Comic book writers who make their own content usually do everything themselves, but for editing their script, an outsider's perspective might be better.
Standard editorial relationships are different for big company-owned comics and independent, creator-owned content. Creative teams owned by large publishing houses require at least an editor and proofreader.
For most creator-owned teams, this is an option and not a requirement. This can be explained by the fact that most creator-owned teams are usually nimble as they cannot afford to hire more people than they need. Roles such as writer, editor, and project manager are done by one person, usually the creator, to meet deadlines.
One of the largest publishing houses for creator-owned content is Image Comics, which gives their creators free rein with minimal guidelines to follow. Some of their popular series such as Saga do not even have editors or proofreaders in the team. The success of Image has also led to a domino effect in the industry, particularly for creator-owned content, which begs the question on the necessity of having editors in the team.
However, there is a growing shift among the creator-owned content niche, led again by the creators in Image. As more series from Image get known, editors are being added to the team. Increasing sales from their work enable creators to hire editors and proofreaders, loosening up tight schedules and allowing the team to deliver their material on time.
Content creators are all too aware of what might happen to their title if schedules are not met, even for big company teams. An example is the lack of a good proofreader and editor, which can affect production and lead to delayed comics. This can have a strong impact for the title in the long run. People lose interest and buy fewer copies when releases are constantly delayed. Retailers order even fewer copies as a result. Creators struggle to gain back the fans and retailers they lost when they come out with a succeeding issue that has been delayed for some time already.
Multitasking is not new among creator-owned content teams, but too much workload on their plates is one of the common reasons why titles get delayed. A recent example is Afterlife with Archie, an Archie saga of a zombie apocalypse. The first six titles were released as scheduled, but starting issue 7, the gaps between releases got longer. The creators, Francesco Francavilla and Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, struggled to meet their deadlines as they were handling other work as well. The delay of the issues resulted in fewer sales, which made it harder for retailers to stock more copies.
The common practice for independent creator-owned teams is to outsource the proofreading and editing of their scripts instead. Small, independent creators ask their friends or people they know in real life to do it for them for free. But for those in a crunch to get their comics finished, this is not the ideal setup. Having an outside perspective in proofreading their script is also more beneficial in spotting any typos familiar eyes might have missed. Another kind of outsourcing is by having their scripts proofread and edited through online services instead.
Start-ups like 1-Hour Proofreading offer quick turnarounds compared with traditional editing and proofreading channels. The editorial team can be reached at any time during business hours. Any concerns with the edited work can be immediately resolved between the writer and their editor.
Content-owned creators can reach out to 1-Hour Proofreading instead of having to do everything on their own. 1-Hour Proofreading allows the writers to check if their service fits their standards by offering a three-page sample for every thirty-page manuscript.
Do you have any questions? The 1-Hour Proofreading team will be happy to answer them.
Disclaimer: Images are not ours. Credit to the owner.