Royal Historian of OZ finale only available in digital form

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201106211113 Royal Historian of OZ finale only available in digital form

Only a few days ago, SLG announced they would be selling digital comics via iVerse, and, in a sign of the continuing difficulty of selling small comics periodicals, they have announced that the final issue of ROYAL HISTORIAN OF OZ by Tommy Kovac and Andy Hirsch will only be available as a pdf download. Although low orders scuttled the final print issue, it will be available in the collected edition, which is due in September.

It’s getting tougher and tougher out there for EVERYONE. However, the digital option is at least available to make sure that the last issue is published.

Comments

  1. Ugh. I get sales are bad on indies, but it royally pisses me off to realize that the only way I can buy a complete series is to either a. buy a trade for one issue or b. purchase the last issue as some nebulous digital download.

  2. Alβ„’ says:

    At least this way, the creators can sell their work, get paid, and have a store that is open 24/7.

    I think this is the best way for indie creators to stay in the marketplace.

    Then the challenge is to promote the book and the site.

  3. Can’t they at least put it up on an POD site like Lulu or ComicsAlliance?

  4. Gah, obviously I meant “ComixPress” there.

  5. While it’s unfortunate that preorders couldn’t even cover a small run, it’s worth noting that this isn’t really a “nebulous” digital copy. It’s DRM-free in a variety of file types, meaning you can take it to any device, back it up, or even print a homemade copy.

  6. Hardly shocking – SLG did this with Midnight Sun 4 years ago.

  7. Dennis V. says:

    Not happy one bit that SLG will not be publishing the last issue (as a normal comic book). I’m going to have to rethink ever buying another future SLG comic book (or maybe just wait and see if the entire series gets published and then purchase it).

  8. The sales on this (entertaining) book were pretty dire. I could understand complaints if they were making the readers buy the entire series again in trade just to get the last chapter, but they’re not doing that. I’m sure SLG would have preferred to print the last issue too, but it’s unreasonable to complain about a small publisher refusing to throw its money away.

  9. SLG is one of the victims here, not the villain. Dan Vado is a small businessman, not a wealthy philanthropist.

    Dennis V’s reaction of saying he’s not going to buy SLG comics is understandable, but it just ensures that books like Midnight Sun and Royal Historian won’t get published at all.

    The printed floppy is the LP of our medium, folks. Miss it as much as you must – as much as I do – but it’s dead, Jim. If you want to still be able to read comics like these, you’re simply going to have to get them in digital form.

  10. It frustrates me that this keeps happening to SLG titles. Warlord of Io started as print, then went digital, then went to trade; I wish they could have picked a delivery system and stuck to it.

  11. Sure, I’d prefer the series to come out in a single format too. But so far as I’m concerned, the most I’m entitled to expect from a publisher is that if they’ve taken my money for the first half of a story, they make a legitimate effort to produce the remainder. It’s not like one of those Marvel minis from a few years back where they took thousands of people’s money for the first two issues and then gave up. THAT’S indefensible. SLG is making the best of a bad situation.

  12. Not for nothing, but we already lost a lot of money on issue #1 which we priced at $1.00 in order to get people to try the comic. Sales of that issue were less than we had hoped for and the series did nothing but loose numbers and money despite getting nearly universal great reviews behind it.

    The sales on issue #5 were less than 800 copies. So, somewhere along the line I can only assume that people were not into the thing or had adopted a “wait for the trade” mentality.

    You are of course entitled to boycott my company’s output if you like, but from the look at the numbers we are getting it would seem that most of the comic book reading world already is.

  13. I’ve got to thank The Beat for the heads up here… so Thank you.

    Also, Thank you to Dan Vado for this option. I can see myself possibly still getting the trade to support SLG, although it’s a shame this has happened to me multiple times. I recall it happening with the excellent Gargoyles comics as well.

    I’ve spent my $1 and it’s a quality PDF file. This was a great series, sad to hear not more people gave it a try, here’s hoping Dan is right on trade waits and this great work is seen by more folks. It’s up there with Shanower’s work.

  14. Mike Hansen says:

    Well, crap. This was a terrific series. I hope the collection sells well.

    I just preordered the Complete Haunted Mansion collection, which also includes unpublished material.

    Amaze Ink/Slave Labor has published a lot of terrific series over the last 20-odd years, but its sales seem to be awful lately.

    Part of the problem might be the company’s web presence. I Googled “Amaze Ink Slave Labor Graphics,” and the company site didn’t even come up on the first page.

    On the company site, when I click on “Comic Books – SLG” near the top, the site gives me no results. The “Signings & Conventions” and “Terms & Conditions” sections haven’t been updated in years.

    And there are a lot of non-SLG graphic novels offered at cover price, when there are a lot of cheaper options available online.

    On the other hand, there are some GREAT deals in the “Clearance” section, including a lot of $1 comics and a 5-comics-for-$1 funbag! The prices on the Evan Dorkin and other comics are so low they’re worth buying and handing to loved ones and hated enemies.

    I’m placing an order today.

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