Issue Three, Page Twenty-Two

February 22, 2021 in Issue Three
Issue Three, Page Twenty-Two
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Author Notes:

MattSchofield 22nd Feb 2021, 9:00 AM
MattSchofield
Originally, the idea for this page was to have the four characters walking and talking, with Steamroller Man and Night Knight bickering in the lead, while Paige and Sleep Tyke had a sweet conversation as they trailed behind them. As I thumb-nailed that out, though, I quickly realized that it wasn't very dynamic, and would be a bit boring for me to draw. I also felt like I had already established the prickly relationship between the two heroes well enough, and that a page of bickering, would have been treading similar ground. The end result was going to be the same - Night Knight was going to get exasperated and storm off (with Sleep Tyke in tow), leaving Steamroller Man and Paige on their own. The challenge was now what to replace that with.

That was when I was hit by a MAJOR case of Writer's Block!

I've been lucky enough, up to this point, to have not been afflicted with this frustrating condition very much, so at first I had a moment of panic. I knew that I was on a time limit - I wanted to maintain my posting schedule, and every day that I wasn't drawing put that in jeopardy. There was only one thing for it, of course - the only way out was through, as they say, and I had to just keep trying to come up with something.

In real life, due to a couple of weeks of bad weather, my wife and I couldn't go on our usual daily walk - our only exercise, and really our only regular excursion from home since most businesses are closed due to COVID-19.

Days passed, and became a week, without an idea. Now I was really panicking. What if this was it? Maybe "the muse" had left me. Sure, I still had the bones of the plot worked out, but if I couldn't come up with the connective tissue to flesh the story out, I couldn't continue. "STEAMROLLER MAN FACES A META-TEXTUAL THREAT FROM BEYOND HIS UNIVERSE!"

The rain stopped, and I was finally able to get some fresh air and exercise again. That night, I woke up with the idea for this page.
I'm not usually one to dispense advice, but if you're suffering from Writer's Block I thoroughly recommend going for a walk!

I'm sure any reader who is a fan of superhero comic books would have gotten the joke immediately. For anyone not familiar, this is my homage to the classic "Spider-Man No More!" cover by the inimitable John Romita Sr. The image in the third panel is a combination of the cover image to Amazing Spider-Man issue 50 and the story panel from within the issue. I knew I wanted Steamroller Man facing the reader (his back is not very interesting) but I also wanted the classic composition with the trashcan in the foreground, so I decided to combine the references.

The original has been copied and referenced by countless other comic artists, and even by Sam Raimi in the movie Spider-Man 2. Standard etiquette is to be open about the practice, hence the "After Romita Sr." grafitti I added to the wall.

I hope you like it!

Comments:

Peter Wulfdane 22nd Feb 2021, 12:23 PM
Peter Wulfdane
Alas...poor Steve. Passed over in favor of a little Tyke. Now I'm wanting to find out more about the back story between these two. Must be mighty entertaining!

You know, for having been born in such adversity, this page is quite spectacular...although, it would be hard to find any that are not! And I fully sympathize with your dilemma...writer's block and I are, unfortunately, old friends.

Keep up the good work!

...by the way, what are SM's weaknesses?
MattSchofield 24th Feb 2021, 10:25 PM
MattSchofield
Thanks, Peter! I don't really want to spell out what his weaknesses are until I get to a point in the story that actually shows the weakness. We've already seen him get punched in the stomach by a cranky old lady in Issue One, so from this, you can surmise that while his head is pretty much invulnerable, the rest of him is not - unless he has turned on his Steamroller Power (which I also like to keep somewhat undefined and boundless at this point).