Everyone loved seeing Flimp eating garbage last week so we continue one last time with this story. I may actually expand this into a feature length comic book. I have quite a few ideas as to where this could grow into a very interesting, and extremely funny, comic book.
Comic book? Oh yeah! That leads me to last week’s HUGE announcement….
BREAKING NEWS: CHARMY’S ARMY GETS PUBLISHED!
Charmy’s Army, the comic strip, has been running in newspapers for over four years. This run does not classify as being “published”. My newspaper run is classified as being “Distributed”. My ultimate goal is to become “syndicated” which is roughly the same as being “distributed”. The difference is the fact that “syndication” is a higher grade of “distribution” where I do not have to do anything but create my strip, allowing a company to do all the leg work and get Charmy’s Army, the comic strip, to run in DAILY newspapers across the country and possibly around the world.
I printed my own treasury collection two years ago in the form of a comic book. I herald this event as my first published work, but to be honest, that was far from the case. In order to truly be “published”, one requires a real publisher. I am not a real publisher. I am an artist struggling to break even on my show investments. Each show I appear at costs me anywhere from $500 to $600 once I pay for a corner table, which costs the equivalent of two table, and I add in the expenses for travel which includes gas and hotel fees. I never count food because I eat like a pig anyways, so I would still be spending a ton of money on food at home. I actually may spend less on food on the road because when a show goes bad, I will grab a cheap burger… and I rarely eat lunch because I do these shows solo and never get a break from my table.
So, now for the BREAKING NEWS!
With all of the comic cons postponing, I began struggling with my alternate income from these comic con appearances. Last year, I broke even at all but two shows. The two shows where I did not break even blessed me with a nice profit. At the beginning of this year, I was able to make an appearance at one of the shows I did well at last year and I raked in TRIPLE the profit! If this curve continued, I knew I was going to finally make good money with this extremely loyal fan base I have grown over the past five hard years.
All that hard work is in serious jeopardy due to the pandemic. Two shows postponed until late in 2020 and I began scheming. It became obvious that the traditional, printed comic book industry was under fire. I watched my favorite shop, Arkham Comics in Pearland, get forced to close by the city. None of these mom and pop shops can afford to be out of business for a month. With their businesses all being out of operation, where will people go for their comic books?
I feel the #rEVOLUTION beginning. For months, I have been teasing my own rise, dubbing this movement the #rEVOLUTION of Charmy’s Army. I had planned to move into digital comic books in the summer, but the time is nigh. I am prepared to create a new movement for all artists during these trying times. I decided to work around the clock, and around the day job where I am fortunate enough to be “business as usual” at… and bring you all digital collections of my comic strip, Charmy’s Army.
But the road looked long and filled with potholes.
I assembled the first book and I was so extremely happy with the results! I collected all 52 comic strips from my first year in print. I wrote an intro about how I create Charmy’s Army in an attempt to create an extremely bad comic strip on purpose. This story kills when I tell it on panels at my comic con appearances. I topped this off by adding a page with a link to exclusive coloring pages, a print and a digitally autographed photo all of which I dub as my electronic Comic Con Experience.
So, I created the PDF and was ready to distribute my first digital comic book! I looked at eJunkie and it felt a bit sketchy. They offer you a website and storage but I could not find anyone who was using them. The few sites I found links to no longer existed so I wrote these guys off. So where to now? Comixology.
Comixology is the “big show”. They have partnered with Amazon so once you are approved, you are selling on Amazon too. I spent an entire day researching their publishing specs and their guidelines. I filled out all of their paperwork and made my humble submission. I was so excited! I began talking to a few of my friends who are selling comic books on Comixology to get their take on their success. Come to find out, they all told me it will take up to THREE MONTHS before I will be approved to sell my work. The wind was dead and my sails where wrapped around the mast. I was going nowhere fast.
That was last Saturday. Thursday, I received an email congratulating me on having my comic book picked up for distribution through Comixology and Amazon. I am freaking approved! In under a week, I have become a real “PUBLISHED” cartoonist. In a few weeks, my digital collection will be available for purchase. Now, I am remaining realistic. I have no idea how well this will sell. If only a dozen digital copies sell this year, I will be happy with the results. Selling these books is up to me and my marketing efforts. I will begin small with a facebook ad campaign. If that pays off, I may attempt a Google ad, but that move would be so risky as those ads are terribly expensive.
Once my comic book is live, I will let you all know! Thanks again for all of your continued support of my dream. One day, I will be in daily newspapers across the United States.
#digitalcomic #comics #rEVOLUTION #CharmysArmy