Trying To Do What We Do Best

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Awhile ago, I was grousing about how frustrating it was, taking time away from writing to have to deal with some business thing (I forget exactly what, which is sadly indicative of my ultimate point), when the guy I was talking to stopped me and said, why don’t you hire a business person to do that for you? I replied that it was cheaper to do it myself. My friend then proceeded to disprove this. He asked, how much would a bookkeeper cost? I replied that it ran around $40 an hour. He then asked how much I could make with a drawing that I took an hour to make? The short answer is considerably more. Plus I’d have a drawing, which, thanks to the magic of digital storage, I would have around forever, even after I sold it, to be reused in a variety of ways.

His point is that I could spend my time doing what I do best, or I could do something that other people could do better, cheaper and faster. This is one of the reasons why, even though Studio Foglio turns twenty years old this year, we are not a globe–striding entertainment conglomerate. We are cartoonists, not business people, and if someone offered us a Maserati, we’d fret because it didn’t have room in the back for a cage of baboons (this is a real discussion that Kaja and I have been having off and on ever since we got married. We never realized how real–world important it was until Experiments One & Two materialized).

Now, if you have been following our Kickstarter (http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/girlgenius/girl-genius-volume-12-printing-and-reprint-frenzy), you will see that we made all of our reprint goals! We will now be able to reprint the entire line of Girl Genius graphic novels, and make a slew of cool stuff besides. This is a welcome shot of financial stability which will help us produce a lot more stuff for our readers. Thanks to everyone who helped!

However we still have a week to go, and there are people out there still giving us money (and why not? Some of the deals we’re offering are pretty sweet), so what should we shoot for now? We have decided to hire a Business Person. The person we have in mind is Carol Monahan, spouse to James Ernest, the mastermind behind Cheapass Games and Studio Foglio’s official cinematographer. She was the Director of Marketing for Wizards of the Coast, and knows everybody, which, I can tell you, is probably more important. She has been saying for years that we should hire her, and we have been saying that we couldn’t afford her. However, in a welcome bit of synchronicity, she is finishing up a government contract, and we are engaged in this fine KickStarter. Thus, our next Big goal. Hire someone who helps Studio Foglio make that incredibly difficult transition from tiny mom & pop art studio to an entertainment company that can hire other people to help us produce the thousand and one projects we have thought up over the years, but just haven’t had the time, money or extra hands to get done.

Plus, to show that she understands our readers and is fully conversant with the social milieu that she will be operating in, if we make this goal, she will allow us to photograph her with a pancake on her head. I should put that in the Employee Manual.