Greetings, retail partners!
As promised in the letter we sent out regarding Saga
#7, I wanted take a few moments to further explain our reprint policy.
First off, "policy" is a terribly impersonal word, and honestly, I don't sit here and think of each decision as "policy." Like you, I'm just looking for the best way forward, and hoping that it doesn't take us two steps back.
Now to set things straight from the start, I want to assure you we are absolutely NOT doing what some other publishers have done in the past and laying down a hard and fast rule that says we will no longer reprint sold-out comics.
We just announced that we're going back to press on a number of recent comics – the first issues of Blackacre
, I Love Trouble
, The Legend of Luther Strode
and Nowhere Men
; the latest issues of Great Pacific
– and like you, I think it's pretty essential that we keep printing books like that as long as there's a demand for them. Every retailer I talk to has told me how difficult it is to gauge demand for new material from new talent, and we definitely take that into account. If it helps build the audience for these new titles, that's good for all us.
The thing we can't do, though, is just reprint everything indefinitely.
That was the problem with Saga
: We'd reprinted the first six issues already, and it was beginning to look – to us, anyway, or at the very least, to me
– like the reprints were becoming a kind of crutch. Looking at the way that particular book was selling out every issue, despite both overprints and a proliferation of new printings, it just seemed like we weren't building any momentum on something that, by all indications, should have been doing exactly that.
From my perspective, barring extraordinary circumstances, reprinting later issues of a book just doesn't make a whole lot of sense. We did this with the issues of The Walking Dead
surrounding issue 100, but I think that qualifies as one of those exceptional circumstances. Issue 97 was not just the first issue after the most recent trade paperback, but also the first issue following the second compendium – and on top of that, the beginning of the storyline leading into our monster 100th issue. We did a big overprint on those issues and still sold out, so it only made sense to go back to press.
If we were doing that on every issue of The Walking Dead
from there on out, though, that would be a problem, just as it would be if every book was selling out and being reprinted on an ongoing basis.
So, what we're going to promise you is that when circumstances dictate that something needs to be reprinted to meet demand: We'll do that, but we're not going to just reprint everything as a matter of course. As "policy" goes, I think that's pretty straightforward.
To ensure that those circumstances are few and far between, though, we're going to do everything we can to make sure you've got the information you need to order as many copies as you can sell or use to entice potential customers to give something new a try.
We'll continue to offer incentives on new series that allow you to order with confidence. From Fatale
#1 in January to Mara
#1 this month, we've made the first three issues of our a dozen new series completely returnable to accounts hitting certain sales plateaus. Some of you have said determining those plateaus needs to be fine-tuned, so we'll do that in an effort to make the whole process even easier, but the bottom line is that we want you to be able to get on this stuff upfront, so that none of us have to wait weeks for a new printing of anything, unless it's really a unique situation.
And when it comes to some of our bigger or longer-running titles that are launching into new story arcs following the release of a trade paperback collection – as was the case with Saga
#7 – we are going to see if we can create some incentives that allow you to bring in a greater quantity of those "bridge issues," so that you can convert some of your trade waiters to monthly customers, or have an easy sell to someone who is just discovering the series through the trade.
Cases in point:
is the first issue of that series following the sold-out issue 30, and the first issue to follow the sixth trade. As writer John Layman tells us, it's first issue of the second half of the series. We're going to give everyone who orders that book at 125% of issue 30 another 10% off their order at FOC.
is the first issue of that title following the release of the first trade paperback collection. We sold out of four printings of the first issue, three printings of the second issue and we've gone back to press on the others, plus we've got a $9.99 introductory trade out there for anyone interested in dipping their toes into the dark waters writer Tim Seeley and artist Mike Norton are exploring with this critically acclaimed new series. So we're going to give everyone who orders Revival #6 at 125% of issue 5 another 10% off their order at FOC.
We'll run more incentives like this in the months to come, because while we're always excited to launch new series and do what we can to push those, I think it's important that we all recognize that it's more beneficial to all of us that we promote above and beyond the first issue.
In the meantime, and to follow up on what I said in my recent letter about Saga
#7, we do listen to you. In fact, only a few weeks back, Jennifer included a poll in this very newsletter asking some pertinent questions about promotional materials. We only received a smattering of responses to that poll, but the info we got, we paid attention to. We always appreciate any feedback, but honestly – the more we hear from you all, the better.
Thanks, and if there's anyway at all we can be of help in the future – just let us know.
Image Comics, Inc.
PAUL POPE'S THE ONE TRICK RIP-OFF/DEEP CUTS — PORTRAIT OF THE ARTIST AS A YOUNG MAN
We all know Paul Pope is a comic book industry rock star, an innovator, an artist with a sure hand and vision. But what went into making the Paul Pope we know? The hardcover collection THE ONE TRICK RIP-OFF/DEEP CUTS
is a record of a great artist in-the-making, beginning with a graphic novella originally published in 1995-1996 — a story about love and violence and longing for escape. It's being presented in color for the first time, as are many of the short stories in the second half of the book, many of which haven't been published in the U.S. — or anywhere — before. It's fascinating as a record of an artist's development, but more than that, it's beautiful work — deeply infused with emotion and energy. There's a signed and numbered edition of the hardcover as well, since Paul feels strongly about honoring his early work.
In an interview at Comic Book Resources
he described the work as "a young cartoonist developing muscles and sinews" and, in true Pope fashion: "I am one of those who doesn't like to look at his older work. But I am generous toward it, I respect it. It is a living thing. Art is not nihilistic, it is full of hope and love. As we get older, we must be custodians of our former works. I learned this from Moebius. An artistic statement is a footprint in time."
