The Big One:Twilight GN gets 350,000 first printing

Twilight GraphicNovel The Big One:Twilight GN gets 350,000 first printing
Well gang, here is the game changer. Here is the bestseller. This is the book that’s going to drive all-new readers into comics shops, with full support of the publisher. Unfortunately it’s Twilight so the new readers are barbarian girls. Borders, get ready. EW.com has an excerpt of an exclusive interview with Stephenie Meyer and a one-page excerpt of a 10-page preview that is set to run in this week’s issue. That’s right, 10 pages of comics in EW. Do you remember the magazine industry?

TGN panel 510 The Big One:Twilight GN gets 350,000 first printing

The manga — which is being published in hardcover on March 16 — will have a 350,000 initial print run, and $19.99 price. Artist Young Kimis not a character in Scott Pilgrim, but at least hasn’t been replaced by a guy yet. Little was known of Kim, but she is Korean has a fine arts background and this is her first manga — a very faithful adaptation of the book, which will be presented in two volumes. According to the EW piece, Meyer had mucho input:

The text of your original novel is boiled down so carefully that it doesn’t feel like anything is missing. Were you the one who did that?

I was definitely involved. I didn’t do the original “script” for the book, so to speak. But when I got the dialogue with the images, I did a lot of tinkering. In a couple of places, I asked for missing scenes to be inserted. For example, the conversation in the car that Bella and Edward have after she faints in Biology.


Hachette also put out a press release, which you can read in the jump.


Yen Press, the graphic novel imprint of Hachette Book Group, announced that it will publish the highly-anticipated first volume in the graphic novel adaptation of  Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight on March 16, 2010.  Twilight: The Graphic Novel, Volume 1 will be released in hardcover for $19.99 ($22.99 CAN) with a first printing of 350,000 copies.  As is typical in graphic novel publishing, due to the length of the prose novel, the book will be divided into two volumes and the release date for the second volume is forthcoming. 

Twilight: The Graphic Novel contains selected text from Meyer’s original novel with illustrations by Korean artist Young Kim.  A rare fusion of Asian and Western comic techniques is reflected in this black-and-white graphic novel with color interspersed throughout.  Meyer consulted throughout the artistic process and had input on every panel. 

“I’ve enjoyed working on this new interpretation of Twilight,” said Meyer.  “Young has done an incredible job transforming the words that I have written into beautiful images.  The characters and settings are very close to what I was imagining while writing the series.” 

Kurt Hassler, Yen Press Publishing Director, said, “Few American publishing properties are better suited to introduce a vast readership to the medium of graphic novel than the phenomenon that is Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight.  Yen Press will certainly continue to expand this audience with the help of Bella and Edward.” 

In four years, Stephenie Meyer has become a worldwide publishing phenomenon.  The Twilight Saga’s translation rights have been sold in nearly 50 countries and 85 million copies have been sold worldwide.   

Comments

  1. Ray Benton says:

    While I believe this will sell – it will not drive new readers to comics. The people who will buy this will be Twilight fans – die hard Twilight fans. Because it’s nothing new – it just another tired adaption of a bestselling book, yeah it happens to be THE bestseller of the last few years – but still a book with mediocre uninspired art. Because it is an adaptation of a HUGE bestseller the print run is high. I really doubt that most of the customers who buy this will run and pick up Sandman or Persepolis. Just check out the comments on EW’s site. Here is the first one posted.
    “Yawn! And I am a Robert Pattinson fan. But enough is enough.”
    Indeed.

  2. I’m fine with an incursion of barbarian girls as long as they look like Red Sonja and Xena.

  3. I can’t believe they didn’t include either the cute boy vampire or werewolf on the cover. Aren’t they a huge part of what the fans want to see?

  4. Synsidar says:

    I expect that the publisher is targeting fans of Meyer’s Twilight novels, more than it is fans of the movies.

    Taking a look at Meyer’s New Moon, I see how readers could get into the book. The text is easy to read, and the first person POV Meyer uses — if the reader identifies with Bella, her involvement with what goes on could be intense. If there are many chunks of text like the following one, however:

    I was like a lost moon — my planet destroyed in some cataclysmic, disaster movie scenario of destruction — that continued, nevertheless, to circle in a tight little orbit around the empty space left behind, ignoring the laws of gravity.

    Meyer’s comment re the artwork in the EW piece is in line with my attitude toward the artwork in mainstream comics generally. The artwork serves the same purposes that descriptive text does. If the reader wants to get inside a character’s head, words are needed. Artwork can’t do that effectively.

    SRS

  5. Twilight graphic novel.
    Original English Manga.
    350,000 copies.
    In hardcover.

    Truly historic.

    Those are Watchmen numbers. Remember all those “What to read while you’re waiting for Harry Potter” bookstore displays? Well, bookstores did it again with “Twilight”. Since the series is currently finite, there’s probably a lot of fans wanting to read something similar. Maybe it’s paranormal romance. Maybe it Anne Rice or Laurel K. Hamilton or Jane Austen. And if they enjoy the manga, maybe they’ll search for other paranormal or romance manga. Like Fruit Baskets. Or Ranma. Or Vampire Knight. Or…

    (Judging by the cover shown above, I suspect it will form a diptych with the second cover, which will feature the boyfrendt.)

