ComixLaunch_Green018Figuring out if and how to engage brick and mortar retailers in a Kickstarter campaign is a vexing issue for creators. Chimera Comics owner Carmelo Chimera joins Tyler for a frank discussion on retailer outreach.

Today’s Session is Sponsored by Purebuttons

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Today’s Guest

My guest today is the co-owner of Chimera’s Comics, a four location comic shop in Illinois that, in addition to carrying comics and graphic novels, does great community charity work, hosts gaming tournaments, special events, and is now publishing comics as well! He’s also a practicing attorney-at-law, and is a comic book creator himself.

Last month, he launched his first Kickstarter project, The Magnificent, which as of this recording has hit it’s funding goal, heading into the final week.

Congratulations on that and welcome to ComixLaunch, Carmelo Chimera.

What is Today’s Episode About?

One of the more vexing things for Kickstarter creators is figuring out how to approach retailers regarding their projects…

Should they bother with retailer outreach?

What would make retailers back their projects?

And are there other ways besides just financial backing that creators might engage retailers?

Carmelo Chimera the perfect person to talk to about this stuff, because you’re coming at it from both the retailer and the creator perspective.

Guiding Discussion Questions:

1) Last month, you launched your first Kickstarter Project, Magnificent, with co-creator Steven Brown, and David Gonzalez. However, as a retailer, you’ve no doubt been aware of Kickstarter for a while now. We’ll get into your experience as a creator in a bit, but I’d like to start by talking about how you view Kickstarter from the retailer’s perspective.Most retailers I’ve talked to’s opinions on Kickstarter range from open hostility to complete indifference… though some’s opinions on the platform have evolved over time. Can you talk about how you see Kickstarter as a retailer?

2) I think it’s important for Kickstarter creators to understand how a retailer’s business works before they think about how to approach retailers to back a Kickstarter project or support it in some way… Can you give us a look behind the curtain?
How do the terms offered to retailers by most Kickstarter creators differ from the terms you get from your main distributors, like Diamond?

3) What advice do you have for Kickstarter creators interested in getting retailers to support their projects?

4) Have you difficult making the transition from retailer to creator launching a KS? What have you learned from launching your first KS Project? What’s surprised you?


1) Finish this sentence: “Kickstarter is _______.”

“…delightfully subversive.”

2) Let’s the pretend the powers that be at Kickstarter are listening (which you know they are)… if you could change one thing about the Kickstarter platform, what would it be?

Incorporate add-ons as a built in feature.

3) What’s your secret weapon? (Meaning a tool, resource, app, etc. that you couldn’t make comics without?)

Celtix script writing software

4) You guys made an AWESOME video… any tips for creating compelling KS videos?

Keep it short and from the heart. Save the facts and figures for your page.

5) Can you recommend one comic (not done by you) more people need to check out?

Roche Limit by Michael Moreci and Val Malhotra


Episode Sponsor: PureButtons

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A ComixLauncher is a short, actionable activity you can and should do right now, or immediately after listening to the show. They’re all activities I’ve done myself, and will get you one step closer to a successful ComixLaunch. They’ll transform this Podcast from a passive, lean back activity centered around Tyler James, into an active, lean-forward activity centered around YOU.

ComixLauncher 18

Do Something Nice for Your Local Comic Book Retailer

All of us our busy, but we all can spare 5 minutes to do this. [If you’d like to share the results of your ComixLauncher with me, I’d love to see it. Email me at [email protected], subject line: ComixLauncher #18.]

Wrap Up

1) Do you have one final piece of advice on running a Successful KS campaign for the ComixLaunch listeners?

The most important thing is what you do before you launch will determine your success. Don’t start campaigning when you press launch. 

2) Besides the Magnificent Kickstarter page, how can listeners best connect with you online?

Like or follow Chimera’s Comics on Facebook.

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