Behind the scenes in comics, there are a number of shadowy groups pulling the strings of the industry... Okay, that's not entirely true, but there is a group that operates behind the scenes and affects the industry, and that group is the Valkyries. The Valkyries is a group of women who work in comics retail that have banded together. They push books that they particularly love, and work with creators, publishers, and fans to sell more comics -- to women especially. But above all, the group functions as a private support network for women in the comics retail business, and offers its members help when confronting some of the more unpleasant dimensions of the comic book business and geek culture as they relate to women.
Started by cartoonist and retailer (and ComicsAlliance contributor!) Kate Leth, the group just hit 300 members total.We chatted with Leth about the group, its purpose, and its plans for the future.
Welcome to the latest episode of ComicsAlliance Presents “Kate or Die,” a series of exclusive comic strips created by one of our favorite cartoonists, Kate Leth! In this episode, Kate -- a part-time comics retailer -- offers advice to those comics shops who could make their businesses more hospitable to new customers.
The big headline on Publishers Weekly’s site when it published the results of its comics retailer survey last month blared that comics sales were down during the early months of 2014, though retailers seem relatively optimistic about it.
What comes after is a sometimes difficult-to-parse snapshot of the world of comics as it looks now. It’s not necessarily a bleak picture, but it’s very clearly one that portrays an industry may not be able to sustain itself as it is now. Change is occurring, and here are some key items from the report that show how, and what might be changing.
Last week ComicsAlliance published an editorial by Matt D. Wilson's titled What Does A Number One Issue Mean? In that piece, Matt criticized American comic book publishers' reliance on the "all-new #1 issue" scheme, describing it as a "myth" with respect to creative direction and a "stunt" with respect to sales.
After reading Matt's piece, Brandon Schatz of Wizard's Comics in Edmonton penned an insightful look at the topic from the point of view of the retailer, to whom the shiny new #1 issue is also squarely aimed. It's with Schatz's gracious permission that we're publishing his words, which have been edited only slightly so as to add images, relevant links and conform to CA's style guide.
Dark Horse Comics announced last Thursday that it would begin offering digital versions of its comics and graphic novels on the same day they go on sale in comics shops and bookstores. The plan, which goes into effect December 14, brings the publisher up to speed with Marvel and DC Comics, but Dark Horse's plan was distinct in that it was to offer those digital products for as little as $0...
As evidenced by the fact that I still have the occasional nightmare about missing order deadlines, I worked at a comic book store for six years. During that time, I became pretty familiar with the struggles and annoyances that retailers go through, and even though I haven't been on that side of things for a while now, I'm still interested in the things that make it easier for the people running the shops to get comics into the hands of the customers...
Here at ComicsAlliance, we value our readership and are always open to what the masses of Internet readers have to say. That's every week, Senior Writer Chris Sims puts his comics culture knowledge to the test as he responds to your reader questions...
With DC Comics' line-wide relaunch kicking off next week, the industry has been holding its collective breath wondering whether the publisher's gambit will be rewarded with sales proportional to the event's robust marketing efforts...
After the response to the recent Public Service Announcement by the cast of The Rack, a webcomic set in a comic book shop called Panels, ComicsAlliance will be featuring more helpful Public Service Announcements about comics culture on the regular in an exclusive feature called PSAs From Panels by Kevin Church and artist Sandra Lanz...
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