Criticism & Leadership

Rod Walker hasn’t paid much attention to the Alt-Hero comic book project. RW doesn’t dislike comics or object to them, he just doesn’t understand them. They don’t click for him.

It is just not his thing, to use the common phrase.

That said, RW did like Vox Day’s post about the first Arkhaven comic book. Central quote:

But I care deeply about Arkhaven becoming the very best publisher of the best-written, most popular comic books and graphic novels in the comics industry. I expect excellence from everyone involved in the project, including myself. Sure, we fall short. Sure, we have no clue what we’re doing yet. It took me 12 tries to get Kindle Comic Creator to simply kick out a working .mobi file without crashing first. I still don’t really understand what flatting is or why it is necessary.

So what? I don’t need to know. I certainly don’t need to care. I just need to stay out of the way of the experts with whom I’m surrounding myself, and to whom I’m handing over the responsibility to do it right. I’m not afraid to bring on better writers than me, to hire the very best artists and colorists we can find, and more importantly, to listen to the substantive criticism and seek to continuously improve.

That is an excellent leadership philosophy in RW’s opinion. Leaders of large projects could do much worse than to 1.) surround themselves with competent people, and 2.) get out of their way while they do their work.  A pity this approach is not more common!

Also, most criticism is useless, by and large. Most criticism boils down to “I don’t like this for a reason I cannot articulate”, and “here is a rationalization for my dislike.” If you are clear in your objectives and know what you want to achieve, than most criticism is hot air. Background noise, essentially. Substantive criticism should be considered, but at least 97% of criticism isn’t substantive.

Also, while Rod Walker hasn’t read the comic book, he did read the novel that inspired it – Quantum Mortis: A Man Disrupted. It’s a really good novel, and you should read it.

And if comic books are your thing, you should check out the first volume of the comic version of Quantum Mortis: A Man Disrupted.

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