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What the Duck in the news and bingo progress

Back in December and March, I told you about a comic submission called What the Duck by Aaron Johnson. He created a creative way to track the rejections of the submission progress. He’s heard back from everyone but King Features and had some interest from Universal Press. Check out the his bingo chart for more info.

The What the Duck feature is getting some notice over on PopPhoto.com

The story goes that Aaron Johnson of Oak Creek, Wisconsin woke up one morning last July and had the idea to make a comic strip about a struggling professional photographer who just happened to be a duck. These first five strips appeared on his band’s blog, as filler material while the band’s regular blogger, lead singer Carol Kroll, was away for a few days.

Within a few hours, photo-centric message boards such as sportsshooter.com and the PopPhoto.com forums were linking to the original five What the Duck comic strips.

It was meant to be a joke. A one-off. A way to add some fresh content to the band’s website during some downtime. That’s it. Five strips, then back to band updates.

Then the emails began — from photographers, both pros and amateurs, industry names and weekend hobbyists alike. Like wildfire, What the Duck burst onto the scene, with its own Web site, an ever-expanding line of WTD-branded merchandise, and a fanbase that continues to grow, both among photographers, the people who love (or put up with) photographers, and a growing readership that is now reaching beyond the niche photography market.

Community Comments

#1 Chris
April/25/2007
@ 7:05 pm

He turned down online syndication because he wanted others to be able to use WTD strips on their websites still?!
Why did he even submit his strip for syndication if he didn’t want to succeed, then?

#2 steve s
April/25/2007
@ 7:21 pm

Online syndication is nothing more than a right of first refusal for possible print syndication and as yet is not a profitable situation for the creator. It is becoming more popular and the syndicates must be loving it. It is a no-lose situation for them and offers very little promise for the creator. It does, however, put you in the spotlight with a syndicate and allows you to work tirelessly to show them you can work tirelessly. Anybody else’s thoughts on online syndication?

#3 Alan Gardner
April/25/2007
@ 8:00 pm

steve, I think you nailed it. From what I gather from syndicated folks is that they make very little off of the syndicate’s web site. Sounds like Aaron made a very smart business decision.

#4 Review: W.T. Duck by Aaron Johnson » The Daily Cartoonist
September/8/2008
@ 10:05 am

[…] of Aaron’s comic since he created the syndication bingo back in late 2006 (see here, here and here), and was excited to learn that Universal Press picked it up for a development deal and then for a […]

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