Just a few quick items before the holidays:
• Neil Gaiman reveals that he is going to be the guest editor for the next edition of Houghton Mifflin’s Best American Comics series.
• Jeff Smith has a three-page preview of the sixth issue of RASL up at his site.
• Josh Simmons offers a little glimpse into a new story he’s going to be doing for the Mome anthology with Shaun Partirdge titled The White Rhinoceros.
• Ed Piskor is offering the first two volumes of his ongoing serial Wizzywig as a free download at his site. Merry Christmas!
At Comic Book Bin Herve St.-Louis rails against what he terms “The Cult of the Comic Book Creator.” What exactly is this cult, you ask? And do they wear hoods and carry ceremonial daggers?
If I’m reading him right, he’s basically using the phrase as a springboard to rage against the fallacy that self-publishing your work will lead to you producing great art, or at least better art than what passes at the Big Two conglomerates. His Exhibit A in this treatise is Image Comics:
The problem this writer has with the cult of the comic book creator, as romanticized by Image Comics, is that a whole generation of creator believes that the ultimate way to reach ultimate self expression is through self publishing. However, self publishing is a business venture and business is not artistry. It takes a different set of skills to be a comic book publisher and a comic book creator. But the cult of the comic book creator has led many talented creators to get burn by an industry ill-prepared to support them. An alternative offered to comic book creators who want to keep the ownership of their properties, is to work with an established publisher. However, here again, the cult of the comic book creator has twisted reality and makes it more difficult for creators to serve their public.
When Jamie Tanner put together his Eisner-nominated book The Aviary, it took him six years. For his follow-up, he’d like to reduce that time to six months. That’s where you come in. To meet this schedule he’s set up a PBS-like pledge drive, with varying rewards depending on how much moolah you promise to give. $8, for instance, gets you a small, blank sketchbook, while $50 nets you a page of original art. You can even be drawn into the comic or have a character named after you. See the video at the link for more details.