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Comics Experience Publishing

In alliance with digital distributor comiXology, Comics Experience Publishing offers assistance for new talent to reach a broader audience with their creator-owned work.

Comics Experience Publishing focuses on producing creator-owned titles from new talent associated with Comics Experience and its online community, the Creators Workshop. We seek projects that were developed and refined within our community—we believe that through critique and skill development, the work as well as the creator’s skills will be stronger.

We currently offer a digital publishing model for titles to be distributed through comiXology, the world’s #1 digital comics retailer. Going digital increases potential distribution to places where print doesn’t exist while also keeping costs lower.

At a time when it’s becoming increasingly difficult for new talent to break into the comics industry, we’re committed to creating a new avenue for publication, open to those who work hard and hone their craft to a professional level. While membership is not a guarantee of publication, the spirit of Comics Experience Publishing is that hard work and great creativity pay off. We are looking for those creators who are determined to tell the best stories they can with their writing, art, or both.

We are pleased to be able to bring fresh voices to the comic book industry, and if you are interested in diverse, creator-owned comics, we hope you’ll check out our projects.

  • Overview
  • Submissions
  • Deal Points
  • Projects
  • Reviews

Comics Experience’s Creators Workshop consists of talented people just like you who are committed to creating the best possible projects they can. Comics Experience itself is committed to helping new and professional creators expand their skills and reach a wider audience.

Overview of the Program

As the world’s leading online comic book school, we believe in offering paths for your success. We started with courses and then created one-on-one mentoring for individual needs. Shortly thereafter, we created the Creators Workshop for 24/7 online support, discussion, and feedback. We believe that together—as a community—we can all reach our full creative potential.

To that end, in 2014, Comics Experience announced our four-book publishing deal with IDW Publishing and immediately found great interest in it, both from people wanting to get published and from retailers and fans who wanted to read the work of talented—and tested—new creators.

Our first title launched in stores on January 28, 2015 to good sales (especially for a new publisher) and good reviews (especially for new creators and a new comic). Our second title followed with even better sales and more critical praise in April. In September, our third title sold even better again and received even higher critical praise—making several “best of” lists for 2015.

Our last of the four books to be published with IDW was Gutter Magic. Gutter Magic #1 launched in January of 2016 to great reviews and cracked the Top 300 comics of the month in the direct market! Following that debut, the first issue sold out at the publisher! Fortunately, comiXology was able to still take orders for digital copies!

We don’t have 70-year-old icons. We don’t have big-name creators. We don’t have loads of money. We have talent, passion, and hard work. And those three elements create a powerful force capable of competing creatively on a level with the giants within the industry. Each title moves us forward in creator vision, in critical success, and in sales. The reputation of the Comics Experience line of comics is growing with each new release. That’s something to be proud of, and it’s something we are all thrilled to be a part of. And we’d like you to join us.

After the success of our four print titles with IDW Publishing, we launched Comics Experience Digital—a line of exclusively digital comics released through comiXology—and the best part for potential creators is that Comics Experience takes NO fees, NO percentages and NO rights away from you, the creator. Everything we get, passes directly onto you, the creator, the way it should.

We are currently curating taking submissions for Comics Experience Digital on an ongoing basis from members of the Creators Workshop.

All comics published through Comics Experience are 100% creator-owned. That means that the creators retain all legal and moral rights to the material they create. It will be yours. And we will never ask to take that away from you.

You can join the Creators Workshop here. Or look into our online courses here. That’s all you need to be a part of Comics Experience and our thriving, encouraging, and skill-based community. Jump in and start participating right away! We’re looking forward to getting to know you and your work.

The requirements to submit to the publishing program are:

  1. At least one member of the creative team must be a Creators Workshop member.
  2. That member’s portion of the project must be workshopped within the Creators Workshop. That means that if you’re a writer, you must have workshopped your scripts. If you are an artist, you must have workshopped your art.
  3. Creators Workshop members can submit at any time after the above criteria are met. Any member who meets the criteria is able to submit a project.

After meeting these key criteria, projects are then selected from those submitted taking a number of factors into consideration, including business issues such as number of issues and marketability. We are able to publish one-shots and anthologies as well as ongoing series.

For a more comprehensive list of guidelines and details about our evaluation process, we provide threads in our Creators Workshop forums where direct questions can be asked.

