The End #5 is now available on IndyPlanet. You can purchase the issue as a physical order for $2.99, or a digital comic for $1.99.

Issue #4 just went through, and will be up shorty. Eventually, in just a month or two, I will have all 5 issues of The End set-up for physical order and digital download. After that, it’s only a matter of making sure that all 5 are available on all platforms the other issues are already on.

The End #2 is now available on IndyPlanet Digital:

http://www.indyplanet.com/front/?product=104997

The price is currently $3.50 for a physical comic. I am going to try and lower that to $2.99.

For Mechanaflux #1, I had put the transition from the original screenplay to finished comic book to show how Mechanaflux changed between all the versions. This time, I’m going to chose a page from Issue #2 and do that again. This page is the arrival of Redwing the dragon from my initial draft.


ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY

Five more Mecheers emerge to their left as they run by a building.

Jackson, Cory, and Arad pick up their pace and run closer behind Gluss, Darius and Maria. They reach the edge of the town and run into the Metal Plains. From behind, they see over fifty Mecheers marching toward them.

JACKSON

            How are we supposed to avoid so many of those things?

ANGLE ON: Ariel shot of the group with sunlight shining on them. A shadow covers them as something flies over their heads, then leaves.

DARIUS

            We don’t.

A giant red dragon (four stories tall) hovers above the ground, then lands in front of the group. The dragon’s neck sways upward and coughs. He coughs again, then fire breathes from his mouth into the air. Jackson, Arad, and Cory stare at the dragon, eyes wide open. Jackson covers the boys as if the dragon will attack them.

As the dragon lowers his head, the boys notice that he wears glasses. The dragon speaks with an intelligent British accent.

REDWING

            That insidious metal dust can’t be good for my lungs.

REDWING

            Darius old friend, I see you’ve gotten yourself in a spot of trouble. Take cover.

Darius, Gluss, and Maria run behind Redwing’s leg. They motion for the others to follow. Arad, Jackson, and Cory look at the dragon. Then, they look at the army behind them. They immediately run behind Redwing.

Redwing summons a breath in his throat, then lets loose a humongous amount of flame.

ANGLE ON: The Mecheers walking forward toward Redwing as fire engulfs them all. The camera pans back to show more Mecheers, and even some buildings, getting taken out by the fire.

Redwing breathes smoke from his mouth then moves his hand up to his face.

REDWING

            One day Darius, I hope you won’t need my violent skills.

REDWING

            Gluss, are you alright?

GLUSS

            I’ll be fine.

REDWING

            And who are these young friends of yours?

Redwing walks away from them, turns his body around, then lays down so his head will be closer to them.

END SCREENPLAY


After Redwing appears, he suddenly attacks the Mecheers. What, did he destroy all 50 of them I mentioned? Later, I’d make them run away, because Redwing couldn’t be all powerful in the plot (as seen in Issue #3). Plus, him attacking the Mecheers in my comic in 3 different instances would get repetitive. Also, my dialogue continues for 2 more pages. I won’t bore you with it, but will tell you most of it was cut.


COMIC BOOK SCRIPT

Page 6

5 – Arad, Jackson, & Cory are now standing at the edge of town, in the Metal Plains. Buildings are at least 100 yards away from them.

      JACKSON: This is ridiculous.

6 – Jackson turns toward where they ran. In the distance, there are at least 50 Mecheers walking toward them.

      ARAD: Come on, how are we supposed to avoid so many of those things?

7 – ANGLE ON: Ariel shot of the group with sunlight shining on them. However, there is a dragon shaped silhouette directly above them.

8 – CLOSE-UP of Darius’ face. She is smiling, while still covered by the shadow above.

      DARIUS: We don’t.

Page 7

EXT: TOLT – OUTER EDGE OF THE CITY – (METAL PLAINS)

1 – A giant red dragon (Redwing) appears before the group. Redwing wears glasses. Redwing shouldn’t be so large that he appears as if he can take anything. He should be smaller than most sizes you see on dragon books (or Dungeon & Dragon’s manuals)

2 – Redwing coughs. Some fire emerges from his breath, but doesn’t reach the ground. It stops short of Arad, Jackson, & Cory, scaring them.

3 – Jackson acts like a protective older brother and uses his hands to block Cory and Arad from going near the dragon. Arad looks amazed. Cory looks confused. Jackson looks defensive.

4 – Redwing’s head is now lowered toward Darius.

      REDWING: Sorry about that old friend, but flying through the Metal Plains is bad for my lungs.

      REDWING: I suggest you climb aboard before those metal heathens get clos…oh, no.

5 – Redwing raises his head and turns away from the city, looking past Arad, Cory, & Jackson.

      REDWING: A rust storm. Everyone, get on quickly.

6 – Close-Up of Cory, Arad, & Jackson looking frozen in terror.

Panels 7, 8, & 9 are the same long line and should be together at the bottom. One of the kid’s heads should be at the bottom of each panel.

