Hey, y’all! Just a real quick update– the Vengeful Ghost: The First Year Kickstarter is live! You can find it here. As I write this, it is Day 4 and we are 1/3 of the way there. I hope that means we’ll get to unlock some stretch goals!
We’ve been teasing it off and on for a while, but the time has come to reveal our next big project…
We’re collecting the entire first year of Vengeful Ghost stories into a single, beautiful paperback. And we need you on our team.
This Saturday, 4 March, we’ll be launching a Kickstarter to fund the printing and design of this volume. We know it’s going to be great, and we know we can count on you to help make it real. As soon as we hit that “launch” button on Saturday, we’ll post the link here. Please share it with your friends and family. Hell, share it with your enemies–spam the hell out of them with it until they have no choice but to relent and help bring this beautiful thing into the world.
And if you’re in the Baltimore area, check it out: Parker is going to be manning a table at the Amazing Spiral in Belvedere Square. They’re going to be giving away back issues for free, running great sales across the store, and streaming the online-0nly Coast to Coast Comic Con with appearances from Jim Lee, Michael Avon Oeming, Matt Kindt, and a whole bunch more. Parker will be hyping the Kickstarter, selling ashcans, and giving away Vengeful Ghost sampler books. We hope you’ll swing by and check it out.
Thanks so much for your love and support. Watch this station for more details!
Hey there! We just got pages 1 through 7 of What the Mine Gives fixed so that the files are significantly smaller and the page looks more like what it will when we get things packaged for print. Thanks for your patience!
Transparency is important to Vengeful Ghost. Comics is hard business. It gets easier if we share information and our hard-fought lessons learned. In posts like this, Parker will lay out the Ghost’s quarterly numbers and try to provide some context.
We’re at the end of Vengeful Ghost’s first calendar year, which is pretty darn exciting! Q4 brought some interesting developments, some new strategies, and a ton of new data. Let’s get to the data:
Fourth Quarter 2016 (and Calendar Year 2016)
Pages published: 13 (CY16: 32)
Pageviews: 1725 [+372 over Q3] (CY16: 3768)
Average monthly visitors: 128 [+45 over Q3] (CY16: 106)
Patreon patrons (at the end of the quarter): 9 (+1 over Q3)
Revenue: $194.6 [-370 over Q3] (CY16: 764.6)
Expenses: -$1,236.23 (CY16: -$4,405.45)
% of expenses to Ghostfriends: 83.14% (CY16: 74.04%)
Net: -$1,041.63 (CY16: -$3,640.85)
Sold/gifted/traded: 7 [-28 over Q3] (CY16: 42)
The Coriolis Effect
Sold/gifted/traded: 9 [-18 over Q3] (CY16: 36)
Pay to Win
Sold/gifted/trade: 5 (CY16: 5)
There were no digital sales that were not part of a bundle with a physical sale.
Bmore Into Comics Issue #11
VG Books sold: 12
Ghostfriends books sold: 2
Revenue/table fee ratio: 2.84
Project tracker (as of 31 December)
- Launched since Q3
- Pay to Win (formerly Project Jakarta): Web and print published. Ashcan print run, unlimited, negligible costs. No revenue sharing goals reached.
- Mineborn (formerly Project Delhi): Web publishing. Limited print run and digital editions to come.
- In development
- Project Tokyo: In final art production. No change as of 31DEC16…but there has been since then!
- Project New York City: In second-stage editing.
- Project Manila: In first-stage editing. No change, whomp whomp!
- Project Shanghai: In first-stage editing.
- Project Seoul: In outline.
- Thursday Night: Web, digital, and print published. Limited print run of 50. Revenue/Printing=1.88 (+.79). No revenue sharing goals reached.
- Coriolis Effect: Web, digital, and print published. Limited print run of 75. Revenue/Printing=0.95 (+0.31). No revenue sharing goals reached.
