Welcome to the archive of the John Barleycorn blog, produced by Howard Gayton and Rex Van Ryn during the process of creating their graphic novel John Barleycorn Must Die. As part of that process, you'll find discussions of magic, of creativity, and 'Around the Table' discussions with a range of internationally known artists, writers and film makers. The graphic novel was printed in a limited edition, so if you managed to get one, good for you! Although this project is over now, we're leaving this blog online as an archive and as a snap shot in time.

Friday, 25 November 2011


H -  After a week-long bender celebrating the first birthday of our blog, we are shattered and tired and other adjectives of a similar kind. We have just handed the completed second draft of John Barleycorn Must Die to our editor, and now we're awaiting her comments, nervous and excited in equal measure. So...

R - So this week we're presenting a couple of pages that didn't even make it into my very earliest draft of the comic.

H - Ah, then it's not just me that wantonly orphans whole pages of artwork, Rex! 

R - No, apparently not.

H - I'm vindicated!

R - <sigh> Meanwhile, we're keeping our fingers crossed for the well-being of the second draft while it's in our editor's hands. Wish us luck, everyone.

H - And thank you for your birthday messages last week!

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