Sure!– and thank you! I have a couple general tips, but let me preface them by saying I am NOT an artist by trade. This is my hobby and I have no technical training. These are just suggestions and not rules by any means; if they’re not right for you or your project, that’s okay!
Here are my five main tips:
1. Know your goals
2. Keep it simple
3. Have a script
4. Finished is better than perfect
5. Have a backlog
Wall of text below the cut to elaborate….. You have been warned.
1. Know your goals. It’s okay to have no goal except to have fun! But if you do want something specific– like to tell a certain story, or be finished within two years, or have it printed and made into physical copies– you need to acknowledge your goals as early on in the process as you can and think about how you’ll achieve it before you start any heavy lifting.
2. Keep it simple. Because comics can take a while to complete it’s important to keep things simple. This goes not just for the style you use, but the story you use too. My experience is that even simple stories can take many pages to tell coherently in comic form.
Keeping character designs simple helps too. You’ll have to redraw your characters over and over. A design that doesn’t seem complex when drawn once may become extremely taxing when drawn twelve times per page from many angles. There’s a place for ornate designs, of course! But finding ways to make characters simple to draw AND distinct will save you some time and wrist pain.
3. Have a script. You don’t have to marry yourself to your script, but it is much easier to keep your momentum if you know what happens next in the story. This is more important for longer comics than for short ones; you want to avoid running into the end of your script while working if possible.
4. Finished is better than perfect. You will never make the perfect story. Nobody will. It’s natural and normal for artists and authors to love what they make and then hate it so much they can barely look at it. But with comics it’s very important to resist the temptation to go back and fix old pages unless it’s truly necessary. If you spend time trying to patch your old pages you might burn out before you finish your comic. Most readers will be happier knowing how the story ends than seeing updated versions of pages they’ve already read!
5. Have a backlog of pages. Life happens. Sometimes we lose momentum, get busy, or experience declines in health that may make comic-making impossible. I really, really advocate for building a backlog of pages in anticipation of weeks or months where you just cannot work on a comic. You may never need to use your backlog, but if you do it can take a lot of pressure off.