Shop Forum More Submit  Join Login
Many of us are seeking for better ways to pad our resumes in respects to the comic world. Being published somewhere can help when looking to be published elsewhere. Being able to say you were published in a few places can help you get published in more respectable places and climb that ladder up to a larger publication contract.

Publishers such as Marvel and DC often scout for talent. They want to see someone who has been published elsewhere, and who shows they can meet deadlines, do hard work, and gain attention. Honestly, one of the best ways to be discovered is to already be known.

So how do you get known?

First, if you have your own project(s), take it to a whole new level. Make sure you are beyond serious about their success. You cannot wait for it to fall into your lap, you need to make it happen yourself. Post your comic online, or at least a few pages. Make a facebook fangroup for it and go to other fangroups for comics that are similar enough that their readers would enjoy yours, and do link exchanges. Share their page with your followers in exchange for them sharing your link with theirs. Do this daily, trying to find at least three new groups each day.

Start attending conventions to peddle your wares. Not just your comics but bookmarks based on them, of anything else that can get people over to your table in order to see your work. Buttons, badges, t-shirts, plushies, jewelry, whatever you can make/have made that can be related to your work. Or, if you're just starting off, pick a convention that fits the theme of your work, such as a furry con if you do anthro work, or a sci-fi convention if that's your main focus. Bring your comic and a ton of cards (preferably postcard sized cards, people hand on to those). I have found it very helpful to staple my cards to something else, currently I staple them to a bag of dog treats, but the point is you need something to sell. If you are an artist, do commissions or do fanart (if the convention will allow it), draw amazing pictures to sell prints of, and make sure your card is included in all of them. Sell something you have hand made, or paid someone to make for you, but with every sale, mention you have a comic, as well, and hand them a card for it in the bag with whatever they are purchasing. Talk to other vendors! Find others who have their own comics and get their card, and always leave them with one of your own. Get to know their work, and set up links on each others websites/fangroups/whatever! Keep in mind the ideal to help each other out! You do not succeed because someone else has failed. You truly succeed if you are able to help those who helped you.

Get involved in panels. Women of Comics for your area, have a panel at local conventions and invite other women who are creating comics. Do a Local Artists Draw panel and invite local artists to come talk about their work as well as allow audience members to show off theirs. People love it if someone they respect respects them, so if you show them right off that you're not 'above' them and are interested in their work, they will be interested in yours. Don't be shy!

If you don't yet have a project, but you badly want one, consider what it is you need. This is the same for if you have a project but it's not doing well.

Do you need an editor? Almost everyone can benefit from having an editor, look over your story and consider how well written is it?
On that note, do you need a writer? I've met many artists who began a comic only to realize they had a general idea for it, but not much else . . . their art skills were amazing, but they were not story tellers. I personally helped with a kickfund for an artist who realized she needed a writer and the both of them now have two comics.

Is your writing praised, but people don't like the art? Do you need an artist? Do you need an inker?

Do you need someone to market you and your product?

Think carefully about what you do/can do. If you're missing a piece, see about filling it!

Now, writers should not be free. Nor should artists. The only time this is ever done is usually amongst friends and even then . . . generally, there is a limit. In order to show one another respect, which is vital, both sides need to benefit. If you have a story in your heart but no way to turn it into an actual comic, you will need to pay those who can. This is regardless if you are an amazing artist who can draw anything and is making cash on commissions because you're so talented, but the writing gives you trouble . . .  that writer has a skill you do not, and deserves payment from it. Work it out ahead of time and do not bully, either pay by the page (or the hour), split the profit from all books sold, or do both, but something needs to be worked out in advance. Even if it is "your" project, that doesn't mean you should get all the credit/cash. You being in charge often means you will earn less of the profit, because you will need to be the one paying for the conventions, for the hotels, for the printing, for the signing . . . realize a convention takes a lot of time. If you want your artist/writer/whatever to be there at the convention signing, think about how many hours that is . . . hours they could be at work earning a living, or at home relaxing on a much needed say off, working on their own projects, spending time with their own family and friends. If you cannot pay them hourly, offer to get a badge for a friend/spouse of theirs as well as their own badge, and let them take time off to explore and enjoy the convention. Also, when they are there signing they should get more of the profit on the books they sign, because they are helping with sales. If they are at your table, they deserve to be paid. This even goes for close friends who are dropping by to help you out, please find a way to make it worth it to them! I don't care if your friends just love helping you out, and you're not making a profit, try and consider some way to show your gratitude as it will encourage them to help out even more. I personally pay people who help out at my tables and I allow them to sell their own work there. My sister sells her custom jewelry and gives out her business cards, I have friends who I let spread their stuff over to my table, I let them earn money without having to pay for the expensive table, because they are working for me, and deserve the praise/financial reward for it.

