ComicScene Creator Grants, Comic Club Comics and Crowdfunding Comic History

With Brawler on newsstands, the History of Comics in its final week on Kickstarter and a new comic line planned we spoke to Publisher Tony Foster about future Comic Club plans.

Tony, we hear ComicScene are planning to produce comics via Comic Club.

That’s the plan. Join now and you get the Best of Indies Summer Special. The more members we get the more the more we can put your investment back into creators producing great comics. The Comic Club is for comic fans by comic fans. I include creators in that. Everyone plays a part when they subscribe. There is strength in numbers and the more you put in the more you get back. It’s a real community initiative. I’m putting what I’ve learned from community work, supporting creators and producing ComicScene and putting free time and energy into the next stage of Comic Club.

We’ve also been able to put some four figure paid work creators way, which has been a great side benefit of the work we have been doing.

We’ve seen you intend to publish The Best of Indies monthly – how can we get the title?

Exclusively through Comic Club membership. At the moment you get the History of Comics if you join but now you have the choice between that or the Best of Indies Comic. Or both! Thanks to the response to the Best of Indies title and the success of Comic Club we are going to pay grants to creators to revisit some of the best Indie titles. So with your Comic Club membership you get the comic in print and or digital, additional prints and digital content. Its £5 digital a month or £10 a month for print. You can only get them via Comic Club membership, so real collectors items.

It’s a bold experiment but if creators and comic fans get fully behind it with a Comic Club subscription the potential is huge. I’m nervous and excited at the same time as I might just get egg on my face. But if you don’t try you will never know.

Join Comic Club here.

Join now and get this issue of the Best of Indies Summer Special

What kind of comics are you looking for?

I don’t have any preference. If I had time and money I’d read any comic I could before I was born until now. Indies, European comics, US comics, U.K. comics – I’d lap them up. I am even delving into manga, hugely selling lifestyle comics and modern humour comics. So expect a bit of everything – but maybe not comics that would make me scream in anger!

How does the proposed Saturday Comics fit in?

We are launching twelve comic genre titles from April 2022 and Comic Club members will get them! We aim to pay for new content from established and new talent and the more members of the Comic Club we have the more creators will get paid. Think of it as a comic co-operative. Comic Club members will also be able to get original scripts, artwork, sketches, prints, comics and commissions from the creators too. Creators will keep ownership of the their comics and characters.

Members of the Club, creators and comic fans, will also have the chance to be part publishers too! They get to vote on the twelve titles and we will merge two together, leaving the way to produce a new title or focus on a popular character. Again the more members of Comic Club we get the more we can add on summer specials, books or even take some characters to newsstand, as we have done with Brawler.

Join Comic Club here.

If you want to know more about the new comics line join the Saturday Comics mailing here

Brawler on newsstands now feature work from indie titles Brawler and ComicScene Annual 2021

Will you be launching the line on Kickstarter?

The beauty is if enough members join Comic Club we won’t have too. We won’t even have to go to newsstand and pay half our money to the distributors. All of it can go direct to the comic makers. I enjoy crowdfunding but being a member of the Comic Club is like getting a Kickstarter each month. The diverse nature of the comics is some titles you will love and some titles may not be for you. If you don’t like a title you can sell it to future Comic Club members.

I know we talk about wanting more U.K. comic titles and paying comic creators a decent page rate so this is about grabbing us all by the scruff of the neck and saying sure, we know this model is a little different, but let’s do it. I am not cash rich but I had some time and a couple of hundred quid and somehow managed to get a magazine into WHSmiths. That was little retro, which was nice, but this this will be a new and eclectic ride and I think people will love it.

Join Comic Club here.

Saturday Comics available through the Comic Club.
Flame – Magic & Fantasy
Screech – Horror
Emoji – modern love and romance
Tokyo – Manga
Ballistic – War
Hero 86 – Superheroes
Quantum – Sci Fi and Time Travel
Outlaws – Crime
Emily – Girls comic
Falcon – Boys Comic
Corker! – Humour
Atomic – the return of the indie favourite

How is the Kickstarter for the History of Comics going?

We have to raise just over £500 on Kickstarter Phase 3 with one week to go. We need people’s continued support though. Our comics are really popular with U.K. readers but our History of Comics series is very popular overseas and that brings obvious challenges at the moment.

Phase 2 production was difficult because Covid impacted on the health of writers then Covid and Brexit impacted on cost of print, postage and posting. I’m hopeful with restrictions lifting that won’t be as difficult this time. It is such a niche publication we just break even so missing packages across the world can also be a costly business! I had hoped to bring the cost of the books down a little for this Kickstarter but the impact of Brexit has made that impossible. Print and the cost of the slipcases have gone up massively. It is still a very collectible series and on this one we are giving people a chance to catch up on the previous books or, if it’s not for them, donate a book to a local library and we will #passiton. It will be a great achievement if we donate 100 book to libraries and we’ve committed 25 books already ourselves. It’s also a great way to jump on board with this Kickstarter.

Support the Kickstarter here.

You can also get the promised Best of ComicScene Magazine and Crikey Collected with this too?

Yes it’s a Batman Special, pulling together all our Batman articles from the magazine including the 80 Years of the Dark Knight. We hope to do a few more on 2000AD, Brit Comics and Marvel. The Batman Special will be the first of five.

Once this Kickstarter is complete Crikey Collected will no longer be available to buy, so get them while you can!

Support the Kickstarter here.

Any other news?

Apologies to anyone who has been in touch and not had a response. As you can see we have been very busy and also refreshed comicscene.org which will link in to some exclusive Comic Club digital content and our free monthly newsletter. We are inviting subscribers to the list and members of the Comic Club to vote in our ComicScene Awards during November, that will be announced in February, So if you want a vote subscriber to our email list or join the Club.

Subscribe to the free ComicScene Newsletter and get your vote in the ComicScene Awards here.

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