Note that even if you develop a project in our Workshop community, you are under NO OBLIGATION to publish with Comics Experience. This is not a “contest” model, and the majority of projects developed in our community are never submitted to us for consideration. People develop their skills and projects in our community for publication by any and all other publishers. This is welcomed!

Even if you decide to submit a project to us, keep in mind that we publish CREATOR-OWNED projects; neither Comics Experience nor comiXology take an ownership interest in your property.

If you are interested in developing your skills and craft, receiving feedback from peers and pros, and generally learning about the industry, we hope you will check out our Creators Workshop community. And when your project is ready, we look forward to publishing a title with your name listed as its creator.

We offer one of the most creator-friendly deals in the comics industry.

Comics Experience’s commitment to creators and creator rights is well-known. While we must be careful to make sure that Comics Experience is not losing money with the effort that we put into these titles, we have created two deals that demonstrate our commitment to creators and their rights. Comics Experience is about the creators—about growing their skills and getting their work out into the world in a way that respects their talents and their originality.

If your project has been accepted for publication, then Comics Experience offers you a publishing deal. This is a general overview of the publishing deals:

  1. All publishing deals through Comics Experience are 100% creator-owned. You keep your intellectual property and all of your rights, granting us the right to publish the comic and collected edition. What you create—you keep!
  2. For clarification purposes, this means that the creator(s) retain all of their entertainment, licensing, and merchandizing rights.
  3. Comics Experience will offer limited editorial help with print projects, giving advice as the process moves closer to publication.
  4. Comics Experience helps promote your project through marketing efforts made by our staff and in conjunction with our publishing partners. We have different strategies for print and digital publication.
  5. With a print deal, our publishing partner and/or Comics Experience will front the costs for advertising in the Diamond Previews catalog, printing, shipping, and other fees.
  6. When the distributor pays our publishing partner, our partner and Comics Experience get reimbursed for expenses, and then the remaining profit is split between the three parties—Creator(s), publishing partner, and Comics Experience.

Comics Experience takes no cut whatsoever from profits. That means that once our partner takes its cut of the profits, everything else goes straight to the creator.

Join the Creators Workshop and get started creating your next project!

Drones

Drones Cover

Drones is a five-issue series written by Comics Experience alum and Creators Workshop member Chris Lewis and illustrated by Bruno Oliveira. It follows the strange adventure of two Predator drone operators as they run through a terrorism-themed hotel in Las Vegas. Follow Chris and Bruno into a world where entertainment and war blend in unexpected and mind-warping ways!

“I love, love, love finding really good and worthwhile comics… I vouch for (Drones)—check it out!”–Mark Waid (Kingdom Come, Daredevil)

Available in print from IDW Publishing and digitally from comiXology.


Karma Police

Karma Police 01 cover

Created and written by Creators Workshop member Chris Lewis, this four-issue series weaves reincarnation into a murder mystery that spans life times. Chris’s previous title, Drones, was praised by Mark Waid, and we’re pleased to features Chris’s mind-altering take on storytelling with Karma Police.

It is available exclusively on comiXology.


Past The Last Mountain

Past The Last Mountain 01 cover

Past The Last Mountain is created and written by CE alum and Creators Workshop member Paul Allor, who’s written issues of Guardians of the Galaxy, Nova, G.I. Joe, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. He’s also the creator of the critically acclaimed TET. It’s illustrated by Louie Joyce and has layouts by Gannon Beck, also a Creators Workshop alum.

It’s four issues long and tells the story of fantastical creatures on the run from the government. A faun, a dragon, and a child troll must work together to survive their journey to a land of myth where creatures such as themselves will find peace.

It is available exclusively on comiXology.


Gutter Magic

Gutter Magic Cover

Gutter Magic is a four-issue series written by Comics Experience alum and Creators Workshop member Rich Douek and illustrated by Brett Barkley. Set in a world where World War II was fought with magic instead of technology, we meet our hero—the heir to a powerful magical dynasty who can’t cast a spell to save his life—as he sets out on a quest to find his family’s birthright and restore their honor.

Available in print from IDW Publishing and digitally from comiXology.


