"Comics and Work-Made-for-Hire: Discussing page rates"
When I first started working for one particular comic book publisher, a fellow creator told me that this publisher didn’t like it when their creators talked amongst each another. Why is that? So we remain stupid? So we can be better controlled? So we don’t discuss things like page rates and royalties? Can publishers be so scared and so cheap?
Using a page rate system to pay comic book creators seems ok to me. However, one problem occurs when a publisher or editor acts dishonestly when trying to nickel-and-dime creators.
On one occasion, a fellow inker (who had worked in comics many years longer than I) asked me about my page rate. He wasn’t too happy when he found out that my page rate was higher than his. The fellow inker then contacted our editor to get an increase to his page rate. When told "no one gets paid THAT much" (a line once used on me, as well), the fellow inker responded with: "Al Nickerson does."
The fellow inker soon got an increase to his page rate.