Tommy Arnold

The il­lus­tra­tor ex­plains how in­die pub­lish­ing works in prac­tice

ImagineFX - - Imagine Nation - Tommy lives in At­lanta, Ge­or­gia, and works as an il­lus­tra­tor of fan­tasy and sci­ence fic­tion pieces. www.tom­m­

What does your pro­ject in­volve?

I came to Jon Schin­de­hette of ArtOrder Pub­lish­ing with a fully fledged idea that orig­i­nally I was go­ing to pub­lish on my own. There are a num­ber of short sto­ries by Philip K Dick that have fallen into the pub­lic do­main. So I’m tak­ing those sto­ries and col­lect­ing them in an il­lus­trated hard­bound vol­ume. It’s about 240 pages and I’ve got a de­signer who does cov­ers for Tor. com Pub­lish­ing, Jamie Stafford-Hill.

How does work­ing with ArtOrder dif­fer from self­pub­lish­ing?

It’s sim­i­lar in some ways. For ex­am­ple, there’s no cash up­front so I’m still do­ing my reg­u­lar sched­ule of free­lance work. Any time I have a gap I try to fit in an­other il­lus­tra­tion for this pro­ject. The main dif­fer­ence is that you’re work­ing with some­one in your cor­ner, so to speak. But there are still some of the typ­i­cal hur­dles of self-pub­lish­ing.

Like what?

Well for one, we’re not plan­ning to print more than 10,000 copies so we won’t be able to go through a tra­di­tional dis­trib­u­tor, which means a lot of the re­spon­si­bil­ity for ad­ver­tis­ing and dis­tri­bu­tion will fall on Jon’s and my shoul­ders. But in terms of those el­e­ments, Jon has pretty broad shoul­ders.

So what’s the pub­lisher bring­ing to the ta­ble?

Jon’s got a wide on­line au­di­ence and a lot of pull and reach in a lot of places. So I’m bring­ing in an ally that, in ex­change for a per­cent­age of the pro­ject, is go­ing to boost the pro­ject’s suc­cess and ef­fi­ciency. This means I feel a lot more con­fi­dent about the pro­ject and see­ing it through to com­ple­tion.

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