- It still feels like early days for Vengeful Ghost. More data means more better analysis, and my understanding is that the publishing world moves on annual cycles–I’ll start drawing harder conclusions in the next 6-9 months.
- On that note, December was a much less impressive showing at Bmore Into Comics than July. Maybe it was because the audience was largely the same and they’d already bought one of my books. Maybe it’s because it was December. Five shows have been announced for Bmore in 2017, so it’ll be interesting to see how they go this year.
- I need to work on in-person marketing. I was practically giving away “Pay to Win” at that Bmore show, but few people took me up on it. Best guess is that the jokey pitch I used for it fell flat, so I’ll try something more straightforward next time.
- Despite our best efforts getting derailed by the…surprising…election, November was still a solid month for Vengeful Ghost in terms of website traffic. We got some return on our investment for the promotions we executed (especially since the cost was pretty darn low!).
- Unique monthly users climbed month over month. It’s hard to tell how many are new month-to-month, but I’d like to imagine this represents a growing cadre of quiet readers.
- More cons = more money (though that’s not always the point). For 2017, I’m shooting for 3-4 major cons and at least 2 or 3 of the Bmore shows or other minis.
- As always, looking closely at these numbers points to just how costly this business can be to break into. Hopefully as the year progresses, I’ll be able to get some higher-margin items into the mix. Is there anything you’d like to buy?
Thanks for reading. Please comment with any questions. If you want to help make those numbers a little prettier, consider clicking over to our Patreon campaign, buying something from our online store, or throwing something in the tip jar.
It’s January and it’s raining in Baltimore. Isn’t the snow supposed to be coming soon? In any case, here’s what I’ve been up to over this mild week.
WORKING: All the baby doctors and nurses are on their winter break, so I am too–from the day job, at least. That has meant more time to edit Project NYC and get a solid start to the draft for Project Makalu. I’ve also been trying to figure out what the next year of Vengeful Ghost looks like. There are two Kickstarters I’d like to run in the near future and I’m a bit behind in my buffer of weekly content, so there’s a lot to do in pursuit of New Year resolutions.
PLAYING: I’ve fallen back into Skyrim, so help me. A friend published his mod lists a while back and I decided to give it a go. I am literally right now feeling a little stupid, though, because I’ve been playing the original, while the Special Edition snuck unannounced into my Steam library a while back. Oh well, I’ll get that downloading and probably start another playthrough. My new character is a hunter, and has already killed two dragons. All my other playthroughs have petered out when faced with the massive freedom of the Elder Scrolls games, a sort of paralysis by analysis, but I’ve got a good feeling about this one. You’ll probably be hearing about it for a while.
And on the roleplaying front, an acquaintance’s stray mention of Spellbound Kingdoms got me intrigued again. It’s a swashbuckling game of political and cultural revolution that makes a couple assumptions about genre conventions–things like Inspirations, the effectiveness of insults, and True Love–and bakes them into both the rules and the setting. Imagine a dystopia where love was magic. Now imagine that the kings and hierarchs of this world knew love was magic, and therefore set about a massive cultural engineering effort to ensure that only the noble and loyal were capable of love. I want to get this thing to a table, ASAP.
CONSUMING: The big news in my media consumption is that I’ve joined two groups of people dedicated to working through The Artist’s Way. If you’re not familiar with the program, I call it a 12 week process of introspection and indulgence. It gets terribly woo-woo at parts, but the lessons and exercises are incredibly useful for developing trust in one’s creative self. I’ve started it twice before (finished it once), and I’m looking forward to approaching the text with today’s eyes.
Oh! And I watched Spy! What a film! I enjoyed it terribly. Melissa McCarthy is hilarious and also empathetic as a brilliant person out of her depth (which I think I’ve mentioned is one of my favorite genres), and it is a funny spoof of super-spy movies that is, in itself, a completely respectable super-spy movie. Loads of fun.
But what about you? New plans for the new year? Let’s chat!