Tag Archives: comics

28Jun/22

What Is The Cost of Collecting Comics?

How Much Does Collecting Comics Cost?

Hey there, Silverline family. Today’s an interesting topic that doesn’t get brought up too often despite it running almost every aspect of our lives. Money. How much does it cost to collect comics?

This is one of those questions where there is no real answer. As unsatisfying as that is, it’s for a reason. Not everyone collects comics the same way. I’d wager that no two comic collections are alike. Comics are considered to be one of the more expensive hobbies for us nerds, but I know of some collections that were purchased so frugally that it’d make an extreme couponer blush.

To make matters even more convoluted, there is a multitude of different product types that are all still considered comics. Taking that into consideration and you start to see why there’s no definitive answer as to how much money you can expect to spend if you want to start collecting comics.

To start let’s learn what types of comics are out there are what they cost.

Cost of Single Comic Issues

Your classic comic is the single issue, sometimes called a floppy. This is equivalent to one chapter of a story and ranges between 18 and 32 pages depending on the publisher and how much goodwill they have with their printer. This costs anywhere between $3 to $6 for a new issue currently. You can also find old, not valuable issues in bargain bins for 99 cents around the world.

The next level up from that is a trade paperback or trade. A trade will usually collect 5 or 6 issues of a series. The average price for a trade is between $13.95 to $17.95. Of course, depending on publisher and brand value, that price could go up or down by several dollars. This serves as our smallest and most effective form of a collected book.

Cost of Collected Comic Issues

The next level from that is going to get split into two different categories. It also has the broadest range of content so getting an average is tricky. This will be our Collected Editions sometimes called Complete Series or just big books because we’re lazy. They come both in paperback and hardcover and combine entire story arcs or entire runs of a comic into one publication. This can be anywhere from 12 to 36 issues or more.

For a paperback, you should expect to spend anywhere between $20 and $40. This number can vary greatly because the amount of content inside the cover can vary greatly. A hardcover will usually run between $35 and $65. Again this number can vary greatly.

The total cost of your collection can change drastically based on what comic products you choose to pick up. If you are okay with not following a new series month to month, you could save yourself a chunk of change by waiting for it to get collected into a trade or a collected edition.

Buying Comics To Read

The next big determiner of how much money you’ll be spending is whether or not you are buying to collect or buying to read. If you are buying comics purely to read and engage with the storylines, you’re probably buying just what interests you and are not hunting down super rare back issues. This means that your cost for entry is at most going to be the market averages we discussed above.

Depending on if you prefer digital or physical comics you could get all your reading down through a subscription to an online service. Making your total cost for the hobby a monthly flat rate of $9.99 to $15. If you prefer to have paper in hand, your friendly local comic store might have sales or a loyalty/rewards program. Either way, you can greatly reduce the amount of cash you’ll be investing in the hobby while still supporting the creators and their sales/online reading metrics.

Buying Comics To Collect

If your goal is to have the biggest or most impressive collection, you’ll find that you’ll be spending a pretty penny on the hobby. Even if you are only hunting down a specific publisher or superhero, the hunt can be costly. Many comics and their creators have long and storied histories. That means a long history of books to collect. Many of these issues are no longer going to be in print, so that means you have to get into trading circles and find the collectors auctions.

Rare issues that are out of print can range anywhere from $25 to several thousand dollars. The further back you go, the more it’s going to cost.

You can also get your issues graded or slabbed. This is another investment that you will have to pay for but if you want to know that you have the best quality comics in your collections, the value could be there for you. The standard cost to grade a single comic issue is going to be around $75. To have a comic slabbed you can expect to pay anywhere between $22 to $120 depending on the value of the comic. Once you get into an issue with a value in the thousands though, the price can go up from there.

Bottom Line: How Much You Can Expect To Spend on Comics

Hopefully, now you see just how much the cost of collecting comics can vary. If you’re just a fan of the medium and want to read a storyline or two here and there. You might spend $9.99 a month, or $60 to get the entertainment you want. If you want to have the biggest collection of your favorite superhero you can be looking at $3000 plus the cost of grading/slabbing.