Because of this, we don't generally allow members here to beg for free services, even if they insist they will get the person a lot of great exposure. Exposure is the icing on the cake, but you must also provide the cake, you see? Work it out between yourself and your partner. It is not our place to say you must pay X amount . . . some people want/deserve more than what we may say is standard, others may insist they don't want that much. We have some members who have insisted we set a price guideline, while we have others begging us not to as they cannot sell their work for that price . . . we're not responsible either way, we just strongly recommend not doing anything for free, for 'exposure' or as favors . . . if you are putting hard work into something, you deserve to be rewarded with something substantial. Decide for yourself what that is, and determine with each contract what you can do.

This goes for editors, PR people, marketing . . . if you are good at something, get a reward for it! This economy sucks, but the only way for us all to pull ourselves out of it is to realize everything has a price, and fight for it. If you want to help someone out, go for it! If you say your prices are firm, good! There is no wrong way to do this, except to undervalue yourself into thinking you don't deserve anything, or that exposure is enough every single time. Remember, you'll get exposure from paying customers, too! Even if it's a promise that you will get an equal share of any profit earned, you deserve that even from your best friend in the world.

That was a long rant, but it comes up a lot. I make pet products and have a ton of people coming up and expecting that they'll all be free . . . it may not be a 9-5 job where I have to go in, but it still costs me money in supplies, it takes up my free time, and no one has the right to just take your time for nothing, not when they want something from you. Heck, even door-to-door salesmen better give you one heck of an offer because they're intruding on your home and your free time to try and get you to buy something. It had BETTER be worth it! (I had a sales person at my house last night while I was ill, trying to get me to switch to Cox from CenturyLink. I had to get my dogs put in their kennel and deal with their barking because this unannounced visitor was there bothering me on my time off . . . their offer better knock my socks off. And it didn't, so I politely told them it wasn't worth listening while my dogs were barking when it was more expensive than what I was paying now.)


Work with each other. We have a ton of comic makers in this group! Use that to your advantage!! In the comments here, post about your comics, your projects, your needs, whatever! Share links with one another, do guest panels, let's use this as the first Meeting Place where creatives can get together and market their work!

If you're a publisher, post your company, a URL to your site, and your criteria for submissions.

Editor? Post that you are an editor, give any examples you've worked on int he past, any classes you have taken.

Let's do this!
Add a Comment:
 
:icondevinhworks:
DevinHWorks Featured By Owner Jun 22, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Excellent Advice!
Reply
:iconangelicempyress:
AngelicEmpyress Featured By Owner Jun 6, 2016  Professional Digital Artist
This is awesome advice! I also want to add some advice to that if i may: 1) you can look for arts and craft fairs/festivals in your area and be a part of those. It really helps you 'practice' setting up a booth and presenting yourself to others before going somewhere big like a convention. Plus booth fees are normally a lot cheaper than for conventions so its easier on your pocket just starting out.
I do a plethora of fairs each year and its been a big learning experience.

2) another BIG thing I want to point out that people miss. Gaining traction on something orignal takes a LOT of time. Look at the life story of Walt Disney and the like and you see that it doesn't just happen overnight. It takes a lot of time and dedication and determination to really get it out there.

3) Start being REGULAR. I can't stress how much you benefit from this. Don't just go to something once or twice and throw in the towel. Pick events that show potential and do them every year. People need time to recognize and learn about your story. And, once they start being interested, they can depend on you being there when they want to come back for more. When people know that you are at a certain place every year they know where to find you, and you build up your clientele. I've had so many people ask if I'd be back at my regular places the following year and I always say yes, and they do come back and find me!

