Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Blogging sold more cats than FB and Instagram

Sorry for the lack of updates this past month! I was paralysed by the selling of the cats... I had to reply tons of emails, messages, comments all over my many social media channels (FB, Instagram. Blog, Patreon), coordinating transport from warehouse to temporary holding then to my house and shop, labelling, packing and mailing the cats, etc. etc. There was simply no free time at all to draw new comics and I learnt:

Despite me posting several times on FB and Instagram to ask people to buy, nothing beats a good story about how difficult it is to make them. 

After posting this article: "Why Matcha cat cushions were so difficult to make", sales soared and I sold around 150 cats compared to only 30 or so initially...

Other things I also learnt selling online:
  1. Don't use bank transfer if a flood of orders come in because people don't put their initials when they make payment. Therefore it is difficult to cross-reference which payment is paid by who. Also specify limited quantity items must be ordered via paypal because some people just transfer the money without checking whether the item is in stock first...
  2. There are still many people who are new to paypal and do not know that I will automatically receive order confirmation email... (online shopping works like this...) . My paypal address is different from contact email so I received tons of forwarded paypal confirmation emails from worried buyers who mistook my instructions for bank transfer customers... This caused a lag in response too...
  3. There were some customers who thought I can magically read every single comment on FB, Instagram and Blog to change their order information.... (such as address change or change of items)... ... ... ....Sorry my brain froze at the thought of so many posts I made and so many comments from people afterwards and I had to magically scan through everything to cross-reference to the already flooded mailboxes...
  4. I also received many queries if they can self collect at my home to save on postage...
    Many people message or call me before and after the meet up time. Some of them want to make sure I will be at home, some do not know the place well and need to ask for directions and some simply wants to chit chat or make sure I am there when they come. Multiply this by 20-30 a day and my tiny brain will explode into a million pieces of popcorn. Therefore to prevent this from happening, it is best buyers pay postage so I can mail when I am free or just go to Simplifi3D shop to pick up (Once again, many people thought I will be there... I have to stress that it is on consignment basis... I...am... not....there.....)
  5. There are still people who do not know that "Eva The Explorer" is the same book as "Eva, Kopi and Matcha" despite me mentioning several times on FB and I also wrote on my website... So after reminding them that it was the same book but in different language, I had to cancel order and update setting... which also used up my time.
I also learned...

"I am your fan" ≠ "I will buy your book to support you" and
"I am your fan" ≠ "I will buy your cat even without discount"

When I told them the only way to self-collect and enjoy the discount was to bring my book or buy my book at Simplifi3D, they just told me they don't have my book or don't want to buy my book... which made me kind of...

But frankly speaking, I am very happy I sold around 200 cats now and made many fans delighted. But at the same time I am now very scared of seeing my own cat cushions because I had to deal with so many of them everyday. I even freaked out immediately when I came back from my one-week family trip into my room filled with cats and packages waiting to be mailed out...

Nevertheless, I have to perserve to earn some money for my trip to Japan next month to work on my second book and blog with JapanTravel. So hey if you have some spare cash, please consider supporting! http://www.eva.sg/EN/shop.html (there are still around 300 cats waiting for adoption!)
*The website has all information about the price and location, so please don't ask me again how much or where to buy...


Monday, October 19, 2015

Take away or to go in Japan

I heard that no take away of leftovers from restaurants and buffet was allowed because of a major food poisoning that happened some years ago. Caterers and restaurants did not want to be liable if anything happens. Bento are ok because they have a expiry date and storage instructions on the packaging!

Maybe this explains the tiny portions too...hmm...

Monday, October 12, 2015

Monday, October 5, 2015

Haze comics

It's the haze season again in Singapore! Yes, it is actually an official season now! Starts from September and might end in November...
It is said to be caused by the palm oil plantations in Indonesia: https://webreathewhatwebuy.com
So I drew this "sensitive" teeth toothpaste to help get more signatures for the campaign. But apparently it is still far from target (maybe it's too troublesome?)

