Strip News 1-8-9

It’s almost scary just how much comics are all the rage. Things are happening.

Obviously, the big news this week is on’s sudden paywall announcement. The most recent words come from Websnark tells us this will likely not do well. It sums things up nicely, although there are pages and pages of comments everywhere with lots of different reactions. (Note: Image is incidental, not commentary.)

You can read Guigar’s reaction in this Robot 6 interview… I’m left wondering about the vacillations between I/WE who decided to do this/will be doing this. And if there isn’t some subscriber goal then this has definitely been poorly thought out in a fiscal sense.

To be fair, let’s see how the people that subscribe report back in a month. It is only the cost of a magazine subscription, after all. Will it find legs? Only time will tell.

♦ One nice result is that there is no shortage of other sites to fill the webcomic discussion void and some are now much easier to find. Some have been around for a while and others have recently gotten started or just restarted themselves.

Of course, which one(s) grow and which don’t are a matter of wait-and-see. The real key is that there is a passion for comics discussion, perhaps moreso than many realize. The more the merrier – it will be easier to find a place that you feel comfortable and useful.

♦ And someone, somewhere is always putting forth ideas on how to make comics. One site, for instance, run by Koltreg has a guest post on learning to write and another has solid advice on advertising webcomics. I just ran across this post with great suggestions on making your own webcomic and Tom Richmond talked about self employment and retirement.

♦ And other people are busy creating things potentially of use to all webcomics. The features of HIGUT look interesting. Webcomics Update has returned to help you keep up on in-comic events but you may not have seen Cameotracker’s falling anvil. leapt into the fray with a promise of the ultimate Digital Comic Book Store and even the Chicago Tribune Media Group is coming on strong with Division and Rush, which you don’t want to miss.

♦ Let’s see. In other news, CuttingRoom is looking for artists, Comics Curmudgeon put on a new suit and Disney bought not only Marvel but Stan Lee too. Sort of. That’s also #1 on ICv2’s list of top ten comic business events of 2009. Morgan Wick looked back on his 2009 predictions and Futurismic featured some (eight) publishing predictions for the next decade. Manga Worth Reading talked about Manga price points and Comics Oughta Be Fun just got started on 365 days with Hank McCoy. We’ll round this out with Webcomics Critique’s poll results for Pic O’ The Year 2009 and Madinkbeard’s picks for Best Comics of 2009.

♦ Let’s take a breather. Maybe there’s something artistic to be learned from a real study of internal anatomy. Perhaps for those who have operation scenes or something in their comics. I dunno. But aren’t you glad I didn’t post the pic? Anyway, back to comics…

Websnark reviewed Fans and gave us literary criticism on eight webcomics. Koltreg had a guest reviewer that covered Dinosaurs vs Robots, Panel Patter looked at Bug and . Mpd57 reviewed Schlock Mercenary while musing about comic concepts having ends (and I dig the header, too. It really adds something to the reading.) He also covered Newbot and Beyond The Borderlands while Webcartoonist gave us the good and bad on Battlegate. Paperless Comics pointed to a review of Full Frontal Nerdity (plus some other good comic news.)

Ink Destroyed My Brush talked about Street Angel and Optical Sloth talked about the excessive prolificity of Brian Mitchell and a couple of comics by Lauern Barnett. Fictions reviewed Garden Funnies and Comic Book Resources reviewed Mouse Guard Fall (and Winter) 1152. I just bought Fall and I plan to get Winter so I didn’t read that part. I do agree with the last sentence of the first paragraph, at least. Suite101 looked at Astro Boy’s lesser know sibling, MW.

A Nickel’s Worth interviewed Leigh Rubin and CBR talked with Thom Zahler while Crosshatch started talking with Frank Santoro – which ended on an interesting observation about the Indie comic scene.

♦ Everyone likes to see new comics and there is a new one called Foxing Quires and Zuda has a new batch of competitors. Then, Warren Peace showed us Basket Ogress and King of Monster Isle.

Comics Worth Reading pointed out this visual storytelling book which I must make time to read this weekend.

♦ As you know, it’s high time you tried your hand at hourly comics. And then we can learn something from Big Boy’s story.

♦ Let’s make note that Spwug has plans for this next year, Panel Patter has vowed to read more webcomics and Kez discussed comic hosts, affiliates, collectives and publishers. Congrats as Chris’s Invincible Super Blog as it hit the five year mark, Comic Critics officially reached 100 and the King of Candy has passed on.

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