My experience: The first THREE years of having booths at different fairs I didn't sell anything at all. I caveat that with the fact that my entire booth has always been and will always be just my world, my comic and my characters. I too have a lot of merch with my characters on it, all handmade :) I've never done fanart and don't intend to. The problem is that people see it but it's not familiar so a lot of times they don't know what they are looking at. The solution is figuring out the best way to present your vision to others in a way that's inviting but not overwhelming. And you know what? It took me three years of experimenting to figure it out. And now, when I show up I know how to present myself. People walk by and are drawn in by the artwork, and when I say that its all my own original story they are really intrigued. And the following is starting to grow, people are coming to recognize me and my work, and I'm seeing the same people return. Some of those same fairs i went for three years and didn't make anything, I break $100 at each time now. People know I'm a regular and they recognize me. I even got an email to be invited as a regular in a store now from them finding me at a fair.

So it is possible. You just have to give it time and don't give up!
Reply
:iconravyncrescent:
RavynCrescent Featured By Owner Jun 21, 2016  Professional Artisan Crafter
Excellent!
Reply
:iconbored-chick:
Bored-Chick Featured By Owner Mar 26, 2016  Student Filmographer
I've been trying to figure this out for a while now. And DA only helps when it comes to fanart or you've been on here forever. I've posted my works to many groups and still barely get views. My comic dose better on other sites then here, and the fan base is slowly growing.
Reply
:iconhestia-edwards:
Hestia-Edwards Featured By Owner Mar 27, 2016  Student Traditional Artist
I find with dA, you have to try a little of everything: I've gotten followers by replying to threads in the forums, by posting in groups, by reading others' works, by the thumbshare forum, etc. You can't rely on one method. Another one I want to try is making tutorials, as they always gain attention (if done well).
Reply
:iconbored-chick:
Bored-Chick Featured By Owner Mar 28, 2016  Student Filmographer
I try posting on the forms from time to time, but most of them are out of date or no one replies to them.
Tutorials dose help a lot as new and regular artist are searching for more help. DA and Pintrest helps a lot too.
Reply
:iconravyncrescent:
RavynCrescent Featured By Owner Mar 27, 2016  Professional Artisan Crafter
Glad it's growing! Still, talk about your comic here and let's see if we can get some other comic creators who might want to Link Share!
Reply
:iconbored-chick:
Bored-Chick Featured By Owner Mar 28, 2016  Student Filmographer
Alright. My comic is called Psychosis: tapastic.com/episode/112588
I just started updating again I have to update here on DA soon.
Reply
:iconstickfreeks:
StickFreeks Featured By Owner Mar 26, 2016  Professional General Artist
I've found that talking to other deviants with comics of their own goes a long way. :XD: Submitting to a lot of groups can help, but I think interaction and friendship with others is the key component to doing well.

I read and comment on the comics of deviants I admire / those that I generally communicate with, but I'm far less likely to do the same on a random group-submitted comic unless it has a really grabbing story or an interesting art style. There's just soooo many comics that it's hard to pick out which to give attention to. @_@ It's kind of a give n' take deal I guess, find your common people and support each other!~ :happybounce:
Reply
:iconbored-chick:
Bored-Chick Featured By Owner Mar 26, 2016  Student Filmographer
True, but most of the comics I read are on tapastic.com/ ,www.webtoons.com/en/ and most of them have their own websites.
Reply
:iconstickfreeks:
StickFreeks Featured By Owner Mar 26, 2016  Professional General Artist
I guess I prefer more interaction with comic authors than what those sites allow. :XD:
Reply
:iconbored-chick:
Bored-Chick Featured By Owner Mar 26, 2016  Student Filmographer
True I friend them on twitter and tumblr and interact in #comictalk every saturday
Reply
:iconhestia-edwards:
Hestia-Edwards Featured By Owner Mar 25, 2016  Student Traditional Artist
I would say, in general, this is a worthy post with good advice (especially about not working for free), but there are a couple of points I want to question:

1. You suggested selling wares of your own characters. I found this an odd suggestion; why would someone new to my characters want to buy wares with my characters on them? Unless they are mermaids or some other creature that anyone can appreciate, I would be hesitant to buy wares with characters I don't know. But perhaps this is just me, and everyone else thinks differently. 

