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Re: [Yuricon] do-mo,desu

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  • Kathryn Williams
    ... to ... etc. *blinks* oh... I did? ahhh... good... What pros and cons? ahh.. Pro: There are pros? I guess that fact that someone might actually want to buy
    Message 1 of 6 , Mar 27, 2002
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      > Well, you kind of talked about it - getting noticed by distributors is
      > hard...but can you talk more about the process of publishing what amounts
      to
      > a doujinshi in North America - the pros and cons - costs, main points,
      etc.

      *blinks* oh... I did? ahhh... good... What pros and cons? ahh.. Pro: There
      are pros? I guess that fact that someone might actually want to buy you work
      is a pro... You have to first beleive in your own works or it will not sell.
      The publishing world is a harsh and crule one. Everyone will try to prove
      that you are worthless and your work is crap because well.. it is. According
      to everyone else you are nothing... a nobody. Self publishing is one step
      above playing an insturment on the side of the road.. or that is how it
      feels most of the time. At cons people don't care because they just want t
      lastest CLAMP or Eva stuff. Stores don't want to take a chance because they
      would rather have the shelf space for something that will sell and not
      something that might sell.

      The only real pro is that you are in complete control. You don't have to
      write what "They" want you to write. It was when I realized this fact that I
      started to get somewhere. I started writing a story that I felt needed to be
      told. I was prepared to fail form the moment I started. As I sat at AN my
      first year and watche dpeople pick up my book and toss it aside I was about
      ready to give up until I noticed that when I talked about what the story was
      about that people actually came back the next day and bought (it did help
      that my books were only a twoonie, $2 cdn) My quote at the con was "Come on
      everyone has a twoonie." yes I felt like I was begging at times but I have a
      large print run to pay for and if this didn't work out there was nothing for
      me to turn to... and I mean nothing. Art was all I had and if this didn't
      work out I would end up spending the rest of my life staring at teh ceiling
      wishing that I were dead. Art was my only outlet that kept me form killing
      myself. I was sort of luck that I am disabled and because I could focus
      entirly on my art.

      I remember reading Dave Sim's "Cerebus's Guide to self publishing" and
      realized just how hopless this kind of this is. 95% of self publishers fail
      before their 3rd issue and 95% of that number do not make it to their 1st
      year. After 5 years I can tell you he wasn't lying. I have watched people
      fail time and time again. The faces keep changing at the cons every year
      with only 3 that have been the same in the last 2 years.

      So how did I succeed? I don't really have a clue. at my first con I was
      shocked to have sold over 150 copies of the Shadowland and 40 posters. The
      posters are what made enough to keep printing. low cost of printing. While I
      was barly scraping by with the money from teh Manga sales the posters more
      then made up for the rest. They allowed me to go to more and more
      conventions. Other then the 5 stores that I has selling my works in Ontario.
      Cons were my only other way of selling my works so getting to as many in the
      summer as I could was very important. Mind you one year it almost killed me.
      I was working on 5 projects at once and came down with a very high fever but
      this didn't stop me from working and ever doing a signing at a comic book
      store. I still hear people talk about meting me there. I was pale, tired and
      looked like death itself and didn't hide that fact that I was not feeling
      good. Mind you it was this signing that got me known in the self publishing
      comunity. They joked with me about how much work the self publishing and
      that the only ones to succeed are those who are willing to work themselves
      to the point of death and do it for some deeper reason then just because
      they think creating comics would be a cool job to have.

      I still think of myself as stumbling through life. Not really knowing what I
      was doing but somehow I was able to say the right things at the right time
      to the right people. (that odd charm everyone says I have I guess) The idea
      of a survivor stuggling through life like I was intreged people, more and
      more buoght my books just to see what made me keep moving when I should have
      died long ago. Like I side in the Yuri Manga project ML. Manga is a strange
      form of Self exebitionism (sp) You have to be willing to show the world your
      heart in order to succeed. If you are not willing to open up like this you
      are bond to fail from teh start. I'm noticing that it is more and more the
      stories about things other then giant robots that succeed. FLCL, Alein 9,
      Fruits Basket, Lain and other like these seem to be what people want to see.
      I have yet to figure out what it is about stories like mine that keep people
      coming back but I was told my my fans to just keep writing the way I have
      been.. every depressing moment. This seems to be the way things are
      shifting. People are looking for stories and not just the same old thing. If
      you start out by saying "I want to creat something like Sailor Moon." you
      have failed already. *shrugh* that is just how things seem to this tired
      soul...

      > And how *do* you get any distribution outside your local area.

      There are many small distributor out there... they all depend on the area
      you live in and none are international. The biggest is Diamond (The Giant
      Previews cataloge you see at your local comic store is theirs) and you will
      not beleive what they consider a great comic. Take a look in the independent
      section sometime. Other then all teh Manga companies (yes they consider CPM
      and VIZ as being small companies) Most of the stuff is just rehashing old
      ideas. The big companies don't want to take a chance at something new that
      might fail. If it is somehting different they will steer clear of it. It
      took them years to have Manga listed at all. They have finaly in the last
      year realized that Anime/Manga actually isn't a fad and will not be going
      away. Teh market is slowly changing like this but I don't see it entirely
      changing for another few year.

      So how do I distuibute outside of my area? I have my own online store that
      is how. I created www.KatAndNekoManga.ca because I couldn't keep up with all
      the emails about where to get more of my works. and asking me to come to
      their city to sell things (when they live across the contry) They couldn't
      wait for me to show up at teh next convention so I had to buy my own domain
      and host all my art there. Mind you the site has only started to get major
      traffic when I changed if from just a store and added reviews and anime that
      has the same themes and I have in my stories. about half the people who come
      to my site come to read teh reviews on Alien 9. Then seeing what kind of
      person I am they take a look around the rest of the site and some have even
      bought things. IAlso alot have mentioned loving my Bio page and such in
      which I state just why I'm doing all of this. Soon I'll be adding an
      actually statement about what K&N Manga realy is about (mostly because I
      finally figure it out myself.. I have been doing alof of soul searching
      these day and finally understand who I am a bit more) People like to read
      about my stuggles for some reason. I mean when I printed the story "Dreaming
      of Another Day" which is entirely about how I survied being raped and
      lossing my girlfriend I did it more for myself then anything else, but
      people want to read more. It is kind of creepy, but also conforting to read
      about others like myself who thank me for showing them that they are not
      quite as alone as they tought. *sighs*

      Gomen, *shakes her head* I hope I havn't got to over board...

      > I know some of these things because we've talked about them together, but
      I
      > think other people are interested.

      hope I was of some help... now back to giving myself a proper burial...
      Don't ask it is a looonnggg story...

      ja ne

      Kat
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