Sunday, January 18, 2009

JAVILAND Episode 10: The importance of your Readers becoming Active Fans

We all want readers, whether we make web comics or print comics. But to help us indie creators prosper and even live off our own work, perhaps the model of the "1,000 True Fans" should be looked at, or at least adapted to our individual endeavors. An 'Active Fan' supports all your work by helping promote it and purchasing new products you create.

There are a lot of things we can do to cultivate an active fan base, some being communicating online, meeting fans by exhibiting at conventions and art galleries. Basically just keeping in touch with your fans by more than just creating the work (which is the primary concern). Personable skills are obviously important in cultivating true fans, and some D.I.Y publishers will have to work at this. But the rewards are positive and really motivating (not to mention financially beneficial!)

Calling in on the show were cartoonists/podcasters Ted Seko, Jerzy Drozd and Krishna Sadasivam. Joining in the chatroom were argonsassistant, dungeonwarden, KipOneil, Mark California, Vertigo X and Mark Rudolph.

One thing I tried to do different starting with this podcast was to focus on staying on-topic! If you've listened to previous episodes, me and some of the other callers veer off on tangents that usually revolve around old 1970s Marvel comics or TV shows. While this stuff is obviously fun for some of us, I've realized that it could certainly turn off many listeners. I want folks to be able to listen to these podcasts and hear content useful to them in learning about self-publishing and creating comics.

So, my promise to the listeners, and readers of this blog, is to strive to keep the episodes focused on the topics at hand. And now I'm going to work on making these podcasts between an hour and 90 minutes in length!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

JAVILAND Episode 9: Ideas!

Our first show of 2009 was off to a great start. Our topic was "Ideas: How we get them and how do they shape our work" (or something like that!). I was curious to hear from other creators as to how they get their ideas. Ideas can be starting points for stories, leading to other ideas, or the idea can be so strong and complete that it provides a solid blueprint for the finished comic.

There is never a wrong or right answer for these topics (I feel), but what you get are insights into other artit's creative process. It's interesting to hear other people with similar procedures for creating ideas, even though their work is very different from your own.

Joining me on the call was regular caller Ted Seko, Mark Rudolph, Ryan Dow, and Kevin Cross.

We had some great input from our chat room participants. Apologies if I've neglected to mention someone! markCalifornia, Matt Munn, Dungeon Warden, Kevin Decker, Argonsassistant and Kaiki. Thanks to them for taking the time to participate.

You can listen to the episode with the Talkshoe player on the right, access it via the Talkshoe page. Once you're at the Talkshoe page, find the iTunes icon, click on it and get every episode delivered to your iTunes library as they're posted.

Hopefully the Javiland podcasts can provide some beneficial insights to you the listener, particularly if you're interested in storytelling via comics. I enjoy listening to several podcasts myself, as I always gleam inspiritional insights. The shows I follow, and strongly recommend are Jerzy Drozd & Mark Rudolph's ART & STORY podcasts, Kevin Cross's MINI COMICS DUMPTRUCK and the SEQUENTIAL ARTISTS PUB hosted by Krishna Sadasivam. I've only been listening to these show last year, but I have to say that I've been able to form some friendly ties with the hosts of those podcasts. They're all cartoonists in their own right, and while we all do very different work ,we have some common interests and approaches to our work.