Oy vey, I’m tired of saying I’m tired, I’m over saying how busy I am, and quite frankly, I want to get to it. The thing is that you are bogged down with a lot of bullshit. AND I MEAN A LOT OF IT. But right now, I’m trying to wrap my head around going forward.
See, as a comics creator, I think it’s pretty straightforward: MAKE COMICS. You make them and then later find a way to get them out, be it Webcomics, blog, digital delivery, or print. Then, you plan your attack from there, marketing, getting it into people’s hands, conventions, companies, and what have you. Lots of times, it’s a boon to have a team or publisher behind you to do that and help out. Then when all of it’s together, you go forward and get the comics out, and you see your plan come to fruition or ruin. Afterward, you collect your data, learn to form your mistakes, praise your successes, and then do it again on the next issue or next project. Rinse and Repeat.
Not that this is the ideal way to do it, but the reality of it all is you have to have all this in consideration at the time before even going forward! Because it will inform your decision-making going in, and how you may approach things… or am I wrong?
Then again, with this week’s revelation of SUBSTACK and so many going that way, I wondered about that newsletter model to adopt while CREATURE ENTERTAINMENT is in sleep mode for now. We have been making comics all during COVID, and before everything went to hell, so we feel primed to go forward with our comics now. The only concern is that our previous model of working with Distributors, comics, shops, convention sales, and using Crowdfunding for certain things is still “there,” but is it feasible? Maybe not. We’ve never gone full digital as a company, really, other than incentives on our Kickstarters and such, so we think it will be interesting to take this on in a new way.
This is ultimately the new strategy for any creator now, is about the platform, and what to use and what works and what doesn’t. I have this tactic that everything is viable, but what works for you. I have used Patreon to somewhat succeed but have never been able to get that real engagement I want. It isn’t about numbers or money but an exchange of energy. Real connections.
But hey, who knows? Many people will have good or bad opinions about this, but the mission of MAKE COMICS is everything. That still stands; I don’t care who you are.
And I continue to do just that. So that satisfies that. I just wish I had time to engage IT. Sure, I run a comic shop, and I’m knee-deep in it every day, but I’m always trying to see how the industry involves.
We just had FREE COMIC BOOK DAY at the shop, and it was an AMAZING time; I’m sore, my back hurts. I woke up at 2 pm the next day with a slight hangover. It was all excellent. The shop pulled a small profit despite a tropical storm that was supposed to happen but didn’t. All the vendors were happy, bands played, and comics were handed out; MISSION COMPLETE. Now, that being said, I still want to punch a motherfucker in the face the whole time. Because you have so many moochers that come out of the woodwork, yet also a bunch of people finding you at the same time, it’s kind of torment. I don’t really care about giving free comics, even though THEY ARE NOT FREE. Still, it is a fantastic way to engage and get new customers and have people come in, make sales, make connections, and get the community going.
I can list so many things that went great there, but for some reason, the one thing that got on my FUCKING NERVES was this one instance: We had a family of four come in, Mom and Dade, two sons. They took a look around, saw some stuff, but nothing tickled their pickle, and they b-lined to the Free Comics. Fine, no problem. I talked to them about titles and comics in general, what is going on in comics. They Dad was instantly into it; I go this some books, then I talked to Mom, and she was kind of into it, but was hesitant, but we spoke of some books and got here some Indies, and she was happy. Then the oldest spoke up and was like the mix of the two, and I got him some mainstream stuff and indie books so he could try it out, and he seems jazzed about it. Then it was down to the youngest, an early teen, and asked if they was into anything. He shrugged, and I wondered if he was into any shows or movies and again sort of shrugged, and I made a selection of some comics for him to try out, and he just sat back and said no. I was like, okay, who says No to comics? But then I noticed his COMPLETE DISDAIN for the place and people around him. The young cunt ROLLED his eyes at a girl who was excited about finding a My Hero Funko she was looking for. My ire was up by then, but I just told him, “Wow, too cool for comics, huh?” To kind of break, the ice and hands in his pickets again gave a shrug while I handed him books, and he left me hanging. His mother kind of urged him to take it, and that when he kind reeled against her. I said that cool and just moved onto the next customers. The Dad sort of pulled everyone out, and they all left, thought the oldest said thank you to me.
That kid is stuck in my head, sort of. I mean, really, I DON’T FUCKING CARE, but there was a lesson there that I forgot I learned in Stand up: You can’t please everyone. Sometimes no matter how good you are making or producing or selling whatever, they’re people who will just not give it a chance. No matter what, like this little prepubescent edge lord sack of shit kid. He will be a douche bag no matter what, and all we can hope for is that he’ll be far enough out of the way that we don’t have to deal with him in any absolute sense.
You might be thinking: Juan, you are waaaaay overthinking every aspect of this industry, and I will tell you this: YOU HAVE TO. This is my life, or at least what I’m trying to do with my life; to bring something in this world with some fucking shine to it. Not the same garbage everyone else is churning out. It’s not about money, do ANYTHING FUCKING ELSE IF YOU WANT MONEY, it’s about making something that gives and lives on, does more than the bottom line.
So for now, I’m sitting here writing and drawing again, making notes for the next show, the next event and what to do next, drinking coffee on a Sunday, and jumping to the next vine.
I wouldn’t have it any other way. Remember what Stan Lee said all the time?
That’s right, he reminded me every time, not only for his company or for his work but for all of us to be more, to go HIGHER. That’s where I’m at. So should you!