Q: I have a friend who has written a comic book script for some already established DC/Marvel characters. He would like to get it published, but doesn’t know how. Should he call the company’s front desk and ask, or get in touch with an editor via e-mail or website? I haven’t come across this situation specifically for comics, and am trying to point him in the right direction.
A: I’m not well versed in the writing side of things, but my advice would be to snail-mail the script to the offices of the publisher as listed in a given comic’s masthead, and to the attention of the editor of the book that story would fit best in. Chances are it won’t be published though, and possibly not even read. Publishers put together creative teams that spend a lot of time planning the direction of characters and story arcs, and according to the editors I know cold-submitted scripts are not something they usually even consider. They also don’t like getting full scripts featuring their own characters because maybe some plot element or concept in that script ends up being similar or the same as something they already have written in an upcoming issue. Now they stand a chance of being accused of getting the idea from a submission. So, they might not even read the submission.
Your friend would be better off writing comics with his own characters and submitting them to a smaller company to try and get published, or to DC and Marvel as writing samples. DC and Marvel probably get their writers from smaller press but established pros with a fair amount of credits under their belt than from cold submissions.
Thanks to Kyle for the question. If you have a question you want answered for the mailbag about cartooning, illustration, MAD Magazine, caricature or similar, e-mail me and I’ll try and answer it here!
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