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Frequently Asked Questions from stores and groups interested in hosting a 24 Hour Comics Day 2007 event
October 20th, 2007.
Events can be hosted by any comic book shop, educational institution, museum, civic organization, arts organization, business, or previously-established comics club in the world.
Before we can list you as a participating 24 Hour Comics Day event store, you must commit to actually hosting the event and all that it entails. This means that you commit to providing:
However, there are things that we provided in past years that we will not be providing this year. We will not be providing the video tape of Scott McCloud talking about the 24 hour comics phenomenon. We will not be mailing out certificates of participation to the participants (although we may provide a certificate form that you can print out yourself.) We will not be offering returnable copies of any of our products. We do not anticipate expending much effort trying to find corporate sponsors to provide food, drink, and art supplies. We've done that in past years, and our success was very small when compared to the time and money invested.
No! About Comics does not charge any fees for the event hosts, nor for the cartoonists. We might offer event hosts the chance to buy t-shirts or promotional posters at some reasonable price, but you will not be required to buy them.
We are not releasing a new book of 24 hour comics in conjunction with that day, you will still be able to order copies of four existing books:
These books will be available on a non-returnable basis through Diamond Comics Distributors and on a returnable basis through Diamond Book Distributors (and via the standard book wholesalers who order through them, such as Ingram and Baker&Taylor.) Some or all of the books may be available to direct market comic book stores through Cold Cut.
The books of the past years, as proud as we are of them, were not profitable, and they took a large effort to compile. As such, barring either some sizable grant for producing it or some other established publisher expressing an interest in publishing the book this year, there won't be a central book.
However, we will encourage individual sites to produce their own anthologies, and expect to be partnering with a print-on-demand service to help make this practical.
First, let me clear up one misunderstanding I've gotten from a host. About Comics does notprovide professional cartoonists to the retailers. We will publicize the event to the comics community and use our list of stores to steer interested folks to you. While we do know of professional comics creators who intend to be involved in the events, we expect the vast majority of folks will be amateurs. Art students, your local minicomics community, the folks who buy your copies of Draw and Write Now! and The Complete Idiot's Guide to Creating a Graphic Novel and even How To Draw Manga are all likely folks.
So what do you do to get your local cartoonist community, amateur and pro, involved? First, you have to publicize it. These easiest way is in store -- put up some of the downloadable signs, hand out the flyers, talk to any of your customers that you know are cartoonists. We also recomend using the customizable press release we will provide to get local press attention. And getting signs up at your local art school, college, and possibly the art supplies store could all help.
Keep in mind how much space you have, and don't overbook your space (and realize not only that folks drawing take up more space than people just sitting there, but also that people staying together all night need space to stretch, to walk around, and perhaps to simply get out of each other's face at times.) You can, of course, set a limit of how many people may attend.
You may charge for participation. In the past, almost all hosts chose to forego this, seeing all of the expenses as reasonable promotional costs (and the only exception that I'm aware of was a store that used the money they raised for charity.) Retailers should remember that these cartoonists make your store look like a hip place where things happen, and this whole event should help you get the word out about your store. If you are charging, keep the price reasonable, and make sure that the charge is included on your flyer and other materials.
(Even if you can't talk the local known professionals into taking the 24 hour challenge, you might be able to convince them to make surprise visits during the event, giving encouragement to participants. Do keep it a surprise, because that way if the pro fails to show for any reason, no one is disappointed.)
Perhaps not all of them. You can expect a certain amount of people flaking out. This isn't surprising; even the best-intentioned of folks are apt to find out that there's something they have to do during a fixed 24 hour period. Generally, a strong majority show.
We are not going to guarantee exclusivity in any area. Most sites are likely to have a de facto exclusivity, but if an area has more than one shop that is cool enough to host such an event, it likely also has enough cartoonists to get attendees at both.
No. We allow any location to start at any time they want, so long as some part of the event overlaps with October 20th local time. Basically, that means starting the 24 hours at any time on the 19th or 20th. (Previously, we have allowed events to start so long as it was on the 24 Hour Comics Day date anywhere in the world; we are considering whether to include that in this year's guidelines; please contact us if such an option would be vital to your event.)
We recommend against the midnight-to-midnight scheduling. The downside about starting at midnight Friday/Saturday is that you have trouble getting rested cartoonists. Most will have been up since Friday morning, a tough way to start a marathon session. Starting at, say, 9 AM Saturday will let them start rested, and thus be more likely to complete it.
However, there are up-sides to starting at midnight. First off, it sounds cooler. If you're holding it in store, it's easier to publicize that your store will be open all day Saturday. And if people are stopping by the store at normal hours, running midnight-to-midnight means that they're more likely to see the heart of creation. Plus, some media-savvy retailers feel that it's easier to get TV coverage if the event starts at midnight.
It's your choice. Pick times you think will do best for you.
This change was made with the input of many past event hosts. The April scheduling proved problematic for many comics retailers who wanted to host events, as it was too close to Free Comic Book Day. Also, there were problems for school sites with the dates falling at a difficult point in the school year. October is a relatively quiet time, generally without major comics conventions, superhero movie releases, or other events that can cause complications.
No. While we work to coordinate 24 Hour Comics Day, we cannot control the situation at your event site. We do not offer any assurances or guarantees against problems or liabilities arising. While we attempt to offer insight from our experience coordinating the day, we are not lawyers and do not represent any of our materials as protecting you from any legal, financial, or practical situations that may arise.