Snark: Visionary Contest

Press release received:

Visionary Comics Studio will proudly be making its first public debut at this year’s San Diego Comicon, and harkening to the spirit of their name, they are doing it in a truly visionary way! “What better way to make our public debut than to simply revolutionize the way creators can break into comics?” Brian Augustyn, VCS’ Senior Editor stated. In an exclusive partnership with Markosia Enterprises LTD, Visionary will be launching its first Be A Visionary Contest which will kickoff taking submissions July 20th at the San Diego Comicon and will be open for entry through September 10th at the Baltimore Comicon. We will also begin announcing the first winning and SOON TO BE PUBLISHED creators at the Baltimore Convention. Yes, you read that right…SOON TO BE PUBLISHED!

“This is a contest for every kind of creator and you can enter on your OWN merits, you don’t have to find a team, we do that for you.” C. Edward Sellner, VCS Creative Director stated. “This is also not a scam where you pay us to print your art and send it anywhere so it might be reviewed. This is actually a proving ground where you end up published, a rep contract and a printed portfolio!”

First round qualifiers in each category will receive notice of their status within two weeks of submission. Those who pass the first round of qualification will then be partnered with a team, the team will then compete in the second round competition which requires the team to complete an actual 6-page story under VCS’ guidance. Qualifiers at the second round are guaranteed invitations to the studio as active members, and that their completed story will be given some public exposure. Finally, finished stories will then be judged and the top choices will be slotted for publication as backup stories in Markosia titles. YES! PRINTED! Team will retain full rights to the story and property. There is no monetary award or payment for this contest, winners will be offered professional representation contracts through Visionary Comics Studio, guaranteed public exposure and consideration of their work, the opportunity to develop a creator-owned property through VCS, and grand prize winners will have their work published and thus hit that all important mark of PUBLISHED CREATOR! All prize winners will be notified no later than December 18, 2006. Number of qualifying entries and winners at each stage will be based on number of entrants, and number of potential slots for stories available.

Thoughts in response:

Get an editor. Those run-on sentences are confusing.

Accepting submissions at San Diego is nothing special, with all sizes of publishers doing the same thing.

I’m happy to see someone mention the Baltimore Con, but I wish it was someone that smelled less of snake oil.

Visionary hasn’t yet published anything, although their website is full of “coming soon” promises.

They’re not paying the winners anything, and they’re fattening up their portfolio of “properties” they will represent. Guaranteeing that “their completed story will be given some public exposure” could mean “we’ll put it on our website”.

If someone cares that much about being a “published creator”, go down to Kinkos and run off 50 copies of a minicomic.

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10 Responses to “Snark: Visionary Contest”

  1. Dan Coyle Says:

    And it’s kind of sad they need an editor, when a well-known former comics editor is quoted in the release.

  2. Augie De Blieck Jr. Says:

    When I read the release, the first thing I was reminded of was CrossGen’s first foray into the submissions slush pile in San Diego, complete with their own booth.

  3. Comics Worth Reading Says:

    [...] Their website appears to not have been updated since March. The company page is anchored by a welcome message from Brian Augustyn, who’s now associated with Visionary Comics Studio. Small things, but they make the story plausible. [...]

  4. C. Edward Sellner Says:

    Hmmm, interesting thoughts. If you’d care to learn a little more about the company your attaching ‘snake oil’ to beyond a single PR and a cursory glance at our website, feel free to let me know. I would be happy to speak with you. Otherwise, I hope we prove our integrity and viability to you as we do with everyone…one step at a time.

  5. Chris Hunter Says:

    “If someone cares that much about being a “published creator”, go down to Kinkos and run off 50 copies of a minicomic.”

    It’s…it’s just not the same…


  6. C. Edward Sellner Says:

    Well, seeing as the ‘published’ grand prize winners get their story published as a backup in one of Markosia’s books, with full credits… I’d say it isn’t.

  7. Johanna Says:

    This is going to sound harsh, apologies, but it’s meant to be realistic:

    I appreciate the offer, but it’s not my job to seek out information about you, it’s your (or your PR person’s) job to get the information out there. And right now, all I have makes you sound like one of any of a number of similar companies, all of which I find vaguely dodgy until they prove otherwise.

    Proving yourself is the best strategy you have, and if you do, then no one will remember what I said. The odds are against you, but maybe you’ll be one of the few to win through.

  8. Nektarios Chrissos Says:

    Your scepticism is, of course, understandable, and your opinion is respected. So I’ll just add some of my own thoughts on this.

    I am a creator from Greece and, if it weren’t for VCS, I probably would stand little chance of promoting my work in the States anytime soon. The guys there have been helpful – to the extent a new comics studio can be to a new, unknown creator such as me – and very supportive to me thus far. I have no reason to believe they will try to take advantage of me and my work and all the internal deals and contracts we’ve had so far were clear and specific, professionaly done, without so-called ‘fine print’.

    I must also add that I don’t really consider “self-publishing” as publishing. You are right, it’s easy to be published nowadays, and bookstores, as well as the internet, are full of trash-style publications by vain writers and artists. However, there’s a certain amount of collaboration in VCS that leads me to the assumption it is good to be part of that Studio and be supported by it. They don’t seem to be a vanity publisher to me, and help me better my skills. Most probably, cash won’t flow towards my pockets very soon but, through VCS, I think I’m bettering my chances for this to happen sometime in the near future. And I guess that’s good steps in the right direction, at least for me.

    Thank you for giving readers the space to add comments in your page. To me, it shows your intentions are good, even though you might be harsh sometimes, as you said yourself.

  9. Johanna Says:

    That’s great, that you’ve gotten such benefits. I hope things continue to go well for you.

    I have to disagree with you about self-publishing, though — Finder, for example, is a brilliant comic everyone should read, not any kind of vanity trash.

  10. Trey Says:

    I appreciate the offer, but it’s not my job to seek out information about you, it’s your (or your PR person’s) job to get the information out there. And right now, all I have makes you sound like one of any of a number of similar companies, all of which I find vaguely dodgy until they prove otherwise.

    Are you not making a report? Are you saying you have no responsiblity to get the facts correct? I find that amazing. If I were reporting on a company I would consider it paramount that I have my facts in order. Then again, I suppose real reporters no longer do this so why should anyone else.

    Success is the best revenge so keep an eye on us.

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