I still go for my yoga classes and went to a Ashtanga yoga class last month at Yoga Inc. And boy, it was very tough, jumping in and out of poses and several repetitive sequences. I think I will go back to my regular hatha and flow classes...

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Why Matcha cat cushions were so difficult to remake

matcha cat animal cushion
It wasn't easy to clear 100 cat cushions last year. I sold through my homepage, during my talks and I rented booths at conventions. The books were freakin heavy and the cats were freakin bulky. You combine the two and it's a seller's worst nightmare. Finally after 3 months of struggle, it was finally sold out during Anime Festival Asia in December.

...and I thought my nightmare was over...

But whenever I take Matcha (yes that is the name of my cat) out to conventions, people kept asking for it. Strange that:
When I have plenty of stock, people don't want to buy.
When I have no stock, people want to buy.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Animals taking over human jobs in Japan

tama nitama cat station master japan
In Japan, cats can become station master and dogs can become store keepers!
Don't think this can happen in other countries... *sweat*


*I will be signing my comic strips from now on to prevent theft of my artwork with my credits removed.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Deadly Indonesian chili VS Japanese curry

Japanese curry Indonesian chilli webcomics evacomics comic strips culture shock difference
Last comic strip based on my trip to Indonesia last month! The chili is deadly!!! (Singapore is in between I think)

Friday, September 18, 2015

Singapore Toy, Game & Comic Convention (STGCC) 2015

Singapore Toy, Game & Comic Convention STGCC 2015
With nothing to sell this year, I went to Singapore Toy Game and Comics Convention, aka STGCC 2015 (12-13 Sep) as a media visitor to check out the exhibits, the artist alley and crowd.

One-day pass costs $19 and two-day pass costs $28, increased from $25 last year. Kids below 5 can enjoy free admission on Sat and kids below 12 can enjoy free admission on Sunday. Unfortunately this information was not well conveyed as many people I spoke to did not know about this.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Tight security in Indonesian shopping malls

I was really amazed with the tight security at shopping malls in Indonesia. They even check vehicles when you drive into the driveway or carpark. I felt almost as safe as airports... I wonder if it happens in other countries too?

Monday, September 7, 2015

5 things not to say to a comic artist

I was recently terribly busy helping out in my alumni's event and doing an urgent commission work so there were not many new comics besides the regular Monday ones. During those alumni events, I networked with many strangers who had never heard of my comics. The most popular comment was "Can you draw me" and "Can you give a talk at our school". But when I asked if I can sell my books there and if I will get speaker fees, the replies were mostly irritating: "Oh sorry, you cannot sell your book during the talk... We are tight on budget, so can you consider doing it for free? Think of it as promotion". The irony was after chatting for some time, it is revealed that they do have LOTS of money. Well, not for me that is.

I did lots of free talk last year and sold my books there. That was how I managed to clear 1,000 books all by myself within a year. But the downside was I became so busy preparing the materials, doing promotion for the events, that I have ZERO time to work on my new book.

The last comment "MORE EXPOSURE", which was used by 80% of potential clients last year to negotiate my fees downwards actually made me motivated to grow my fanbase to proof that I don't need your exposure, you need me to promote you instead.

Unfortunately this year, I am caught up with tons of commission work, some were paid last year but delayed till this year. That's why I am very grateful to all my patrons at Patreon, who provided me a steady flow of monthly allowance so I could jack up my commission rates and lessen the projects I had to do. This means more time to work on all-new content for my book, while still keeping the regular Monday comic strips! Of course, I do still get requests to conduct workshops (which sometimes require lots of meetings and get cancelled last minute, so I will be declining all workshops for corporate HR training), tons of requests to negotiate my fees and collaborations, etc. Sometimes I wish I can just ignore all the emails and go somewhere far far away to work on my book... But money is important, especially in Singapore, so I will still read emails.


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