There are only two kinds of comic book creators: those who ship, and those who don’t.
By “ship,” I mean creating a comic that others can read, instead of it just being in your head. A comic I can read will always beat a comic that’s coming in some sort of murky future.
Why aren’t you shipping? There are only two real reasons: lack of money or an abundance of fear.
Lack of money is very simple. You don’t have the money to create. I understand that. Everyone understands that, because we’ve all been there. Some of us live there. (And no, I’m not casting aspersions on anyone—I live there, too.)
Abundance of fear is something else entirely. Most of you reading this are disagreeing with me. “I’m not afraid. I’m just getting my ducks in a row.”
“I’m just studying to know what the market looks like.”
“I’m just trying to understand the medium.”
I know that none of those examples sound like fear, but that’s what they are. Making a comic book isn’t that difficult, especially now. Read a single book (or the excellent Bolts & Nuts column at ComixTribe, written by some idiot who doesn’t know his ass from a hole in the ground), and you have enough information to create a comic and ship it.
Fear comes in a lot of shapes. After a while, studying becomes procrastination. Getting your ducks in a row becomes another way not to create that book.
Know what fear is also disguised as?
Lack of time. Lack of experience. Lack of hardware or software. Lack of knowing people. All of that, and so much more, is nothing but disguised fear.
There’s a movie production company called The Asylum. They make astoundingly bad movies. I have some of them, so I know. But they keep making them. Why? Because people keep buying them. It actually turns into a chicken and egg situation: do they make them because people buy them, or do people buy them because they make them?
It doesn’t matter. They ship.
Are you going to ship, or are you going to let fear keep you on the sidelines?