The cost can vary even more when you take into account Kickstarter tiers but those usually include additional rewards, so you’re getting more bang for your back in terms of total content and SWAG.

There’s no wrong way to enjoy comics. Whether you’re a trade reader or a floppy collector, you’re both engaging with this phenomenal medium. The only advice I can give is to buy what you like and buy within your means.

Until next time,

Make Mine Silverline!

21Jun/22

Can I Read Comics Online?

Can I Read Comics Online?

Hey there silver Fam! This week I wanted to answer a question that pops up now and then. If you’re asking this question, you might be new to the comics hobby or maybe you have a kid or family member who likes comics and are trying to get them a way to read. Online comics are also a great solution if you live in an area without a local comic shop and have a hard time having books shipped to your address. For some of us with a lot of time spent in the comics sphere, this might seem obvious, but this is a question that gets asked. Not everyone knows where to look or where to start. 

So to answer the question – yes, with some exceptions. We’ll get into that as well as some additional context on platforms and why online comics could be a good fit for you. 

 

Are Comics Available Online?

Yes! There are a ton of comics you can read online! Some are free, some with a subscription, and some you need to buy individually. This includes comics from the major publishers, books from a lot of independent publishers, as well as books from individual creators. Comics online, let’s list out a few of our favorite sites to read comics on. 

This is the site for your indie darlings. A lot of the comics on this site are made by one or two individual creators. These books are free to read and are usually updated weekly. The quality can be hit or miss depending on the title but the same can be said for comics platforms. The lack of project editors just means that the lack of polish can be more apparent at times. If you’re looking for something unique and never done before, this is a great place to look.

Comixology is a digital comics shop that sells books from all the major publishers as well as a lot of independent publishers. It also has a line of independent creator-owned projects published as Comixology Originals. Many of these books can all be read with a Comixology Unlimited subscription, while the rest of the shop catalog requires the digital copies to be purchased individually. That being said, they regularly run sales or even offer comics for free. Offerings include floppies, trades, and collected editions, as well as curated bundles. 

  • DC & Marvel

If you or the person you’re shopping for are diehard fans of DC or Marvel, and that’s all you’re looking for, both publishers have their own online comic services: DC Universe Infinite, and Marvel Unlimited. Both sites offer a large collection of comics from their respective publishers as part of a monthly subscription.  If all you need is The Bat or Cap, these sites could be your solution. 

 

Why Would I Need Digital Comics?

Well, we all need comics, that’s a universal truth. Some of us are lucky enough to live close to an FLCS (Friendly Local Comic Shop), are in good enough health to get there, and are lucky enough to find what we want in stock. If any one of those criteria is not met, online comics try to remedy that. While you can order some trades or collections online and have them delivered, that’s still reliant on that book being in print and carried by a store that can afford the overhead of shipping. If you recently moved to a rural area, had an accident, or are into something niche, you may be able to scratch that same itch by collecting digital comics

Another fact of the matter is that anyone can make a digital comic and post it online. As mentioned earlier in the segment on Webtoons. There are some unique stories that you will not find anywhere else. The digitization of comics has democratized publication as it has with so many other forms of media. 

 

Why Aren’t All Comics Available Online?

If it does so much to meet the reader where they are, it would make sense for all comics to be published online, right? Unfortunately, it doesn’t make the most business sense in every situation. As with anything, there is a cost involved. It could be the monetary cost for scanning and formatting, server upkeep, publishing dues, or even just time invested. To get that cost back, the comic needs to sell enough to cover that cost on top of the costs that are already incurred in making a book. 

With how many books are available online, that is sometimes not the case, especially for small independent publishers. There are so many options presented to readers, that they can’t possibly look at or purchase every book. Small publishers also do not receive the same priority for marketing or placement, so they are effectively hidden from the reader. If a book can’t be seen by the reader, it can’t be purchased, and therefore can’t cover the cost of making the digital copy.

