What do you do to look for work?
This is, of course, assuming that you’re ready for work. (Since we’re talking comics, this could be a decently broad view, but we’re going to say that you’re producing work that someone will pay for.) How are you looking for work?
For comics, I believe that you have to do a certain amount of free work in order to get a paying gig. There are skills to hone, things to learn, and it takes a while before you’re really in a position to be paid for your skills.
This is my belief, and it might run contrary to your own. But just because you’ve created it does not mean that people will buy it; it does not mean that it is any good. You get good by doing a lot of practice, and some of that practice will be in the form of free jobs. Free work doesn’t hurt, as long as you continue to grow and get to a place where someone will pay for your skill.
Back to the question: what do you do to look for work? It isn’t going to fall out of the sky for you. Without being aware of your work, no one is going to come and tap you on the shoulder for a job. (Another reason why free gigs are good for you is because they can act as a calling card, showcasing your abilities.) Since no one is going to be tapping on your shoulder to give you a job, you have to go looking.
For the more visual portions (basically, everything that isn’t writing or editing), this generally means putting your work on a site such as Digital Webbing, Penciljack, or DeviantArt, and then trying to promote that work into getting a gig. Some of it is also word of mouth.
For the more cerebral parts (writing and editing), the going is a little tougher. Few places are looking for writers. They may be looking for stories, they may be looking for entire teams, but they are rarely looking for just writers. This means you’re going to have to try to create your own opportunities. It’s more challenging, but you can do it.
Editors have it the hardest. Who’s out there looking for an editor? In the indies, editors are generally afterthoughts. It’s a shame, really. A lot of bad books could actually be decent if there were a halfway competent editor onboard. Editors have to make their own way, as well. (And yes, when first starting out, writers and editors will probably have to do free work.)
What do you do to look for work? How do you make it known you’re available? Let’s discuss it.