2. I would have to disagree with the fan-art option. The problem with fan-art is that people cluster to your art because of the characters they already know, not because of your talent (sometimes it's reverse, but not often). Once you start focusing on your own original stories, the fans of the fan-art will dissipate. They're not here to see your ideas; they are there to see someone else's. 

I would suggest instead, based on observations, rather than experience:

1. Make beautiful art. Make stunning art. If your art isn't spectacular, then work on getting better. Nice comic art attracts fans, and good stories maintain the readership.

2. At conventions, make sellable books of your work, comic books if you have completed work. Also make cards with your information and where they can view the art online. I would also bring my comic-making supplies to the convention and draw projects. Nothing gains interest like an artist at work, and welcome the audience to ask questions and interact with you. 
Reply
:iconangelicempyress:
AngelicEmpyress Featured By Owner Jun 6, 2016  Professional Digital Artist
My booths are nothing but my comics and wares of my characters :) always has been. It actually makes your presentation more diverse. Think about if you saw a Disney booth, you wouldn't just see books, you'd see books and shirts and plushies and all kinds of things. You have to think of your story as a more than just a story. Think of it as a brand. I've had people come up to my booth thinking my stuff was an actual cartoon they couldn't put their finger on, simply because it looked like a big name brand's table. That's what you want, you want people to stop and look and ask questions. People are naturally nosy, so if you have a bunch of art prints out where they can look through, they will stop and pick through them just to look. You'd be surprised at what people are interested in, or what they will buy even if they don't yet know your characters.

I do agree with your second point, I've never done fanart.
Reply
:iconhestia-edwards:
Hestia-Edwards Featured By Owner Jun 6, 2016  Student Traditional Artist
After some people have disagreed with my comment, I am beginning to see where you are coming from. Nod For myself, I would wait until my current comic is finished, and perhaps after I finish another short comic. My current comic is really a practice run, and you can follow how my art skills have developed over the span of the story. I'm not sure people would want to buy it. 
Reply
:iconangelicempyress:
AngelicEmpyress Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2016  Professional Digital Artist
you never know. The comic I have in print now shows that. The artwork gets better as you go through it. But practice is good and its all about what you are comfortable with :) best of luck on your journey!
Reply
:iconhestia-edwards:
Hestia-Edwards Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2016  Student Traditional Artist
Surely your beginning art isn't as bad as mine. ;) But thank you. 
Reply
:iconangelicempyress:
AngelicEmpyress Featured By Owner Jun 9, 2016  Professional Digital Artist
oh pfft slap color on your first ones and you'll have mine XDDD

perfect example: DoU 0:3
Reply
:iconhestia-edwards:
Hestia-Edwards Featured By Owner Jun 9, 2016  Student Traditional Artist
The color redeems a lot, though. ;)
Reply
:iconravyncrescent:
RavynCrescent Featured By Owner Mar 27, 2016  Professional Artisan Crafter
1) People buy stuff with my characters on it all the time. I cannot tell you how often I'll have something with Hunter on it and someone who likes catboys will come up and want to buy it, and it allows me to introduce them to the comic. I've made so many fans that way! My new story has a vampire and people seem drawn by it, so you're write sometimes it's about the species. . .  but often it's about the scene. People will by stuff even if they don't know the characters, if they like what is drawn. Do a 1 panel comic, have the characters talking and saying something people can relate to. I got into a comic series because here on DA I saw a picture of the characters dancing, and another time it was because they were playing a dice based RPG game and it looked interesting. Miles and Eli is a very popular comic here on DA I've gotten into and even donate to the patronus because of a single picture of the two characters stalking through a dark castle. I've gotten addicted to comics I've seen the characters from, but the main thing is to make sure you can tie it in. When I go to a table at a convention and they're selling anthro cat ears and tails and then telling me they have a comic that has nothing anthro related, I tend to ignore the comic in favor of what brought me over to begin with. I would much rather go over and see artwork of the characters. I started reading a steampunk comic because they were selling steampunk jewelry, which I wanted, and threw in a postcard sized advertisement for the comic in the bag with the earrings.

