Christian Comic Arts Society

A Network of Christian Fellowship for Comics Fans, Pros, and Amateurs

Hey Jesus freaks,

I recently discovered Comixology, and have bought a few online comics from their site. I've been pleased with the experience of reading a comic on my computer, but even more pleased with the price. If I buy a comic at the comic store, then by the time shipping and retail has been added it costs me just over $8 to buy a comic here in Australia. If I buy the same comic online it costs me $4, often even $2! Half or a quarter of the price of a physical comic from the shop.

I'm seriously contemplating buying most of my comics as downloads from now on, but I am wondering about whether it will affect the industry in a positive or negative light. I don't have a lot of economic smarts, so I don't know what the effects of more sales online will be, apart from the obvious effect of a lot of retail comic stores losing business, and printers losing business.

SO... all you comic guys out there with some knowledge about this sort of thing, please impart your knowledge/opinion here; what will be the long-term effects of buying a download rather than a paperback comic, and will the ramifications be mostly positive or mostly negative?

Do any of you guys buy download versions as well? I still love a physical comic that I can flip through, but maybe that is just due to nostalgia.

Thoughts?

Views: 150

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

I approach this issue from a creator perspective - I love having digital as an option!

I have comics available on Graphicly ( Araknid Kid ) and interactive children's books published digitally ( like this one ) and it's a super cost-effective way to get work out and earn income. And it's quick! I can be done with a book, and have it 24 hours later.

I like buying digital as I think it's a way of "try-before-you-buy". If I really like something, then I'd go get the physical copy. I still prefer flipping through something than viewing on a screen (particularly Trades/Graphic Novels).

I think this trend will encourage innovation on the print side of things - motivating printers/designers to play with look/feels of a book in an attempt to make them "bookshelf" worthy. I've seen some fun stuff done with regular novels - like making the book look and feel like an old journal.

 

It's only a matter of time before ALL publishing goes digital. Cost, of course, is a major advantage for both the creator and the publisher, but also the whole "going green" nonsense is also a huge factor.

I am very wary of digital publishing, and a bit sad over it.

I intend to hold out as long as possible for two reasons...

  1. I love print. I love the smell of the paper, and the weight of the book in my hand. (There is definitely a different weight experience between reading "Animal Farm" and "The Rise And Fall Of The Third Reich".) ...Also, the printed word gives that word an added value. If my original copies of of the X-Men's "Dark Phoenix Saga" get damaged- or even my graphic novel reprint- then I have lost it's value. (Not to mention the thing itself.) It is a loss which is why I take great attention in caring for it. But if I have a digital copy, I can reproduce as many as I want, and even decoupage my bathroom walls with it for all I care. ...Plus, few things warm my heart like the sight of a well stocked, and well cared for book case.
  2. As with all digital media, it can be easily edited. Revisionism is a serious concern. Who's to say the distributor of a digital Bible won't revise some language- say, to make it more gender neutral- and automatically update it on your device when you plug in next? Who will notice? In short, digital publishing is less permanent, and severely susceptible to editing, and rewriting. With the printed word, what is there is there- at least for that edition- and the ability to fact check or reference previous editions is solid.

Anyhoo... them's my thoughts.

Josh, good points. I'm curious, as a creator, do you make more, less or just as much net profit from a comic sold online compared to a printed comic?



Josh Alves said:

I approach this issue from a creator perspective - I love having digital as an option!

I have comics available on Graphicly ( Araknid Kid ) and interactive children's books published digitally ( like this one ) and it's a super cost-effective way to get work out and earn income. And it's quick! I can be done with a book, and have it 24 hours later.

I like buying digital as I think it's a way of "try-before-you-buy". If I really like something, then I'd go get the physical copy. I still prefer flipping through something than viewing on a screen (particularly Trades/Graphic Novels).

I think this trend will encourage innovation on the print side of things - motivating printers/designers to play with look/feels of a book in an attempt to make them "bookshelf" worthy. I've seen some fun stuff done with regular novels - like making the book look and feel like an old journal.

 

Steve, wow, really interesting perspectives there, I agree with a lot of that.

