Thursday, September 25, 2003

Want to print your own Graphic Novel? 

Occasionally I have looked into various printing companies that specialize in comics to see what is out there. Generally they have options for a normal stapled floppy comic, sometimes with an option for square binding if you paid a ton more money.

While that was interesting, on a personal basis I don't think there's any way that I could put out a monthly title with my lack of great artistic skills. I was always leaning more toward some sort of instructional guide relating to yo-yos, for which I've already written a lot. Of course an actual book would have a ton of diagrams of some kind in it as well...

This kind of perfect binding is also in the spotlight lately due to the bookstore market and manga specifically. So, what if you want to do something like that yourself but don't want to go with a big publishing company?

I stumbled across Dream Wave Press the other day, and it looks very impressive. Print runs as low as 25 volumes, sizes from 8.5/11 to small digest, as well as very reasonable pricing. You can even order a single volume with no print run at just $25 if you want to test without commitment.

Most manga is around 200 pages and is digest size. For a 25 run, this is about $180, which comes out to slightly over $7 an issue. I'm not sure how much shipping 25 GNs would cost to get to you. Even at $20, that'd be less than $8 an issue. If you marked it up to $10, that still gives you $2 profit an issue, at the same price and size as the professional companies, for a pretty small commitment. Of course as you increase the size of the run, the price decreases per issue, to something like $2.50 an issue for 1000. If you sold every copy, you might make as much as $6k, even though I'm sure there are bazillions of expenses that'd eat into that, assuming of course that it could take ages to sell them them all by internet or somehow get copies into bookstores or comic shops.

But from my uneducated view (in terms of self-publishing), it seems like a great deal for someone doing a b&w GN, and something to check out...

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