Submitted by Delos on February 6, 2009 - 14:30
Woah. Lots going on. Iâ€™ve debated going to a semi-daily update but sometimes noticing what the longer trends are provides more practical use. In any case, thereâ€™s arguably too much this week:
Submitted by Brad Guigar on February 4, 2009 - 10:44
I've got two trips to the Big Apple in the next few days, and I'm major-league excited about both.
First, I head out tomorrow to tape the Superfan Roundtable -- a show dedicated to the popular Howard Stern Morning Show on Sirius Satellite Radio. You can hear me Thursday at 7 p.m. EST on channel 101.
Then Friday, I'm back in New York for the New York Comic Con. It's at the Javitts Center Friday through Sunday.
Submitted by fesworks on January 26, 2009 - 19:44
Webcomic Beacon #61 - Hobbyists vs Professionalists: Scott Gallatin (of The Gigcast and Madscott) join Fes, Tanya, and Mark as we talk about hobbyist and professionalist approaches to webcomickery… Yes I know that isn’t a real word, but it looks funny.
Milestones: Trying Human (100 pages), Genuine Draft (100 pages), Alone in a crowd (1 yr), Big sandy gilmore (100 strips), Heroes of Lesser Earth (100 strips). This week we set our Beacon Searchlight on The Nolans.
Submitted by Xaviar Xerexes on January 22, 2009 - 14:50
Last year I posted a couple times (Previous posts on this "research" project were here and here) about a possible article on "ComixTALK's 100 Greatest Webcomics" which would be something like the American Film Institute's list of the greatest movies of the last 100 years.
A recurring comment to the previous two posts was what is the criteria for this. I'm always a little hesitant to give too much guidance when part of the point of asking this kind of thing out loud is to listen to the resulting discussion of what everyone else thinks the criteria should be. For the AFI list judges picked films based on criteria such as Critical Recognition, Major Award Winner, Popularity Over Time, Historical Significance, and Cultural Impact.
That sounds about right to me. We've got a round decade plus a year or two of webcomics to look at it. Critical reception (both from peers and critics), and popularity are both relevant to thinking about the impact of a webcomic. WCCA awards are somewhat indicative of what peers were impressed with in a given year and more recently awards like the Eisners and Ignatzs have recoginized webcomics. Historical significance and cultural impact are a little harder to pin down but various "firsts" in webcomics are important and comics like Penny Arcade have had a much wider impact on popular culture than most comics do these days (put aside the legacy superheros of comics -- what other "new" comic, let alone webcomic, in the last decade has had a wide cultural impact?)
Another thing AFI did that might be useful here to help sort through the vast numbers of webcomics one could talk about is to also think about categories or genres of work. Just as a simple matter of numbers if a webcomic isn't one of the best of a larger type of story -- or frankly, so startlingly unique it's hard to categorize -- then it's hard to imagine it's one of the 100 Greatest...
So to move things along I'm listing another "draft" of titles submitted by the crowds but this time I've tried to break them up into drama and comedy so as to help avoid complete apples to oranges comparisons. In doing that I've realized (1) it's hard in many cases to decide; and (2) there are probably more comedic than drama on the list so far. I think it would make sense to whittle down the two lists to 75 each so as the final list is no more than 3/4 of one type or the other. Of course we could further do genre type lists but for now this was enough work on my part.
So -- your assignment (if you choose to play):
- Name the comic you're talking about (you're also welcome to nominate ones not on the list -- I KNOW there are many I haven't even thought about yet -- it takes time to review all of the corners of the web)
- Tell me where on one the two lists (comedy and drama) it should be (you could give a range of slots if you're not sure). (If you think I've got a drama on the comedy list or vice-versa let me know! I'm not "done" - this is fairly dashed off still at this point)
- Tell me why! Referencing awards, critics, historical achievements, strengths and weaknesses of the works are all really helpful!
Submitted by Xaviar Xerexes on January 6, 2009 - 11:18
Does anyone want to do some cover art for ComixTalk for January (like this month)? Email me at xerexes AT gmail DOT com.
Newsarama has an interview with Raina Telgemeier who is working on a graphic novel version of her webcomic-in-progress Smile. Raina and her husband Dave Roman are two of the nicest (and talentest) folks in comics. (h/t Journalista!)
The Washington Post has an interview with Tom Rickard, the creator of the comic strip Brewster Rockit. I didn't realize this started back in 2004, it is a better than average strip in terms of what's in the Post's comic pages.
Achewood creator Chris Onstad visits the Googleplex - click for a video of an interview with him there for Google's Authors At Lunch series. (h/t Journalista!)
Following up on FLEEN's mention of the NPR story on Penny Arcade, a commenter lists several other webcomic stories NPR has covered: Achewood, Sluggy Freelance, Erfworld, Questionable Content, Megatokyo, Cyanide & Happiness.
Brian Fies, the creator of the web/comic Mom's Cancer has REALLY good advice on dpi requirements (72, 300, 600, 1200, etc) when scanning. (h/t Journalista!)
AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 BLOGS
Scott Kurtz announced some changes to his other webcomic Ding! -- he took back the art chores from Paul Southworth and is now soliciting stories from players of the game World Of Warcraft to tell in the comic. I think the format change is interesting, but I'll miss Southworth's take on the art.
Submitted by Xaviar Xerexes on January 5, 2009 - 11:45
NPR does a story on Penny Arcade (this is a couple days old but I just listened to it this morning) which does a decent job of capturing the comic although interesting it doesn't mention Robert Khoo's role in their business success. Contrary to other reports though NPR did cover a webcomic before - it had an interview with Pete Abrams of Sluggy Freelance way back in 1998.
Submitted by fesworks on December 18, 2008 - 12:52
Cover by Thomas Overbeck of Times Like This!
Submitted by Xaviar Xerexes on December 18, 2008 - 10:29
Did you know that, with a 1% cover price share and assuming the books are equal in cost, a Zuda book would have to sell 10,000 copies to make the creator what I would selling 100 copies of Templar? And that’s assuming there are no penalties in the payout for deep discount/damaged/give-away books, and the payout isn’t be split in half between a writer and an artist or something.
There's a good discussion at FLEEN in the comments. Here's my question though -- no matter how good Spike is at DIY (and she is good) shouldn't ZUDA be able to do better? Otherwise what the heck is ZUDA adding to the value chain? It's just another flavor of the question I feel like I've been asking all year -- given all of the DIY tools available to a comics creator, what role is there for a publisher/agent/manager kind of entity? I think there is one for a company built around doing really well and efficiently the kind of business and marketing things that someone should be able to do for the new breed of comics creator but I'm not sure I've seen it yet.
I can't remember now how I stumbled across Dave Ryan's Badass Muthas! but the title alone grabbed me and then I found I really liked how the art contrasted with the jokes and story. It's a kind of rough, angular style but with a very soft, tranquil color palette. What else can I say - you should go check it out! I got a chance to interview Dave about it - read on for the gory details.
Sean McGuinness is the creator of the website Neo Monster Island and the webcomic Twisted Kaiju Theater it hosts. Kaiju is apparently a Japanese term for monster. McGuinness makes TKT with his own collection of Godzilla toys so you know it's a labor of love... of love and smashing Tokyo to bits. I got a chance to interview McGuinness about his long-running webcomic (since August 2000!) via email last month.