I Have a Webcomic
I love webcomics.
Correction: I love comics. Comic books, comic strips, manga, “graphic novels”, I eat em’ up. But I’m also incredibly cheap. I’m not the kind of guy who goes down to the local comic book shop and picks up the latest issues about his favorite superheroes. I’m the guy who goes to the local comic book shop and sits on the floor in the back aisle reading whatever comic caught my eye on the way in.
So considering that I am
a) a comics fanatic and
webcomics was just up my alley. If you’re not familiar with them the concept isn’t too complicated: they’re comic strips and pages put up on a website at regular intervals that you can read for free. I first discovered them back in high school with PvP, which I had read about in a magazine. It was funny, and I enjoyed being able to blow through the archives at my own pace. I gobbled up years of content in just a few days, and was hungry for more. Now I have about eleven separate webcomics that I check in on regularly, and who knows how many more I’ll discover before I die.
I was impressed by how much the internet had changed things. Just twenty years ago if you had a great comic idea you wanted to share with the world you had only one option: get picked up by a syndicate or a big name publisher like Marvel or DC. If they didn’t want your comic then the best you could do is draw your comic on bits of paper and hand them out on a street corner. If you had plenty of extra cash lying around you could self-publish, but that doesn’t guarantee that anyone would buy. A few people like Jeff Smith managed to beat the system and succeed, but it was a million to one shot.
Today if you have a great idea for a comic all you have to do is make it. Write the script, draw the panels, and get yourself a website to showcase it on. That’s it. That’s all you need to make your work available to millions of people worldwide. Now whether or not they’ll want to read it or not is a different story, but that seemingly impassable moneywall that was distribution has been breached. You don’t need to be a millionaire to self-publish anymore. You just need to have an internet connection.
Now we come to me. I love webcomics and I want to write professionally someday. My art skills are subpar but one of my best friends is a talented artist that currently has no creative outlet for his work. The only thing stopping me from making my own webcomic was myself. It’s fun to think about creating a webcomic but actually getting off your duff and writing one is hard work.
But I did it. Last November I sat down and pounded out a script for a long form, comic book style webcomic. I contacted my artist friend and he was more than willing to draw it for me. Delays followed: technical difficulties, personal problems, etc. Months went by with no progress. But now all that is over. Our comic, S.L.O.P.A.N. is online and updating once a week. It’s not Shakespeare, I’ll tell you that much. But it’s mine. I have a webcomic. It may never be very popular or critically acclaimed, but it is something real that I have done.
So check the comic out if you can. I’ll probably post now and then about the comic, and go into more detail about the story behind it. For now just enjoy it, or ignore it, your choice.