Retrofit Comics aims to publish 16 32 page floppy-style comics by 16 of the best established and emerging comic artists in the business. Why 16 artists? Originally it was going to be one year's worth of comics, but too many AMAZING artists wanted in. Far be it from me to deny these artists their right to work!
Right ok, by why??
I am all too envious of fans of superhero style comics. Every week they get to go into a comic shop and for a couple of bucks get some new comics to read. Alternative comic fans don't have that luxury anymore. Graphic novels have taken over the alt-comics industry as a natural progression. It's worked out well for fans and publishers but the floppy comic has fallen by the wayside. Drawn and Quarterly, Top Shelf, Fantagraphics these publishers used to publish lots of floppy comics. Now because of a variety of reasons they do not. Retrofit aims to highlight the importance of the floppy comic to retailers, fans and the industry.
Wait, wait, the "importance"? GET OF YOUR HIGH HORSE!
Let me explain. The floppy comic allows artists to experiment and work on comic while building an audience. Without the floppy comic (or mini-comic) the artist is forced to work on a largescale graphic novel mostly in private and THEN sell it. What if it doesn't sell? What if the audience isn't there? What if there are kinks that could have been worked out somehow? The artist basically has to go back to the drawing board. If there is an avenue and audience to work with, the artist can produce better and more refined work.
For retailers, the cheap and frequent publication of floppy comics creates an incentive for people to come INTO THE SHOP on a regular basis. It also can help to bring in new readers not willing to drop $20 on a book.
For fans it means more and more frequent content!
Aren't artists already doing this via the self published mini-comic?
Yes, they are! This is proof that the format of the floppy comic is a viable avenue for storytelling. But, like it or not, having a brand on the back of that comic means something to readers. If people see a Top Shelf logo on the back of a book, or Fantagraphics logo or even a Marvel logo it is a mark of quality that is VERY HARD to garner as a self-publisher. The books are receiving the selling power of every AMAZING comic that was published before it.
"Mark of quality"? Who are these Retrofit artists exactly?
Only the best working cartoonists in the business. Collectively these artists have won Harveys, Ignatzes, Xerics and been nominated for Eisner Awards! They are diverse but equally amazing and look some of them are even women! Yes, women make comics. Awesome comics.
How will people be able to get these books?
They'll be able to get them via the Retrofit website, subscription AND through these exclusive retailers:
Jim Hanley's Universe
New York, NY
Forbidden Planet UK
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Brave New Worlds
What about the money, pal? Where is the money going? We all know from HBO's The Wire, we need to follow the money.
We are asking for $9000 to get the project off the ground. This money will go straight to the printing and mailing of these books. Books will be released monthly from September 2011 to January 2013! Any extra money that may come in will go the following: convention tables, travel costs for artists and freebies for you!
Music in promo video by Brian F