 

Are Silverline Comics Online?

Unfortunately, we do not currently offer a catalog of comics for online reading. It is something that gets brought up with some frequency in our internal conversations. At the moment, we feel like we need more growth to justify that cost. In the meantime, our comics can be bought online and shipped to your address. Our Kickstarters do also offer PDF copies. If you are in a situation where you rely on digital comics for your reading pleasure, check out our next Kickstarter and select the PDF reward tier. You will receive a digital copy to download and read on any device. 

If you want more digital copies of our comics, let us know! Post in the comments or message us on social media and we’ll keep that in mind the next time it comes up. At current, you can still support us by backing or sharing Kickstarters to help us reach the growth we need to make it worthwhile!

 

Who Are Silverline Comics

A bunch of nerds trying to give you some dope reads and take you on fun adventures through comics. If you want to catch up on what we have going on, follow our socials. If you want to hang out with us, check out our live shows on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Sunday. 

Make Mine Silverline!

 

07Jun/22

What Is The Craft Of Comics?

Hey There Silverline Family!

Today is a cheeky post. We’re talking about the craft of making comics. We’ll be talking a little bit about what all is involved in making a comic, and then giving a start on how to improve that craft. We’ll probably do an entry down the lie on how to grow that craft in detail, so this will just be the first step once you know what it is.

First of all . . .

What is Craft?

Well, craft is all sorts of things. To boil it down a craft, or someone’s craft is their skilled profession, hobby, or pursuit. Some people are skilled carpenters and are said to be craftsmen. Others pursue an art form as a craft, either professionally or for pleasure (ideally both). That art is said to be their craft.

What is the Craft of Making Comics?

Other than a sick blog series we run, the craft of making comics is almost another umbrella group. Making a comic involves several art forms. This includes writing, different forms of illustration and pencil/pen art, color, and editing. I do include editing as an art because the editor needs to have a solid working skill or understanding of all the other involved art forms.

Some people are auteurs and can do all the above themselves and will either publish independently or get a special contract with a publisher to do so but in most cases, multiple people work on one comic book or series in different aspects. So in most cases, there are no true comic craftsmen, but rather several individuals skilled in other crafts that come together to make a well-crafted comic.

You might ask if the real craft of making comics then is teamwork and friendship? If you want to be sappy about it, yes. Practically, the craft of making comics is an umbrella term for all the skills involved. I am a writer, but understand the value of good art. I know that for my books to be well crafted, I need a good artist.

What Is My Craft?

Your craft is largely going to be dependent on what you are skilled in, or are willing to learn, and what you already like doing. It can be a relief knowing that if you want to get into making comics, you don’t need to do it all. You just need to find someone like-minded with a craft that fits the needs of your book. If you’re a writer, you need an artist. If you’re an artist, you need a writer.

If you haven’t drawn or written something seriously, and you don’t know what your craft style is. Try to create something in any of the following crafts.

  • Writing
  • Penciling
  • Inking
  • Coloring
  • Lettering

If you have questions about any of those. Click around in our Craft Series. You might find something that sounds exciting. Experiment with art, kids! All your friends are doing it. You might just find something you can get good at and that you love.

How Do I Get Better At My Comic Craft?

You’re going to hate me for this one, but “just do it” (As commanded by Shia Lebouf). The reasoning is pretty simple. The more you do something, the more efficient you become at it. Whether that’s figuring out how to do it properly or quickly, you get better at getting it done. If you read comics (why would you want to make comics if you don’t read them?), you already have a taste in comics that has grown with each comic you read. The more efficiently you do something, the more efficiently you do it to your taste. So the more comics you read and the more you perform that craft, the better you get.

Now, there is much more you can do to get better at making comics. That’s a subject for a different blog post though.

