Anyone for Seconds?
This is the interesting stage. And by interesting, I probably don’t really mean interesting. Or at least, not just interesting, but other words that I’m about to unpack, if you feel inclined to continue reading. Interested?
In my limited experience of selling self-produced work there are a couple of stages with which I am familiar.
Stage 1: The initial sprint out of the blocks is welcomed by the natural euphoria of finally having something to show and something to sell. Friends and family warmly greet you with their genuine congratulations and, pleasingly, their support in the form of purchasing a copy of your aforementioned ‘self-produced work’. (In this case, Mockingbird: Nightmare on Another Planet – in case you forgot why we’re all here. Smiley face.)
This stage is wonderful. But you should not be fooled into thinking this is how’s it going to be from now on, because there is Stage 2.
Stage 2: Like the anecdotally difficult second album, there will be a small challenge after Stage 1. This can described with the questioning phrase “What now?” Your main audience (friends, family, followers on social media) will have made their happy purchases, but that can’t be the end – can it? Getting your creation into the hands of a NEW AUDIENCE is a slightly longer road than Stage 1.
I know I said ‘small challenge’ but really this is where a strategy and a plan is needed, and certain amounts of endurance and tenacity. As I alluded to last month.
(By the way, don’t expect any great insights, I am essentially winging it and making this up as I go. “I noticed.” Thanks.)
My current plan is to build a new audience. I think one of the strings on the bow in doing this is to get the comic into the comic shops. Simples. (Sorry.)
So far, the kindly people at Orbital (in London) have kindly taken 5 copies (sale or return), and I’m in conversation with Gosh, Page 45, Dave’s Comics and Forbidden Planet. I will keep you posted on progress, but if you live in our capital city, do visit Orbital and buy Mockingbird (hey, I’ll lend you the tenner if you like!).
I even boosted (as they call it) a recent advert I posted on Facebook. I’ve done this before with mixed results (I got a lot of Likes but none of them seemed to turn into anything more than that).
Finding the right avenue to walk your comic down isn’t straight forward, and does seem to require a few hazy trips down certain roads, mainly to confirm they are not the path you should be taking.
Yes, there are conventions to attend and pushing one’s online presence on that Twitter, Instagram et al. But there is still this nagging feeling in the back of my brain-head that maybe I should just… write and draw some new material!!
(That deserved two exclamation marks.)
By the way, I’m not sure what Stage 3 looks like. Feel free to tell me.
Oh, did I mention we’re now on a second print run of the book? I should have said this earlier (according to Blogging 101). Soz, teach.