It’s never been simpler to start a webcomic, yet it might still be frightening. Fortunately, many comic pros have contributed their knowledge in the form of books, websites, and webcomics if you’re seeking help. Here are all of the tools you’ll need to get started.
It’s crucial to remember that there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to creating a webcomic. A little guidance, on the other hand, might sometimes provide the push — or the confidence — you need to get started. Furthermore, the knowledge and expertise of these authors may be quite beneficial as you begin your journey into the world of webcomics.
If You’re Starting Out
To begin with, webcomics necessitate reasonable expectations. You’ll likely be disappointed if you expect to be the next Zach Weinersmith or Kate Beaton within the first year of putting your comic online. When we asked authors about the most common mistakes, individuals make when starting a webcomic, they all said the same thing: focus on your comic first. Don’t get caught up with a merchandising, celebrity, or tinkering with your website at the price of improving your comic.
Want To Start A Webcomic? Image from the article Want To Start A Webcomic?
The Most Common Mistakes People Make When Starting A Webcomic
Do you want to start your webcomic? Great! But, before you go too far, make sure you’re prepared.
Webb Space Telescope’s First Full-Color Images Will Be Available in Weeks C. Spike Trotman is one of my favorite webcomic creators. Spike is the publisher of Iron Circus Comics, which has a roster of publications that includes Poorcraft, Smut Peddler, and Sleep of Reason, in addition to her webcomic, Templar, Arizona. Spike routinely gives authors sound advice, as seen in her amazing 24-Hour Comic This Is Everything I Know. Spike’s short comic is fantastic because she manages expectations (reminding us that life isn’t a meritocracy, and neither are comics). Still, she also reminds us that if your webcomic becomes a company, you’ll have a lot of non-art-related responsibilities to deal with, and it’s only a friendly reminder.
You’re ready for some nittier, grittier guidance now that you’ve adjusted your expectations. You may find excellent information from people like Jenny Romanchuk (The Zombie Hunters) and Kel McDonald by searching for “webcomics guidance” (Sorcery 101). (I like McDonald’s advice, which includes things like “First start the comic, don’t wait to be good enough,” and “Be friendly to other comic artists.”)
Of course, things change all the time on the Internet, and webcomics are no exception. Fortunately, The Webcomics Handbook, the 2014 follow-up to the 2008 book How to Make Webcomics, was recently released last year by Evil Inc. The Webcomics Handbook offers all you need to know about posting your comic online, advertising it, and even print it. This is the place to go if you want a comprehensive, step-by-step tutorial.
While Unnatural Talent by Jason Brubaker (reMIND) isn’t specifically oriented toward webcomics, it does offer some good suggestions for self-publishing in the digital era, including why you might want to make your comic available for free online.
If You Want to Know About Business
It’s easy to forget about webcomics, but if you’re lucky, your webcomic may turn into a full-fledged business. You may need or want to make judgments regarding selling ebooks or print books, merchandising, and commissions at some time in the future.
I feel that the creators themselves have some of the most intriguing and informative talks on this subject. Jason Shiga (Demon), Dorothy Gambrell (Cat and Girl), and Ryan Estrada (Lots of Stuff) are all known for talking about their profits. So, what should you do if you’re not already following a few hundred webcomic authors? Free, Gary Tyrrell’s webcomics site, is a good place to start. Tyrrell is always covering noteworthy news and debates in the field of webcomics.
There are, however, alternative options available to you. Todd Allen’s revised The Economics of Digital Comics is the most directly targeted toward the profitability of webcomics and other digital comics. Don’t be thrown off by the first chapter’s denseness; the book gets much more user-friendly as it progresses. Allen isn’t interested in advising you on how to make money from your comic. Instead, he lays out several monetization possibilities and breaks out the expenses and revenues.
Katie Lane’s blog Work Made for Hire is another excellent resource, albeit one with a more legal bent. Lane is a lawyer who specialises in the creative industries, and it helps that she is married to Dylan Meconis, a fantastic webcartoonist (Family Man).
Oh, and if you’re thinking about launching a crowdfunding campaign, Spike Trotman can help there, too. Let’s Kickstart a Comic (And Not Screw It Up), her ebook, lays down the fundamentals of a comic crowdfunding campaign in comic style.
If You Want Constant Comics Creator Advice
There are a slew of websites (including this one) dedicated to informing webcomics readers about what’s available. There are, however, websites dedicated to comics professionals, including those who work online. Fleen, as I described before, is a mix of the two, presenting noteworthy webcomics as well as webcomics news.
However, there are other websites dedicated to the day-to-day operations of maintaining a webcomic. Making Comics is a free online resource for emerging creators, not only webcomics. The Webcomic Alliance, as the name implies, is a resource for online cartoonists, offering guidance, suggestions, and viewpoints on a variety of topics. Brad Guigar also runs Webcomics.com, a subscription-based site that offers news, suggestions, and lessons for webcartoonists, if you’re seeking for advise like that found in The Webcomics Handbook on a daily basis.