What's done is done
by ringbark

Now that I have cut up all the digital files and scheduled them for upload three times a week, there's not too much left to do. I have a few supplementary pages to write and load, but I don't want to do them too soon or they would become spoilers for newcomers to the world of Scottie Road.

So I just spend a minute or two looking at the page view statistics and thinking that they really should be better! I haven't done any promotion at all yet, because I reckon we need a few comics up before anyone will be gripped by it. A couple more weeks, and I'll see what I can do to unleash Scottie Road on an unsuspecting world...

The problem is knowing what the target audience for a forty year old cartoon about a pop group, and one that wasn't massively popular in the first place. I have to assume that there really is a target audience for this, though maybe it is rather small. A niche market? A cult classic? Answers on a postcard, please.

Scottie Road reborn
by ringbark

In 1975, I was an impressionable teenager living in Wirral, collecting various bits and pieces of memorabilia. The Liverpool Echo started a cartoon strip about a pop group in Liverpool, and it seemed like a good thing to cut out and keep in a scrapbook. Once the first scrapbook was full, I kept going, until the story came to an end about halfway through the thirs scrapbook.

I'd have to admit that although it was a reasonable story and plot, it probably wasn't too popular. Some of the characters don't seem to be well developed and some of the subplots require you to suspend your disbelief rather more than you might choose, but it still made a fair tale. Various unnamed cartoonists took part, and the strip was unashamedly a promotion of Liverpool: Scottie Road itself, the Liverpool Echo where it was published, Radio Merseyside, Tom O'Connor and The Hillsiders all feaured in the strip at various times.

Then it went quiet, time passed and Scottie Road was all but forgotten. I know it was forgotten, because I couldn't find anything about it on the internet, not for want of looking. So the only thing for it was to put that right myself: despite the ravages of time, I still had the scarpbooks, now forty years old. Along the way, I've found out various things, and I will no doubt find out more.

Scrapbooks in those days had a large page size: perhaps they still do. It means that you can't scan a page of a scrapbook in an ordinary A4 flatbed scanner. For each page of the scrapbook, I had to scan the top of the page and the bottom of the page separately. When you do this, the top half ends up upside down. So I ended up with more files than I expected.

Then there was the question of editing them: I don't have a budget for this job and I don't really want to spend much money on it at the moment. I found that Paint did a lot of what I wanted, while the new photo editor in Windows 10 did a lot of it too. That way, I ended up with a lot of strips to publish, but they were too large for normal web pages. A piece of software called Fotosizer sorted that out for me, so that the strips appear reasonable on most screens.

Finally, I needed to find some hosting software. I looked at several, but ComicFury seemed to be the best one for what I wanted. They allow great flexibility in what I can do and allow advance scheduling of cartoons painlessly. To get the cartoons out at a reasonable rate, I've decided to publish three times a week, on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. So far, I have scheduled fifty cartoons, with more than another fifty ready for publication.

I'll be happy to hear from anyone with thoughts on the cartoon as it is now, as well as anyone else who remembers it from the old days.