February is almost done. The bad weather out east caused the Wednesday comic shipment to be delayed last week. And again this week we have a delay with the shipment. Managed to get the box of statues and Heroclixs on Tuesday this week but not the comics. At least today (Wednesday 25th) they showed up during the noon hour again. Aaron is hoping they return to Tuesday shipments. Makes it easier for all of us. New comic Wednesdays are the most important day of the week for the store so when the shipment gets delayed that is bad news. The customers that come here every Wednesday for their comics are the best customers we have. Never want to have a reason for them to get out of their Wednesday visit habit.
Last Wednesday with the cold weather and no new comics was painful. Action figures did see some sales increase at least with people coming in for new comics and still buying something.
This week at least the comics did show up earlier than last week. Last week half the shipment showed up last on Thursday the 19th and the other half shows up Friday the 20th. Thursday we managed to get all the trade paper backs that were ordered. Friday the new comics finally showed up. Ouch. Aaron took care of the shipment during the lunch hour this week and last week. I ended up closing late Friday. Well Saturday morning actually. Needed to get some things done. Returned again Saturday to enjoyed the day repairing a damaged back issue bin. Someone tried to move it while it was still full of comics. I learned long ago not to move filing cabinets, desks, entertainment centers, or back issues bins before taking everything out of them. Take basically five long comic boxes of comics for weight for the top part of it and even more on the bottom part and then see what happens. At least now there is only six more screws that are noticeable. The cracked wood underneath is not noticeable. This is why we can’t have nice things. And why we are not doing anymore free gaming. Using up time making repairs instead of selling things is not a good use of time. Having a mess and drilling and vacuuming while customers are coming in is not ideal.
If you hear wood creaking and cracking because someone tried to move the back issue bin speak up. Don’t leave and hope no one notices. Because after the damage that was done to the back issue bin it could have hurt someone. The gaps kept growing because of the forced separation. One side could have collapsed and hit someone. That is what really disappoints me. The item that was dropped between the back issue bins was retrieved by getting something long and thin to push it back out. No trying to force the bins to move was even needed.
And of course while trying to get the repairs done as fast as possible it gets busy. I swear the best way to increase business is when I actually want some dead time to get something else done. It’s Murphy’s law. It’s not going to happen. Even had someone call that I still don’t know if it was a joke gone bad or what while trying to get repairs done. Someone called to chew me out about ordering an item for them but not getting it? It made no sense. The person claimed to have talked to me earlier that day but that was the first person I had talked on the phone with. Aaron says the person asked for me. Some random numbers seemed to be rattled off when I asked what was ordered. Item 19326? I was then told I was going to get in trouble with my superior? I only own the store so what the? At that point I even asked if this was a friend of mine playing a joke on me. I was asked what my job title was. I gave the phone back to Aaron figuring the person mistakenly had thought they talked to me and it was really him. Then the person said they talked to our other store. The person thought they were talking to Best Buy. Um, ok Rodman Comics, Best Buy. Same thing on Bizarro world. Phone numbers aren’t even close. And when we answer the phone Rodman Comics that might be a clue?
Long Saturday. On my way home going 40 miles an hour I was startled. I look over while I am driving and there is a deer running right beside the car. Shocked the heck out of me. I could have rolled down the window and petted the deer it was so close. I thought for a second maybe I had fallen asleep at the wheel it was so surreal. It only lasted a few seconds as I let up on the gas in case there were more that I did not see. I didn’t want to hit anything. Was the deer part cheetah?
Monday set a record for sales. The wrong kind of record.
Was hoping this week is much better. The comic shipment was delayed by a day instead of days so that is a start. Ironic in the previous Projections I bring up about how much easier life is for me by receiving the comic shipments on Tuesday and that same week it gets delayed along with the following week.
The new Trinity Heroclix set is here! Will you be able to pull the Ultra Chase White Rabbit? I pulled the chase, Greed out of all the Chases.
Next week the new Star Wars miniatures material is out. The bounty hunters get their own ships.
March is almost here. Lots going down in March. New D&D book. New Pre release for Magic. A New Magic set. Along with if Wizkids doesn’t have the typical delays of their new sets a Justice League Dice Masters set. And of course each week new comics. And I will be gone for a few days at the Gamma Trade show in Las Vegas. Which will be the first one I have ever went to. Will it be like the Diamond Summit? Will I learn even more? Will I win money while I am down there? I did last time I went though that was for vacation. And sadly I do not think I have ever won back to back when going to Vegas. I do look forward to talking with the various companies that produce games. Such as Wizards of the Coast, Wizkids, and Fantasy Flight Games.
Aaron and Amy will be holding down the fort while I am away by filling in for the hours that I usually work. They will be the last line of defense for Rodman Comics. Will there be a Rodman Comics when I return?
Will I be able to return from Vegas? Will the Rodman Comics Facebook have a help us find this man caption along with my picture? Stating lost everything in Vegas including the plane ticket to return home? Will anyone even notice I am gone?
Will I make it back in time for the midnight prerelease on Saturday the 21st? Will I come back at all?
Sign up sheets are here for the Prereleases. We will have one at noon Sunday the 22nd. The Sunday one will be for only people that signed up before hand.
May 2nd Free Comic Book Day! Diamond has reported that orders for free comic book day top 5.6 million copies. Beating out 2014′s 4.65 million. 2340 stores will participate this year. This year will set a record.
