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1.1. Murder Count

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Welcome to the start of part one of E-merl’s brand new webcomic series! We’re kicking things off with a special double-length episode and then Solid Metal Override will be updating regularly every Tuesday. Want to hear a bit more about the origins of the new series? Then check out this handy news post all about it!

Five Robots Walk Into A Bar

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Solid Metal OverrideTypical isn’t it? No news posts for years and then two come along at once! The reason for this second missive is to close off the dangling thread I left in last week’s post and properly introduce my new webcomic serial, Solid Metal Override. SMO is going to be taking the place of the recently departed Ghosts of The Great Mistake, updating every Tuesday both here at E-merl and in mobile-friendly infinite canvas format over at Webtoon.

Story wise, SMO is… hmm… I haven’t really figured out exactly how I’m pitching this one yet. It’s basically me taking a whole bunch of my favourite science fiction universes, putting them in a big blender and then sifting out all the bits that aren’t five robots talking shit in a bar. It’s also possible it may be a sort of sequel to MASIVO, although time will tell about how true that ends up being. Anyway! Why not tune in every Tuesday and we can discover what the hell it is I’m doing together?

In other news, Solid Metal Override’s arrival has given me an excuse to do a very light spring cleaning and refresh of the site’s colour scheme – let’s go with E-merl 8.5.1 as the current designation, shall we? While I was dusting around the place I also brought the Theory and About E-merl pages up to date with my most recent projects and publications. Oh, and if you’re interested in the comics theory side of what I do, keep your eye out for the online Transitions 9 conference from 8th to 10th April. I’ll be presenting a new paper called “How to Cheat at Comics” in which I’ll be lifting the veil on the various digital illustration processes I’ve used over the years (providing I can find some way to shave about twenty minutes off my current draft of the thing, anyway).

183. The End

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That’s all folks! Thanks to everyone for tuning in every Tuesday and I hope you all won’t miss your regular slice of afterlife weirdness too much. I’ve written a longer news post about the end of the series over here. And, while Ghosts may have reached it’s end, that doesn’t mean your Tuesdays will be empty of new webcomic goodness at E-merl. Tune back in next week, same place, same time, for the debut episode of my brand new webcomic serial, Solid Metal Override.

A Ghostly Goodbye

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Ghosts of the Great MistakeIn my continuing quest to write these news posts further and further apart, it’s now been an impressive one year and seven months since the last one. To summarise events in this period: first life at E-merl towers got steadily better for seven months or so, and then the pandemic happened and things in general have more or less been put on hold for a year. Which, given how much worse than that the pandemic has been for many people, is something I can’t really complain about. So in lieu of complaint, lets solider on to the actual point of this news post: Ghosts of The Great Mistake, which finished its three-and-a-half year run this week.

Thanks to everyone who has tuned in regularly to read Ghosts either here at E-merl or over at webtoon. I began the series back in September 2017 at a time where I felt like I desperately needed to start making comics again, having taken more than a year off from regular webcomic updates to focus on finishing my doctorate. Between Trump and Brexit, the world didn’t feel like a particularly nice place in 2017 and Ghosts was at least partly a reaction to that. And then of course the world got worse, first on the home front and then for everyone with the arrival of Covid-19. But Ghosts kept on going through all of it and managed to do exactly what I needed it to – it let me rediscover the simple joys of making comics and it helped keep me sane at the times in my life when I really needed that extra bit of sanity. I think it was somewhere around episode 106 that I originally decided to start teasing out a storyline that might bring a conclusion to the series. I had no idea at the time that it’d take me another 76 episodes to finally wrap the whole thing up.

If you’ve enjoyed Ghosts and never sampled any of my other work, might I suggest you peruse this page and check out some of my previous webcomic series? And in case you’re wondering what you’ll do without Ghosts in your life every Tuesday then fear not – I’ve got a new series in the pipeline that will launching at E-merl and webtoon in the very near future. What series you ask? Well, more news on that soon but… okay… here’s a little hint.