As a follow-up to the recent review of You’ll Have That, Vol. 2, I shot Wes a few questions to get his thoughts on the criticism and to squeeze out any other juicy secrets while I’ve got the chance. Enjoy!
Do you plan on including more content/strips in collections for the future or are you happy with the size now?
Well, the future of YHT in collected form is somewhat in limbo. The two collections haven’t been selling as well as we’d like, so we (Viper Comics and I) have decided to release a 32-page one-shot this summer that will include the best comics from 2006 to present. We plan on promoting the one-shot pretty heavily, and we hope that it will appeal to people who are afraid to shell out five bucks for a title they’re unfamiliar with. And, hopefully, it’ll increase sales of the first two volumes (fingers crossed).
As for the current collections, I’m very proud of them. We noticed that a lot of webcartoonists were having a hard time selling 128-page books at ten to fifteen dollars a pop. So we decided to cut the book size (and the price) in half in hopes of attracting new readers. It was a decent experiment, but I’m not sure that it’s working as well as we’d hoped.
Would you like to tell longer stories or do you feel the shorter snippets appeal more to the increasingly ADD-centric webcomic crowd?
In 2006 I told much longer stories than I did in 2005 and late 2004. It wasn’t until late 2005 that the strip switched to a Monday-Friday schedule, and that has allowed me to write much more elaborate story-arcs.
The most popular storyline from last year involved Andy’s creation of a new motto. I actually told several, week-long stories and had them interweave with each other. Overall, the arc lasted about five weeks, I believe.
In December, I wrote a month-long Christmas story involving Andy and Katie visiting family in Michigan. That was a lot of fun, and I think my readers enjoyed it.
I’ve already got some neat storylines written for 2007, but I’m not going to write a long storyline simply for the sake of telling a long storyline. I like stories and I like daily gags. And, to be blunt, I am my primary audience. So, basically, I’m just trying to entertain ME. : )
Were YHT a sitcom, CBS would make a perfect home as opposed to FOX or even NBC. What would your response be to criticisms that the toothless, no-conflict style of YHT takes away from the dynamicism comics, especially webcomics, are known for? Are you fine with this classification?
Well, I don’t think a “toothless, no conflict” style takes anything away from comics. Personally, I think it’s silly to believe that a comic (or any form of entertainment) has to be dynamic, edgy, and in-your-face in order for it to be considered noteworthy. Not to say that I don’t enjoy that kind of entertainment, but whatever happened to just being “good”? What’s wrong with trying to make people laugh about the mundane minutia of life? Why do some people feel that you have to use curse words and adult situations in order to be relevant?
As for the classification, I’m totally fine with it. I realize that YHT is pretty tame compared to other, more popular comics like PvP and Penny Arcade. But I hope people don’t mistake “tame” for “crappy”. Hopefully they’ll visit my site and decide for themselves.
Are there any plans for introductions of more characters in the near future or big plotlines we can look forward to?
All I’m going to say is “yes”. I don’t want to give anything away right now. : )
Finally, do you have any projects you’d like to plug?
The only other project besides YHT (which is published every Monday through Friday at www.yhtcomic.com!) is the upcoming Sasquatch anthology being published by Viper Comics. It comes out in April, and I wrote and drew a 15-page story for the book. I’m pretty excited to hear what people think of it.
I thank Wes for his time and hope that he will come to us when the dirt drops on any future secrets.