Insomia Seeks Submisisons

Edinburgh-based Insomnia Publications , publishers of titles such as Layer Zero and the upcoming CancerTown, are accepting submissions from both writers and artists.
Incoming Creative Director Nic Wilkinson tells us: “Insomnia are currently inviting submissions from both writers and artists (pencillers, colourists and inkers).

“We will be at the Birmingham International Comics show and will be hosting portfolio review sessions throughout the weekend. Times will be up on the table, so come over, talk to us, show us your stuff – art, writing or both.

If you cannot make the show this year, or would like to send submissions in advance for discussion on the day send me an email to “nichola [at] insomniapublications.com” but please do not send any files over 8Mb or they will bounce.”

Crawford Coutts, the MD, will write up the “official guidelines” for the Insomnia Publications website in the next couple of days, but for now the company has revealed the books they have in progress at the moment cover a wide variety of subject matter.

“It is originality and quality that Crawford is looking for rather than any specific genre,” says Nic. “We would rather have something unusual, challenging, inventive, creative, inspired, literate, thought provoking (you get the idea!) than another version of something that is already out there. You can get mainstream works from many places, that is why they are called mainstream.”

Here’s what they want from writers: tell them about the story – proposed length, how much (if any) is complete, about the characters, the setting, What happens, Why it happens, – all of that not just a 10 word high concept “idiot pitch”. “That tells me if you are good at formulating snappy high-concept pitches,” says Nic, “not what your scripting, structuring and storytelling are like.
“Samples are good if you have them but not required at the pitch stage
“We do not care if you have the right script formatting software or fonts at this stage, we want your talent, not your technical know how.”

For Artists, Insominia is looking for pencillers, inkers or all three. “We would like to see sequentials as well as pin ups,” Nic reveals, “Unless you want to be purely a cover artist – which is fine, but let us know that. Tell uas what formats you work in – traditional media, digital etc., and whether you work in Colour or black and white.
“If you are submitting to be an inker or colourist then we need to see copies of the underlying pencils as well as your work.
“If you have been published before or have self published in print or online and can show us a portfolio, that is fantastic. However Insomnia is all about new writing, new art and new concepts and we certainly welcome submissions from new talent.

“Finally one of the most important things for both writers and artists is to let us know the length of story to which you feel you can commit,” Nic adds. “We have an anthology title for people who want to do short stories through to complete graphic novel series of hundreds of pages.

“We also appreciate that many creators are showing incredible dedication by working on their comics alongside day jobs and other commitments, but if we like your work enough to publish we will work with you to agree a schedule that suits all parties.

“Many of us at Insomnia are/were creators ourselves and we appreciate that making submissions can be difficult and nerve-wracking,” Nic says. “We will look at everything we receive, although it may take time we will respond to everyone. The important thing to remember that your work may be great, and we may even personally love to read it, but it sometimes will just not what we are looking for right now.

“We are also interested to hear from games designers, animators, and model makers as we often need to call on such services.

As for what Insomia plan for their titles, “In most cases we will look to put our books out as albums or ‘instant trades’ so that they can be sold in bookshops and online as well as through comic shops.”

• If you would like to see examples of Insomnia books to get a feel for the type of material they publish then you can see previews of two forthcoming Graphic Novels and a selection from their Anthology title online at MyeBook

Graphic Novels:
Cancertown – by Cy Dethan and Stephen Downey
Cages – by Xander Bennett and Mel Cook
Layer Zero Anthology Selection

John Freeman

The founder of downthetubes, John describes himself as is a “freelance comics operative”, currently working as a freelance editor for TITAN COMICS, as Creative Consultant on the new DAN DARE audio adventures for B7 Media, and on promotional work for the LAKES INTERNATIONAL COMIC ART FESTIVAL and LANCASTER COMICS DAY.

John has worked in British comics publishing for over 30 years, starting out at Marvel UK, where he edited a number of the Genesis 1992 books with Paul Neary. His numerous credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine at Marvel and Star Trek Magazine and Babylon 5 Magazine at Titan Magazines, where he was Managing Editor.

He also edited STRIP Magazine and worked as an editor on several audio comics for ROK Comics, including TEAM M.O.B.I.L.E. and THE BEATLES STORY.

Most recently he is writing CRUCIBLE as a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz, published on Tapastic; and DEATH DUTY and SKOW DOGS with Dave Hailwood for the digital comic 100% Biodegradable.

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