7 – To the left, on Panel #7, an army of Mecheers approaches them.

8 – Directly in front, is the giant Red Dragon.

9 – To the right, is a piercing metallic storm tornado.

I had considered putting blue energy (Darius’ sleep spell) seeping and increasing with each panel.

END COMIC BOOK SCRIPT


      The original wasn’t dramatic enough. Redwing met the cast outside the city, and it was supposed to indicate that the Mecheers were on their way, but not so close that they can’t all talk for a bit. I increased the the intensity a bit by having them coming closer quicker. Then, in the actual comic below, you will see that the Mecheers were just already in their face. I did just notices that both times I had Redwing cough fire and scare the kids, but there wasn’t enough space to do this in the actual pages. He also didn’t acknowledge Gluss’ injury, but then that was very minor and not important enough to keep.


THUMBNAILS

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I then wrote on the thumbnails some small corrections. My biggest concern was how Redwing was going to talk to them after landing if they were completely surrounded by Mecheers. Solved that by having him land directly over them and causing a shockwave that knocks most of them down. Hopefully he doesn’t appear too powerful, as his skin isn’t immune to the Mecheer’s blasts. Also, after this phase, my artist thought of a way to make the final panels more suspenseful, which we’ll see next week.


FINAL ART

Here are the final pages (minus the lettering). Hope you enjoyed this step-by-step journey.

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The End #4 & #5 are nearly complete, so I am going to post to you a page from the first story drawn by Sonia Liao. A group of astronauts hijack a space shuttle and make off for a space station, where they hope to avoid all the comets completely and return to Earth later. Now, they are still alive, but was survival at any cost worth the price?


1The End #5 – Story #1 – Contemplation (Sketch) by thescarletspider on deviantART


The End #5 – Story #1 – Contemplation (Inks) by thescarletspider on deviantART


The End #5 – Story #1 – Contemplation (Final Art) by thescarletspider on deviantART

Wow, I am loving this new Embed feature on DeviantArt; the art scales to the webpage itself instead of expanding out so much that I have to lower the file size then repost it.

      I have always thought that one of Marvel’s missed opportunities at a movie during the start of their films with X-Men & Blade, was Deathlok. Who is Deathlok, and why do I think he is one of Marvel’s better chances for a film adaptation?

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      Deathlok would be a perfect movie for this reason: When Michael Collins, a well-known scientist and pacifist, discovered his employeers were behind illegal weapons designs, he finds his brain placed in a cybernetic weapon known as Deathlok. However, he is able to gain control of this weapon. Realizing what he has become, Michael must wage two wars, an external one to gain his original body against the evil corporation that turned him into what he is, and an internal battle against his own AI, that merely wants to kill everything in it’s way to help Collins accomplish his goal.

      Do you not see the potential here? You have a pacifist trapped in a death machine. Said death machine is always telling Michael the easiest way to accomplish his goals, but he constantly tells it to explore other, non-lethal options.

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      Throughout the comic, much of the dialogue is like this:

MICHAEL: They’re shooting at us. We need to stop them.
COMPUTER: Recommend rapid fire shot to all 5 targets.
MICHAEL: No, find another way!
COMPUTER: There is only a 17.80% chance you will survive without using lethal force.
MICHAEL: I don’t care!

      You already have a conflict, where one man refuses to give into the easy tools at his disposal and chooses to live life according to his beliefs, no matter what has happened to him he refuses to compromise his beliefs and take the easy way through life. And what do most heroes do? They don’t kill. This writes itself.

      Then, there’s the hope. You see, Michael Collins wants to be human again, but is it even possible? Well, his original body is still around, being kept alive in a tube, and his former employer holds the keys to making him human again. But will Deathlok kill just to get his life back? Well, of course he won’t, but you need to make it appear that he might compromise his beliefs near the end of the movie. There could even be a tragic ending where he sacrifices his body to not kill someone, but in the end, despite the fact he can never be human again, he still has his soul, and that’s all he needs to remind himself of who he once was.

      So, there you go. You have a pacifist struggling with the fact he is now a weapon of death. He has to fight an AI that would rather kill to keep itself alive. He has to fight evil henchman and some robotic boss at the end that threatens to kill people somehow. He has to fight his desire to compromise his beliefs to be human again. And don’t forget his wife, who he can never visit because of what he has become (who might or might not be kidnapped by the corporation to convince him to do what they want). And, just imagine how many unique scenes you can create that GO AGAINST the tradition action movie. You have set-ups for normal shoot-outs, but Deathlok finds a way to win non-lethally. Get crackin’ Marvel!

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There are many Deathlok characters in the marvel universe, and this one is based on the 1990’s version, who had his own series for 4 years.

Finishing out the last of the Spider-Man Anniversary issues, I look at Spectacular Spider-Man 189 & 200, which examines Peter Parker (Spider-Man), Harry Osborn (The Green Goblin) & Mary Jane’s relationships to each other, and ultimately leads to Harry Osborns death. Surprisingly, there are many allusions to child and spousal abuse that are really serious that I was surprised Marvel let go through when I read these again.


