Machine of Death: the webcomics game changer
So why haven’t I been talking about Machine of Death on this site? You know, the book written and illustrated by webcomic creators like David Malki !, KC Green, Ryan North, Kate Beaton, Dorothy Gambrell, Rene Engstrom, Ramon Perez, Cameron Stewart, Kris Straub, John Allison, and many others that debuted #1, beating out both John Grisham and Glenn Beck? Well, like Glenn Beck, I was totally blindsided. Distracted. Likely by video games.
Fortunately, Lauren Davis at Storming the Towers is far more astute. She’s written an excellent post as to “Why ‘Machine of Death’ is important for webcomics.”. An excerpt:
What better way to defragment your audience than to show them stuff they already love alongside stuff they might love? If I’m already reading Dinosaur Comics or Wondermark, I might pick up Machine of Death and suddenly it’s “Ho! What’s this Cat and Girl business?”
And there are more projects like this in the pipeline. It won’t have the same broad appeal as Machine of Death, but TGT Media is publishing Webcomics: What’s Cooking? which is exactly what it sounds like: a cookbook with recipes written and illustrated by webcomic creators. Spike Trotman’s Smut Peddler, which is accepting entries through December 2011, is bound to find a cushy audience with porno comics from the likes of Erika Moen, Tom Siddell, and Spike herself.
Some of these creators still have a lot to learn about their own ecosystem. But what Machine of Death tells us is that they are organized; they are skilled marketers; and they are sprinting happily into the future of comics, whatever that may be.
Full disclosure: as part of her post, Ms. Davis refers to an odd little list I put together on this site. It’s pretty humbling, especially since I think Ms. Davis’ post is far more lucid than mine.