I knew it would be hard, but I didn't know how hard it really would be.
Just getting REFORM SCHOOL NINJA GIRLS finished and ready for launch was a huge endeavour for a couple of guys who had never done anything like this before. And then taking the book out, and getting it to a couple of shows and selling our first print run was an enormous amount of work.
But okay, running any business is a huge endeavour and an enormous amount of work. We knew it would be, and we were up for that.
But we're putting it aside for now. REFORM SCHOOL NINJA GIRLS has to go up on the shelf. Not because it's too much work -- I love these girls so much and really want to tell their story. But it's just not a good use of my time and resources.
It costs thousands of dollars to create an issue of this comic book. We'll need at least three issues in hand to get the book into stores around the country. And we haven't made a dime on it yet.
I've learned a ton. I made a great friend and collaborator out of the GIRLS' artist, Dave. I've gotten amazing, supportive feedback from people all over. Industry pros have helped me out, and my friends and families showed me once again how fortunate I really am. The girls have real fans out there, folks who love their story and want to hear more. I'm as proud as could be of what I accomplished.
But the truth is that there's precious little sign that the book will sell.
Maybe I just haven't pushed hard enough. Believe me, that thought is keeping me up at night. Maybe if I put in more advertising, fought for some press and reviews, sales would grow. I'm sure they would. Maybe if I renegotiated my mortgage to finance another few issues, we'd have enough product to make going to conventions worthwhile -- with one issue we can't possibly sell enough product to make any sort of a profit at a show.
But I'm going to try another tack.
Comics are really expensive to produce -- unless you're an artist who can doodle them in your spare time. One thing I've learned is that they are an inefficient way of building an audience.
So I'll be trying something new in 2014. Or rather, something old. Writing.
Writing stories. What has been my favourite thing since I was a kid. I don't know why it's taken me this long to think, "Hey, what I should do is write some stories!"
2014 I'll be launching an all-new tale. I've got two ideas I'm developing and will soon be putting up to a vote -- I'm going to let you folks decide which one I should pursue first. I'll have more details on what sort of projects these will be.
And there will continue to be ongoing work about the GIRLS coming down the pipe. They aren't going away, just going on break for a while as Dave and I figure out how we're going to make this really happen.