How to Publish Your Own Comic Book

Written by marianne moro
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How to Publish Your Own Comic Book
Comic book artists can experiment with many publishing methods. (Patrick Ryan/Lifesize/Getty Images)

Like other artists, comic book creators are self-publishing more of their work with the help of low-cost digital printing and personal computers. As a comic book author you have to think about colour reproduction and the type of paper that will best showcase your artwork. A plethora of options is available to assist in publishing your comic book, including digital proofing from online and print-on-demand publishers. As a comic book author, you no longer need to depend upon a few major publishers to "make it."

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

Things you need

  • Computer
  • Printer
  • Paper
  • Staples
  • Ink Cartridges

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  1. 1

    Determine the format. You can choose from stapled, photocopied zines to lush, colourful bound graphic novels prepared by a professional printer. Online comic strips posted on a blog, website or in an electronic book format are other possibilities. Consider your budget, schedule, supplies and the tastes of your audience.

  2. 2

    Contact publishers who specialise in DIY comic books. ComiXpress prints short runs of comic books for small presses and comic book authors. The company quotes prices based on a sample copy of the comic book and the amount of issues you need. The company offers pre-press services, such as colour correction and proofreading, at an additional cost. Ka-Blam Digital Printing offers templates for comic book artists with saddle stitch binding (pages stapled together at the crease). The company offers standard covers printed on glossy paper, with premium covers printed on glossy cardstock paper.

  3. 3

    Determine page size. Most news-stand, or standard comics measure 6.625 by 10.25 inches after being trimmed and printed. An artist submits the original artwork in full bleed format, meaning the artwork extends to the very edge of the page. According to Ka-Blam Digital Printing standard size bleed pages measure 6.875 by 10.5 inches. Digest-sized comic format measures 5.5 by 7.75 inches full bleed and 5 by 7.5 inches after printing. According to ComiXpress, mini-comics, a smaller version of standard-size comics, measure 5.25 by 8.25 inches full bleed and 5 by 8 inches after printing.

  4. 4

    Print your paper comic books. FedEx Office and other copy services will print simple, stapled comic books cheaply with lower rates for runs of 100 or more issues. While online and print-on-demand publishers generally offer more options and cheaper prices, a local copy shop may give you a chance to see physical samples quickly, as opposed to checking proofs on a computer screen.

  5. 5

    Publish an electronic comic book. Offer your comic as a download for sale. Place scanned or JPEG images of your comic book pages into a Portable Document Format (PDF) document. Several print-on-demand (P.O.D.) publishers, including Lulu and BookLocker publish electronic comic books.

Tips and warnings

  • Print copies on your home computer. However, ink cartridges are pricey, so this method works better for limited runs or prototype test copies. Print comics on card stock or photo paper.

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