Alterna Comics is a small press indie comic publisher. We only publish graphic novels (with the exception of one children's comic called The Unlikely Trio) in paperback form. Our books are almost always in black and white; featuring unique stories from horror, sci-fi, fantasy, and action genres. The company was started in 2006 by one person - Peter Simeti - who owns, operates, publishes, funds, and designs everything that the company does. Without him, there would be no Alterna, end of story. Peter is a substitute teacher with a love for comics and if things keep going the way they are, Alterna will have to cease operations within a year or two.
I wish I could say that we are a failing business because we don't have a good product. But unfortunately, success is what has been killing us. Credit companies and banks have slashed our financing to the point that we can't even afford to fund for advertising, promotional items, and BOOKS. Credit lines that used to be $10,000 are now $2,000. We used to put out 1 to 2 books a month, we now put out 4 or 5 a year - we don't even fund the print runs for these books anymore - the creators now fund them and in turn they get a higher profit percentage to compensate their financing. We would much rather shoulder the print run burden but it's become impossible to do so.
Sales don't come in quick enough (book distribution takes up to 6 months to pay us) and we end up accumulating over $4,000 worth of interest ever year, even though we've maintained a small profit for the past 3 years, that profit has been quickly eaten up by the bills we have. The most ridiculous part about all of this is our company debt is around $28,000 - which isn't even a lot for most small companies. It's practically nothing compared to a lot of the debt that most small businesses have. But due to the fact that we can't even make new books to spur new income - the debt has become stifling and will eventually take its toll on us within 1 to 2 years.
The most heartbreaking aspect about the possibility of Alterna going bankrupt is the fact that a lot of people will see their dreams die with Alterna. Sure some creators may move on to other publishers - but even that is highly unlikely because Alterna has been publishing a lot of books that everyone else has already rejected for being too "out of the box", "weird", "not sellable", or any other various reason to reject quality work. All of our books are critically acclaimed and have even won awards and the hearts and minds of readers all over the world. We're sort of the Island of Misfit Toys in the comics world. But without us, a lot of these books, writers, and artists, will lose a home.
What We Need & What You Get
The goal of $1,000 is extremely small compared to what we need (which would honestly be at least in the $10,000 range) but anything helps. The $1K goal will help keep us alive for at least another year as we try to weather the storm we are currently in. We can make the $1K go far and it might just provide the cushion we need.
For your generous donations, we will be rewarding you with books, signed copies of books, original art, commissioned art, and even a grand prize of all our books that are currently in print as well as some original artwork from the artists and creators of these books.
Other Ways You Can Help
Even if you can't afford to donate, please spread the word about our campaign. If you can put a good word for us in your Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, - any kind of social media - then that would be terrific. We need as many people to know about this as possible so we can hopefully try and avoid bankruptcy. thank you!!