BlipTV / YouTube / Vimeo

Murphy’s Media Memories – Spider-Man 30th Anniversary Comics (Part 2) – Spectacular Spider-Man 189 & 200 from Shawn Padraic Murphy on Vimeo.

I have started a Kickstarter for Mechanaflux #2, an All-Ages Fantasy Comic Book. Plus, I am hoping to achieve enough money to make an Animated Trailer and possibly an animated series of shorts if I get enough money.

Mechanaflux is about 3 Earth kids (Cory, Jackson, & Arad) who fall into the world of Flux, where they meet a sword-fighting princess, the last sorceress, and a centaur general (Maria, Darius, & Gluss). Together, they must stop an evil mechanical creature from turning the entire world into metal.

You can find the Kickstarter Here

You can view the video for it below (will be deleted when the Kickstarter ends)

Spider-Man is celebrating 50 years in comics (well, not Spider-Man, but Doctor Octopus inside Spider-Man’s body is celebrating it), but do you want to know what happened on Spider-Man’s 30th Anniversary? These are 4 different comic books, all are one-shot stories that attempt to get people interested in Spider-Man and his supporting characters, while also producing stories about how Spider-Man’s powers work and showing his origin for new readers. These are the great stories inside the hologram covers of the Spider-Man 30th Anniversary comics.

YouTube / BlipTV / Vimeo

MMM – Spider-Man 30th Anniverary Comics from Shawn Padraic Murphy on Vimeo.

How Not To Make Money In Comics

My Self-Publishing Adventure

Part 5 & 6: 2006 & 2007 (Serious Spin-Off & First Artist Hire)


      The Webcomic I created (Wesleyan World) was continuing to be a source of enjoyment, even though one would say the art is pretty below average (that’s being nice…to myself). At one point, I wrote a comic script based on the idea I had for the serious storyline, but it was just too boring. I eventually found a short story I wrote in undergraduate college that I realized I must have gotten some subconscious inspiration from, and decided to place the idea of another self clawing it’s way to the surface of a human mind to guide it’s user to what it should be as a representation of the ‘id’ that most people contain. After writing my first comic script, I then placed it in a folder on my computer and forgot about it, because getting an artist was considered unrealistic to me at this point in my life.

      Many months later (this was later 2005), I brought up the idea of a comic book I wanted to make to my friend Michelle Balze (a fellow graduate student at Long Island University’s Southampton College) and she said she was actually making a comic with (or for) someone at the moment. Later, we met so I could describe the plot of my book and she could show her some art samples. I then realized it was a perfect sketch-style for my diary-esque comic book. We then later talked about doing the comic and the page rate.

      I will list the pay for next year when the project was actually complete for easier inventory processing. She started drawing, and eventually finished in the next year. Though I would leave New York and move to Maryland.

      After moving to Maryland, I commissioned her for 3 covers and a replacement panel for one of the pages. The total cost of the project was $???.?? for a 3 issue mini series (22 pages each, 3 Covers, & a replacement panel)

      After the project was done, I had 3 finished comic books (a 3 issue mini-series), but had no idea what to do with it. I was able to find a very large photo scanner to scan the pages into the computer so I could get them in my email, and then they sat on my computer for a few months.

      Eventually, my salvation came when someone told me about the Small Press Expo (2008). An independent comic convention sounded like the perfect place to get help with people who had done it before. I tried to ask people questions about how they printed their comics, but mostly I was still confused and felt way out of my league. Someone I had talked to behind the counter (I wish I could remember this person) told me to speak to Evan Keeling, as he had a local group called the DC Conspiracy. Upon talking to him, I learned that the DC Conspiracy was a group of artists & writers (or both) that met once a month. It was something I started attending every month, and I met lots of people and got some good advise. Eventually, I just hired someone who knew computers to format it for ComixPress.com’s specs, as they were well known and looked the best to deal with at the time. I have no skills when it comes to computers, so hiring someone for this minor action was pretty much a necessity. He offered to do it for a small amount, stating it would only take a few hours to format everything. After he aligned my comic to their specifications, I submitted them, then weeks later had a preview copy sent to my house for all 3 issues. Holding in my hand was the comic I had started 2 1/2 years ago.

      From the DC Conspiracy, I had heard they were going to get everyone together for a table at SPX 2009 and split the tables based on full, 1/2, or 1/4 tables. I immediately signed up for a 1/4 of a table, as I only had 1 comic book (even though it was 3 issues).

      Next article (and next year) I start showing you actual numbers with my comic costs, and how I started making more comics from there (and hopefully stop sounding so dry and analytical in my speech). I will only mention the total cost of a project the year the project is completed.


Total: You know this will be blank; check the next article for the numbers.

The End #4 is nearing completion. Here is a look at the intial sketch of The End #4’s cover.

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Next, here is a preview of the final image without the title, names, and issue number on it.

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