Wednesday, November 24, 2010

From Gilbert Monsanto: How about editors for independent komiks in the Philippines?

NB: This was a Facebook Note posted by Gilbert Monsanto. You can see the original, including comments, here

Okay this might be a sensitive topic. This is another question raised at the local conventions here in the Philippines.

What are the roles of an editor in komiks?
-If working for a publisher, an editor does a lot of essencial tasks to finish a book including:
a.) concept of a title or what should be inside a title. The decide what is allowed to print or not to print.
b.) follow ups the creative crew, timing is very important. They usual talk to all the people involved in a project.
c.) proofreading. Corrections corrections, corrections before going to print.

There are more but let's just minimize all these shall we? In short he is the manager and boss to most comic titles. A lot of responsibilities but someone has to do it.

There was a time, when I was working as a contributor for GASI,Sonic Triangle and Infinity Inc. A fellow contrbutor had a fight with an editor and decided to talk to publisher about it. The publisher just said. " you know? the reason I have editors is to avoid having talks with you guys. I trust them, so just deal with it."

 Artists can learn alot from them, they might not be artists, some are writers and they have a lot of practice looking at details and basically see things creators tends to ignore. I personally learned alot from my editors, I thank them now for giving me the opportunity to work with them.

Now, editors for independent komiks? This might not work the same. Since the owner/publisher of a title is the creators. The roles are somewhat reversed. The last say will be the creator's. Who would want to be an editor with this kind of set up?

I often heard stories of people offering to edit works to some indie creators. " what the f--! he wanted me to change this and that and that, I created this! I know better!." Not a good scene huh?  I think that having editors is still a must in order for us to minimize mistakes. The problem was that the creator I mentioned earlier came to another creator with another title of his own. Thus, ineffective.

This is now being avoided by selecting carefully new breeds of editors, collaborators. People who are willing to help and in exchange be helped as well. There are no bosses, just friendly advises.

 I am very much in need of these new heroes, I usually have difficulty seeing my mistakes, especially since I am so focused on other details. My editors are there to tell me exactly what I needed to hear and saves the day. The last say is usually mine as a creator but because they are there, mistakes I'd say has been to a minimal.

 I am thankful for them. 

-Gilbert Monsanto

NB: Gilbert's article ends there. I just wanted to add that this clearly points to need for better quality control in indie komiks. This is certainly not endemic, independent comics around the world vary in quality and could benefit from good editors.  The dilemma here is how to get editorial advice from a pro while staying independent. Please feel free to share your comments or suggestions below.

If any of you have komiks articles that you want to share here, please contact me at

No comments:

Post a Comment