Friday, May 11, 2007

Dave Sim's blogandmail #242 (May 11th, 2007)


Fifteen Impossible Things to Believe Before Breakfast That Make You a Good Feminist

1. A mother who works a full-time job and delegates to strangers the raising of her children eight hours a day, five days a week does just as good a job as a mother who hand-rears her children full time.

2. It makes great sense for the government to pay 10 to 15,000 dollars a year to fund a daycare space for a child so its mother - who pays perhaps 2,000 dollars in taxes - can be a contributing member of society.

3. A woman's doctor has more of a valid claim to participate in the decision to abort a fetus than does the father of that fetus.

4. So long as a woman makes a decision after consulting with her doctor, she is incapable of making an unethical choice.

5. A car with two steering wheels, two gas pedals and two brakes drives more efficiently than a car with one steering wheel, one gas pedal and one brake which is why marriage should always be an equal partnership.

6. It is absolutely necessary for women to be allowed to join or participate fully in any gathering place for men, just as it is absolutely necessary that there be women only environments from which men are excluded.

7. Because it involves taking jobs away from men and giving them to women, affirmative action makes for a fairer and more just society.

8. It is important to have lower physical standards for women firepersons and women policepersons so that, one day, half of all firepersons and policepersons will be women, thus more effectively protecting the safety of the public.

9. Affirmative action at colleges and universities needs to be maintained now that more women than men are being enrolled, in order to keep from giving men an unfair advantage academically.

10. Having ensured that there is no environment for men where women don't belong (see no.6) it is important to have zero tolerance of any expression or action which any woman might regard as sexist to ensure greater freedom for everyone.

11. Only in a society which maintains a level of 95% of alimony and child support being paid by men to women can men and women be considered as equals.

12. An airline stewardess who earned $20,000 a year at the time that she married a baseball player earning $6 million a year is entitled, in the event of a divorce, to $3 million for each year of the marriage and probably more.

13. A man's opinions on how to rear and/or raise a child are invalid because he is not the child's mother. However, his financial obligation is greater because no woman gets pregnant by herself.

14. Disagreeing with any of these statements makes you anti-woman and/or a misogynist.

15. Legislature Seats must be allocated to women and women must be allowed to bypass the democratic winnowing process in order to guarantee female representation and, thereby, make democracy fairer.


Depending on your point of view:




So, I phoned Richard Starkings to find out how much ComiCraft pays for a lettering font. I had paid $69 U.S. for their Joe Kubert font which I now use very extensively. In fact I bought it twice, once for me and once for my Digital Production and Research Assistant Guy on my secret project so that he would be able to fix typos or re-do whole blocks of text if that became called for. I could have just sent him a copy of my Joe Kubert font but I felt at that point that I'd be taking money out of Mr. Kubert's pocket when he was putting money in mine by saving me oodles and boodles of lettering time.

So, I just said to him, flat out, "Hey, you want to do a Dave Sim lettering font?"

And he says, "Sure, definitely!"

May all of my business negotiations go that smoothly. So then I ask him, "So, how does this work, how much do you pay for a font?"

Basically what happens is you get a free copy of your own font.

I told him I probably wouldn't use my own font. I prefer Joe Kubert's for my photo-realism stuff. He laughed. Wait a minute. You mean, Joe Kubert doesn't make any royalties off of the $138 I've paid for his font (so far)?

Oh, Joe waived his royalties.

Well, uh, (how to put this?) What if I DON'T waive my royalties?

Richard proceeded to give me a crash course in the realities of lettering fonts on the Internet. There was actually a fair amount of money coming in early on when there were only a handful of fonts available, but now lettering has gone the way of all the Internet. The number of fonts is exploding exponentially so the market for each individual font has dropped. Couple that with the fonts already circulating that people are downloading and swapping with each other for free and, well, it isn't as sad a story as the music business but there isn't a whole heck of a lot of difference between the two. I explained that I was looking for what I hoped were reasonably effortless ways of raising money for the next five years to help me buy back Gerhard's 40% of the company. He said he would do what he could, but he warned me that it can take up to two years to get a font ready for market and there's already a waiting list of fonts to be developed. Well, what the heck: two years from now is still within the time frame of trying to raise money to buy Gerhard's shares. Every little bit helps.

We had a nice, long interesting chat about lettering (there are not a lot of guys in the comic-book field who could sustain a conversation about lettering). He said the strangest thing that's happened lately is that editors are starting to take a proprietary interest in lettering. Because they're just computer fonts and can be reproduced by typing them out, he's now running into the situation where the editor wants to tell him what lettering style to use on a job. That was interesting and by the way he discussed it, totally unexpected. You assume that with all of your awards and nominations for lettering that an editor is going to hire you for your expertise and instead he's running into these guys all the time who are convinced they know what lettering a specific job requires and they aren't much interested in discussing it. Just goes to show how you can be an expert in something and by making it widely available for use on people's computers you suddenly find that everyone thinks of themselves as an expert.

Very interesting guy. So, there might be a ComiCraft Dave Sim lettering font somewhere up ahead, but don't hold your breath. At least it won't involve any work for me. When I told him that I thought I would enlarge my own lettering on the photocopier and then clean it up and send him a selection of alphabets, he blanched audibly (no mean trick) over the phone. Seems he has a state-of-the-art guy who does that part of it, that there are all kinds of nuances and subtleties to making a lettering style into an actual font that stays consistent no matter how you group the letters or what size you use. As long as I don't have to do anything, maybe it could be Every Lettering Style Dave Sim Used in Issues 1 to 300 of Cerebus. Might end up being half of the ComiCraft line.

So, there it was: my first attempt at selling out in many, many years.

I'd like to thank Richard as well for sending me a whole whack of his Elephantmen Comics which were published by Image. I've got eight of them here all in full glorious colour as well as two hardcover reprints of Hip Flask. I've put them in with the mail and I'll do a review of them when I get there.

I started flipping through the Industry Directory again.

Tomorrow: Dave Sim's Second Attempt at Selling Out

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If you wish to contact Dave Sim, you can mail a letter (he does NOT receive emails) to:

Aardvark Vanaheim, Inc
P.O. Box 1674
Station C
Kitchener, Ontario, Canada N2G 4R2

Looking for a place to purchase Cerebus phonebooks? You can do so online through Win-Mill Productions -- producers of Following Cerebus. Convenient payment with PayPal:

Win-Mill Productions

Or, you can check out Mars Import:

Mars Import

Or ask your local retailer to order them for you through Diamond Comics distributors.