I love printed comics, but here's the benefits I see with digital, purely from a reader's viewpoint, not a creator (I agree with Josh's viewpoint as a creator):

1. CHEAPER! I can buy up to 4 comics for the price of one. More reading goodness for my money.

2. I can zoom right in on the art or blow it up full screen; extra appreciation, better colours.

3. A well stocked shelf is cool, absolutely, but after collecting comics for 20 years (oh my goodness, where'd THAT time go?), even though I've thrown out a bunch of them, I've still got 6 boxes of comics to store, not including the favourites on my shelf. Much easier and less space to store them in a hard drive or on the cloud.

4. Out and about, if one has their iPad with them, one can have a choice of hundreds of comics to read without having hundreds of comics in their backpack. (Ok this one is a pretty weak point, as life was just fine before that option, but it's still a point).

But yeah, despite all that I do still love sitting down with a nicely printed graphic novel :)


Steve Crespo said:

It's only a matter of time before ALL publishing goes digital. Cost, of course, is a major advantage for both the creator and the publisher, but also the whole "going green" nonsense is also a huge factor.

I am very wary of digital publishing, and a bit sad over it.

I intend to hold out as long as possible for two reasons...

  1. I love print. I love the smell of the paper, and the weight of the book in my hand. (There is definitely a different weight experience between reading "Animal Farm" and "The Rise And Fall Of The Third Reich".) ...Also, the printed word gives that word an added value. If my original copies of of the X-Men's "Dark Phoenix Saga" get damaged- or even my graphic novel reprint- then I have lost it's value. (Not to mention the thing itself.) It is a loss which is why I take great attention in caring for it. But if I have a digital copy, I can reproduce as many as I want, and even decoupage my bathroom walls with it for all I care. ...Plus, few things warm my heart like the sight of a well stocked, and well cared for book case.
  2. As with all digital media, it can be easily edited. Revisionism is a serious concern. Who's to say the distributor of a digital Bible won't revise some language- say, to make it more gender neutral- and automatically update it on your device when you plug in next? Who will notice? In short, digital publishing is less permanent, and severely susceptible to editing, and rewriting. With the printed word, what is there is there- at least for that edition- and the ability to fact check or reference previous editions is solid.

Anyhoo... them's my thoughts.

For me - I net more.

Going the self-pub route - I haven't been able to print high enough quantities to lower the price per copy. My comics were print-on-demand, so by the time I printed them, shipped them to me, packaged and sent them to the buyers or sold them at shows - I barely broke even.

I've netted enough income just independently doing the interactive children's books, that each book starts to pay (myself) for production of the next one. And the next book encourages sales of the prior books. And it's building soft-income streams (we'll see how it goes over the next few months - I just completed my first year of full-time freelance and published my first interactive book last December)

So, for the creator - digital is a GREAT way to get work out there and exposure so that each projects builds the next one.

My ultimate goal is still in printed copies though. Ideally, using the digital income to fund it (for a, hopefully, built-in audience).



Matt Baker said:

Josh, good points. I'm curious, as a creator, do you make more, less or just as much net profit from a comic sold online compared to a printed comic?



Josh Alves said:

I approach this issue from a creator perspective - I love having digital as an option!

I have comics available on Graphicly ( Araknid Kid ) and interactive children's books published digitally ( like this one ) and it's a super cost-effective way to get work out and earn income. And it's quick! I can be done with a book, and have it 24 hours later.

I like buying digital as I think it's a way of "try-before-you-buy". If I really like something, then I'd go get the physical copy. I still prefer flipping through something than viewing on a screen (particularly Trades/Graphic Novels).

I think this trend will encourage innovation on the print side of things - motivating printers/designers to play with look/feels of a book in an attempt to make them "bookshelf" worthy. I've seen some fun stuff done with regular novels - like making the book look and feel like an old journal.

 

That's really cool, sounds like you've got it figured out! (insert thumbs-up sign here.)



Josh Alves said:

For me - I net more.

Going the self-pub route - I haven't been able to print high enough quantities to lower the price per copy. My comics were print-on-demand, so by the time I printed them, shipped them to me, packaged and sent them to the buyers or sold them at shows - I barely broke even.

I've netted enough income just independently doing the interactive children's books, that each book starts to pay (myself) for production of the next one. And the next book encourages sales of the prior books. And it's building soft-income streams (we'll see how it goes over the next few months - I just completed my first year of full-time freelance and published my first interactive book last December)

So, for the creator - digital is a GREAT way to get work out there and exposure so that each projects builds the next one.