Who Are Silverline Comics

A bunch of nerds trying to give you some dope reads and take you on fun adventures through comics. If you want to catch up on what we have going on, follow our socials. If you want to hang out with us, check out our live shows on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Sunday.


Make Mine Silverline!


31May/22

The Craft of Creating Comics with Dean Zachary

Hey there, Silver Fam! For this week I talked with Dean Zachary and asked him a bunch of questions about his time working in comics and how he creates comics as an artist. I hope you enjoy this conversation and get some insight to help with your comic creation journey.

 

1. You have a breadth of experience working in comics. If you had to say one invention or development had the biggest impact on how comics are created, what would you say it is and why?

The sophistication of technology has improved to such an extent in the past 30 years that a creator can now, pencil, ink, color, and even letter an independent comic on an iPad Pro. This Incredible advantage allows for an unprecedented amount of creative control. Similarly, the “distribution system” used to be a Political Networking Bottleneck where Editorial Gatekeepers determined who saw your work. Today, you can operate in a worldwide marketplace with limitless possibilities.

2. As an artist, you’ve also worked on comics that are entirely you’re idea, comics that other writers have created, and comics that are licensed properties. Are there any differences in how you approach creating the artwork? Why or Why not?

The advantages of Creator-Owned properties include more control, and if the property is successful, a more substantial reward, especially if the Creator wears multiple hats of Writing/Pencils/Inks and so on. The disadvantage is commercial exposure. “How do you get your Name/Title Out There to the Widest Possible audience?” When starting from scratch, that’s the biggest hurdle. We here at Silverline work on answering that age-old question on a daily basis.

Regarding Licensed Properties, the advantage is that you may already have a built-in fan base, like if you’re drawing/writing an X-Men title for example. The disadvantage is, that the majority of the Creative Control resides with Editors, Writers, and License Owners.

3. How important are references or samples for your art? Are you constantly checking a reference on another screen, are they just nice to have available if needed, or are there some pages or illustrations where you don’t even check a reference?

My attention to reference obviously depends on the subject matter. If, for example, I’m drawing a cover for Wolf Hunter, I would reference any WWII aircraft, military vehicles, weapons, uniforms, and settings comprehensively. This approach adds legitimacy to the comic book in a Real World setting. For a more fantasy-oriented subject, I enjoy exaggerating reality to fit my “vision” which helps to make a more memorable impression on the reader. The “Zachary Realism” then makes my work more unique, making me less of a Human Camera and more of a Visionary, sharing what I see with others in a more unique style or brand.

4. One thing you’ve said a couple of times on the Silverline live shows is, “don’t calculate.” Something that gets brought up is people creating something just because they think it will say, not because they are actually passionate about it. If you could expand on that, what sort of advice would you give new creators as they embark on this journey of creation?

Creativity Beyond Calculation. This concept is one of my favorite subjects in the Comic Creation world. While keeping in mind that at its core, one could argue that Comic Books are a Commercial Art venture, and creators ultimately want to sell their work. We at least want to sell enough copies to do the work full-time. That being said, Calculation to Sell is the Death Knell of creators. In essence, the creator begins second-guessing his own instincts in favor of some incredible sales numbers an Indy Book is doing online, prompting the temptation to “copy that” so I’ll succeed too. This is a huge mistake, in my opinion. Trust your instincts. If you like it, in a Worldwide Marketplace, there are likely enough other people that will like it as well. Your genuine Internal Enthusiasm, Instincts, and Creative Fire will be so evident that the concept will shine much brighter than a calculated copy of someone else’s success. Trust your own creative instincts, regardless of what’s selling. Be True to Yourself when you create. This brings not only freedom but more gratification once you’ve shared the creation with the world.