    And for those who do not enjoy the series:
    Top 20 Unfortunate Lessons Girls Learn From Twilight
    http://www.wired.com/underwire/2009/11/twilight-lessons-girls-learn/

  6. Nate Horn says:

    YAY! I’m just happy to see a publisher select manga as the comic format. I think this should serve as the nail in the coffin of the idea that Marvel and DC are still “mainstream.” Manga is now what people think of when they think comics!

  7. Ray Benton says:

    Nate – manga is NOT what people think when they tink of comics. Give me a break. People will think of what they read – whatever the style and believe me when I say when mainstream America hears the word comic they most likely thing of a super-hero.

  8. Michael P says:

    Why would they go to comics shops when they can probably get it at the same chain bookstore where they bought the novels?

  9. One other thing… 350,000 copies. This means that Hachette will be promoting this like a bestseller title, which means attractive discounts to retailers to encourage them to order quantity of the title, who will then merchandise this title like a bestseller/blockbuster title, discounting it heavily in the stores.

    From my experience as a chain bookstore bookseller, it will be merchandised in a variety of locations within the store… Probably a Twilight display, probably a genre manga display, probably near the entrance so people see it when they come in, probably even a Yen Press display near manga.

    Oh man… just had a glorious vision… years from now, there will be a “Harry Potter” for comics… something to sell at Midnight, to large crowds of people, with a print run of a million copies.

  10. that’s lovely art there!

    It’s a shame Young Kim won’t be getting royalties.

  11. Not necessarily, Mario. There are a lot of shades of gray in work for hire.

  12. yeah, but what I know from having worked on licensed comics is that the artist gets a (good) page rate but the royalties go to the licensed celebrity person/entity.
    It’s found money for the celeb.

  13. What I know from working on licensed comics is that the cartoonist sometimes does get royalties, although that isn’t the norm.

  14. I don’t understand how this is “manga.” What is there about it that’s Japanese? What am I missing?

  15. PPL are using manga to mean the general art style, not traditional manga, with its accompanying forms/expressions/language. There are a lot of works these days that are manga-like w/out being manga.

    @ Ray: that is likely what they are thinking when you mention comics to an American in their 30’s. Americans 25 & younger might just as readily picture a manga style book when you say “comics” to them, if my seeing what younger folks are reaading @ bookstores is any indication. & in Europe, although there’s still lots of superheroes, there’s way broader inclusiveness @ shows (the whopping two I’ve seen). So we were set up across from a famous Dutch humor cartoonist: that guy likely would not have been @ an American comics convention.

    Don’t particularly care one way or the other about Twilight, said the vampire comic book writer. But my partner says I both have to read the books & watch the movies. Homework. Phooey. Like everyone else I’d be happy if this meant even a few more comic book readers, though! I didn’t mind the Twilight influx @ CCI. ;)

  16. Bob Fingerman says:

    The art for the Twilight thing looks completely apropos: vapid and unappealing.

  17. Xenos says:

    Twilight ruined The Beat! What? This goes up then the serves go down. I blame the Twilight. :p

    Yeah, this is pretty good numbers for comics, but it’s still leeching off the back of a multimedia monster that, personally, is a book that is questionably good for its teen fanbase. To me this is as cheap as bad girl comics in the 90s, just aimed at the opposite gender. While I do want more women reading comics, is this trash really the best way? Maybe it is. Who knows..

    @ ericshanower: Yeah. I think it’s totally BS that people call this manga. Though I think I know why. People are too lazy to use proper industry and literary terms. Also it still in this day and age has twinges of a type of racism. Before we said Japanese all looked the same with slanty eyes. Now we say their artwork all looks the same with large eyes. Plus there’s the whole issue of calling a Korean artists work Japanese, as if they were all the same. Korea does have its own word for comics after all. I will give credit to Yen for officially calling this a graphic novel and not going the TokyoPop route. Still doesn’t stop brainwashed fans though.

  18. Argh! says:

    Love it or hate it, Twilight as a manga is gonna sell. It is a game changer and will open more than a few doors in the book trade market place. For those of you who despise this and any of the other ‘crass’ adaptations, ya may want to take a step back and think it over a bit more. There will no doubt be a lot more of this to come. The audience will get smarter and discover there are better books out there.

    For now, the term comics applies to only the folks who live in this part of the industry. For anyone outside, it means comic books. Graphic novel is a term for the newly arrived but it’s also becoming common useage. Manga allows the book trade folk some way of differentiating Asian works from Western.

    Kids under the age of 20 just call them ‘books’.

    Now, you can sit back and whine about the adaptations or, you can step up and make better books that retailers will want to sell and readers will want to um…read.

    So dont get all pissy about a manga print run of 350,000 books. And dont forget the contribution Mr. Crumb has made with Genesis(which is clicking in at 130,000 maybe more). The comics publishers can see that it is possible to think beyond typical sales of 5,10, 20K print runs. What they need to do now is promote their books the same way Yen Press/Hachette is going to.
    Invest in marketing your books and you will see a return. That does mean you have to actually buy advertising now. You have to create publicity and, you have to act like business people.

    I know, it sounds crazy but it actually works.

    Bring on Harry Potter!

Speak Your Mind

*