My ultimate goal is still in printed copies though. Ideally, using the digital income to fund it (for a, hopefully, built-in audience).



Matt Baker said:

Josh, good points. I'm curious, as a creator, do you make more, less or just as much net profit from a comic sold online compared to a printed comic?



Josh Alves said:

I approach this issue from a creator perspective - I love having digital as an option!

I have comics available on Graphicly ( Araknid Kid ) and interactive children's books published digitally ( like this one ) and it's a super cost-effective way to get work out and earn income. And it's quick! I can be done with a book, and have it 24 hours later.

I like buying digital as I think it's a way of "try-before-you-buy". If I really like something, then I'd go get the physical copy. I still prefer flipping through something than viewing on a screen (particularly Trades/Graphic Novels).

I think this trend will encourage innovation on the print side of things - motivating printers/designers to play with look/feels of a book in an attempt to make them "bookshelf" worthy. I've seen some fun stuff done with regular novels - like making the book look and feel like an old journal.

 

I wouldn't say that I've got it figured out - but I'm trying to! :)

Matt Baker said:

That's really cool, sounds like you've got it figured out! (insert thumbs-up sign here.)



Josh Alves said:

For me - I net more.

Going the self-pub route - I haven't been able to print high enough quantities to lower the price per copy. My comics were print-on-demand, so by the time I printed them, shipped them to me, packaged and sent them to the buyers or sold them at shows - I barely broke even.

I've netted enough income just independently doing the interactive children's books, that each book starts to pay (myself) for production of the next one. And the next book encourages sales of the prior books. And it's building soft-income streams (we'll see how it goes over the next few months - I just completed my first year of full-time freelance and published my first interactive book last December)

So, for the creator - digital is a GREAT way to get work out there and exposure so that each projects builds the next one.

My ultimate goal is still in printed copies though. Ideally, using the digital income to fund it (for a, hopefully, built-in audience).



Matt Baker said:

Josh, good points. I'm curious, as a creator, do you make more, less or just as much net profit from a comic sold online compared to a printed comic?



Josh Alves said:

I approach this issue from a creator perspective - I love having digital as an option!

I have comics available on Graphicly ( Araknid Kid ) and interactive children's books published digitally ( like this one ) and it's a super cost-effective way to get work out and earn income. And it's quick! I can be done with a book, and have it 24 hours later.

I like buying digital as I think it's a way of "try-before-you-buy". If I really like something, then I'd go get the physical copy. I still prefer flipping through something than viewing on a screen (particularly Trades/Graphic Novels).

I think this trend will encourage innovation on the print side of things - motivating printers/designers to play with look/feels of a book in an attempt to make them "bookshelf" worthy. I've seen some fun stuff done with regular novels - like making the book look and feel like an old journal.

 

Well josh, I'm supposed to be busily finishing a calendar right now, midnight in Australia, but instead I've bought issue #1 of Araknid Kid and want to read it. I'll reward myself by reading it when I've finished, I guess.

Josh Alves said:

I wouldn't say that I've got it figured out - but I'm trying to! :)


Sweet! Thanks, Matt - let me know what you think.

Matt Baker said:

Well josh, I'm supposed to be busily finishing a calendar right now, midnight in Australia, but instead I've bought issue #1 of Araknid Kid and want to read it. I'll reward myself by reading it when I've finished, I guess.

Josh Alves said:

I wouldn't say that I've got it figured out - but I'm trying to! :)


RSS

Welcome to the Christian Comic Arts Society (CCAS) Online Network!

Did you know that CCAS has monthly meetings in the Los Angeles area? Contact Eric Jansen for more info!

 

Also, members of CCAS have produced the APAzine ALPHA-OMEGA for over 25 years!  We have about five openings right now!  Contact Eric Jansen for more info!  (This is a 30-member active-participation-only photocopied magazine for Christian writers and artists who submit a "trib" every other month for fun, fellowship, and critiques by other members.  Between postage and your photocopying costs, you might pay anywhere from $5 to $25 per issue.)

© 2019   Created by CCAS Web Admin.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service