Indie Creators - Edit Your Work!

By | Thursday, March 09, 2023 Leave a Comment
I pick up local artist comics as often as I'm able. Trying to support folks as I can, you know. But sometimes, as I sit down to read them, I find that they are not atypical of local indie artists trying to do their take on superheroes. They owe a lot to Marvel and DC, and the stories can be a bit derivative in that respect. I'm okay with that, though. Not my thing -- if I want superheroes, I'm generally going to go with the experts -- but if you like it, knock yourself out!

The art is usually serviceable -- not great, but not bad either -- and they frequently go the extra mile to get their books printed in color, which often helps. Sometimes they can be a little hard to follow -- these creators are often still pretty inexperienced storytellers -- but they make sense enough in light of the zillion other supehero stories I've read like it over the years. (I know they're trying to be original, but you simply cannot out-Kirby Jack Kirby himself!) More often than not, the books are fine. Not usually knocking my socks off, but enjoyable enough and I'm glad to be able to support local talent.


Except they're not always edited. There are typos all up and through everything, and misspellings, and incorrect word usages... I can let slide a typo or two, and I can tolerate bad grammar if it's dialogue of someone who's not supposed to be speaking properly anyway, but there are some basic mistakes that just pull me out of the story entirely and stop me cold. It makes these okay comics a lot worse in my mind than I think they deserve.

You know, I'll admit that I'm not a fantastic writer, and I've been known to make my fair share of typos and grammatical errors and such. Here on my blog especially. But if you're doing something for print? And you've only got 22 pages of a comic book story? You better be damn sure you get as much of that fixed up as you possibly can! Your readers should NOT be seeing problems on every other page!

Look, I know not everyone has decent editing skills. And I know that some of these folks came from backgrounds where education wasn't valued, and the fact that they can read/write at all is incredible! But if you want to put out a comic to the world, and you opt to do single issues in a pamphlet format, you NEED to have someone at least read over it for you before it goes to the printer! It's bad enough when you see problems on a four panel webcomic; you can sometimes excuse that because they often come out daily (though with webcomics, errors are easy to correct as soon as any of your readers point them out). But for something as permanent as a pamphlet comic, you need to get your shit together and have things proofread by SOMEone! You might be able to cover up a incoherent plot, or awkward scripting with great art, but even a fantastic script looks like crap if it's filled with typos and bad grammar!
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