Back in February I announced that I was applying for the final round of the Xeric grant. A couple of weeks ago I got a letter informing me that I wasn’t selected. I’m not going to let the rejection slow me down. Putting my work out there for review, for sale, or for awards means that it might get rejected. Anyone who wants to be a creative professional needs to have a thick skin.
I applied to self-publish a comic that’s already posted on my website, Moon Queen. I wanted the funds to do a two-color offset print production of that comic. Because I was drafting a plan with potential buckets of cash, I thought about and researched a publishing, marketing, and distribution plan that’s way more ambitious than anything I’ve done with my comics so far. Formulating that plan means the Xeric helped me out before I even mailed in my application. Not getting the Xeric doesn’t mean I can’t implement some (or all) of these ideas in future self-publishing projects, I’ll just need to save my own pennies. But I’m not sure at this point if Moon Queen will exist in print. We’ll see.
Applying to the Xeric was something I’d been wanting to do since I first started reading about self-publishing comics in high school. I’m glad I finally got my shit together and did it. It’s a bummer that there are no future rounds of Xeric funding. I think the opportunity that the Xeric gave people isn’t quite replaced by self-publishing on the web, which requires a different skill set than self-publishing in print, and Kickstarter, which is only successful if a cartoonist has an existing audience. Fortunately the Sequential Arts Workshop, a new comics school in Florida, recently announced that they’re stepping in to fill the void left by the Xeric with micro-grants for self-publishing. The first deadline is August 15th, 2012, go apply!