Comic Site Rant: Crazy Sunshine

Original Post

This script is pretty much 100% true. I’m not sure if /d/ actually did the shitting dick nipples, though. That may be more up gurochan’s alley. Lineart turned out mostly good, with the exception of the last panel. I tried to be a bit ambitious with that one, and it turned out kind of ok. Colouring is good, though the light/shadows in this one are probably a bit too strong. The background is based off a little ramen place down in Porter Square. I forgot to include the cheesy tablecloths and folding chairs. I will next time.

Lately I’ve been thinking about the comic– mainly how to make it better, and make it appeal to more people. This site gets a modest amount of traffic each month, roughly 1000/1500 visits a day and ~10000 unique visitors per month, according to AWstats. It’s nothing impressive, but it’s fine. However, I don’t feel I’m reaching all the people that I’m setting out to please. There are a number of reasons for this, the main ones being quality and quantity. This comic isn’t very good. The art is below average and the writing is less than amateur. On top of that, considering that I only update once a week, just to bring more crap, who’s going to want to read that? Not that I feel you, the reader, has bad taste, this is just my own personal opinion on what I do. Another reason could be that I start internet slap fights with random people and usually end up as the bad guy, but people read what jerks write all the time so I’m not too bothered by that.

Now, my goal with the comic is to be a Penny Arcade-ish answer to anime fandom, with an NHK/Zetsubou-Sensei/PPD sense of humour. The thing here is, Penny Arcade is about a large shared culture: video games, and therefore their readerbase will be huge. I write about anime. Not just anime, but niche anime. I don’t talk about your Naruto or your Bleach or your Inu Yasha or whatever it is kids like these days. I write about stuff that is a niche within a niche, and I feel I’m still not getting all the people from that niche of a niche. So, naturally you can understand why I’d want to at least get that much. I do just make this comic for fun, but seeing a healthy stats page is inspiring.

So, how do I go about getting more readers? Well, I’ll go back to the issues I mentioned previously: quality and quantity. I need to improve the quality of the comic, while also improving the quantity. This is no easy task, as comics are a lot work. Unlike blogging, which just depends on writing, comics depend on both artistic skill and writing skill, and both of these need to be nothing short of impeccable to create quality piece of work.

Now, the main problem here is time. There are only so many hours in the day, and only so many of those hours can be spent on comic making between school and my other commitments. Now, in addition to producing the comic, this comic also requires something else: anime. This comic is based around anime, so naturally I need to watch anime quite regularly and formulate opinions on them. Not only that, but I need to keep up with the fan scene and news. That takes up a lot of time, especially considering the nature of anime. You can’t really cut down the amount of time you spend watching an episode of anime, since that’s just set. So, I have to make comics faster, and make them the best quality that I possibly can so I can produce a higher quantity of comics per week. This really just requires hard work, experience and practice. As of right now each comic takes about 5-7 hours (totally guessing.) If I can bring that down to 2-3 hours, then that’d be perfect. As of right now, the things that eat up time the most are drawing (lineart), backgrounds, and general slowdowns caused by computers. The drawing and background issues can be taken care of with hours upon hours practice (you should see how many pages of my sketchbook are just filled of different renderings of my characters) but the PC is an issue which I just have to deal with right now. Basically, I just have to get better at drawing, it’s as simple as that.

On the writing side of things, one bit that really needs to improve is character. People attach themselves to works that have likable/entertaining characters. For the most part, my characters have been soulless vessels by which I push my crazy rantings into. That’s fine, but I need to give them more defining attributes. In coming comics I’ll be experimenting a bit, trying to give these guys a bit more life. I’m not going for epic Gurren Lagann-style character development here, but I do want a fun cast of colourful characters that people can find entertaining.

To end this somewhat angsty rant, I’ll ask you guys: what do you think about this comic? Be as harsh as you want. I want you tell me what you think about every aspect of it, and I want to know in detail. Not just that, but do you actually think me updating more would help? Address all the things you like and dislike, please. I’ll be listening.

Anyway, that’s enough of that. I really need to get to work on some art projects before it gets too late. I covered most of what I wanted to, so that’s fine. Until next time.