2) Fanart is an option for some, especially on DA where people often ignore original content. Also, as sad as it is, until your characters get well known, some people ignore them at conventions and the only way many have found to make up their expenses is to do some fanart pieces. In this group, we have nothing against it, but do urge people to strive toward turning their tables at conventions and their main art focus exclusively to original creations. . .  but if they prefer doing the fanart, that works for them and that's fine by us. You disagreeing is also fine, it's all about what works for you, what makes you happy. We generally only frown upon people who take other peoples creations, such as the guy I had sitting next to me once who was thrown out because he got high resolution photos of artwork done by official Marvel and DC artists, had a spectacular printer print them up in a better quality than the DC booth was doing, and then selling them . . . that got him in a lot of trouble, and generally left us around him feeling negatively toward him. We here suggest people find what works for them, but of course we discourage something like that. 

I take all suggestions from experience. I have a good friend who started out with me giving her half my table (when I had a big income coming in and was mostly doing conventions for fun/marketing, I often let people use one of my tables, or half of my table depending on what I had purchased) and she started out just with her own original designs. Beautiful art! I met her because I had commissioned her! But she barely made enough to cover her gas expenses. The next time, she did her own stuff, did commissions, and also had a few fanart pieces and sold out on the fanart and got commissions from it! Sadly, her own art people complemented her on, but they did not start buying until we changed the strategy. Halfway through that convention, I gave her some of my bags and anytime anyone bought anything, we included a postcard sized advertisement for her comic and would often throw in one of her original prints (since they weren't selling and had her DA address on them) She got a ton of visitors to her DA page, and at the next convention, she sold twenty of her original designs! It's been growing ever since and now she has 2 comics, one of which was entirely crowdfunded and people know her characters enough to purchase things on them, despite them not generally being any sort of specific non-human being that's outwardly obvious.
I have met a few who went in with their comic and only their comic, and too often stopped seeing them at conventions. For years, I brought my novel, manga, and nothing else. . .  I made a profit, but usually just barely. I introduced jewelry and made more! Then I introduced pinback buttons and made more than ever before, even selling them for $1. And I got a lot more sales for my book as people loved my sense of humor which was displayed on the buttons.

It really is "do what works for you!" Don't copy your neighbors (if someone is making bank selling chainmail bracelets, consider selling something else that might be related or go with such an item, but don't start selling chainmail bracelets, as an example.) Copying halves your sales, which is another drawback to fanart.  80% of some conventions is fanart, you better hope your art style is good/different enough to compete with everyone else. . .

All in all, you're right on your opinion! It works for some, and people should do what works for them and follows a moral code, we try to just use our experiences in these posts as we have direct evidence of them working, that's all.
Reply
:iconhestia-edwards:
Hestia-Edwards Featured By Owner Mar 27, 2016  Student Traditional Artist
My, that's quite a reply! :) As someone who hasn't sold things at conventions (yet), I am afraid there is not much for me to say. I am always hesitant to produce artwork that isn't directly related to my comic, but would be more popular (drawing dragons, for example). Perhaps a consideration would be to work on colored, detailed illustrations that would catch someone's interest for their own sake, and if the audience is curious, they can read more about the characters in the comic. 
Reply
:iconstickfreeks:
StickFreeks Featured By Owner Mar 26, 2016  Professional General Artist
These are really good points you've brought up!~ I was thinking about them a lot. :meow:

I think selling wares of your own characters (while maybe not profitable) could show that you're serious and believe in your story. Like you said, if the character is cute enough, people might buy it anyway for the sake of it. (I may or may not have bought a print of someone's adorable dragon at some point. >_>) Or if they don't buy anything, at least they've seen them and acknowledged their existence. They might want to know more about your story if they see an interesting plush character they've never seen before.