Wretched Things

Wretched Things 01 cover

The wretched shall inherit the Earth! That’s the prophecy that the rodents and the insects believe! In this tale of terror, Creators Workshop members Devon Wong and Ken Perry thrill us with the wretched creatures who decide to fight back when a new family moves into a long-deserted home.

Wretched Things is four issues of adventure that explore our ideas of what makes one thing beautiful and another disgusting.

It is available exclusively on comiXology.


Tet

Tet Cover

Tet is a four-issue series written by Creators Workshop member Paul Allor and illustrated by Paul Tucker. In this hard-boiled crime drama set at the height of the Vietnam War, we meet Eugene, a detective in the U.S. Army as he falls in love with a Vietnamese woman while he serves in the United States armed forces. One part star-crossed lovers and one part crime noir, Tet delivers on multiple levels.

“Tet is the kind of thing I’d like to see more of: a comic about something that actually counts.”–Garth Ennis (Preacher, The Punisher)

Tet is exactly what I want from a story about war. Not patriotism or polemics, but an exploration of people being human under the most inhumane circumstances.”–Corinna Bechko

“Allor is the real deal. He’s a fresh voice who pulls you into intriguing territory that doesn’t feel like what you’ve read before. When his name is on a book, you should take that book home.”– Jeff Parker

“Paul Allor and Paul Tucker craft a fascinating tale of one man’s loss that’s every bit as brutal and heart wrenching as its setting. The characters will haunt you long after you’ve turned the final page.”– Ed Brisson

Available in print from IDW Publishing and digitally from comiXology.


Deluge

Deluge 01 cover

A three-issue crime thriller set in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, this hard-boiled drama delivers a lot of punch as corrupt police officers boat around flooded neighborhoods looking for criminals and to dispense their violent justice. But one of those suspected criminals is an under cover cop, and he’s determined to uphold the law, even when the world has been turned upside down.

Written by Comics Experience alum J.D. Oliva and illustrated by Comics Experience alum Richard P. Clark, Deluge is an action-packed story that delivers.

It is available exclusively on comiXology.


Creature Cops: Special Varmint Unit

Creature Cops Cover

Creature Cops: Special Varmint Unit is a three-issue series written by founding Creators Workshop member Rob Anderson and illustrated by Fernando Melek. It follows the lives of two Animal Control officers in a near-future city who must deal with patchwork, hybrid animals—from gator-snakes to panda dogs. Follow these working-class heroes through a world of gene-splicing and mutating horror and action.

“…a low key police procedural that’s more invested in the day to day lives of its Animal Control Officers than the cool monsters. It’s a near perfect first issue that makes me want to read more.” — Steve Bennett (Review from his column “Confessions of a Comic Book Guy”)

Available in print from IDW Publishing and digitally from comiXology.


While these are our first titles to have launched, there are always new projects developing from creators within the Creators Workshop. None of them started off as master storytellers, but instead as passionate people with a commitment to honing their craft as comic book storytellers. You could be next!

Drones

Drones is the War on Terror – Vegas style – and it’s every bit as riveting, fun, and wildly unpredictable as something with that description should be.” — Ain’t It Cool News

“I love, love, love finding really good and worthwhile comics… I vouch for this one—check it out.” — Mark Waid

“It’s absolutely nutfuck mental in the best possible way. Drones is one of those books where – if you can just surrender yourself to the insanity and go with the flow – it all comes together very rewardingly.” — Si Spurrier


Gutter Magic

Gutter Magic is smart fantasy that’s well worth your time and treasure.” — Charles Soule (Star Wars: Lando, Death of Wolverine)

Gutter Magic is a smart, engaging, and original debut that cements Douek & Barkley as creators to watch.  With great characters, wonderfully composed action scenes, and an effortless sense of world building, Gutter Magic pulled me in from the first page and has me anxiously waiting for issue two!” — Frank Barber (Five Ghosts, Broken World)

Gutter Magic is a fantasy-fueled caper that mixes gun-slinging and spell-slinging. Fun stuff!” — Jim Zubkavich (Wayward, Skull Kickers)

“Weird and surprising, which is what this and are two of my favorite things in comics. And fun, which is the part that really matters. There’s not a lot of urban fantasy steampunk in comics, and Gutter Magic makes a good argument that we’ve been missing out.” — Justin Jordan (Spread, Luther Strode)