5. What are some projects that you have coming and where can people see your work? Anything you’d like to shout out?

People can see my work on many Silverline Covers, including Cat & Mouse, Wolf Hunter, BEAH, Beyond the Stars, Obsoletes, the upcoming Capetown, and classics like Krey and Switchblade. I’m also writing and drawing Silverblade, a Victorian Fantasy that explains why Silver affects Monsters featuring Knights fighting supernaturally powered Cultists. For my past work with Malibu, DC Comics, Dark Horse Comics, and others, my work can be found on sites like Comic Art Fans, Comic Vine, and, of course, Silverline Comics. Here’s a link

24May/22

Kickstarter Funded: Science Fiction Extravaganza

Hey there Silverline fam! You did it again! Another Kickstarter is fully funded. The Silverline Science Extravaganza has finished its run on Kickstarter and is getting ready to migrate to your mailboxes. If you weren’t able to get your order in quite yet, that’s alright. Soon enough, these titles will be available through the Silverline storefront on Indyplanet. But you will still have to wait until after the backers get their copies and you won’t get as many copies. (You also won’t get as many goodies.)

If you backed the Silverline Science Fiction Extravaganza be sure to keep an eye on your email, and also your Kickstarter message center. You should be receiving an invite to complete a survey soon. That survey is crucial as it allows us to make sure your books get to you. We want to make sure you get exactly what you ordered in the way that you ordered it. To do that, we need you to make sure we get it right. Fill out the survey to confirm your name and shipping info and make sure we know what bonus goodies you ordered.

Right now, those of you who backed Wolfhunter/ Sirens should be getting your flipbooks in the mail. Be sure to tell us what you think on our socials! We love to hear from you guys. The Instagram and Twitter posts of people opening their copies have been great to see. That coupled with knocking this Kickstarter campaign out of the park has made our week.

If you were looking forward to either of those titles but did not get a chance to preorder during the Kickstarter campaign, don’t fret. Those should be in our online store any day now. While you’re there you can also catch up on any titles you missed (I recommend Divinity).

This marks our 18th successfully funded Kickstarter! Our Kickstarters are old enough to vote in the US! We hope that you stay with us as we continue to grow. Soon enough, we’ll have Kickstarters 19 and 20, and 21, soon enough it’ll be off to college and falling in love. We’re still talking about crowdfunding right?

Make sure you’re following all the Silverline Socials as well as all our creators so that you don’t miss out on the next chance to preorder a Silverline comic. Each Kickstarter comes with juicy exclusives (juicy ‘sclusies?) and fans have told us they love them. Especially our collector’s bookmarks.

We’ll see you on the next Kickstarter, and hopefully, we see your name on the Thank You Page. Until next time,

Make Mine Silverline!

17May/22

Content Spotlight: The Comics Fu Show

Hey there, Silverline fam!

We have another Silverline Content Spotlight for you. This week is an extra special episode. Kurtis, Silverline’s resident Kung-Fu expert, hosts the artist and crew involved with the Shadow Ghost inspired music video from Capitan Walas.

Shadow Ghost is the kung-fu comics by kung-fu master upcoming from Silverline! Sifu Kurtis Fujita created this comic to combine two of his passions. We’ve mentioned it before, but Kurtis is an actual Sifu, a certified instructor of kung-fu for health and competition. He also has a historied career in comics and entertainment. Combining the two into one dope comic series seemed like a kind of no brainer.

A few months ago Capitan Walas made a track and music video inspired by Shadow Ghost. The track, Drunken Tiger featuring Alan Yip on Erhu features themes from traditional Chinese music with a modern twist. The music video is also a great demonstration of practical martial arts and use of traditional Chinese weapons. “Capitan Walas is a Mexican musician based in California’s SF Bay Area. He has been a guitar/ guqin composer and martial arts practitioner since the early 2010s.

Capitan Walas, Alan Yip, Sifu Tony Tong, and Megan Wong join the the comics fu show to talk about their various backgrounds, influences, and behind the scenes production of the song/music video. This episode also features a screening of the video!

Be sure to check it out as it goes live today on the Silverline Comics Channel!




03May/22

Silverline Content Showcase: Paul Kupperberg on Wednesday Wham!

Hey there Silver family!

