Re: [Yuricon] do-mo,desu
> Well, you kind of talked about it - getting noticed by distributors isto
> hard...but can you talk more about the process of publishing what amounts
> 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
> 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, butI
> 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...