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Remember, Remember, The Fifth Of Estradember

Another day, another reason to pay attention to Ryan Estrada, or (as the case may be), two reasons. Firstly, Estrada drops some wisdom on what will get you hired for comics gigs, based on his past history of not only hustling for work, but also from his history of hiring people for his various projects. Secondly, one of those projects, which Estrada has been teasing, is nearing fruition and he was kind enough to share some details with us. Broken Telephone is a story which Estrada has been working on for years, and which will require the services of (at present) 18 webcomickers.

The Kickstarter to launch it will be dropping in the immediate future, but in the meantime Estrada’s given us the skinny on everybody participating: Rachel Dukes, Carolyn Nowak, Brittney Sabo, Kelly Bastow, Irena Freitas, Will Kirkby, Amy T. Falcone, E.A. Denich, Chad Thomas, KC Green, Maya Kern, Amanda LaFreinas, Dan Ciurczak and JR Robinson, Justin Peterson, Tauhid Bondia, Elias Ericson, and Matt Cummings (plus Estrada himself, of course). Oh, and since Estrada’s not a jerk, you know that those collaborators are people that he’s hired, for money, which just reinforces the other aspect of how to get hired for comics gigs: it doesn’t count as hiring if you don’t get money.

  • In other news, I was simultaneously thrilled and disappointed to see the announcement that Longshot Saves The Marvel Universe hits tomorrow. Thrilled because it’s going to be hilarious; annoyed because (at the time of this writing) it appears to be announced multiple places that should know better without a writer credit. Well, the writer is Christopher Hastings, as should be obvious to anybody that looks at the bottom of that cover image.
  • This morning, I saw a good lesson in double-checking everything, and an even better lesson in treating your readers right. Firstly, Kris Straub: updated the world on the progress of the Broodhollow books. They look great, but there’s a problem:

    I opened the package and was knocked over by how beautiful both the softcover and hardcover books are. I felt along the lovely clothbound spine of the hardcover edition… and I realized the manufacturer forgot the red ribbon bookmark.

    Somehow that spec got left off the final quote from a previous one, and after conferring with them, I found out the books were approaching the end of their manufacture process. No chance to correct this.

    So that’s lesson #1: no matter how good your relationship with a vendor, you need to double-check every order, every spec sheet, every everything. But, there’s good news to offset the bad, not least because Straub is — far from his namesake — a stand-up guy:

    Here’s the good news — I also was not charged for the missing ribbons, so I have decided to take that savings — and some of my own money — and have nice dust jackets made for all the hardcovers. You guys at hardcover levels dug deep for the Kickstarter and you have earned my affection and gratitude, so I wanted to make up for the ribbon oversight. [boldface original]

    The bold isn’t the important part; the aside just before the bold is. Straub could have looked for a solution that didn’t cost him out of pocket (I’m wagering that he could have substituted printed bookmarks and satisfied his backers for less than dustcovers), but he wanted to more than make things up to his readers. Straub’s incredible comics makes me read Broodhollow, but knowing that he won’t ever short his readers is what will make me upgrade my book order next time¹. Culturally, webcomics is far more likely to take Straub’s approach here, and each example of doing right by your readers just reinforces that culture.

¹ Despite the fact that now book one and future books won’t match on my bookshelf. Dammit!

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