James Tynion IV Clears Up Some FAQs

by Olly MacNamee

With the news that James Tynion IV was leaving DC Comics behind, a lot was lost in the translation as news sites such as ours tried to get the news up as quickly as possible. So, in an unusual move, Tynion IV sent out a second newsletter answering some of the more frequently asked questions many fans had.

While the Substack funding and contract means Tynion’s comics will be initially shared to his subscribers – which doubled his expectations after his announcement (although he doesn’t put a number on his original goal) – that doesn’t means they won’t end up in print, Where, though, is another matter. But, as Tynion writes, “there isn’t a single comic I’m developing that won’t end up as a print comic available on stands in comic book stores.”

As for leaving DC Comics behind completely? Well, he assured readers that Nice House on the Lake will still be coming out from DC Comics. But that’s a creator owned title anyway. So, headlines claiming his departure from DC Comics weren’t necessarily false, juts maybe massaged for clickbait. And we include ourselves in that.

But, as with many creators, Tynion states once more that “This is a move toward making the comics I own my primary occupation, and any projects outside of that are going to depend on what works best for my creator-owned schedule.”

There’s also the subscriptions themselves:

“The only print comics included with a subscription are the six covers you can receive if you sign up for the Founders Tier, and the storage locker “bonus comic” you’re going to receive if you sign up for an annual subscription in the first 24 hours (which you have until 10:30AM ET Tuesday Morning to get in on!).” 

The one area – and the most important one when distributing digital-first comics – is how they’ll be delievered and read on Substack. To which Tynion writes, “We’re figuring it out.” But for the initial launch:

“… right now the plan is to release my comic projects in shorter chapters, about 10 pages long, releasing biweekly. We’ll run those as ten images you scroll down through in the body of the newsletter itself. We’ll also have an option for subscribers to download a PDF copy, with a download link in the newsletter. But this is all evolving!”

And, importantly, Tynion gives a shout out to other comic book creatots also launching Substack comics but who were overshadowed by Tynion’s announcement:

  • Saladin Ahmed launched COPPER BOTTLE, his own creator owned comic imprint!
  • Molly Knox Ostertag launched IN THE TELLING, where she’ll be serializing a brand new graphic novel!
  • Jonathan Hickman is building an entire comic book universe called 3W/3M, with the help of Mike Del Mundo, Mike Huddleston, Tini Howard, Ram V and Gerry Duggan!
  • And my good friend and mentor, Scott Snyder, is going to teach you all how to write comic books in COMIC BOOK 101! As a former student of Scott’s, I promise you don’t want to miss out!

That’s quite the list of creators all signing onto Substack. Congrats to all, and all the best in this brave new venture.


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