New comics creators, remember, there ARE people out there who want to take advantage of your time, enthusiasm, ambition and talent. Be careful, be aware. If you are offered a deal that sounds hinkey, it probably is. Ask around, use google. We no longer have to just guess at someone’s reputation. If someone is trying to cheat you, odds are they have tried to cheat others. Google is your career’s friend. Do the research, and it will save you UNTOLD heartache.
Don’t let this be a roadblock to your aspirations. There are tons of honest publishers and other people who keep their word. But if you do a google search and some red flags come up, PROCEED WITH EXTREME CAUTION.
Sometimes, a company or individual will have too much negative commentary on their practices, and they will change their company name. In that case, use Twitter and Tumblr, ask around about that person or company’s reputation.
We’re often so eager to get established that we overlook our instincts. Don’t be that person, don’t let anyone take advantage of you. Do the research!
By the way, it is PERFECTLY acceptable to take terms that are not all that favorable to you IF you get something else out of it. You can work at a low page rate, for example, if it is for a PROVEN publication that can give you exposure and credentials you need. That is your choice, and it’s okay for you to make that choice. But be aware it is not ideal. Be aware that it may give you a rep for working cheap. Be wary of backend deals from unproven publishers. Your work, time and talent are either worth something, or they aren’t.