“Really entertaining stuff!” — Joe Eisma (Morning Glories, Big Trouble in Little China)

“Douek and Barley’s GUTTER MAGIC is a surreal and densely illustrated piece of work with charming characters that pull you into the story. And magic.” — Declan Shalvey (Injection, Moon Knight)

 “Gutter Magic is packed with ideas. Bullets and magic. White knuckle Western standoffs of Wild Bunch intensity.” — Arpad Okay (Doomrocket.com)

“Smart. Original. Entertaining. 5/5!” — Tony Caballero (fanboycomics.com)

“I love stories about alternate histories of Earth…. so when New York native’s Rich Douek’s ‘Gutter Magic’ crossed my desk, my curiosity was piqued.” – -William Vitka (NY Post)

Gutter Magic crafts a fantastical world that never was, but feels like it has always been, and infused our very real-world class disparity into the whimsical world of magic.” — Rob Patey 
(Ain’t It Cool News)

“A fast-paced and absorbing read, Gutter Magic is a book with a premise that has huge promise. ” — Andy Oliver (Broken Frontier)

“9/10…perhaps the best steampunk book of the year.” — Jeff Marsick (Newsarama)


Tet

“Tet is the kind of thing I’d like to see more of: a comic about something that actually counts.” — Garth Ennis (Preacher, The Punisher)

Tet is exactly what I want from a story about war. Not patriotism or polemics, but an exploration of people being human under the most inhumane circumstances.” — Corinna Bechko

“Allor is the real deal. He’s a fresh voice who pulls you into intriguing territory that doesn’t feel like what you’ve read before. When his name is on a book, you should take that book home.” — Jeff Parker

“Paul Allor and Paul Tucker craft a fascinating tale of one man’s loss that’s every bit as brutal and heart wrenching as its setting. The characters will haunt you long after you’ve turned the final page.” — Ed Brisson


Creature Cops: Special Varmint Unit

“Anderson has a fresh take on animal-oriented comics that’s rife with the problems of today slathered in sci fi sauce….On the five-o front, Melek did a GREAT job. No person was the same…” — Ain’t It Cool News

“Fernando Melek’s art is visually appealing…Rob Anderson’s storytelling gets right into the meat of the story while still giving character development to its cast of supporting characters…If you are a fan of animals and the supernatural, then I would suggest checking [it] out…” 4.5 out of 5 stars!” — Comics Online

“…a low key police procedural that’s more invested in the day to day lives of its Animal Control Officers than the cool monsters. It’s a near perfect first issue that makes me want to read more.” — Steve Bennett (Confessions of a Comic Book Guy)

“…masterfully blends tension, mystery, politics and humor that not only makes for a great story, but also addresses some real world issues… It’s an awesome man-playing-god versus nature-gone-awry adventure…The art in Creature Cops: Special Varmint Unit is also top notch…”– Nerdvana

“…one of the most original and well-crafted stories I have seen in comics as of late…at its core, [it’s] a story about the human condition…The art in this book is excellent…” — Comic Crusaders

“…the bizarre nature of the gene-spliced critters keeps the surprises coming…each new varmint looked distinctly unique…It’s very well done…If you have a twisted sense of humor and like procedurals, I highly recommend Creature Cops: Special Varmint Unit to you.”– Fanboy Comics

“Writing in this book is solid. Rob Anderson has created quite a cast of characters to work with…On the artistic side, Fernando Melek, Novo Malgapo, and Juan Romera (penciler, inker, and colorist respectively) do a fine job with the animals…this is an original story…” — Comic Bastards

“…[it] doesn’t just rely on the concept, …[Creature Cops] gives us a precinct full of cops who are interesting, flawed, heroic, dumb, gorgeous, too old for this sh@t, and all the other types of people you meet in a day. Not stereotypes mind you, people.” — What’Cha Reading

“The artwork by Fernando Melek is incredibly effective at capturing all of the detail of the cops and the critters… ‘Creature Cops’ holds far more value for the comic buyer than most ‘big two’ comics do…. a police procedural with a twist, and that twist provides a world of opportunity for the imagination of both its writer and artist.” — Examiner.com

“…I’m intrigued to see where the story is going to go…The art from Fernando Melek is rather nice to look at throughout this comic, looking clean and well-drawn from panel to panel…” — Flickering Myth