Ready for another tip?
I’m betting you haven’t thought creating comics all the way through. There are things that are in plain sight that you probably don’t realize, and as such, haven’t budgeted for. Let’s look at some of them. (These will be what most of you will run into and does not take special situations into account, such as collected editions or graphic novels and the like.)
You’ve got a 22 page book, but not really. You’ve got 22 pages of story. You also have four pages of cover to deal with and fill. Does your artist also do covers? If so, that’s more than likely an even larger expense because the cover is quite often the selling point of the book.
Speaking of the cover, do you have a logo? A competent letterer is going to charge you for logo creation. I’m talking about the logo for your book, not the publisher’s box you often find with the issue number.
What are you doing with the other three pages of the cover? Have you made any decisions about that?
You’re now up to 26 pages of book, but not really, because printers don’t do that. They have to divide the paper by four at the very least (usually by eight), so you’ve got to do at least another two pages per issue. So that’s 28 pages.
If you’ve got ideas on how to fill those pages, great! But have you budgeted for that? More than likely you want some sort of backmatter, which means words and pictures, which means the letterer will have to design something, which means you’re going to have to pay them more for those pages.
You basically have five extra pages to fill, and you’re not done yet.
Have you been accepted by Diamond? Congratulations! Have you gotten your ISBN number yet? That’s another expense because Diamond requires it on every book they sell. (And yes, they’re selling your book to the retailer. That’s how your book is distributed.)
Do you need to register a copyright? Not in America you don’t. It’s an expense you don’t need. (And if you don’t understand the difference between copyright and trademark, go do some research. Learning it and knowing it will save you headache, confusion, and money.)
If you’re self-publishing, are you also going to print the book? That’s another expense. (And if you’re printing in color, that’s a huge expense.) You now have to make decisions about paper weights and glosses and the like. These decisions will affect your price as much as color will, if not more.
The paper weights will also affect the shipping price. (You didn’t think about that, did you?)
If you’re not printing the book but are going to make a webcomic, have you registered your domain name yet? Have you hosted it?
These are the expenses you’ll generally run into as a creator, after the initial investment for the story pages. Get quotes for everything and budget accordingly.