Friday, January 28, 2011

Wearing hats

Yeah, halfway into my new mindset and I'm pissing people off, perhaps I should calm down with the rallying cries and talk about something else. Or maybe not, but I've been thinking about something to write since I hit the pillow last night, and that is the amount of different jobs that I have to do, and that if you are an indie creator will have to do (well maybe or maybe not depending).

I like to think that I'm a writer most days, and had it as a profession on my passport when I was eighteen. It is something that I feel I am passionate about, although some would question my merit and my talent. That is my first hat, pumping out scripts, or stories. I imagine in some regard that it is an extension of my First Nation blood, and that if this was another world, I would be entertaining people around a fire before we retired to sleep in the dirt.

Somehow I also find myself as a web designer. I use a shitty program that I got for free from a program for free for a day type of thing. The website, if you haven't seen it is, http://www.foreignmattercomic.com and it isn't the worst one in the world, but it is also not anywhere near the best. I have spent a lot of hours making it not as crappy as it once was, and I'm still not sure if it works properly. Being a web idiot makes this a crazy obstacle to run up against, but you gotta do what you can with what you have.

Next, I am a letterer. Yup, I have almost thrown my computer through the wall on about a thousand different occasions working with Illustrator, but I think I don't really suck at this. I can get the letters down on paper, and it doesn't look like a two year old did it. I really, really want someone else to do this, but it just doesn't justify paying someone to do it if I can hack it out myself. One day though I will retire as a letterer.

Also, I'm an editor of my own works. Don't know how to wear this hat very well, because when you read the same thing over and over and over, it all just kinda seems okay, but never really good. I try to get others to read what I have done, but they are busy people, so it falls on my shoulders and man can it be crazy-making at times.

Financier. Yup, I'm the financial genius of the operation. Hairdresser by day, all my money gets funneled into Foreign Matter. I cut and cut and cut and talk and talk and talk and hope I have a little left over at the end of the day so that I can funnel some money over to German and get some nice pages. This part of the job keeps my motivated in my other job, and gives me something to talk about with all the folk of Toronto. It also makes me dead tired at the end of most days.

Marketing Genius. Yes, I am a marketing genius. I know how to annoy the hell out of celebrity comic writers and just try and get a little recognition for myself. I have been on project wonderful, I have had my comic read by people in Africa. I have pimped and pimped and pimped on twitter, on Facebook, on google, on message boards. I have done whatever I possibly can to let those four fans out there know that Foreign Matter is alive and kicking. This is a hard one. I like to think of myself as a nice person, someone that wouldn't harm a fly, but marketing can be a little bitch, and I have been a little bitch while marketing. But you cannot be a fly on the wall if you are trying to let people know that you have something you are proud about. I've also made business cards and give those to whomever wants one, or asks for one after I've spent a haircuts worth of time talking to them about it.

Other things I have to be: patient, calm, stressed, crazy, obsessed, and passionate. I give this project my all, not knowing what will happen from one crazy moment to the next. And I've done well. I have a bunch of people following me on Twitter, and another bunch on Facebook. I've heard a couple good things from people. And I know our story and art gets better!

I know this. I have an issue and a half that no one except for me has seen yet, and it looks sweet. It looks fucking amazing. So to all you indie comics people out there, do what you have to do. Say what you have to say. Work what you have to work, and hopefully people will respond in kind.

Martin

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