Presentation by Heidi Black and Becca Hillburn about self publishing, specifically aimed at preparing comics for publishing. Basic tutorial on how to use InDesign to set up a document, printing and assembling comics yourself, and finding a printer willing to work with small orders.
Or, making your comic into a book
So you made a comic
And you thought maybe you could sell some
Or perhaps you just wanted to give one to a
Either way, you want to make your comic into a
If you have adobe in design
Then this isn't going to be too hard
STEP 1: SCAN ALL OF YOUR COMIC
PAGES. UNLESS THEY'RE ALREADY
DIGITAL. THEN YOU'RE ALL SET.
Size all of your pages to the same size in your
Generally, most mini-comics are letter size
paper folded in half, so you want your comic
pages to be about 8 inches tall by 5 inches
wide at 300 dpi, or some close semblance
Create a master page (this will make your life so much
Use the placeholder box tool to create boxes the size
of your comic pages on your masters.
Make sure to apply your master to your pages
Step 5Place your pages (in order) into the document.
They should fit nicely in the boxes you made.
Scale the images to fit proportionately if
When all the images are
placed and sized
correctly, its time to print!
Go to file -> print booklet
In the print booklet dialogue, choose “print
settings” (at the bottom)
Set the printer to “postscript file”
Under setup, choose the landscape orientation
This will save a file to your computer that is a .ps
Use acrobat distiller to make it into a pdf file
Printing can be done on a home printer or at places
like office max or kinkos.
Home printers allow for you to be in control of each
page and is better for figuring out how to put together
a book, but is also more expensive and the quality
may not be as high
Stores with printing services sometimes have helpful
staff that can correctly print your comic, but
sometimes have people who do not know what they
are doing and will mess your work up. Black and
white copies can be as little as 10 cents at some
stores, color copies can run as expensive as $1.50
Add a nice cover
Adding a cover makes the whole comic come
Then, its time for stapling and folding your comics.
Folding your comics in half lets you know where to
Use a long-arm stapler (available at office supply
stores for around $20)
Professional printing services
Ka-blam, comixpress, createspace, lightning press, lulu, ra
local print shops
Can print hard cover and perfect bound
Generally print at larger volumes, the larger the order the
cheaper each book
Need .pdf file (made in in design or illustrator)
Can print in color or black and white, some offer special
Professional printing services
Turnaround times are much slower (plan several months in
Some offer proof services or professional review services,
others will print all of your mistakes
Have specific bleed and formatting requirements
Can be expensive & often have a lot of stock
Owned and Operated by Amazon
You submit your files to their website in PDF form, once they
approve your submission, you can view a digital proof or order
a physical proof.
Additional copies of Proof (like to members of a group) require
submitting a 'change' to CreateSpace (usually just resubmitting
your document), and will take 24 hours to approve.
Only offer perfectbound printing, can't order hardbound
Offer the option to buy as few copies as you'd like, but this
means individual copies are more expensive on your end
Books can be sold and distributed via Amazon and Kindle, but
your cut will be small
Books created through Createspace already come with an
Very slow turnaround (six weeks)
Digital proof is available, but not a physical proof
Very much mixed experiences
Offer both perfect bound and saddle stitched
Can get discount on order if you allow them to place their ad
on the back cover
Offer both Black + white and color, including a mix (like color
cover, black + white interior)
Distributing your Comics
Self publishing requires self promotion!
Sell your comics at conventions via a dealer's table or an artist
Contact local stores like book and comic shops to see if they'd
be willing to purchase books wholesale or offer consignment
Contact local libraries and schools to see if they'd be
interested in purchasing copies
Open an online shop (Etsy, Store Envy, Ebay, or your own)
Make sure people know about your book! Contact pertinent
blogs and request guest posts, write up tutorials that feature
techniques used in your comic, give panels at conventions
about self publishing~!
Contact sites to review your comic, you will probably have to
provide a copy for free.