The Business of Art

I think it should be apparent to even a cursory glance from a complete stranger that I am no businessman.  I have great respect for people who have a head for business as I am a firm believer in the purity of free market interaction.  Alas, despite my greedy love of money and material possessions, I have an even greater love for the purity of a good story.

Despite my previously professed passion for plentiful profit and prosperity, selling a comic is the last thing on my mind when putting it together.  It's easy to look back, with the aid of hindsight, and analyze how a book could have, or even should have been sold.

I recently ran a Kickstarter to fund a new book that I wanted to do with my good friend, Chris McJunkin.  Our new comic, Urban Archer & Abracadiva, would be a spin off of our Zero's Heroes comic.  Needless to say, the Kickstarter was unsuccessful, mostly because I don't have the ability to market and sell a comic.  I understand the things that need to be done on an intellectual level, sure, but there is a difference between knowing and doing.  Still, I am incredibly grateful to the regular readers and friends who do enjoy my comics and support me any way they can.  

We decided to crowdfund Urban Archer & Abracadiva because I think it's a great concept and one that's easier to sell than anything I've done up to this point.  Much as I want to do Urban Archer & Abracadiva, I think Chris and I are going to put it on the back burner until we can finish up some of the projects we have already started.

At present, I am in a comics making limbo, of sorts.  I have lots of Zero's Heroes comics and four issues of Science Hero already produced.  Within Science Hero, I have started 4 different comics series.  Without intending to, I have spread myself quite thin, with lots of projects started and nothing finished.  I find myself in my current situation not because of a single decision, but rather a series of decisions and reactions that, over time, have lead me to this point.  

Science Hero was started because I wanted to make Time Agent Z.  Joie wasn't able to maintain a weekly schedule, so Josh (the co-creator) and I decided not to run it as a webcomic.  I had previously completed Muscles & Mullets with Grant Perkins for a different anthology, but it looked like that was never going to happen.  Since I was going to start tabling at comic conventions I wanted to have something to show other than the first Zero's Heroes book.  So, rather than keep Time Agent Z and Muscles & Mullets in limbo, I pulled out an old script and had Chris McJunkin illustrate it.  This would become Dogtown.  With three short stories, I now had a 32 page comic that I could print and show off at conventions.

I am happy with the way the comics turned out and over the next three years, we made three more issues of Science Hero.  Of course, over three years, things can change.  People's schedules change.  Attitudes and goals change, as well.  I enjoy making Science Hero because I love working so many great and different artists, but my goals now are less focused on having new issues finished and instead focused on having full graphic novels with complete stories.  They will take longer to produce, but I think they will be a more fulfilling product.

Earlier in the year, I placed Zero's Heroes on a hiatus so I could focus instead on completing full comic issues and attending conventions.  I think that now I will be putting Science Hero down as well, so that I can focus on finishing the individual comics within, starting with Dogtown.

I haven't yet decided if we are going to update the new chapters of Dogtown as a webcomic on or just offer them as digital downloads as they are completed, but we'll figure something out.

I have a few other projects in various stages of development, but I am hesitant to say too much about them, because I don't want to make promises that may not be kept due to changing or conflicting schedules. 

Rest assured, I am working on new comics, and they are going to be amazing.  Stay tuned.