Dundee comic artist’s warning for publishers

Comic creator Monty Nero.

A Dundee artist has said the days of comic book publishers could soon be numbered after he raised thousands of pounds for his new project in the space of a few hours.

Monty Nero set up an online fundraiser through Kickstarter for his new project, Hollow Monsters.

He sought £800 to begin work on the comic, which will be his first solo work, but smashed that target in hours, raising more than £2,900 with 26 days of the fundraiser still to go.

Eventually, he wants to write, pencil and ink six issues of the comic which tells the tale of a gang of children confronting monsters in their suburban housing estate in the 1980s.

Monty said although the big publishers will survive, he expects most independent, creator-owned comics will be soon published in the same way as Hollow Monsters.

He said: “It was a massive surprise – I raised in the first day what I expected would have been the best result from the whole campaign.

“I’m now looking at stretch funding and offering people extra stuff.”

He added: “I think in the future all comics will be sold and done this way. In a few years all the big global comics superstars will be doing this and smaller names won’t get a look in so it’s important to build your profile now.

“People used to follow characters, like Spider-Man or Batman, but now they are much more aware of the people making the comic and follow them. The people who have backed you tend to keep backing you.”

Monty said internationally famous comic artists such as Mike Mignola are already using Kickstarter.

He and artist Gary Gianni raised $100,000 for a new book of Hellboy art.

“The third movie is being made and Hellboy is massively popular,” said Monty.

“It’s been published by Dark Horse  but their Kickstarter has raised $100,000 and all the money goes to the artists rather than the publishers.”

Monty is a member of Dundee’s Inkpot Studio in the Dundee Comics Creative Space and is a masters 
graduate of Duncan of Jordanstone at Dundee University.

He co-created the critically-acclaimed hit series Death Sentence with artist Mike Dowling and its sequel, Death Sentence: London.

He has also written for 2000AD and publishers Vertigo and Marvel, where he worked on iconic characters such as Hulk and Amazing X-Men.

The first issue of Hollow Monsters will be published in December with fresh funding appeals for each subsequent issue.