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The Comic Shop Adventure: Learning the Ways of Buying Comics

I was reading Katie Schenkel’s twitter and she was talking about DC making a how to video on the comic shop system. She’s right that it is hard for a new fan to figure out how to make sense out of it. I know when I got back into comics I had my own learning curve with it back in the late 90’s. I was left to my own devices learning the comic shop system. I picked up on it as time went on by listening and researching all the terms. Of course here’s the thing too as she mentions, a lot of comic shops won’t explain the ropes to new readers. Now people are wanting to get into comics and people are hunting out stores. Some people find an awesome one that engages them and gets them into the comic world. Others get a bad store and get driven away faster than you blink. I’ve done my share of helping people in shops before so I’m inspired to write my own oddball helper piece for a comic store newbie. Take note I’m not an expert but I’m a sponge and also helped a few new people get into comics. If I miss anything don’t hesitate to let me know and now onward with the comic learning show!

Now with a comic store you’ll enter in there trying to figure out how to navigate it. Where are the new release books, the back issues, trade paperbacks/graphic novels, and so forth. I went into a Hastings store recently that carried comics and my word it was a nightmare to navigate, new issues mixed with the old, it was such bad design with a little sign saying “New this week!” over the new title. It’s why most stores have new releases in a defined separate section. If you want to get more to catch up, the issues can be either behind the comic, next to the comic, or even in their own separate set of shelves next to the new books. Every store operates differently but usually it’s one of those setups for a lot of stores.

I have been talking in previous posts about pull lists and pre-ordering comic books. A pull list is when you tell the comic store people what you want to get week to week. You give them your list of books and they either put it into their system or put it onto paper near your pull, depending on the store. Once you give that store your list of books they’ll be sure to order that copy for you and you won’t miss a single issue. You can add or subtract titles from your pull list at any given time too.

Now with pre-ordering, it’s the same way with video games. You tell the store what you want and they’ll order it for you in advance. It’s another way to let the store know what you want and that book will be there for you the day it comes out. Pre-ordering also works for TPB’s, GN’s, and whatever else you desire from your store. You can use a catalog called Diamond Previews to go through and find what you want and use the order form or tell your store yourself what you want in advance.

There’s a lot more here to cover but this is a good way to adapt you to a store. I’ll probably do more of this as I don’t claim to know everything, I’ve just been in a lot of comic stores. Comic stores, book stores, and you name a style of book store I’ve probably been in it at least once. It’s my own experiences fueling this and believe me I don’t claim to be an expert at all. Seriously if any of you out there on twitter, tumblr, here in the comments, or anything else have more to add, feel free to put your voice out there. We’re all in this comics train together, let’s help one another out and help new readers out in their own adventure. To a better comic world and making comic books that much a better place for our new comic reading pals.


The Battle to Save Your Favorite Comic Books Continued

So I posted my thoughts on the books DC cancelled last night and now people are a little concerned. Now it was DC focused because of what was happening. After all DC took a lot of chances on books and things are looking a little up in the air on many of their titles that’s not a main Bat book or one of the major heroes in the DCU. Soon Marvel is about to start a major new book push during the latter bit of Secret Wars and beyond so it’s way too soon to tell how that’ll play out. Image is always trying out new series and some are meant to be mini series and others are cut short way before their time. Many people wonder the ways that they can help save their books and a lot of what I said in the DC column can be applied to any comic series. I also have some added ideas that I want to put into the universe from my DC post too.

I still want to say that word of mouth is a good one. Talk up any titles you’re into and see who may be curious. If they’re not into the book then at least you tried but you’d be surprised how often just recommending a book hooks a person. The art of “Hey this book is cool!” and speaking passionately about why you dig the book is always a plus. People can miss things and when you talk about a book it may be by their favorite writer or a subject they’re curious about and blown away they somehow missed it. I’ve had it happen to me a couple times and I’ve found many a cool series that way thanks to someone talking it up to me. Even more when someone talked about a series and I’d never heard anything about it or was reminded it existed then immediately buying it.

Now pre-order and pull lists to me go hand in hand. Pre-ordering is still the ultimate tool for a comic store to use for sales. Go to your Diamond Previews and fill out the order form or ask your store owner to specifically grab that book or books for you. That’s why I mentioned pull lists as well as once they know those are the books you want, they will grab those books for you. Now here’s one thing, I’d love to know how digital sales are applied to the overall sales totals of books now. I’d also like to know more as to how trade sales effect these books too. That’s something to think about down the road as to how books survive long term as there are readers who are digital and trade only readers.

I’m thinking out loud and also restating stuff that I’ve already said in my DC post. Yet I think discussing how to help all of the books out there is important too. Thanks for reading my continued thoughts on this.

The GWL Comic Book Pull List: 9/2/15

Right now I am in the midst of massive reevaluation of my pull list at this point. I’m getting fried on Secret Wars as #5 of the comic left me pretty cold. I still like some of the tie-ins but the main story is leaving me pretty worn out. As the series keeps expanding and going onward I’m finding myself less and less into it. A shame really as I adored the first two issues of it but I’ll give it another issue and see as we are nearing the end so let us see how it plays out you know? I am getting Squadron Sinister and Thors this round for tie-ins. Then for the rest of the Marvel end, Silk is still on my list I’m still behind on it but still I’ll catch up and it’ll be awesome. I’m getting the S.H.I.E.L.D. book this week and you know I’m torn on getting Miracleman this week. I want to trade wait Miracleman but the Gaiman and Buckingham run on Miracleman has me wanting to get it immediately rather than wait awhile. Call it the impatient side of me but I really enjoy Miracleman and I’ve never read any of Gaiman’s Miracleman so I’m excited for it. Then of course I’m getting Groot because I am Groot. Groot is fun.

