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Steamroller Man
Issue Three
Issue Three, Page Nine

Steamroller Man

Starting from Comic #94: Issue Three, Page Nine
Issue Three, Page Nine
Happy New Year!

Here’s the first page of 2023, and I hope I didn’t use up my wordplay and pun quota for the year on this one!

As soon as I created M.A.R.S.H.M.A.L.L.O.W, I knew I was going to use the “S’more” pun somewhere. (I don’t know if it’s a thing outside of the USA, but a ”S’more” is a kind of dessert/sweet snack recipe made with chocolate, marshmallow, and these biscuits/cookies called Graham Crackers. I’m an Australian expat who lives in the US and I’d never heard of them before I moved here. So, my apologies if this joke didn’t track for my non-American readers). Similarly, I knew I wanted to use “rocky road” as something he would say but it took me forever to figure out just the right wording for that line. As the saying goes, writing is rewriting… and rewriting, and rewriting. Once I had figured that out, I was certainly quite pleased upon realizing that the “rocky road” pun could then feed right into a Steamroller Man retort, riffing on the fact that a steamroller’s main purpose is to flatten out bumps in roads.

I also was pretty happy with the late addition of the “Hey Four-Arms!” line, playing off the old maxim “Forewarned is forearmed” but also attempting to sneak in another half of a marshmallow pun in “you’re toast”.

As I’m thumbnailing out each page I’ll scribble in some temporary scratch dialogue, mainly so I can work out the word balloon placement in each panel. My scratch dialogue for the last three panels was originally much more direct and simple, basically just “Rocky roads don’t bother me… Allow me to introduce myself” leading the reader to turn to the next page, where Steamroller Man will do just that. But I was concerned that the Rocky Road/Steamroller connection was not clear enough, so this dialogue also went through a lot of various permutations, firstly trying to add meaning and clarity, and then trying to figure out how to hopefully make it funnier or at least more interesting. I came up with quite a few alliterative appellations for Steamroller Man during this stage of the writing process, but decided to keep some in reserve for the future.

On a somber note, 2022 brought an unwelcome number of deaths in my circle of friends, colleagues and acquaintances, and served to remind me that life is fragile and fleeting. So my resolution for 2023 is to be more active in working to achieve my long-held goal of getting Steamroller Man into print. This is the first time I’m putting this out into the universe - so now I have to do it! I’m currently formulating a plan for a crowdfunding campaign, which I have never done before. It’s somewhat intimidating. Wish me luck!

My other resolution is to post more work-in-progress stuff on my various social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Mastodon), the links to all of which can be found at my Linktree account. So if you’re into art process stuff, please follow!

Thanks for reading!!

Reader Comments

I love the puns, keep them coming! And I hope the print run is successful!!
Brilliant, and the US-centric elements of the comic work well into the nostalgic feel of your work....Silver-age vibes. Too perfect.
On the other hand, a Vegemite pun may even play well for the Yanks! Maybe even a nod to Skippy, the bush kangaroo.
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