Last evening I finished coloring and lettering the final page of book 1 in the Adamsville series! It was a really nice moment as I was up chatting with a few cartoonist friends and my wife was in the room with me and we all got to celebrate together. What a journey it has been. I am super grateful for all of the encouragement, and congratulations and cheerings on and dealing with me being a sentimental sap along the way to this point. Thank you everyone who has gone on this with me. It’s been a unique experiment to try and make a book completely away from the eyes of the open public when today’s default is make a comic and share it with people immediately.
When I started this project I had a few things I wanted to see happen.
1) I wanted to make this book my way.
This may seem like an odd statement, but when you are making a webcomic, as I have over the last five years or so, you get pressured by your readership to do a lot of things that are fun, in some ways helpful, but for me were distracting. I wanted to make a book in private and have it finished before I shared it with everyone. I wanted to have no pressure on what my work flow was or what needed to happen and when. I felt this would maximize my productivity. That was goal number one. And that’s what I did.
2) I wanted to finish it in a year
This more or less happened. I started rewriting this book in June of 2011 and started penciling and inking pages in July. I also had to take about two months off to stay focused on a few licenses I needed for the full time job. But all in all I finished in about 14 months. That I can not even believe. I will be honest. It was difficult, time consuming, exhausting and awesome. Not everyone can do this. But I highly recommend you try to within the confines of maintaining your life and responsibilities. Sarifices have to be made to do. For me it was sleep. I miss it and I plan to enjoy it for a short period before book 2 gets under way in about a month.
I owe a tremendous thank you to my color flatting help in Kev Brett, Nick Perkins, Van Roberts and James Greene. You guys saved this book from being something that would have just been way more labored. You kept me able to stay focused and let the train keep on rolling. I can’t thank you all enough. Truly.
3) I wanted to give this book its best chance
This may sound strange, but I wanted to give this book it’s best chance to succeed by finishing it first, making it absolutely the best book I think I could have made and then letting the world do with it what it pleases. My first goal though is make a book that’s hard for it not to find an audience.
I had a set of goals when I started, and I have no idea what the future will be for it or me as a result of it, but what I can be excited about is I accomplished my goals and I take joy in what I consider a job well done.
This book is what I wanted it to be. I think it’s fantastic and the kid in me (and adult) would have fought someone to get this book off the shelf. (OK I wouldn’t really fight someone… no fighting over my book kids)
A lot is still set to happen. I have a round of edits I want to do on it to make sure it’s the best possible read I can give people. After that begins the hunt for an agent and publisher. The plan at this point is to spend the next few months doing that. Hopefully it will find the right publishing home. If it does not I will then start building the comic as a web comic and will look to self-publish. All of this will take time. The publishing industry is a slow business. The best thing to do is just pick up book 2 and get to work on it while all of this shakes out. But if you want to follow along with that journey, please continue coming here as I will look to share my experiences with others about all of this. Hopefully it will be helpful for others as well!