SKTCHD is back.
So..what was SKTCHD?
SKTCHD was a site run by myself, David Harper, from June 2015 to June 2016.
It was fun, and something that was a little different in the world of comic sites. And now it’s back as a subscription site with an expanded purview and new content from yours truly, including:
Old favorites, like deeply researched longforms and industry analysis, are set to return, as well as dedicated weekly columns, monster interviews, a slew of new content varieties, guest stars, and more.
The home of Off Panel, my weekly comics interview podcast. It will continue to be free, but there will be subscription-only content on the site, including key chats from each longform.
The brand new SKTCHD forum will be a haven for comic lovers of all varieties to discuss the world of comics, what they’re working on, recent news, and more with other members and David himself.
Want more information on what SKTCHD will include? You can find a deeper breakdown on that and why the site is embracing the subscription model below.
Want to subscribe?
Select one of the site’s plans below to subscribe.
$4.99 per month
$3.99 per month
A month of SKTCHD is either the same as your typical Marvel #1 or, for the best rate, the price of most single issue comics to get unlimited access to the site’s content and community.
Still not sure? Try a free week on me, as each subscription gets a 7-day trial.
Note: Subscriptions automatically renew at the end of the month
or quarter you’ve signed up for. You can cancel at any time by turning auto-renew off. Your subscription will end at the conclusion of the period you signed up for.
So what makes SKTCHD and its content worthwhile?
Let’s ask some people you might know for their thoughts.
SKTCHD is one of the most comprehensive online resources for anyone who is interested in the inner workings of the comics industry. David is extremely thoughtful and thorough in his research and always manages to cover a wide breadth of topics and creators, so there is something for everyone.~Jen Bartel (Blackbird)
Whether in podcast interviews or longform journalism, David Harper’s passion and devotion to the comics medium in all its forms underlies a youthful exuberance and amiable demeanor that always puts his subjects at ease. Regardless of genre, format or personality, David’s curiosity and professionalism drive his pursuit of the profound deep dive; always engaging, never repetitive!~Stuart Immonen (Nextwave: Agents of H.A.T.E., Grass of Parnassus)
David’s interviews and articles are friendly and thorough, and it’s apparent that he’s put the legwork in when it comes to background research. Always informative and a pleasure to read.~Fiona Staples (Saga)
SKTCHD is an oasis of good faith comics journalism, chiseled with a canny eye. David Harper is providing something the industry and the medium desperately needs, and I’m excited to see what SKTCHD 2.0 brings to the table.~Declan Shalvey (Injection, Moon Knight)
So…again, what is SKTCHD?
Let’s do it one more time, but with more detail.
SKTCHD subscribers will get access to all of the content publishes each and every week, with my goal to publish four to six pieces a week, all of which is completely original content. This will include industry analysis, retrospectives and oral histories, deep dive interviews with creators and industry types, looks at the weird world of comics, and more, including weekly staples like my Friday column in which I analyze the past week in comics, the industry and beyond, as well as my look at the week’s releases in “The Pull.” There will even be monthly chats hosted on the site, either with me or hopefully guests in the near future.
Still wondering what SKTCHD might look like? Here are some good examples from my previous run for what you might be able to expect from the site.
- The oral history of the one time DC and Marvel not only crossed over their entire lines but mashed up their characters in the DC vs. Marvel event, with insight from the vast majority of the key players who were involved
- Variant covers have become a frighteningly big part of the comic industry. But how big are they and are they a hero or villain to the health of the industry? Through data and perspectives from comic shops, publishers and readers, this subject is thoroughly explored
- Artist John Paul Leon is a comics legend, and a true artists’ artist. He shared insight into his cover work and approach to his craft in an art feature
The objective of SKTCHD is to do things a bit differently than other comic sites, approaching varying topics in informative, heavily researched yet fun ways. While there won’t be a ton of content, the idea is quality, not quantity, making it a bit atypical to the trends of the internet. The vast majority of it will be from me, but The AV Club’s Oliver Sava is signed up for a quarterly column, guest columnists will be popping in from time-to-time, and more is on its way beyond that. It should be a lot of fun.
The SKTCHD podcast, Off Panel, will continue to be free as it was before. It’ll exist on all the places you found it previously – Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, etc. etc. – and is still going to be the same weekly comics interview podcast it was before, with guests new and old talking about comics, the industry and more.
So your subscription will include the same access everyone gets. However, SKTCHD subscribers will get access to non-Off Panel related audio content, including some of the interviews that feed into the longform features I’m writing, occasional video features, as well as perhaps eventually a second podcast that’s SKTCHD exclusive. But Off Panel is the core of the podcast side of things and will continue to be free (although you can support the show and get early access to each week’s episode by backing it on Patreon).
Comics are one of my favorite subjects to talk about.
But sometimes, the conversation about comics can have a frustratingly argumentative and ugly tenor to it. That’s not to say disagreement is universally bad, but when it lacks common decency, that’s enough to chase even the most passionate fans away.
The SKTCHD forum will hopefully be different. It’s a moderated home for discussion about the world of comics in a broader scope, with conversations touching on everything from the comics themselves and the industry to comic movies and beyond. It’s been running for a bit already, and people to seem like it! It’s something I’ve always wanted to do, as I’ve long loved the comic shop talk experience, but this is that on a larger scale.
This forum also exists as a place for discussion about the site, its content and what you all would like to see more of (it’s also where article comments live), but above all, it will be a place for you to have fun, in-depth and civil conversations about this medium we all love so much, while meeting fellow fans who could become new friends or future collaborators.
Or we can just make a bunch of jokes about silly comic things. That’s fun too. Join the conversation by subscribing and pressing the Discussion button at the top!
Why is this a subscription site?
I love writing about comics. It’s something I greatly enjoy, whether I’m creating absolutely ridiculous Excel documents examining comic sales or diving deep into the story behind a comic I adore. The first run of SKTCHD was a blast, and people seemed to dig it. But in my year of running the site, I created hundreds of pieces of content, which proved unsustainable for one major reason: I never found a real way to monetize it.
That’s not entirely surprising. It can be incredibly difficult to monetize anything online. Even worse, the existing banner ad model that most sites use encourages bad behavior and negative user experiences, as it inspires low quality content that’s quick to churn out at volume (all of which is surrounded by hordes of banner and video ads). I’m never going to be able to create that kind of volume, nor would I want to write that kind of content. It’s exhausting and not interesting to me, if I’m being honest.
The subscription model offers a perfect alternative, as SKTCHD might not be for the masses, but it might be for you if you’re into deeply researched longforms, a wide variety of interviews with a different approach, industry analysis, and a whole lot more. And even better for you, your subscription means you get to read the content you want with no ads, no pop ups, and no random videos that are playing somewhere but oh god where are they playing can someone figure it out?
Going this route makes it possible for me to write the types of articles I want to write in a sustainable way while you hopefully get to read the types of articles you want to read. It’s the best version of a comic site by me, or at least that’s what the goal is. It’s a dream of quality over quantity, with room to grow and make something special.
Welcome to SKTCHD, once again. I hope you enjoy it.