So you’ve written, drawn, lettered, edited, and then self-published your own comic book.
Well done, that’s a fantastic achievement!
But the hardest part of the job is still ahead of you, and that’s getting it in front of a customer – either by getting a table at a convention, social media direct marketing, or getting it on sale at a shop.
For this article, I’ll be talking about getting retailers on board for selling your comics for you.
As a followup to my Conventioneering article, I’m analysing a few table displays from other creators and patrons, and make some suggestions on how to improve them.
I’ve been attending comic book conventions, zine fairs and other trade events for the better part of 20 years.
Over that time, I’ve determined what to do and (more often than not) what NOT to do, through trial and error. It’s difficult to prepare for conventions because no two events are alike, so you need to be able to adapt your table to suit the crowd that shows up on the day.
What I mean by that, is that the commercial interests of the punters can vary from show to show.
- some are there to buy comics
- some are there to buy prints
- some are there to buy sketches and original art
- some are NOT interested in buying local product whatsoever.
The last one is something you have to become comfortable with, but many creators struggle to come to terms with. You can have the best display and high-quality product at the show, but if the customer is only there to get their photo taken with a TV star of their favourite show – you’re not going to interest them.
The sooner you accept that, the happier you will be.