Tag Archives: Indiegogo

Iceskating Uphill

We all know the line... Let's say it together...
We all know the line… Let’s say it together…

So, this was posted today on one of the many groups I belong to on Facebook:

Why is it so hard to break into the comic book industry?

Here’s my issue with this post: it seems that the poster’s look at the fact that since the “Corporate Two’s” hiring practices are so insular that creators have taken to other avenues or different formats as a bad thing when, as it has been shown with examples (i.e. Harry Potter) the success that creators have found by working outside of the confines of the mainstream.

The climate of the industry today is this: Create your own. That’s not bad at all. More readers are gravitating to work outside of DC and Marvel. In fact, most creatives working at DC or Marvel today are seeing that exposure as a stepping stone for an audience to follow their independent work.

For example, Rick Remender and Mike McKone have stopped taking on work from DC and Marvel to focus on their own work. In addition, with crowdfunding platforms, Print On Demand options and webcomics, we as creators don’t need to work for DC and Marvel for any other reason than just to get a paycheck because the “Corporate Two” is not looking for original IP. They’ve got more than enough characters in their roster.

You won't get this level of satire from the mainstream...
You won’t get this level of satire from the mainstream…

Case in point, Attack on Titan has far outsold the highest-selling DC or Marvel book. Independent books like Saga, Lumberjanes, Low, Velvet, Lazarus and others are selling quite well and are being optioned for film. In all honesty, the creator of today does not need DC or Marvel to get out there.

The fact is that the creator of today has to also be a salesman, marketing and advertising entity, etc. Yes, that’s hard. Yes, we’d all rather just create and have other people take care of the elements of selling our IP that we may not want to make the time for, or have that innate ability to do, but this is the state of the industry today… And, it ain’t bad at all.

My issue is that the feeling that I get from this post is that it seems as if the poster looks at going into trade publishing and adapting a book to a Young Adult format as a some sort of defeat.

Yes, people who only look at DC or Marvel as the end all be all are going to ask where are the new superheroes because, quite simply, they aren’t looking. As it was stated, there are so many more spaces where people can be satisfied and, honestly, many creators have eschewed pursuing work at DC or Marvel because they enjoy the freedom of dictating the direction and potential financial rewards of owing their own IP.

Why follow when you can lead?
Why follow when you can lead?

As a fellow creator of comics and as an owner of my own company as well, I get asked that same question all the time: How do you break into comics? And, the answer is simple:

Create your own.

Now, if people are asking the question, how do I break into DC or Marvel? Again, the answer is simple:

Create your own.

Today, DC and Marvel are looking at what people do on their own, what kind of work they produce, what kind of following are they able to generate and how consistent their output is. In addition, yes you go to the cons and you use social media to foster honest relationships with cats who are working in the “Corporate Two” if you’d like to get a paycheck from them. But, they are not the end-all, be-all of this industry.

It’s like this: you can’t become the next Stan Lee working on Stan Lee’s properties at Stan Lee’s company. The Image cats knew that. The Milestone cats knew that. Independence is the goal, not the consolation prize.

So again, the only issue I take with this post is the perceived pessimism of working independently when, after it’s all said and done, it’s the desire of most people working in the industry, both in the mainstream and independent sphere.

Speaking of…

Support the Complexion of Comics!
Support the Complexion of Comics!

For a pledge of just $5.00, you’re officially a Head Nod and you get The Posse Cut(over and hour of some of the greatest collabos in Hip Hop history) and a digital version of Sequential Graffiti, a 64-Page poster book featuring some of the finest Visual MCs and Literary DJs working in comics today… Support‪ #‎4Pages16Bars‬ project on Indiegogo today… The deadline in August 16, 2015.

Cheers, fam!

http://www.griotenterprises.com

C U @ C2E2!

C2E2 2013 Poster
C2E2 2013 Poster

What’s happening, fam!

skethcardcavalcadesmall1.jpg

Yours truly, Jiba Molei Anderson, is going to be at C2E2 April 26 – 28! I’ll be stationed at the IADT Booth # 701 Friday, April 26 from 2pm 4pm, Saturday, April 27 and Sunday, April 28 from 1pm – 3pm. Come on by to hang out, say hey and learn more about the upcoming Outworld: Return of the Master Teachers and the NEW Horsemen series coming later in 2013!

