Girl Genius is more successful than nearly any creator-owned comics being published today. The creative team of Phil Foglio & Kaja Foglio, who make up Studio Foglio, have been funding the print runs of their webcomic on Kickstarter for years now, and their success has only increased as more volumes are added to the series. The series, which the Foglios bill as a story of "Adventure, Romance, MAD SCIENCE," continues with Sparks and Monsters, the upcoming nineteenth graphic novel in the series. Less than twenty-four hours after the book's launch, it has raised over $75,000.
Here's how the Foglios pitch this volume of Girl Genius to their dedicated, and growing, fanbase:
It follows the adventures of Agatha Heterodyne, the last of a notorious family in which the spark of mad science runs strong. We call it a "Gaslamp Fantasy," by which we mean that it takes place in an old-fashioned, Vernian world of airships, monsters, and wild inventions. Sparks and Monsters is Book Six of The Second Journey of Agatha Heterodyne–and the nineteenth book in the overall series. If you're new to the Girl Genius comics, The Second Journey is a great place to jump in!
The Hugo award-winning Girl Genius is one of many comic series on Kickstarter that is currently changing the landscape of the way people read and purchase comics. Certainly, the way creators publish and market them. The Foglio's, whose amount earned through Kickstarter can currently be seen increasing by the minute on their campaign page, has taken a grassroots approach that speaks to the 2020 reader.
The music industry has seen record labels and A&Rs become irrelevant, which seems to match a current discussion with indie publishers where even successful companies seem wary of publishing series longer than six issues. Meanwhile, the Foglios have built and maintained a fanbase through producing thousands of pages of one, long-running story.