Becoming a creator and making a name for yourself means that you’ve become something of a public figure. It means that people either listen to you, or they come to you for what you can do/get accomplished.
This also means you’ve got responsibilities.
When it comes to making comics, making a name for yourself can be either easy or difficult. Easy in that you can always stand up and say some of the wildest things imaginable in order to gain attention, or do things that bring attention to yourself within your bailiwick; difficult because you could toil away forever and not do anything to promote yourself or what you do.
I have written several books worth of information in my Bolts & Nuts column. I run The Proving Grounds on a weekly basis. Those things and a few others led to me writing this daily column.
How did I do it? I had something to say, so I said it. I researched and put in the work and finally put the lessons I learned out there for any who cares to seek them out. I made a niche for myself, and while I’m not making a living at it, it is serving me well by raising my profile and getting me some work. I’ve made a small name for myself: I speak the truth, and I have a biting humor. However, because I speak the truth, what I say can be trusted.
Because I’ve made a small name for myself with the columns I sometimes get emails from people thanking me because they found them helpful.
Becoming something of a public figure means I can’t say some things. I can’t be an ass in public. Not without provocation, and even then, there has to be some sort of decorum. Just because I’m honest doesn’t give me license to be mean or cruel. It doesn’t mean I can belittle.
It also means people give more weight to my recommendations, whether for or against. It’s an endorsement. (Which I don’t understand all the time. Why does a celebrity’s endorsement of a product mean that the product is good or better? If Tom Cruise were to endorse Wendy’s, that won’t make me eat Wendy’s more, or avoid it. If Demi Lovato drinks Coke…I don’t care. But some people do. And that’s the portion of the population you’re trying to reach and possibly influence.)
Then there are the requests for free usage of your brain. Some creators may come out of nowhere and want you to mentor them for free. While this is definitely your prerogative, just realize it will happen, especially as your profile raises.
Is this something you really want? Is it something you think you can handle? There are pros and cons to everything. This may be something you want to think about.