Sorry it’s been a while since we posted. I was lost in the desert for a week. I was some about Bend when the Monster and Protein Bars began take hold. I then got cozy with some bacteria while I was out there which knocked out of commission for the next week. We’re back and lightly medicated, so that means it’s time for a post.

We got an extra special one for you this time! Long time comics pro, veteran of the long war, Paul Kupperberg joined the Whammers for an incredible episode of Wednesday Night Wham!

If you’ve been living under several rocks, Paul Kupperberg has had a career in comics for over 45 years, and has written over 1,400 stories. That’s a lot. Like . . . a lllooooooootttt. Some companies he’s worked with include DC Comics, Weekly World News, and WWE Kids Magazine. You might recognize two of those names, if you’ve breathed at any point in the last 40 years.

Paul also famously killed Archie. Yes, that Archie. He’s worked on Peacemaker, Vigilante, Doom Patrol, and Supergirl to name a few. If you’re like me, you’ve been loving the shows based on those titles, I would definitely recommend reading some of his work after you watch the conversation he had with the Whammers.

Enjoy!

 

12Apr/22

Upcoming Kickstarter Alert

Hey there Silverline Fam!

Only got time for another quick one this week. But we won’t need a blog where we’re going. That’s right, we’re headed back to the (comics) future!

Silverline has an upcoming Kickstarter that you can pre-save, right now! It’s a Science Fiction Extravaganza as we release a collection of 3 books with a sci-fi twist. This collection has some classic and some all new content for your reading pleasure!

This laser-fight-party will feature a Beyond The Stars, Krey, and Obsoletes. If you enjoy long walks on the moon or cantina folk jazz, then this is a can’t miss!

If you backed Wolf Hunter/Sirens Remix, we are working on getting those out of the print cycle and into a mailbox near you soon! Make sure you completed your Kickstarter survey, so that we can send it to the right mailbox!

If you want to help us keep the comics train rolling, head on over to the page for the Sci-Fi Extravaganza and hit that Notification Button.

Until next time, Make Mine Silverline!

05Apr/22

Quick Update – Kickstarter Survey

Just a quick update this week!

Make sure to check your email! If you backed the Kickstarter for Sirens #1 Remix and Wolf Hunter #1, you’ll have received a few emails from Kickstarter to complete the survey. This survey is SUPER important. This allows us to collect your shipping address as well as the name you want us to put on the thank you page. If you want your name to be correct and your book to actually be sent to you, you need to complete this survey.

Your regular scheduled can resume when everyone, and I mean EVERYONE has completed their survey. So get to it soldiers. Up and at ’em!

29Mar/22

Kick Starter Success

Hey there Silverfam!

I just want to congratulate everyone involved on another successful Kickstarter! That means you too! We wouldn’t be here without the readers and the backers.

This Kickstarter had special significance to me. Wolf Hunter is my own comic and the story has been rattling around in my head for a few years now. The art on this comic is blowing my mind. I hope my story lives up to the dopeness that AJ, John, and Martin encased it in. I’m super proud of what we created and I CAN NOT WAIT for it to be in your hands.

Make sure to check you emails for surveys and updates. We’ll need to confirm your shipping info and make sure your name is right on the thank you page. 

Of course I also need to shout out the incredible Sirens team as well. Sirens is a classic penned by my former college instructor Sidney Williams, and features incredible art work by John Drury, Chuck Bordell, and Barb Kaalberg. I loved this comic the first time I read it and can’t wait to turn through the pages with the new life breathed into this book. 

You all even backed these books so hard, that we hit our second stretch goal! That means that every backer will be getting a Historical Reference PDF that can be used as commentary and reference for Issue 1 of Wolf Hunter. In essence, your digital copy just got upgraded to a History Edition. If you backed at a physical reward level, you’ll also be getting a double sided bookmark featuring unique art from both Wolf Hunter and Sirens. 

Again thank you so much, for backing these books! Be on the look for more Kickstarters in the future and remember to Make Mine Silverline!