Tuesday, February 28, 2006

WARREN ELLIS: SPEAKING OF SPEAKEASY

In one of his email blasts, comics writer Warren Ellis (Nextwave, Planetary) had some interesting comments on the recent closing of indie comics publisher Speakeasy:

... I was kind of taken aback when Speakeasy started releasing book after book with no visible marketing plan beyond the usual "if you build it they will come" that always spells doom. Especially in an overheated publishing marketplace that now has increased expectation placed upon it by the internet conversation.

[snip]

Publishing isn't just a case of assembling and trafficking books. Speakeasy's moves just baffled me from start to finish. They filled no obvious gap in the marketplace, and, sad to say, I think they'll vanish with not a ripple at all.

Except for the creators. I think a lot of people got their start at Speakeasy, and I'm damn sure there's people who had books in the pipeline there who will now feel robbed of their start. All I can say to those people is: it happens. Almost every pro creator has a false start early in their career, sometimes more than one. It's never easy.

Things aren't getting harder. This isn't market correction. This, I'm sorry to say, is one publisher getting it wrong from start to finish: releasing too many books, without a support structure.

Adam's saying online that he's done with publishing, and would like to go back to just being a fan. Some might say that it's being such a great fan of the medium that did him in as a publisher. But if he does come back, he will do better. Publishing comics is a harsh gig, and he's been through pretty much the most unpleasant learning curve it can give.

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Die Laughing: Funny Crime and Mystery Fiction

SHE'S THE SHERIFF!

A woman with a complicated past returns home to become the small town's new sheriff. Best Mann For The Job is by the writer/artist team of Chris and Erica Well. Read it from the beginning at StudioWell.com. Watch the trailer on YouTube.