. Why, dear fellow citizens, do any of you imagine that if we vote someone in, they will then be able to change things! Votes will not enable to us to leave the island. Votes will not improve the climate, or health provision. Votes will however enable a few self righteous people to feel more smug than ever.

Our island was settled with a spirit of independence and self reliance. We get things done by co-operating with each other, not by putting people in charge. We are all equals, and we should keep it that way! Our founding fathers are probably turning in their graves at the thought of ‘democracy’. I am surprised their shades have not yet risen up to challenge this modern lack of sense and moral courage!

I appeal to you to stay away from the meeting at the Town Hall this Friday, where the self righteous amongst us will be trying to persuade you to give up your right to self determination. If you must go, do so with anger, and a good supply of rotten vegetation.

Wanderers Return!

Brothers returned to shore after ordeal at sea.
Brothers returned to shore after ordeal at sea.
As you may remember, dear readers, slightly over two weeks ago, three of our number attempted to leave. Oedipus Raft (21), Titus Raft (19) and Sam Raft (17) set sail in a rowing boat, declaring their intention to reach the mainland. It will come as no great surprise when I tell you they failed. Theirs, by my reckoning, is the 27th such attempt in the last decade, and no more effective than any other. Still, managing sixteen days in the unfriendly waters beyond our shores is no small achievement and they should be commended for their determination.
None of the boys are in good health. When I attempted to interview them, Titus repeated the words ‘It’s looking at me. It keeps looking at me.’ I asked them what they found out there, and Oedipus claimed ‘It goes on forever,’ but would not add any details. Thus adding very little to our knowledge of the state of the world.

Freak Storm Hits Hopeless!

rain of blood 

I can’t imagine anyone missed the major event of last week, but as nothing else of note happened, I’m reporting it anyway as there may be more to this than meets the eye.

On Tuesday night, a bloodstorm swept the island, covering people, buildings and streets. We were lucky in that the rain on Wednesday washed away the worst of it. I consulted Doc Willoughby who confirmed that the red rain was definitely blood, but he could not say if it was animal or human. Where did all the blood come from? Does it represent some unimaginable horror that has happened beyond the boundaries of our beloved island? How could so much blood have become airborn, with no trace of any bodyparts? I fear this latest mystery may go unsolved, but if you have possible answers, do share them.

Correction

Last week we reported the death of Regan Higsbottom. This appears to have been an error. Regan accosted me in my office yesterday to point out that she is still very much alive. Apparently she walked out on her husband after a row, and has been living in one of the old fishing cottages on the West side of the island. Please do not scream and run away if you see her, as apparently this is getting on her nerves.

Community News

Deaths – Audrey Pickett, 79, a rare case of natural causes. Funeral Thursday.

                Bendigo Weaselgrease, 7, partially eaten by creature or creatures unknown. Funeral Friday.

The rest of Millicent Cobbage will be buried on Thursday evening, with special prayers, in the hopes that she can now rest in peace.

Births – Angel StJohn Goodfellow, born on Wednesday afternoon to Glory StJohn Goodfellow and StJohn StJohn Goodfellow.

Arnold Sanctity Brown, born midnight Thursday to Hephziba Brown and Veritable Brown.

Congratulations to both families, keep up the good work!