Copy Protection Faults

Warren Ellis has gotten it into his head that he needs to do some analysis the past few days. First was his assessment of Alan Moore's relationship with postmodernism. He followed that with some advice for new creators about getting their work noticed. There's ann emphasis that the retailer is the creator's actual customer which is cealry important for anyone who want to make money off of this business to understand. What I find most important, though, is how he breaks down solicitation copy. I'm not a big fan of that movie pitch method of solicitation: "It's Die Hard in a sewer with mutants!" I do like the idea of the two step approach Ellis provides, namely an interesting tag line followed by what he calls "the Element."

There's not much to go on when deciding how much of a risk to take on an unproven work/talent/publisher. Even when dealing with proven commodities, there's a fine line that few have learned to walk between giving enough information to hook the retailer and giving away plot points that can ruin the reading experience. I know I would've enjoyed Bendis' last Daredevil a lot more if Marvel had worked out "the Element" for selling Brubaker's first issue rather than giving away a huge spoiler.

Every story can be broken down into its basic elements and, while coming up with a tagline and choosing "the Element" may not be easy, no one said anything in this industry would be. Hell, I'm still working on signing up my first subscriber.


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