Year Of The Angels

The remainder of 2018 was spent plotting a new adventure for my graphic novel Clockwork Watch and working with the Lakes International Comic Art Festival in Kendal.

The team introduced me to students at Kendal College who were to be my actors in our latest immersive adventure, which was inspired by the centenary of women’s suffrage.

The project was centred around Angel Corps – a fictional all female airship squadron who are known to be Queen Victoria’s favourites. This part of our narrative was created by Haley Moore of Texas. The Angels featured in the Clockwork Watch online story, and will be making their first appearance in Sins of My Father, later this year.

Working with students at Kendal was a blast! Our immersive event was set across the whole town, and ran from 10am till close to 2am. The students created profiles for their own characters, costumes were made, and posters were plastered around town. Put another way – they rocked!!!

Here’s a short clip of them parading through town.

The event was called Angel Corps Homecoming, and featured Hodgson’s India Pale Ale, a special brew created from the Clockwork Watch world, and the first beer to be named India Pale Ale. This was created by our friend and supporter Henry Hodgson, who has generously helped us with many aspects of this narrative.

The event also featured a pub takeover, and a live band, courtesy of the McGarry Brothers, and David Silverman of the Simpsons.

A Sneaky Way To Read A Comic…

This is the best way to read a comic – the #script to one side, and art on the other, but without the speech / thought bubbles. Welcome to Clockwork Watch: Evolution Part II (@clockworkwatch). Great work by Megan Bradbury (@BusyMatches) and awesome editing by Corey Brotherson (@CoreyBrotherson). We are creating a proper #Steampunk for #London. Some of this narrative is based on live events hosted at Weekend at the Asylum (Lincoln), and the Make Believe Festival (London).

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British Library Chat and We’re On Patreon

It’s been a long and amazing ride, but things are about to get super exciting in the final stages of the Clockwork Watch adventure – we’re on Patreon!!

This Patreon is to help fund bigger and more ambitious projects. With your generous assistance I will be creating engaging and immersive comics, films, and live events. So kindly support in whichever way you can.

We will be publishing three more books, as well as host several live events around the UK to open up the narrative a little bit more. The hope is that participants who have co-created the story with us since launch in 2011, will help make the ending go with a bang!

British Library
Last week, I joined Bryan Talbot, Kate Ashwin, Daniel Merlin Goodbrey, and John Freeman at the British Library to chat about digital comics.

It was a great session, and the hope is that there will be more opportunities like this in the future. Much gratitude to the British Library team, and everyone who came to the event.

Photographs are courtesy of Jemima Gibbons.


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Spring is for writing

An absolute joy to have finished my first year of lecturing at the Royal College of Art. Huge gratitude to Eleanor Dare, and Neville Brody for giving me the opportunity to share my practice with the students, who allowed me to expand their understanding of storytelling.

From now till summer, I’ll be working on my writing chores, including the next immersive theatre piece from Clockwork Watch, which will debut at the Lakes International Comic Art Festival in Kendal this October, where Corey Brotherson and I will be collaborating with Kendal College, and members of the public.

A Digital Conversation at the British Library

The British Library has invited me to talk about my work with graphic novels and new forms of narrative, alongside the legendary Bryan Talbot, Kate Ashwin and Daniel Merlin Goodbrey. The event will be chaired by John Freeman of Down The Tubes.

I’ll be explaining how readers have helped to co-create the Clockwork Watch story for almost a decade through writing and role-play.

Tickets are available through the British Library Box Office

Kendal Calling – Lakes International Comic Art Festival

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Our annual trip to the Lake District was a rollercoaster, promising to be even bigger in 2018.

This was the 4th time the Clockwork Watch team (Corey and I) were at the Lakes International Comic Art Festival (#LICAF), an event that boasts an amazing contingent of creators, makers, authors, and illustrators.

The organisers have been super supportive of our project, with the team making all the respective hurdles a breeze, and we can’t thank them enough. Huge props to Carole, Julie, Jonathan (all the way from Canada), Chris and all the volunteers that make the weekend a family affair.

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We actually sold out of a Clockwork Watch title for the first time at a convention, making the Lakes 2017 a major milestone in the history of this project. It goes to show that promoting a Steampunk title in a town like Kendal works. People loved the story, in fact many came back after buying one of the books last year. It was great to hear their feedback, chat about plot points, and tease the future storyline.

LICAF covers all spectrums of the self-published comic sector more than any other convention that we’ve attended in the UK.  It is an event for creators, makers, and grassroots comics, making it a must for anyone interested in comic book art or writing.

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This year was a blast, as we forged closer links with some of the country’s top comic stores, artists, and a great contingent of creators from Australia, and Holland. One of the special treats was having time to chat, and plot 2018 with Stephen of Page 45, and the legendary Bryan and Mary Talbot, who signed copies of the final Grandville graphic novel at our table on Sunday.

We’d like to thank John Freeman and the ‘Down The Tubes’ blog for interviewing us, and express our gratitude to the town of Kendal. We love you and promise to be back.

Evolution at Thought Bubble Convention in Leeds.

Designer Megan Bradbury, Corey Brotherson and I will be launching our new book, Clockwork Watch: Evolution at Thought Bubble Convention in Leeds this weekend. Evolution is the 7th graphic novel in our Steampunk story, and is based on live events that we have hosted over the past 6 years. Want to know more? We’ll be at table 22, in Victoria Hall. Come say hello!

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Here’s How It Started by Corey Brotherson

Seems like a “When harry Met Sally” situation, but having editor Corey Brotherson at the helm of Clockwork Watch has changed lives. Here is his annual round up of how we started the project.

“Rounding off a busy year was the launch of Clockwork Watch: The Arrival (Clockwork Watch Films, 2012), which was my biggest project since I started fiction. Former BBC gent, filmmaker and Drum and Bass pioneer Yomi Ayeni came a-knocking after I was recommended by our mutual friend Matt Gibbs (now games/comics writer and Improper Books editor). He needed a comics writer to help adapt Clockwork Watch – a more inclusive, less colonial based Steampunk universe – across comics, live events, participatory articles and more. Read more

New Book – Tick Tock IPA #2 – is out there

Tick Toc IPA #2

I’m proud to announce the launch of my new graphic novel, Tick Tock IPA #2.

The book, a continuation of Tick Tock story, follows Ervin the sentient Clockwork on a journey of discovery.

The first 40 copies come with a free limited/numbered copy of The London Gazette, our fictional newspaper that was central to the immersive experience theatrical, staged at the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich, last week.

Ervin

“A Clockwork automaton falls into a brewery’s fermentation tank, and gains sentience. Exactly the opposite of what would happen to a human being. He finds himself in a world sick to the core, searching for a miracle. Could he be the answer? Is he ready for such responsibility? And why isn’t anyone asking him what he wants?”

Copies are available from our online shop, and will be on Comixology for digital download in the next few weeks.

Story: Yomi Ayeni
Editor: Corey Brotherson
Illustration: Jennie Gyllblad
Lettering: Mick Stock
Cover Art: Fabio Duarte Martins