Last time: Lady Celestine enquired after Tozo’s health.

In the words of Granny Weatherwax from Sir Terry Pratchett’s brilliant Discworld series: I Aten’t Dead.

To be truthful, I probably restarted Tozo when I wasn’t actually ready, but I’d picked the restart date and so I stuck to it, and then became unstuck rather spectacularly. Apologies for the long absence.

Anyway: here, finally, is Tozo. He’s looking a bit weather-beaten, as we’ve all been recently, at least in this part of the world. Next time we get to see something of the Spider Empire. I’ve been looking forward to drawing these next few pages for (literally) years…

Chapter 2 Page 2


Chapter 2 Page 2

Last time: Klikker met a wanderer in the mountains.

Thanks so much for the ‘welcome back’ comments – it’s great to be doing this again, even if my updates are going to be a bit irregular.

Recommended reading: ASTRODOG by Paul Harrison-Davies. A beautifully crafted all-ages comic with a great character. Glad to see that Paul is going to collect it into a print version.

Also CARTOZIA TALES, an all-ages fantasy comic series, from a fantastic cast of independent comic creators. There’s a Kickstarter campaign to raise money for the series which is in its last few hours (if you’re reading this on Tuesday). They want to pay the contributors, something you rarely see in the indie comic world, so do please consider contributing, even though they’ve met their target.


A very warm welcome to TOZO – EMPIRE OF THE SPIDER!

Goodness – has it really been over a year since the last Tozo strip? September 2013 seemed like a long way off then but it has rushed up to meet me at quite an alarming rate! I hope you’ve all had a good year in the meantime.

It’s been a very busy and exciting twelve months for me and I’ve been glad of the chance to focus on new projects. My children’s book series MONSTER & CHIPS was published and my career in the book world appears to be settling in (fingers crossed). However, I’ve really missed drawing comics regularly and it’s nice to be able to return to Tozo’s universe.

Tozo was the first comic I’d ever attempted and, in the six(!) years since I started it, I’ve learnt a huge amount about the process of creating comics. In spite of this, I kept the style of Tozo fairly static so that the comic had a consistent look and feel to it, and also because the weekly deadline didn’t allow me much time to flex my wings.

With the start of this new chapter, you’ll see some slight changes. Firstly, I’ll be updating a ‘page’ at a time, rather than a three-panel strip, which will give me more freedom to play with the layout and pace of the story. The strip will also be larger at 980px wide as opposed to the 800px of The Public Servant. I’ll also be taking more time with the design and colouring, and some characters will have a very subtle makeover. Hopefully none of this will be too jarring – the tone and overall look of the comic will stay the same, it’ll just have a bit more finesse to it.

The only (I believe) downside of this is that these things require time. It’s still my intention to update weekly but it’s likely that this won’t always be possible and perhaps not on the same day every week. I’d thus like to encourage readers to make use of some of these ways of keeping in touch with Tozo:

  • There is a Tozo Tumblr which will publish the comic at the same time as the website;
  • a new Facebook page which will also publish the comic (please note that the original Facebook page for Tozo has now been deleted);
  • a Twitter feed which will notify of new updates;
  • and also the standard RSS feed.

I hope you enjoy this new chapter in the Tozo saga – we’re in the Empire now, and there’s lots to explore…