If you have any questions, suggestions or concerns, please drop us a line (or more) at firstname.lastname@example.org
Have a great week!
Todd Martinez, Sales & Licensing Coordinator
Jennifer de Guzman, PR & Marketing Director
NEW THIS WEEK(12/19):
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As the televised games continue and Tommy tries to tap into his enormous power, the government begins shutting things down. Their plan to use the kids as human batteries is close to realization. Will the renegade teens known as The Rejected stop it, or only make matters far, far worse? T+
CARBON GREY, VOL. 2 #2 (of 3)
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In Kernow Lady Fermoy works to unravel the riddle of the Kaiser’s letter, while Waldstatten receives a delegation from Her Majesty’s homeland. Far away in a desolate outpost on the edge of the Empire Mathilde and her team make a horrific discovery. Is the stone’s power more than a myth? T+
CHEW, VOL. 6: SPACE CAKES TP
by JOHN LAYMAN & ROB GUILLORY - OCT120481
While Tony Chu – the cibopathic federal agent with the ability to get psychic impressions from what he eats – clings to life in a hospital ICU, his twin sister Toni steps up to take center stage. Toni is cibovoyant, able to see the future of anything she eats, and, lately, she’s seeing some pretty terrible things. Collects CHEW 26-30, plus extras, as well as the blockbuster spin-off one-shot that stole America's heart, CHEW: SECRET AGENT POYO. M
COMEBACK #2 (of 5)
by ED BRISSON & MICHAEL WALSH - OCT120515
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HAPPY #3 (of 4)
by GRANT MORRISON & DARICK ROBERTSON - SEP120504, cover B by RIAN HUGHES SEP128131
With a day left until Christmas, and time running out for Santa's innocent victims, Happy the Horse learns what turned Nick Sax from golden cop to broken-down hitman. But can he convince Nick to do the right thing or is it Happy's turn to face some uncomfortable home truths? M
by JOE CASEY and NATHAN FOX - MAY120613
How well does Still Harvey Tubman know the Kilgore brothers? What secret past does he share with Kurt? And what does this have to do with Daniel's life with the Agency? All this – and the return of Purgatory! This monster lives! T+
MACGYVER: FUGITIVE GAUNTLET #3 (of 5)
by LEE DAVID ZLOTOFF & TONY LEE, WILL SLINEY & OWEN JOLLANDS, cover by ANDIE TONG & CIARAN LUCAS - OCT120530
En route to Moscow, MacGyver and Kari find themselves on a plane journey to certain death when an old nemesis of Mac's returns to claim his bounty - and things go from bad to worse! Catch up with the series everyone's talking about, co-written by MACGYVER creator LEE DAVID ZLOTOFF! T+
MULTIPLE WARHEADS: ALPHABET TO INFINITY #3 (of 4)
by BRANDON GRAHAM - OCT120533
Sexica runs into some old Organ hounds from the Red city that have discovered a magic secret about the city built into the Whaling wall. M
NOWHERE MEN #2
by ERIC STEPHENSON, NATE BELLEGARDE & JORDIE BELLAIRE - OCT120535
There are fates worse than death. T+
by BRIAN K. VAUGHAN & FIONA STAPLES - OCT120541
Former soldier and new mom Alana has already survived lethal assassins, rampaging armies and alien monstrosities, but now she faces her greatest challenge yet: the in-laws. M
SUPER DINOSAUR #16
by ROBERT KIRKMAN & JASON HOWARD - SEP120521
Why are Super Dinosaur and Derek Dynamo on the moon? Why not?! There’s a dark secret deep below the surface that could spell doom for our heroes... what is “Inner-Moon?” E
by ERIK LARSEN & CORY HAMSCHER - JUN120576
From the pages of INVINCIBLE comes the most requested Supreme opponent of all time. Enter: Omni-Man! Supreme is out of control! Suprema is at death's door and Ethan Crane is in a bad way. Can even Omni-Man hope to save the day? T
THIEF OF THIEVES #11
by ROBERT KIRKMAN, JAMES ASMUS, SHAWN MARTINBROUGH & FELIX SERRANO - OCT120546
The lines are drawn between the cartel and Augustus’ group in the race to save Emma. The only problem is that things could get a little grisly before either party is ready to strike. M
WHERE IS JAKE ELLIS? #2 (of 5)
by NATHAN EDMONDSON & TONCI ZONJIC - OCT120548
Jon must use all of his ingenuity to escape Bangkok and the ruthless hunter pursuing him – but can Jon make it on his own? T
WITCH DOCTOR: MAL PRACTICE #2 (of 6)
by BRANDON SEIFERT, LUKAS KETNER & ANDY TROY - OCT120549
Doc Morrow doesn’t remember what happened to him last night — and what he doesn’t know might kill him! With the clock ticking, Morrow consults with some very unorthodox specialists. But will the cure prove worse than the disease? T
by TIM SEELEY, DIEGO BERNARD & FRED BENES - cover A by JOHN TYLER CHRISTOPHER AUG120535, cover B by DIEGO BERNARD & FRED BENES AUG120536
Sara Pezzini finally relents to Cain Jorgenson’s advances and agrees to a date at a baseball game in this date night issue of WITCHBLADE! But as usual, the Witchblade’s tendency to attract weirdness like a magnet will draw out Chicago’s supernatural corruption... even at Wrigley Field. T+