Once you have a finished product, you will probably want to look into getting published.

How do I decide which publishing companies to submit to?

Top comic book publishers – A list of the most well known companies that publish comic books

More comic book publishers

Comic book company profiles – In depth profiles of well known and indie comic book publishers

Tips for getting started?

Think small! Independent publishing companies can be a great way to get started.

Know your field. Read a variety of graphic novels and comics from many different companies. Go to many comic book stores and look at the titles. See which styles mesh with your own. That way you’ll know what’s out there and you’ll have a good idea of what companies you should be contacting. Think about format, color vs. black and white, monthly vs. miniseries, the genre, etc.

Look for submission guidelines. Before you can submit your work, you want to know the best way of doing that, and each company has its own set of rules. Go to a company’s website for its submission guidelines. For example, here are the submission guidelines for Dark Horse Comics.

What should I know before I submit?

Put together a portfolio of your work. Include samples of your work and business cards. Remember that you can change your portfolio based on the company you’re submitting for. If you’re submitting to a company that publishes lots of superhero comics, play up that side of your portfolio, as you would with a resume.

Remember not to send out originals — it’s not likely you’ll get them back.

Display your best work in your portfolio. Your portfolio is a representation of you and your work — put your best foot forward!

Always include a self addressed stamped envelope. This makes it easier for the publishers to respond to you.

What’s going on in the world of publishing?

Keeping abreast of the publishing world trends is also important.

NYTimes: Selling Grows Rougher for Small Comics Publishers – New policies are making it harder for small comic book companies to stay afloat.

End of an Era: Tokyopop Shutting Down US Publishing Division – Tokyopop, one of the biggest manga production companies, has shut down its U.S. operations.

Black Women Take on Comic Book Industry – Though graphic novels are increasingly popular, there is still a lack of diversity in terms of those who produce it. One African American woman voices her concerns.

What if I want to publish online?

Some artists have had success in putting their work on websites. Many, like Questionable Content and xkcd have obtained cult status. Here are some guidelines for webcomics.

So You Want to Start a Webcomic – Tips from Questionable Content author Jeph Jacques

Starting a Webcomic for Beginners – Tips for beginners from the author of the webcomic Packet Log

How to start a webcomic – Useful tips geared towards the website/web hosting side of webcomics.

Webcomics to Watch – Examples of popular webcomics:

Questionable Content

xkcd

Perry Bible Fellowship

Penny Arcade

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