How I Self-Published a Graphic Novel (4/10)

This is the forth in a ten entry series of blog posts about my experiences self-publishing my first graphic novel, Tonoharu: Part One. I’m writing this “how-to” guide in the hopes that my limited experience might be of some value to aspiring comic book self-publishers.

This guide is offered with no guarantees. I’ve done my best to provide accurate information, but I assume no responsibility for any negative consequences that result from following my advice. For other important disclaimers, please see the first entry in the series. Links to other installments in the series can be found on the bottom of this page.

Part Four: Money Matters
Since I’m so disclaimer-happy, I want to reiterate: cartooning (especially “alternative” cartooning) is a horrible career choice; it is a field where “breaking even” is often considered to be synonymous with “smashing success”. You should only consider cartooning as a career if you are either independently wealthy, or if you feel like you can do nothing else with your life.

I myself am firmly and exclusively in the second camp, and if you are too, then it’s all the more important to put yourself in a good financial place before you self-publish, and to make good choices with what little money happens your way once you start selling books. Continue reading How I Self-Published a Graphic Novel (4/10)

How I Self-Published a Graphic Novel (3/10)

 

This is the third in a ten entry series of blog posts about my experiences self-publishing my first graphic novel, Tonoharu: Part One. I’m writing this “how-to” guide in the hopes that my limited experience might be of some value to aspiring comic book self-publishers.

This guide is offered with no guarantees. I’ve done my best to provide accurate information, but I assume no responsibility for any negative consequences that result from following my advice. For other important disclaimers, please see the first entry in the series. Links to other installments in the series can be found on the bottom of this entry.

Part Three: Research, Research, Research
If you’ve been drawing comics for a while and are considering self-publishing in the not-so-distant future, it’s probably the right time to sit down and start doing some research. Reading this guide is perhaps a very small step in that direction, but by itself isn’t nearly enough. To really prepare yourself, you’ll need to crack open a few books. Continue reading How I Self-Published a Graphic Novel (3/10)

How I Self-Published a Graphic Novel (2/10)

 

This is the second in a ten entry series of blog posts about my experiences self-publishing my first graphic novel, Tonoharu: Part One. I’m writing this “how-to” guide in the hopes that my limited experience might be of some value to aspiring comic book self-publishers.

This guide is offered with no guarantees. I’ve done my best to provide accurate information, but I assume no responsibility for any negative consequences that result from following my advice. For other important disclaimers, please see the first entry in the series. Links to other installments in the series can be found on the bottom of this entry.

Continue reading How I Self-Published a Graphic Novel (2/10)

How I Self-Published a Graphic Novel (1/10)

 

This is the first in a series of ten blog entries about my experiences self-publishing my first graphic novel, Tonoharu: Part One.

This account may be of interest to laypeople (maybe), but I’m writing it more as a sort of informal “how-to” guide for aspiring comic book self-publishers. When I was going through the self-publishing process I had a number of questions that I had a hard time finding answers to on the web, and I hope that this guide can help to fill that information gap in some small way.

This guide is offered with no guarantees. I’ve done my best to provide accurate information, but I assume no responsibility for any negative consequences that result from following my advice. For other important disclaimers, please read the rest of this entry. Links to other installments in the series can be found on the bottom of this entry. Continue reading How I Self-Published a Graphic Novel (1/10)

Introducing Pliant Press

I’ve just launched the beta version of my “business” website at:
pliantpress.com

So in recognition of that, I thought I’d devote an entry to what “Pliant Press” is, and why I created it.

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I’ve previously written about why I want to self-publish. I figured self-publishing would be my best shot at earning a living wage through comics. Or in the very least, I would walk away from the experience having learned more about the book business than I could by any other means.

But I certainly don’t have any allusions that it’s an easy path. There are a number of hurdles that stand in between an aspiring self-publisher and a successful one. Not the least of these is the stigma that surrounds the very notion of self-publishing.

Continue reading Introducing Pliant Press

I Got Distribution!

 

Getting started in any business is tough, and self-publishing is no exception. One of the biggest hurtles that faces the aspiring self-publisher is that of distribution.

Most booksellers prefer to work with distributors rather than with individual publishers. Distributors tend to process and ship orders more quickly, and it consolidates the number of checks that have to be written every month (just one to the distributor, versus dozens to dozens of different publishers). There’s no way around it: you want to see your book in bookstores, getting a distributor to work with you is critical. 

Distributors, on the other hand, tend to shy away from small publishers, and especially self-publishers. They don’t want to bother with a self-publishing author who only has one book and who may never publish again. A distributor wants to develop a profitable long-term relationship with publishers that have a whole line of books. My informal research suggested that most distributors wouldn’t even consider a publisher unless they had a backlist of at least ten titles or so.

This creates a nice little catch-22. You’ll never be able to publish ten books without distribution, but you can’t get distribution unless you’ve published ten books. So what’s a first time publisher to do?

Continue reading I Got Distribution!