How to make comics the successful way: an investigation into the strategies for successful comics creators

Masters Thesis

Hill, W. 2020. How to make comics the successful way: an investigation into the strategies for successful comics creators . Masters Thesis Canterbury Christ Church University School of Cretive Arts and Industries
AuthorsHill, W.
TypeMasters Thesis
Qualification nameMasters by Research

Success is chiefly viewed as a destination point, often containing no clear direction as to how to arrive, or assurances of when one’s arrival has taken place. House this delicate theme of success amongst the vast genre of comics books and several questions occur: “What is success?” “Who has previously been successful?” “How did they gain success?” “What are the proven routes to success?”

This study explores the different methods to find success within the comics industry, these methods included classical approaches such as periodical comics and newspaper strips as well as the more contemporary avenues such as self-publishing & web-comics. To gain a solid understanding and context of the commercial aspect of the business, first the study reviews the history of the comics industry. This is followed by an analysis of the definition and essential components of the comic book, to achieve a better understanding of the structure and classification of comics and, therefore, their intrinsic value as a product. The rise of the digital revolution, recent developments in technologies and web2.0 have not only contributed to expanding areas of production, distribution and fandom recognition, but also to implement innovative ideas and projects. This has led to the expansion of both profitable potentials and perilous pitfalls. To analyse the implications of these new means of creation and distribution, themes such as Communities, Pitfalls of the Internet Age and Crowdfunding have been explored.

In this study, seven comic creators who have experienced varying levels of industry success engaged in interviews about how they view the comic industry, their own work and possible paths to success. From the data gathered, recommended practical strategies for success have been produced whilst the theoretical importance of fandom, gatekeepers and definitions and types of success are all carefully examined. The study concludes that to be a success, the most important factor is creating the work in the first place, with commitment and perseverance being fundamental. Producing the work via any of the multiple avenues available allows fans, other creatives, and publishers the opportunity to see your work and provides the opportunity to achieve success.

KeywordsComics; Comic industry; Creator success
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Deposited05 Aug 2021
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