September 12, 2010

The economics of comic books

Here's why you don't see a lot of self-published Native comic books from Blue Corn Comics or anyone else:

Labor Day and the Cost Of Doing Business in Comics

By Glenn HaumanWhen people talk about putting regular, old-fashioned comic books online, keep that $500 in mind.

That's about how much it costs for an average page of comic book art, in terms of labor. Figure $100 for the writer, $150 for the penciller, $130 for the inker, $90 for the colorist, and $30 for the letterer.

Graphic novels? From scratch? You're looking at about 120 pages minimum--that's $60,000 in labor costs. Unless you're economizing and doing a lot of the work yourself, that's going to almost insurmountable unless it's commissioned by somebody--most writers don't have a spare $48,000 to spend on an outside artist.
The Kirkman/Bendis Debates:  Let’s Do the Math

By Todd AllenIf you’re interested in independent comics publishing, take a look at cost and revenue estimates and take a look at the sales charts for a few months. That’s a tight market, particularly if you live in an area with high cost of living. You’re not paying rent in Manhattan with most independent comics, if you get my drift.Comment:  You can get a page of black-and-white art done for much less than the pro rates listed above. $100/page for the penciling, inking, and lettering is possible. But that's still a $12,000 outlay for a graphic novel's art before you get to the printing stage. It's a daunting barrier to entry.

For more on the subject, see Comic Books Featuring Indians.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Hey Rob,

I would like to share with you that there is a comic book grant available to anyone. The Xeric Foundation has a comic book grant for anyone who wishes to submit a proposal to the foundation. Each year they fund a number of projects that fall with their funding guidelines.

Here is there link

I hope this helps with anyone who wishes to publish their own ideas.

Chad Solomon

11:02 AM