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January 13, 2010

Handling Rejection and Finding Your Comic’s Target Audience

Posted in: Business,Webcomics

It is easy to get upset when someone rejects your work or leaves you a negative comment. We artists can take criticism personally because art is such a deeply emotional form of expression.

rejection

There is a secret to all of this. SURPRISE! Everyone gets rejected.

Think of any celebrity. Madonna, Lady Gaga, and Audrey Hepburn are all famous. They have also suffered more rejection than you could possibly imagine. The reason they are so famous is because they got through it. The trick to being successful is to get through your first few thousand rejections. Don’t let it make you stop!

In art school they used to say that every artist has 1000 bad drawings to get out before they can start making good drawings. I say that every career has over 2000 rejections that they have to walk through before they find their audience.

There was a fandom around the pet rock. It was a rock. Yes, a ROCK. There certainly is a fandom for your comic. You can find it if you keep going.

Rejection Analysis, Your Target Audience, and You:

When you hear some negative feedback about your work, the first thing to so is look at it from a neutral perspective. Is there any validity to it? If yes, note this and use it to make your work better.

There are two types of people on the planet. There are people who are your target demographic and people who are not. Negative comments are often being said by people who never would like your comic in the first place.

It helps to think about who your target audience is. How old are they? What do they like? If you do a comic about why being a Dallas Cowboys fan in the best thing ever, don’t be surprised if a Pittsburgh Steelers fan hates you. This is good hate. You are doing your job properly.

Awhile back some random guy said that my comic had nothing interesting to offer at all. That is no surprise because he was a fan of comics that were about guys and gaming. My comic is about a girl and it is definitely not a gaming comic. Of course this person wasn’t interested in my work. It is not for him. Gamers read my comic because I am a huge nerd, but not gamers who are only into gaming jokes and nothing else. I just don’t post jokes about games every day, that’s all.

Consider the source of your criticism.

You need to plow through the people who are not your target audience and find the target audience that is yours.

Haters Rock:

I have to tell you that haters give great links! The best promotional linkage for my work has been done by people who were telling others why they hated it because they went the extra mile to describe it. People clicked to see what the deal was, and I got new fans in the process.

Rejection is a growth process like any other. It’s necessary, inevitable, and sometimes even helpful. Think about it intelligently and don’t let it get you down.


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