Friday, July 11, 2008

Shotgun Interview #6: Victor Wong of Chloroville

A Chloroville strip, and an insane fish tank, by Victor Wong.

Note to readers: I've been re-using my best questions a lot from interview to interview, and I can see how this could get old. I've already started working new questions into upcoming interviews, and I encourage you to suggest questions and/or comics people to interview. Note that not all candidates take well to the tight format I favor. (Look for longer interviews at ComicsMix.) You can use Comments or Email. And now, Victor Wong of Chloroville...

Q: What web comic (not by a friend) do you think deserves wider attention, and why?

A: Cardoons by Justin Nicholis. Marginally offensive, great toilet humor, instantly lovable characters. And he's Canadian :)

Q: Is there a web comic you are always excited to read, the minute it updates? 

A: It would be Horribleville. Always funny and full of style.

Q: What blogs do you read?

A: The most famous is Cute Overload. Also, stuff related to design: Better Living Through Design, and Colourlovers, if you count it as a blog. 

Q: If cartoonist Danielle Corsetto, who is more known for racy than cute, can make it into Cute Overload, I'd think it would be worthwhile for you to submit some of your drawings. Anyway... introduce your work to new readers in a few sentences.

A: It's a light-hearted and colorful comic featuring characters that look like vegetables. They live in a small town called Chloroville. If you like cute graphics, I think you will enjoy the comic.

Q: What are your web sites, and what do they offer?

A: I have my own portfolio website and you can visit it at MagicKetchup. I only update it when I am looking for a new job. (I haven't updated it for a few years, thank goodness.) It also has my personal blog which I used to update quite often before the launch of Chloroville.

Q: What promotional tools have helped you find new readers?

A: I post my site in a few forums dedicated to web comics. Whenever I have a new strip, I will remind readers to visit. I will be advertising my comic at one of the web comic directories, very small budget, but I am more curious with how many new visitors I will get after the ad placement.

Q: What's the best thing you've recently heard from a fan?

A: The best comment I got was "Hahaha! This one genuinely made me laugh out loud! Fantastic!" My site has never been promoted heavily, and it's still very young. I am happy if someone unknown to me posts an encouraging message on my site. That would validate the existence of my web comic in this ginormous internet space.

Q: What's the worst thing about the state of web comics today?

A: May be it's too easy to make one? There are tens of thousands of web comics out there and I wish there is a great way for new readers to browse through the massive catalogue in a visual way and quickly discover what they fancy.

Q: What tip would you offer someone launching their first web comic?

A: I heard a suggestion from a web comic podcast telling newbies to have about 30 strips ready (for a daily comic strip) before launching or promoting your new site. This will get the momentum rolling and keep readers coming back. I post a new strip only once a week, and it would be ideal if I have at least 5 stocked up strips to use when I go for a vacation or get too busy working as a freelancer. I have used up all five so far and I am now living dangerously.

Q: What merchandise item would you love to offer if the economics allow?

A: Plushies. It will bring me super satisfaction if I ever see a toddler (or grown up) happily holding a plushie of Jon-Jon, the main character of my strip.

Q: What's new in your life that has nothing to do with comics?

A: I will be helping an ex-coworker of mine create some casual video games. I think that is quite exciting.