Lars Martinson: Businessman??


As mentioned in my previous entry, I just found out that I have been awarded a Xeric Grant to self-publish my graphic novel Tonoharu.

Since then I’ve been rushing around trying to get everything ready. I’ve contacted printers for quotes, secured an ISBN number and barcode, started drafting and sending out press releases, worked on the design and content for my forthcoming business website, wrote this longwinded blog entry, etc., etc., etc….
Continue reading Lars Martinson: Businessman??

Big News! I got the Xeric Grant!!

My series of posts entitled Creating Tonoharu will resume in a few weeks. I had to put it on hold in light of the following: I have been selected to receive a Xeric Grant to self-publish my graphic novel Tonoharu: Part One! For those who don’t know about the Xeric Grant, see the previous post about it here. To learn more about Tonoharu, click here.

I just received word about this last Saturday, and have been running around like a chicken with his head cut off this whole week trying to get everything ready. It’s been exhausting, but terribly exciting.

I’d like to get it published and out there just as soon as I can, but of course these things take time. So I’m shooting to have Tonoharu: Part One released sometime during the first quarter of 2008, or maybe even a little before then, like late December 2007.

Well, I think I’ll leave it at this for now. This is a short entry I know, but I’ve got a lot to get to. Check back next Friday for more details.

In the meantime, check out my newly-expanded “About Me” page (, and my newly-created “About My Comics” page (

One more thing: next Tuesday’s installment of “JET Program Reflections” is cancelled, to give me more time to devote to publishing-related stuff and to give this entry top billing on my site for a full week. “JET Program Reflections” will be back on Tuesday, October 30th.

An Introduction to the Xeric Grant

Sweet, sweet Ninja Turtle Money: Coming my way soon??

As mentioned in last Friday’s entry, whether or not I self-publish depends heavily on the outcome of my bid for a Monbusho Scholarship to study in Japan. The problem is that I won’t find out about that for another five months or so. This uncertainty about even what country I’ll be living in come April makes it difficult for me to take any concrete steps towards self-publishing (or anything else).

But actually, in addition to the Monbusho Scholarship, there is one other factor that asserts major influence over this decision. And thankfully, this other factor should be resolved one way or the other in just a couple short weeks. That is my application for a comic book self-publisher’s grant from the Xeric Foundation.
Continue reading An Introduction to the Xeric Grant

To self-publish or not to self-publish?


I would prefer to self-publish my comic book Tonoharu, for reasons described previously. In fact, if I knew I was going to be in the United States for the next, oh, twelve months or so, I think I’d just bite the bullet and do it.

The thing is, if my bid for a Monbusho Scholarship is successful, I’ll be out of the country beginning in April of next year. Even if I put it on the fast track, I probably couldn’t have my comic printed up & ready to go until this November. This would only give me four or five months to sell them before I left. That’s just not enough time to do all the tasks associated with starting a new publishing business, like soliciting distributors, sending out review copies, and doing all the marketing (all while preparing to go to Japan, no less). Granted, thanks to the Internet I could do some of that stuff while abroad, but not all of it, and not while studying full time.

So in a nutshell, if I get the Monbusho Scholarship, I should probably give up on the idea of self-publishing (for now) and just solicit a regular publisher. If I don’t get the scholarship, self-publishing would be the way to go after all. So until I get a final answer regarding the Monbusho Scholarship, I can’t really make an informed decision one way or the other.

And therein lies the rub. Continue reading To self-publish or not to self-publish?

(Part of the Reason) Why I’m considering Self-Publishing

As previously mentioned, I am in the midst of a prolonged attempt to see if I can’t eke out a living by drawing comic books.

For most jobs distinguished enough to be called “professions”, one can at least expect to earn a living wage. Not so with cartooning. Many of the very best (non-mainstream) cartoonists have to supplement their income with side-jobs. Others live in abject poverty. Only a very talented and lucky few are able to make a comfortable living at it free and clear.
Continue reading (Part of the Reason) Why I’m considering Self-Publishing