Now with DC Comics, it has been fun to have DC Comics back in my life again reading wise. Yes I have written about the DC You rumors but I want to see how this plays out. If it keeps going I will be pleased but if it ends then DC Comics at least tried. This week though is pretty light DC wise as it is Midnighter and that’s it. I would get Bombshells but I subscribe to it digitally. I’ll end up getting the trade to Bombshells down the road though as that comic is too cool. I might try out a DC You book I haven’t been reading yet though, I think this might be my Omega Men week. I can see this easily being my week to do that. My light DC Comics haul on this end though Detective Comics has that cool looking Mecha-Joker and man alive is that neat looking.

For the rest of the comics this week, it is pretty light. I did do a review of Adam.3 #1 and #2 hits this week. I will end up getting We Stand on Guard #3 but man there isn’t a ton for me this week. Aliens vs. Vampirella looks strange as all get out though and I am curious in seeing how that plays out. I realize I need to play some heavy catch up on some titles though right now. Between Dark Horse and Veil, Nailbiter, The Autumnlands, and so forth, I got a good bit of catch up on the indie front either way. Heck I have catch up to do on the comic book reading front anyway so I’m behind on comics on many fronts. I shall catch up though by golly!

Anyway that’s my comic book pull or at least possible pulls for this week. My list is always subject to change at any given time. Enjoy your reading this Wednesday or whenever you get your books. Take care everyone!

The Comic Adventures This Week! 3/28/12

In an effort to keep my blog more regularly updated I’m going to let you all know what I plan to get for the week, in turn let you know what I’ll more than likely be reviewing. That way you’ll know what I plan on reading and you’ll all know what to expect on within the week.

All Star Western #7: One I’m sad I haven’t gotten the chance to review yet but I plan on doing this sooner rather than later since I do like this comic. I’ve always like Jonah Hex and putting him more in play in the DC Universe has worked for me overall. The first arc I’m not going to lie was a little hit or miss for me but I do like the series. I loved the last issue especially.

New Deadwardians #1:  Vertigo’s relaunch has been a mixed affair so far. I liked Saucer Country and there’s enough there to really keep me interested to give it a fair shake. Voodoo Child was there, just kind of there. I liked parts of it but I just couldn’t get into it as much as I would’ve liked. I loved Denys Cowan’s art though but everything else left me cold. New Deadwardians is by Dan Abnett who I generally like so I will be giving this a look. The mix of zombie and vampire cultures is a curious one and I want to see how Abnett pulls this together. I say this should be worth a shot, also you can guarantee I’m reviewing this one.

Bloodstrike #26: I can only imagine how Bloodstrike is going to go for me. I got nothing, this is the ultimate wildcard out of the Extreme Studios relaunch. Loved Prophet and Glory and if Bloodstrike turns out well we will be three for three. From the preview pages I’ve seen there’s a good chance this is going to go over fairly well. This is a definite review since I always find I have a lot to say on the Extreme Studios books thus far, especially the first issues.

Morning Glories #17: Ah not much to say outside of I look forward to seeing how this one comes together, especially since this has been some heck of a story arc thus far. Especially realizing that there’s been so many twists and turns. I’m excited.

The Walking Dead #95: The story arc: A Larger World thus far has been one that’s really been on the level of really the Prison in game changing The Walking Dead to this point. Now this will eventually turn I have no idea but dang, am I ever interested in every single issue to come, I can’t believe it’s about to hit the 100th issue soon. Time flies.

Avengers vs. X-Men #0: The beginning of Marvel’s oh my sweet Christmas crossover event of 2012. I’m actually interested, my mixed feelings on Avengers X-Sanction aside this could be a cool story. I’m sort of shocked I’m as into this as I am but hey in life you have to keep an open mind right? Yes you all know I am reviewing this sucker and looking over it with a fine tooth comb, considering I’ve been telling you all on twitter about this for ages.

Crossed: Badlands #2: I didn’t expect to enjoy the last issue as much as I did but wow I really got into this one. Crossed is twisted fun and appeals to my darker sense of humor at times. Not for everyone but if you’re into it you will have fun and I think it should be cool.

Avenging Spider-Man #5:  I am going to give Avenging Spider-Man another chance because I saw the preview for the latest issue and it cracked me up. I was laughing just from the first few pages so I’m more than happy to check this one out again. Just Spider-Man and Captain America and dealing with Cap’s history as an comic artist is going to be hilarious.

One final one is Atomic Robo: Real Science Adventures #1: I cannot wait to read this and I’ve been looking forward to this one for awhile. My friend managed to get it before me because of Comixology somehow having it up a couple weeks early. Bah! Oh well though, I get to read it this week so all is well.

There you go, that’s about what I’m getting this week. I do plan on making this an every either Monday or Tuesday depending on what’s happening. I will be updating my blog much more now that I have an idea of what I want to do with it. Till next time!