The Horsemen by Jiba Molei Anderson & published by Griot Enterprises
The Horsemen by Jiba Molei Anderson & published by Griot Enterprises

I’ll have sketchcards of characters from the DC and Marvel universes for $25.00 a card. These ain’t printed. These are the original cards that I’ve illustrated. Once they’re gone, they’re gone!

I’ll also be selling 11″ X 17″ FULL-COLOR Horsemen, Outworld and JBD prints for only $15.00! And, that’s not all… Buy one of these prints and get the PDF of the print’s first issue ABSOLUTELY FREE!

Avengers Assemble
Avengers Assemble

While we’re kicking it, also pick up the Avengers Assemble print series I’ve created just for this occasion featuring some of the iconic and historic heroes of color from Marvel Comics for only! Each print is only $10.00 with all 7 prints in the series for only $50.00!

Outworld Indiegogo promotional poster
Outworld Indiegogo promotional poster

BTW guys, there’s only 48 hours left to donate to the Outworld campaign on Indiegogo. Pledge before the due date and, if you’re going to C2E2, I’ll have a signed poster ready for you to pick up… No waiting!

Have a great week, fam, and I hope to see some of you this weekend… It’s gonna be an awesome con!

Cheers!
http://www.griotenterprises.com

A Taste of What’s To Come

Outworld: Return of the Master Teachers Preview 01
Outworld: Return of the Master Teachers Preview 01
Outworld: Return of the Master Teachers Preview 02
Outworld: Return of the Master Teachers Preview 02
Outworld: Return of the Master Teachers Preview 03
Outworld: Return of the Master Teachers Preview 03
Outworld: Return of the Master Teachers Preview 04
Outworld: Return of the Master Teachers Preview 04

New pages from Outworld: Return of the Master Teachers! Only 15 days left to support our Indiegogo campaign to get your advance copy and extra goodies today!

The Final Rant Part Three: There Is No Spoon

Molly Danger by Jamal Igle
Molly Danger by Jamal Igle

The comic book industry, as we imagine it, does not exist.

I realize that what I’ve just said is rather controversial. I realize that what I just wrote may make some heads explode. The truth, sometimes, is a bitter pill to swallow. But, it must be said so that we can proceed in a positive direction.

To be an industry, it must be self-sustaining. It must provide goods and services that the public can’t live without.

With that being said, here’s another truth:

Industry does not care about what you think.

Aizan by Shawn Alleyne
Aizan by Shawn Alleyne

As a business, dollars are the only thing that the industry cares about, its bottom line. It doesn’t care about diversity, it doesn’t care about civil rights and the industry doesn’t care about the honest representation of any culture. As long as that money is coming in, as long as people are lining up to consume what the industry has to offer, then the industry is good. The industry keeps on truckin’.

Comics do not fit this category. The comic book is a medium by which I, and others, choose to deliver the most important component of the entertainment industry…

…The property.

With the acquisition of Marvel Entertainment by The Walt Disney Company, the medium of the comic book is officially part of a larger industry known as the entertainment industry. This industry is made up of many facets including literature, video games, television, music, merchandising and animation. These are the different mediums by which we disburse entertainment to the masses. Disney bought Marvel because Disney was lacking in properties directed at young boys. Throughout the 90s and the early part of the new millennium, they focused so much on their live programming and the “Princess” line (i.e. Mulan, Pocahontas, Beauty and the Beast, etc.), they forgot about the boys in their marketing strategy. They weren’t getting that (In my best TF Curtis impersonation) “Little Boy Munnaaayyy”….

Midnight Tiger by Ray-Anthony Height
Midnight Tiger by Ray-Anthony Height

The boys didn’t care that they were being ignored because they were satisfied with the properties that other companies provided (i.e. DC Entertainment and Marvel). Now, DC and Marvel make their money through their properties. The properties are disbursed through the various mediums that were identified earlier in this post. Comic books represent a small, but crucial part, of their bottom line. Comics are the first step in getting their properties to the masses. If the comic book is successful (indicated solely by how many units are sold), then the property can be further exploited through other media. Marvel Studios’ successful exploitation of their peoperties (thanks again to the Blade property, for getting the ball rolling) in the cinematic realm made Marvel Entertainment attractive enough to be acquired by Disney.

Lucius Hammer by Ravenhammer Comics
Lucius Hammer by Ravenhammer Comics

The deal was a win-win for both companies. Marvel now has the resources to continue doing what they do, and Disney has a ready-made and thriving think tank to develop more properties that could be marketed to the young boy demographic… And they want more. That’s why they bought the Star Wars property for over 4 billion dollars (Dr. Evil pinky close-up).

