Toronto-themed anthology series seeks funding for third book
By Cheryl Minns, Contributor
After producing two successful comic collections and a remarkable crowdfunding campaign, the Toronto Comics Anthology team are back on Kickstarter to raise funds for Toronto Comics: Volume 3. The anthology promises even more Canadian comic goodness with 300 pages worth of 30 comics from 47 local creators.
The anthology series began in 2014 when three students from Ty Templeton’s Comic Book Bootcamp decided to make a comic anthology about Toronto.
“We pitched the idea to our fellow writing and art students, and somehow convinced a surprising number of them to take part,” said Andrew Stevenson, the anthology’s lead editor. “The writers agreed to pool together to cover print costs, while the artists donated their time, and we set out to make a book.”
In 2015, the team continued the annual series with Volume 2, featuring over 200 pages of comics from 33 artists and writers.
“The assembled writers actually covered print costs for Volume 2 as well. We planned to use the Kickstarter campaign purely as a marketing and pre-order hub,” Stevenson said. “If the campaign had failed, we were still going to go ahead and make the book.”
The campaign had a funding goal of $500, but ultimately raised $7,244 from more than 240 supporters.
“We were blown away when we received 1,448 per cent of our goal,” Stevenson said. “That inspired us to up our game with this year’s Volume 3. It showed us there was a real audience out there, and that Kickstarter was a great channel to an eager market.”
The Kickstarter campaign for Volume 3 is seeking $10,000 by March 31. It has already received donations from more than 200 supporters.
“We posted an update to last year’s Kickstarter campaign and a flood of return backers came in to support the new product. It was really rewarding to see,” Stevenson said.
The Volume 3 campaign offers a variety of rewards and reward combinations at different donation levels. The Flowest reward tier is $5 and includes a digital copy of Volume 3. Higher tiers up to $60 include print copies of all three volumes, six 6” x 9” artists’ prints, and a T-shirt. The highest tiers, which range from $70–250, feature a limited number of commissioned artworks and signed copies of Volume 3. For those attending the Toronto Comic Arts Festival in May, there is a $20 reward tier that includes a print copy of Volume 3 available for pick-up at the Toronto Comics Anthology table.
“The PDF copy has been a strong seller, due to its lower price point and lack of shipping,” Stevenson said. “After that, it’s the softcover copy, with and without in-person pick-up. But it’s also been great to see a lot of folks ordering the complete set of Volume 1, 2, and 3. It’s wonderful to see folks take a real interest in comics from new creators.”
To learn more about Toronto Comics Anthology, check out the official website at TOcomix.com or go to the Toronto Comics: Volume 3 campaign on Kickstarter.com