Buy My Books: Issue #19

Wed, January 11th, 2006 at 12:00am PST

Comic Books
Robert Kirkman, Columnist

What's up with that asshole from last week, eh?

Anyway, I'm not going to apologize for that, because I think anyone whose feathers were ruffled by last week's column misunderstood my intent. I stand by what I said. However, I do think I should do a little amendment to my column just to remind you folks a little bit about my background.

I sucked.

Some would say I still do, and hell, maybe they're right... but I'm better than I was. Also, a lot of you may not know this, but I originally wanted to be a writer/artist and even drew my own one-shot before Tony Moore and I did "Battle Pope" together. It's a horrible little piece of trash called "Between The Ropes"... it's about wrestling, because wrestling was really popular back then... and the book I did was worse than a lot of the books I've been handed at cons.

I'm including the cover to said book just so you can marvel at how terrible it looks. Pencils and Inks are by me and the colors are by the very talented (now at least) Tony Moore. I had actually planned on publishing this. It was to be Funk-O-Tron's first published book. You see, the thing that sucks about sucking is that it's hard to figure out that you suck.

I promptly gave up my hopes of being an artist shortly after Diamond Comics Distributors sent me a nice letter telling me that they wouldn't be distributing "Between the Ropes" if I published it... and that I suck. Although they said it in a much more eloquent way than I did last week. Mostly because I don't think they were trying to entertain me while giving me sound advice.

Since then I drew a few "Battle Pope" pages (in issue 5 which will be in stores soon) and inked a lot of stuff for "Battle Pope"... although for the most part I was just messing up people's pencils. But for the most part, I realized the art part was not for me... and I've never been happier.

Another thing I should mention is that getting into comics is vastly different for artists than it is for writers. I can look at one drawing from an artist and know if they're worth a damn. Not so with writers. Which is why my column, for the most part, was directed at writers, not artists. If you're a really talented artist, you have nothing to worry about. Someone will find you. All you have to do to get into this biz as an artist is practice, get really good, and have a strong web presence. You'll get offered work. It may not pay a lot at first, but you'll get work.

Also, I wanted to talk a little bit about the flipside of things... the writers that don't suck. That magical 10%. A specific example of this is my good pal Benito Cereno.. His grueling breaking into comics scenario is this:

  1. Talked a friend into drawing his comic.

  2. Submitted it to Image Comics.

  3. Got published.

Granted, he had another book get turned down, but his second book "Tales from the Bully Pulpit" got accepted and published by Image. His next book "Hector Plasm: De Mortuis" (which means, "about the dead") is coming out in May from Image and it's damn great. It's drawn by Nate Bellegarde who is also pretty kick-ass and I think anyone who likes... comic books, would probably enjoy it. I've even included a five-page preview and the cover in this column to show you guys how good it is.


The lesson here is that it can be relatively easy to break into comics also... if you're really good. Benito didn't have to self-publish like I did. He went right to the third largest comics publisher in the industry. That's not to say that self-publishing is only the thing to do if you're not good enough for Image. Different things work for different people. I still think self-publishing is the most productive way to get into comics. Not the easiest, but it hones your craft while teaching you exactly what goes into making these things and it'll give you knowledge that will help you in what will hopefully become a long career.

In closing I wanted to share with you guys the coolest thing I got in my inbox this week. It's a drawing of Cable by my pal and superstar artist, Cory Walker. I can't stop looking at this thing... so I couldn't resist sharing it with the world.

So run, don't walk, to your comic shop and pre-order "Hector Plasm: De Mortuis" (if you like what you saw here-- and I know you did). I'll even include the order code to help you out:

JAN06 1786 HECTOR PLASM DE MORTUIS ONE SHOT

And if you have any money left over... or really, if you just want to throw me a bone because I'm such a nice guy, BUY MY BOOKS.

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