Monthly Archives: October 2010

No Excuses

Recently, a fellow cartoonist and I (C. Edwards) meet up for drinks and to talk shop. He told me about his plan to take his comic, Able Boddy to the level of a daily webcomic. That’s pretty ambitious. It takes a lot of pre-planning, because the trick to having a daily comic, is to have episodes ready to go in advance. That means write out your story arcs, and do the strips in batches.

What I like most was how C said if it doesn’t take off, that’s ok too, hell just move onto something else. I know people that don’t want to draw unless they know it’s going to go somewhere, or when they do, they really hope that this is the one that finally clicks. It always gives me the feeling that they are more concerned about what happens after, then about doing the art.

Edwards view was that if he does it, it doesn’t work and he moves on, he will take everything he learned and bring that with him to his next project. That’s a great attitude, and one that I have. Just do the work, and see what happens. Be true to yourself.

Just do the work.

Make no excuses. To often artists let themselves get tripped up in issues outside of doing the work. Recently I said, “a good artists always sees how they can improve on the past, but uses it to create the future”. Someone responded to that saying when they make mistakes, they get so frustrated they don’t want to make a new piece of art.

That makes me wonder if they really are interested in making art or creating or whatever. The only way you get better is by doing, and all that entails.

If you want to be a freelancer, you need to work on that just like you would your art. Website out of date, schedule time to update it. No excuses. If you keep it simple, it should be easy. Are you a designer? Then don’t worry about having some amazing design that makes people go HOLY SMOKES! Have a design that people go HOLY SMOKES when they look at the art on your site.

Just do the work. It might take time to see results, but you won’t ever see results if you don’t do the work.

NYCC

So, NYCC has come and went. I shared a booth with several friends, and even did my first panel, which turned out better then I hoped. It was at 6:30 Saturday, we walked over around 6, and got there 15 minutes early. There was a large crowd waiting to get in. We asked if they were here for the panel, and they were, and I got nervous. It was a lot of people. So many in fact, it became standing room only, and people got turned away.

But everything turned out great, and I got some good laughs, and after people said I was really funny and did a great job.

I had decent sales for the show. Last year, which was actually in February of 2009, I sold more books in less time. I made the cost of being in the con back and then some. So another good thing.

A person who works for Diamond distributors asked if I had any thing more then Kool Aid, because she thought my sense of humor was really great and wicked, but that mini’s are a hard sell for them. Which I totally understand. She gave me her card and said when I have something ready, to get in contact with them.

I didn’t get to go to the Marvel party for freelancers, it was invite only, and I didn’t know the people you had to talk to personally to get an invite. Besides, having only done one 8-page story, I might have felt like a gate crasher, with more experienced freelancers there.

The week after the con has been good too. I got several direct orders for Kool Aid, one of which was because it was reviewed on Pop Candy. I wouldn’t be surprised if most of the orders where because of that site, since they all came on the same day, the day the review hit. I will send her a thank you, as it’s important to let people know what they did had an impact.

I also got another re-order from a store for Kool Aid. I love reorders, it means the store feels they can keep selling them.

And then X Magazine asked if they could get a copy of KAGF to review in their magazine. I said sure, and asked if a PDF would be better, which they said yes, because it helps them with tight deadlines. So wooosh! Off goes the PDF. Note to people, have a decent but manageable file size PDF of your work that you can send for just such a thing.

I would have been happy to send a printed copy, I do set so many aside just for that. But I always offer a PDF. One it makes it them not have to wait for the actual book, there is no postage, and if they want to run art, they can use the actual PDF for some decent printable art.

So if you don’t know how to make PDFs, I suggest finding a friend or person that can, and asking them for help, and then offer a little something, because setting it up correctly and all that, takes time.

I do love doing these shows, to see what comes out from them, other then sales. If you are doing these shows to make money, prepared to be disappointed much of the time. If you do them for fun, or a little vacation if you travel far, then whatever you get out of them is a bonus.