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Kagaenod
01-07-2014, 11:01 PM
Hey guys. I'm just plugging here, I'm the scripter for an upcoming comic called Hacking Human which is a heist formatted story about a cat-burgular/hacker and her ghost-head companion. I just a group of creators who are forming Arachnid comics, who are being kickstarted right now! The general format of the group is that we are quite receptive to new members, so if you go the extra mile and help us succeed there may be a place for you on the team as we'll be able to expand and accommodate more people. Just take a look guys and tell us what you think! Our Kickstarter has just started http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1772170541/arachnid-comics-the-future-of-independent-comics so spread the word!

Sincerely,
Robert Finch

Alyssa
01-08-2014, 02:02 AM
Heya Robert, seeing as I...er...LIVE on Kickstarter, I'd like to give you some pointers regarding your project! If you're not looking for feedback, feel free to tune out now. ;)


I'm a regular backer on Kickstarter, but I wouldn't back this project. Why? There's no confidence. The project is large and vague, and all the contributors are inexperienced. While the latter isn't a deal-breaker, the former certainly is.

Kickstarter campaigns need to be specific. The more specific you are, the more likely you'll 1) receive funding, and 2) actually be successful in your fulfillment of pledge rewards. If you don't receive funding, you'll have no capital (duh). If you fail to deliver on your pledge rewards, everyone who is part of the project will have damaged reputations.

I would personally suggest that you cancel this Kickstarter campaign before anyone pledges, then get to work on creating a campaign for one single issue of a comic you're looking to publish. The script to this issue should be completed already (and preferably all other issues in that story arc, too), and there should be a handful of (penciled, if not inked and/or coloured) sequential pages to give backers an indication of the storytelling quality.

At best, you should have issue #1 completed (with issue #2 already in progress), along with a secured "yes" from Comixology (you don't want to tell backers you'll get on Comixology, only to have them turn your comics down). Then, treat the Kickstarter campaign as a pre-order drive.

Rinse and repeat until you have a solid catalogue of comics under your belt. Your company will materialise in the background.

Using a Kickstarter campaign to "start a comic book company" is super duper vague. You may as well say that you're using the Kickstarter campaign to "maybe, possibly half-start a bunch of different comics, that may or may not be saleable".

Here's some other things about the campaign that turned me off as a backer:

#1: No campaign video. I don't pledge on campaigns that don't have videos. If you guys don't put in the effort, neither will I.

#2: Unprofessional logo, with super unprofessional (totally overused) font.

#3: No faces. Not a deal-breaker, but this combined with everything else makes me think this isn't a serious campaign. If you guys were confident you would achieve success, there'd be faces shown.

#4: None of the contributors have any verifiable experience. While it's not unusual for creators to be first-timers, there are usually other folk on the team who have experience. It makes me nervous that EVERYONE is inexperienced. This greatly increases the risk that the project will fall flat in one way or another.
Where previous gigs are mentioned, there are no titles/names given, no links, no info on what the projects were. This makes me wonder whether these gigs were anything significant, or merely hobby jobs.

#5: Most of the artwork is very amateurish. While some of it can be passed off as a stylistic choice, all of it is lacking in emotion and storytelling capabilities.

#6: Interaction with fans is not a selling point, it's expected. The fact that you guys focus so much on this makes me think that you were scratching the bottom of the barrel when it comes to selling points. And the fact that you have a Twitter and Facebook doesn't set you apart, as everyone has these.
You guys also wrote this:
"We want fans to give us their ideas for the future of Arachnid Comics: we want to know what they want to see more of, and what they want to see less of, and we will take that into consideration when deciding what to publish next, and what series to cancel, should we ever need to cancel a series."
Firstly, your sales statistics should give you this information. If you HAVE to ask readers, you're not doing things properly. And I'm not sure you should already be mentioned series cancellations. This adds to my lack of confidence in the company. Also remember that if you give your readers (and in reality, it will only be the vocal minority) too much power, you'll doom yourself to failure. You should know what things to do more of, and do less of, because you understand your niche. If you listen to the vocal minority about where to steer your books, you'll get a trainwreck.
"Now, this doesn't mean that every fan's feedback will be followed"
You've used the "we listen to readers" as one of the few selling points, and this statement kills it.

#7: The sample scripts need a lot of work. It doesn't look like there's an editor on the team, and it's painfully obvious in the scripts. This detracts from the quality of the backer rewards, and also adds to the lack of confidence in the project (if you can't sell the comics, they probably won't continue).

#8: The pledge rewards don't seem to be priced correctly. For $5, I'd expect a digital copy of one of the issues, at least.

#9: Don't forget your international backers. You're cutting out a HUGE audience by only shipping to the U.S. Work out your products, get solid pricing, then add that to your rewards as an option for us Aussies (oh, and everyone else, I guess!) :har:

#10: Don't start talking about stretch goals until you're on top of your funding goal!


I'm totally "all for" seeing new indie comics hitting the market. And I'm pledge-happy when it comes to Kickstarter. So if you guys work out a solid comic and put up a specific campaign for that, you're MUCH more likely to achieve success than with what you've got right now.

I hope that helps! Best of luck dude.

Magnus
01-08-2014, 06:48 PM
Listen to Alyssa. That's the harsh truth. Everything she wrote. Nothing will come of this if you run the campaign as is. Cancel and narrow the focus and relaunch. But before relaunching, make comics. Finished short stories. Lots of them.

That's just how it is, sorry. Just the way of the hierarchy.

:M:

Kagaenod
01-08-2014, 10:13 PM
I agree with many of your points. I'm actually not the person running the project, I'm simply one of the creators associated with the project, so I'll pass on your advice to the project leader.

Alyssa
01-08-2014, 10:33 PM
I agree with many of your points. I'm actually not the person running the project, I'm simply one of the creators associated with the project, so I'll pass on your advice to the project leader.

No worries mate, keep us updated!