Archives For September 2017

I’m off to a land where fictional characters roam free, and artists laze on the banks of rivers flowing with Indian Ink, as origami birds lay putty rubber eggs in papier mache trees. That’s right, I’m off to the Lakes International Comic Art Festival in Kendal!

And for those who don’t know geography, that’s near the top end of the United Kingdom*.

And for those who don’t know my personal geography, I live at the other end of the United Kingdom!

“Surely there are other comic events closer to home, Flicko?”

You’re right, gentle reader, but the Lakes International Comic Art Festival, as well as being a mouthful, is one of those wondrous places where the whole town is transformed into a haven of sequential art. This is more than just a scout hall full of grubby men in black t-shirts thumbing through the latest issue of Super Lady and her saucy pout (no offence).

This is the kind of event that encompasses the whole of the medium from kids comics through to the European stuff (that’s a technical term) with Asterix, Tintin, Moomins, etc. as well as the men who wear masks and punch things**.

Even the shops get in on the act with windows displaying 2D replicas of Dennis the Menace, Krazy Kat, Usagi Yojimbo and of course, Super Lady and her saucy pout.

Have a look for yourself right here.

It’s the ideal place to meet like-minded individuals who may very well be interested in the exciting space adventures of a young girl on a far distant planet, battling off the unwanted attentions of some hairy aliens whilst trying to get her homework completed on time! (I hope by now you realise that’s a description of my comic – Mockingbird: Nightmare on Another Planet. If not, seriously, go to the back of the class… don’t dawdle… I can wait.)

“Does this mean…?” (Permission to bate your breath.)

Yes, I’m going to print a few copies to take me with me. I’ll also drag along a bunch of my old comics as freebies, to entice the nervous and naive, like a short bald spider, into my web of irresistible sales banter***.

This does also mean I’ll have some books to sell at this end of the country too. My plan is to print about 50, with the intention of passing a few of them to reviewers and comic shops. But (talking the bottom line now) if I manage to sell 25 at a tenner a pop, that will cover costs nicely.

I’ve put it in the website Shoppe for those who may be interested (click here) but do feel free to ‘stop me and buy one’ in real life if you and your purse are in the neighbourhood.

If you recall my last blog post, regular readers, I floated this as a possible idea back then.

“Yes, nice floater, Flix.” Er, thanks?

On that note I will bid you a fond adieu and endeavour to keep you updated on progress! Yes, let’s call it PROGRESS… in caps!


* Anywhere above the M25 is ‘near the top end’ to a southerner.
** In the real world this would be a description of ‘bad guys’, ironic eh?
*** I have no sales banter, only the resistible variety. “You’re fired!”****
**** TM Sir Alan Lord Sugar.

Printing Comics in the Future

Following on from my last electronic missive, I believe we ended on the tantalising question of whether I’m finally going to print the graphic novel ‘Mockingbird: Nightmare on Another Planet’, or continue to let it gather cyber-dust on the cyber-shelves of the Kindle Bros et al.

“Sorry, tantalising for whom?”

I’m glad you asked! Here are the various options. All of them involve the acceptance that there’s no guarantee I will make my money back on any financial outlay in print costs. Feel free to accuse me of being negative!

“You’re being negative, Flicko!” – I guess I asked for that.

To Kickstart or not to Kickstart: Whilst Kickstarter is a great method for raising funds (this opinion is based on no direct experience), and though it understandably requires a lot of work promoting your ‘campaign’, my main hesitancy is whether I have a big enough following to ensure my target will be reached (and remember fans, if you don’t reach your target you don’t get no mambo).

Also I feel I need to do it right the first time. I don’t want to be in a situation where I’m dragging the same ol’ material out again and again, trying to convince the donating public this flogged mule with its tongue hanging out really is worth your coinage… this time… please.

“You’re being negative, Flicko!” – I guess I asked for that.

Personal Finance: Or I could print up a limited bunch of hard copies, with the intention of getting them into the hands of reviewers. Y’know, create a buzz in the comic community! Of course, I need to have a follow up plan if I’m doing this. It’s no good receiving a positive review if the book can’t actually be purchased.

The other possibility with a limited print run would be to send them to comic shops to see if they’d commit to buying copies to put on their shelves. In a way, I would be the distributor.

I’m not sure about this approach. Mainly as most comic shops are ‘sale or return’ so the money risk would be on me… again.

“You’re being negative, Flicko!” – You can stop now.

Advance Orders: Here’s a thought I had the other day, which isn’t dissimilar to Kickstarter. More of a personalised version. What if I sold advance copies? I would commit to printing a bunch anyway, but advertise and promote it as far as I could, with the hope that some of the costs would be offset by advance sales, so it wasn’t just my wallet involved when the time came for paying the piper… I mean, the printer. It’s not like publishers don’t do this already, is it?

Personal Finance Plus: Now this is a bit of a crazy option. How about I print a bunch (say, 100) and just give them away? (Or ask for a suggested donation?) I wonder if by Control-Zedding the fear of having to cover costs; by removing that concern altogether I can just focus on getting this wonderful tale of space adventure into the welcoming hands of the reading public!

“Now you’re talking, Flicko!” – Yes, I thought you’d like that last option.

Or maybe even a combination of some of the above?

We’ll carry on this chat next time.

Love & biscuits to all!