You can read the latest Schlock Mercenary (as well as the latest of each of the Blank Label Comics) at the new-and-improved Blank Label Comics home page.
Our initial page layout (credit: Maggie, David Willis, and Me) was pretty good, but Elizabeth Dean (espoused to Greg Dean of Real Life Comics) took one look at it and sprouted a patch of grey hairs. Then she got to work.
Less than six hours later she had a new layout mocked up. Twenty-four hours after that, Greg had made her design live.
I have never seen this woman touch a page design without turning it into gold. She is Queen WebMidas, with a golden touch. In this case the gold comes in desaturated cerulean shades highlighted with shining Blank Label Orange, but it is gold nonetheless. It is gorgeous… kind of like the tri-color Black Hills Gold, only without Indian Burial Grounds or Mount Rushmore.
So… go have a look. Read all of the Blank Label Comics in one handy place.
Now then… here are some answers to common questions:
Q: What will this do to ad revenue?
A: The same thing RSS feeds do. It will dilute ad revenue slightly, while expanding the reach of the comics and increasing page-views overall. Ultimately, it’s OUR problem, not yours. This page is for readers to enjoy. If you feel guilty enjoying it, you can buy some merchandise someday.
Q: Can I have an RSS feed for this new page?
A: Hmmm… No. The page refreshes every ten minutes, and updated content (especially blog entries) may appear at any time during the day. If you want to be up-to-the-minute on all that stuff, the best way is to subscribe to individual Blank Label Comics RSS feeds. This page is a once-a-day trawl spot for people who don’t want to bother with all those feeds.
Q: But Schlock Mercenary doesn’t have a feed.
A: Yet. I’m working on that. It’s a separate project.
Q: Why is Real Life on top?
A: Because for now we all wanted it there. The vertical orientation is perfect. Eventually we may auto-rotate the position of the strips, but that’s a version 2.0 task.
Q: Shouldn’t there be plugs for your merchandise, and store links, and forum links, and all that?
A: You’re absolutely right. There should be. That’s a version 1.1 task, and to hear Greg bubble enthusiastically about it, some of that may be in place before this blog entry gets posted.
Q: Do you have plans to add any other comics to the lineup here?
A: No, but the architecture is flexible enough that it would be easy to do. Six seems like the right number right now.
Q: What happened to the Blank Label Comics blog?
A: You can find it at www.blanklabelcomics.com/blog. Yes, this probably broke a lot of trackbacks and pings. Sorry! We’ll look at getting it incorporated into the main page at some future point.
Q: I have a bug to report!
A: Email it to me, or use the “contact” link at the top of the Blank Label Comics home page.