I actually think fan art can be beneficial! You just have to actually be a fan of what you're drawing. Just making it willy-nilly for the sake of it will result in exactly what you stated. I accidentally gained a lot of fans a long time ago by making Sonic and Webkinz videos. Many of those fans drifted over to my animated series and stuck around for a lonnnng while after I stopped making Webkinz and Sonic videos. o_o Some of them are still fans even though I'm the slowest releaser ever. Fan art is always optional, but I think people can be less shallow than it seems. :XD:

Your other suggestions are good ones though! I entirely agree on those. :happybounce:
Reply
:iconhestia-edwards:
Hestia-Edwards Featured By Owner Mar 26, 2016  Student Traditional Artist
Interesting points you bring up. :)

I think making wares of your characters might be beneficial, if you put a limit on it. If I see someone with a ton of wares with their characters, my thought would be "who does she think she is?" Having a couple of products might avoid appearing as if you have a big head (and would save initial costs).

Regarding fan art, I am afraid I disagree about it being beneficial. ;) But let's leave it at that. But I'm glad you found my suggestions reasonable. :)
Reply
:iconstickfreeks:
StickFreeks Featured By Owner Mar 27, 2016  Professional General Artist
Verrry true about the limit. It's definitely a fine line. :XD:

I see! We shall agree to disagree! :dummy:
Reply
:iconstickfreeks:
StickFreeks Featured By Owner Mar 25, 2016  Professional General Artist
This was a really interesting and informative journal! Thanks for writing it!

:bulletblue: I've got a comic I've been working my butt off on! It's called Extra! and it's about the extras in the backgrounds of movies and anime. They're trying to escape their fate of getting killed off in mass "accidents" by going to confront the Producer about the homicide, but to do that they need the help of the cute-animal-run DERP agency.

:bulletpink: I'm currently uploading the sketch pages on weekdays, but I'm working hard on a far more professional version of it for future distribution. There are 171 pages up, but I have 240 drawn and have a solid plot down n' ready to go. I'm estimating it'll be around 550-600 pages when complete.

:bulletblue: Here's the first of the sketch pages, further navigation is in the description:
Extra! Page 1 by StickFreeks Extra! Page 2 by StickFreeks  Extra! Page 3 by StickFreeks  

:bulletpink: Here's an example of what the final version pages look like, I'm only going to publicly release these as I get full chapters done:
Extra1color by StickFreeks  Extra2-3color by StickFreeks

I'd be super honored if anyone would be willing to read it and tell me what they think! I'm always dying for story feedback!

Thanks! :happybounce:
Reply
:iconangelicempyress:
AngelicEmpyress Featured By Owner Jun 6, 2016  Professional Digital Artist
oh i really like the plot of this!!! seems funny and original, i'll definitely have to take a look at it!
Reply
:iconstickfreeks:
StickFreeks Featured By Owner Jun 6, 2016  Professional General Artist
Thanks! I'm pretty proud of the story so far!~
It would make me super happy if you ever read it (or a part of it!) I'm always looking for thoughts and feedback. :happybounce:
Page 222 just got uploaded today. :XD:
Reply
:iconangelicempyress:
AngelicEmpyress Featured By Owner Jun 9, 2016  Professional Digital Artist
your comic story is very good...makes me want to work more on mine :D (your avatar makes me want to do that too haha most of my characters are winged.)
Reply
:iconstickfreeks:
StickFreeks Featured By Owner Jun 9, 2016  Professional General Artist
Thank you so much!~ Haha, I stick wings on a lot of my characters too. :XD: Extra's the first story I've got where one of the main characters doesn't have wings of some sort.
Reply
:iconravyncrescent:
RavynCrescent Featured By Owner Mar 27, 2016  Professional Artisan Crafter
that sounds awesome!!!
Reply
:iconstickfreeks:
StickFreeks Featured By Owner Mar 27, 2016  Professional General Artist
I'm having a lot of fun with it! :D
Reply
Add a Comment:
 
×

:iconcomic-makers-club: More from Comic-Makers-Club


More from DeviantArt



Details

Submitted on
March 25, 2016
Link
Thumb

Stats

Views
10,849
Favourites
5 (who?)
Comments
31