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2009/6/16

Okay, it’s not really all that dark. At best, it’s dim, and that’s pushing it. But, in short: The comics you’ve been seeing to date were all, for the most part, compiled for a submission of Odori Park to the newspaper syndicates. I sent out said submission to the major syndicates at the end of 2007, and dutifully filed away each rejection letter as they trickled in through 2008.

Despite being rejected all around, I was pleased to see the positive comments several editors shared. In general, it seemed that editors liked Odori Park–going by the title A Book By Its Cover at the time (name of the Eastons’ bookshop, natch)–for its art and writing, but that the concept itself wouldn’t sell well to papers. The reasons were ambiguous, but my take is that either a bi-national family was too left of mainstream for the mass media, or my depiction of what’s essentially a family comedy was too ordinary to stand out. Sort of an odd conundrum.

Through 2008 I worked on some additional Odori Park strips, and then put together a second submission package around a new concept. (Maybe someday I’ll share that, too, if the world is curious.) But the reception from the syndicate letters and from friends was positive enough that I decided to take Odori Park online.

Posts starting tomorrow are truly new. Enjoy!

And if you have an opinion as to whether Odori Park would have done well in the funny pages, I’d love to hear it.

:: 4 Comments... ::

  1. Whitey

    2 thoughts:

    - newspapers are dying
    - you’ve created something that could appeal to a very specific niche that others aren’t filling.

    These may have contributed to your rejections. But for both of these reasons I think online is the way to go… You have the opportunity to build a loyal audience here. Hope it goes well!

  2. Chris

    I’m banking on it, Whitey. Thanks for the encouragement!

  3. Strip News 6-19-9 | Strip News | ArtPatient.com | ArtPatient.com

    [...] Musings also name changed to Pajama Forest while Odori Park reveals its dark submission secrets. [...]

  4. Odori Park » Archive » Thank You for One Year of Odori Park :: A webcomic comedy of culture shock in love, life, and family, by Chris Watkins ::

    [...] of Odori Park on the Web. It was a year ago on March 13th that the first strip (from my original newspaper submission package) appeared online, followed by three comics a week for the subsequent 52 weeks. (Phew! Hold, on, [...]

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