By Bruce Lidl Lost somewhat in the initial burst of news from last week’s ImageExpo was the announcement of a new Image Humble Bundle offering, beginning that morning and lasting until January 21. The “Humble Image Comics Bundle 2: Image Firsts” is a massive collection of digital comics that can be purchased for whatever price […]
This is really sad. In a letter to customers, Ben and A.J. Trujillo, the owners of Star Clipepr COMis in Stalous, have announced the store is closing, with a liquidation sale beginning on Saturday. Opened in 1988, and going through three ownership changes, Star Clipper was always in front of retailing trends, and the Trujillos had definitely built up a great relationship with their community—as evidenced by the outpouring of support on their FB page—carrying a wide selection of comics for adults and kids, with a strong emphasis on female customers. Recent signings include Neal Adams, Cullen Bunn, Chris Samnee, Michael DeForge, Kate Leth, Tim Lane, Jeff Weigel, so you can see how eclectic their domain was.
Disclosure: Todd Allen is a long-time contributor to this site, so read the following as advanced log-rolling if you will.
That said, the book he kickstarted over the summer, Economics of Digital Comics is out. I have an early digital copy and this is really a book everyone in the comics business should read, especially people going into various digital models, from crowdfunding to subscription to pay what you want. Allen casts a cynical eye on most of this stuff, and runs numbers to show what works and what doesn’t. But he also looks at print costs, and the economies of other channels to give a strong overview of what we talk about when we talk about selling comics in 2014. The book has new interviews with digital players and statistics on what webcomics earn from advertising, how much it costs to print books, what the big players take out of various delivery methods and more. All footnoted. And an introduction by Mark Waid, who has become something of the spokesman for Generation Digital.
Millennials, can’t live with ‘em, can’t get a vanilla soy macchiatto without ‘em. Among the many charges levied against these lazy, disengaged kids is that they ever grow up and read too many comic books. BUT IS THAT TRUE? Commentator Kevin Drum—who I normally adore—does some back of the envelope calculations and concludes that only 2% of millennials are comics readers. For the numerically inclines out there (translation: Torsten) here are his envelope calculations:
Marvel continued to dominate the top 10 and both units and dollars according to November sales figures released today by Diamond. Sales for the four-Wednesday week were down from five week October, but comics are up for the year overall, with periodical sales statistically flat down .11%. Dolalrs are up, but so are cover prices. […]
Retailer organization ComicsPRO has been a major influence in the industry over the last few years, working with publishers and holding a yearly conference that is widely thought to be one of the most important of the year. However, now it seems a former Board member is under investigation for possible misuse of funds, as […]
I’m devastated to learn of the death of Brian Jacoby, the owner of Secret Headquarters, a comics shop in Tallahassee, FL. Jacoby was admitted to the hospital last week with blood clots in both lungs and a leg, and he died suddenly on Thanksgiving night. Jacoby tweeted his health experiences and hospitalization on his Twitter account—painful reading now, but his humor even in illness is evident. The above photo is taken from his Twitter account.
Well, sort of. It’s well known that some used book prices on Amazon are just kind of…loony. Take for instance, Monsters by Ken Dahl, an excellent book about a guy who thinks he has herpes by Ken Dahl, published by Secret Acres but now out of print. (A new edition is planned for next year.) In the meantime, you can get a used copy for a mere $394.94… or brand new for $11,964.08.
We’ve been talking about how the comics industry is doing well, and people seem to be making good on their business plans. But there are still cautionary tales. One such tale is Kaboom Test Labs, a two store cain located in Albuquerque, NM that abruptly closed shop this weekend. The main site has only a note that the owners were leaving New Mexico; a Facebook page where disappointed customers wondered what happened has been removed.
Out with the old, in with the new? As we’ve been reporting, October comics sales were pretty damn massive. It’s the culmination of a year that started a little rocky but has blossomed as new trends blew into town behind a strong trade wind. Multiversity’s David Harper has the much needed big think piece on what’s happening complete with CHARTS. First he points out that The Big Two are still the big two:
There was a time not too long ago when you could fit all the “women in comics” at a big table in a coffee shop. Now there re more than 300 women who just work in comics shops. That’s the membership of The Valkyries, a private organization for female comics retail employees. and it turns out the group has been instrumental in promoting a coupld of books that have had great success this year, namely Saga and Lumberjanes. Janelle Asselin interviews group founder Kate Leth for all the details:
A diverse group of retailers await entry into the exclusive event! Friday morning, Marvel hosted an exclusive event for retailers, announcing and teasing a variety of titles and projects. On the panel: Dan Buckley David Gabriel Alel Alonso Tom Brevoort Micke Marts C. B. Cebulski Nick Lowe Mark Paniccia Sana Amanat Janine Schafer After all […]
September is Big Event month at DC Comics, and they crushed it this September as they usually do with their super lenticular covered Future’s End event which saw stand-alone stories set five years in the future of the DCU. These “random future” events usually disappoint me as I expect to see the Flash living with is brother in law and their two kids, and Poison Ivy running a plant shop, but then, that’s me. Anyway, Multiversity talked to a bunch of retailers about how the event did compared to last year’s Villain’s month which was allocated and ignited a frenzy as they say. Most retailers I’ve talked to say it was okay but not great and the Multiversity survey yielded similar thoughts. It is a sad time when a Batman butt selfie only does okay but these are the times we live in.
Well, this will come as little to no surprise to anyone but….the group of people who buy the most print books are the oldest and the fewest, the youngest according to U.S. Bureau of Labor statistics. In 2013, consumers spent an average of $29.20 on books not purchased through book clubs. Among different age groups, […]
Everyone should “Listen to JImmy” Palmiotti that is. The veteran writer, artist editor and publisher is one of the most knowledgeable comics people out there. With his collaborators from Paperfilms, Justin Gray and Amanda Conner, he’s made a small publishing enterprise out of kickstarting a series of graphic novels based on the European album format. The seventh, Sex and Violence Vol. II is ending in a few days and we advise you to get in on the Amanda Conner/Dave Johnson action as soon as possible — the books will not be sold in any other way. We talked to Palmiotti a few months ago when he was Kickstarting the SF tale Denver and got his overall thoughts on using Kickstarter as a platform. This time out we talk about the storytelling process,finding artists and also find out how Harley Quinn, which he co-writes with Amanda Conner, has become one of DC’s bestselling titles, with a huge female fan base.