We, as comic book readers, are the focus group in this Grand Hustle of marketing. If we don’t support a property through our dollars, and our dollars alone, then that property will not be successful. Hollywood picked up on this. That’s why it’s even more difficult to get to and attend the San Diego Comic Con these days.

Will Power by Vince White
Will Power by Vince White

What does that mean for the independent creator?

If you want to do comics and have true control and (hopefully) success in this business, first understand that comics aren’t just comics. It’s all about creating a strong concept, a strong property and disbursing that property through as many channels as possible. You can’t wait for DC and Marvel to create that property. You’ve got to do your own thing. The only thing standing between creators and success are themselves.

At this stage of the game, you don’t need Diamond for distribution. POD outfits like DriveThruComics.com and IndyPlanet.com not only provide digital and print books to the buyer, but retailers can order multiple copies at a discount as well. In terms of merchandise, using online companies like Zazzle.com can provide those at little to no start-up cost to the entrepreneur.

The Horsemen by Jiba Molei Anderson & published by Griot Enterprises
The Horsemen by Jiba Molei Anderson & published by Griot Enterprises

What does the mean for the fan?

Your dollars dictate the success or failure of these properties. Your dollars determine whether or not your favorite characters, or the idealized version of yourselves, become part of the global fabric of recognized and beloved properties. If you do not pay for these properties, they will not grow and flourish, but wither and die in obscurity.

The only thing that stands between satisfied and unsatisfied fans are the dollars you spend. Spending money on companies that create properties that speak to you ensures that they will continue to exist. This game ain’t easy and if you’re gonna play it, it’s gonna take hard work and being on your grind each and every day. That’s the reality and I want to see more projects of quality rise to the challenge.

The comic book industry does not exist, but it is a business… And business is good.

Outworld: Return of the Master Teachers second promotional poster
Outworld: Return of the Master Teachers second promotional poster

Speaking of business, please support the amazing properties displayed in this article. And, there’s only 21 days left in the Outworld: Return of the Master Teachers Round Two campaign on Indiegogo. We’ve raised $60.00 of our $1500.00 goal to get our next property out to the masses in May. To support, click here:

http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/outworld-return-of-the-master-teachers-round-two

Next up: The standard… Cheers!

http://www.griotenterprises.com

Outworld Is Doing The Indiegogo!

What up, fam!

This spring, we’re releasing the next addition to the Griot Enterprises’ roster, Outworld: Return of the Master Teachers, and we need your help to make this happen.

Outworld at Indiegogo
Outworld at Indiegogo

The Premise:

The Master Teachers have been outlawed and hunted to the brink of extinction by one of their own.

But, a rag tag band of rebels led by a disgraced Master will ignite a revolution that will restore the glory of the Master Teachers and bring justice to a beleaguered solar system.

The Final Package:

Outworld: Return of the Master Teachers will be released as two 24-page issues in digital format as well as a 64-page “Expanded edition” print graphic novel. The book will distributed through Amazon, Comic Flea Market, Drive Thru Comics, Graphicly, IndyPlanet and Lulu.

Real Talk, we need some dough…

Here’s the deal: we are looking to raise $6000.00 to help with production, marketing and printing costs.

Of course you’ll get some really cool incentives based on how much you donate! For example:

$15.00 – You’ ll get a FREE PDF copy of Outworld: Return of the Master Teachers’ FIRST AND SECOND issues PLUS a FREE PRINTED copy of Outworld: Return of the Master Teachers… Signed!

$50.00 – All of the rewards above plus a FREE Outworld: Return of the Master Teachers 11” X 17” promotional print and a FREE Outworld: Return of the Master Teachers T-shirt… Again, signed!

$100.00 (limited to 20) – All of the rewards above plus the entire Outworld: Return of the Master Teachers promotional poster series (8 prints) FREE… And signed!

$150.00 (limited to 10) – All of the rewards above plus the entire Outworld: Return of the Master Teachers promotional poster series (8 prints) AND an ORIGINAL sketch of a character from Outworld: Return of the Master Teachers… You get the idea!

If we don’t reach our entire goal, we’ll still push on. The book will be completed and all incentives will be honored. That’s how we do at Griot… Can’t stop, won’t stop!

Just click on the link below for more details:
http://www.indiegogo.com/masterteachers/x/2178636

The deadline is March 8, 2013. Thanks for the love and continue to support Indie Comics & Black Sci-Fi… Cheers!

www.griotenterprises.com