Apparently Diamond and others thought Free Comic Book Day numbers would be down this year due to the number of different titles being less than last year. Sigh, I have only been open over four years and do not understand this line of thinking. More titles equals more sales has been Marvel, DC, Image, and all the other comic publishers’ line of thinking for years. Comic stores as a business have only so much for resources. So much money. And even though the average new person who comes through the door on Free Comic Day assumes we received the comics for free to give out that is not the case. I understand the average new person’s line of thinking when I explain that the free comic books are comics that we bought to give away doesn’t make much sense. They are thinking really big businesses that make millions (Marvel, DC, Image, Diamond, ect.) make small businesses buy comics to give away? I agree it doesn’t make much sense. Just because more titles are published doesn’t mean comic stores are going to order more. My first year being opened I ordered all the titles for Free Comic Book Day. Learned the hard way not all of the titles were wanted. Even for free. Had left over stock. Of yes, free comics.
The most popular Free Comic Book Day titles will easily be the ones put out be Marvel and DC. Their characters are the most universally recognized by the average non comic fan and regular comic fans. Just adding more titles does not help. There was a historic Civil War (not Marvel’s Civil War) comic one year for Free Comic Book Day. I thought wow kids might like that and it is something different. Then I read it shows an amputation and is for mature readers. It became a book I did not want a kid to pick up so I did not order it. And as I type this there is no comic based on the historic Civil War. So it would have been a waste of time to get people interested in a Civil War comic with out follow up material.
Did Diamond think last years Zombie Tramp was going to be ordered as heavy as Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy giveaway or DC’s Future End with Batman Beyond on the cover?
Free Comic Book Day’s selection of titles is a lot like when we do our regular monthly ordering of comics. There are some that people will really want and some that people will care less about. Flooding Free Comic Book Day with comics isn’t going to make me order more. If a new person leaves a comic store with 50 free comics or a 100 how does that help? Let’s be realistic the person who stockpiled all the free comics they could isn’t going to read them all. They are hoping they become worth money. Or they even make a quick buck. The prelude issue for Blackest Night on Free Comic Day was going for roughly $10 the day of that years Free Comic Day because not everyone has a comic store nearby. Same thing with past years heroclixs on Free Comic Book Day before they simply reissued them for sale a few weeks later.
As I have stated before less is more. Something I wish the publishers would factor into their comics. Marvel give me one great X Men book instead of so many that they get canceled. Same with DC, give me one great Justice League book. The market is just flooded right now. Marvel’s one new comic a week average is killing me. Same with Image. Order comics is like whack a mole. For every new issue I have to figure out how much another issue will drop in readers. Like myself when ordering comics the readership has only so much they are willing to spend. When Marvel’s newest issues of a title comes out often times something else is getting dropped from a reading list.
As I often state even though Free Comic Book Day is supposedly about getting new customers into comic stores I view it as a customer appreciation day. A day to give back to all the loyal comic customers that have made Rodman Comics possible. I have had people tell me for free comic book day they will go elsewhere to “save me money.” Please do not do that. The comics are ordered. They are not returnable. It isn’t fair to other stores. Look at it as me saying thank you for your business. Because that is what it is.
When I give away comics that I over ordered at the movie theater that creates more new customers than Free Comic Book Day does. The movie theater has a lot of traffic coming through it and the comics are reaching truly new potential readers. And the movie theater gets happy customers that got something for free.
Plus I ordered more comics for this years Free Comic Book Day than ever before. So there should be tons. I even went for the Rodman Comics customized variant cover this year. And plus the new Avengers movie is that weekend. It has to be a good weekend. Mark May 2nd on your calendar for Free Comic Book Day.
Come June Wizard World will arrive to Des Moines for their first show here in Iowa. We will be there. We will try to make our booth a booth worth visiting for you. As the only comic convention we will be attending this year I hope to make it a good one. This should easily be the biggest and most well attended comic convention we have had a booth at. Will Wizard world be back in 2016? Will we be back at Wizard World in 2016? If it goes well and is worth it of course we will be.
In July a new Spirit comic will be launched by Dynamite. It will be written by Matt Wagner.
So far 2015 comic wise seems to about the past. What has been done before. DC has Convergence. Which is about previous eras of DC characters. Crisis on Infinite Earths, Zero Hour, pre 52, ect. Marvel has Secret Wars. About battleworlds that feature previous eras of Marvel characters. Inferno, Days of Future Past, Future Imperfect, ect.
Some of these characters are from decades ago. Why so much mining material from the past? Because there hasn’t been much new material to mine in recent years from Marvel and DC.
Has the comic based movies and T.V. shows helped or hurt the comics industry? I would say hurt more than helped. The Fantastic Four comic is getting canceled due to upper level Marvel politics over the Fantastic Four movie. Marvel has put a lot of time, money, and effort into trying to make the Inhumans their new X Men brand since Marvel has the movie rights locked up for themselves unlike the X Men whoes movie rights are controlled by Fox. The Inhumans have not reached a fraction of the X Men’s popularity. While the X Men brand is losing out.
Millions went and watched the Captain America, Thor, Iron Man, and Avengers movies but the crossover traffic from the movies to the comics is almost none existent. All the titles have been re launched. Iron Man didn’t even have his own title before Superior Iron Man launched. Superior Iron Man sales are dropping faster than Quicksilver running by for a hot date.
Can Iron Man actually return to being an actual hero that people want to read about?
DC’s most popular writer Geoff Johns is rumored by bleedingcool.com to only be allowed to write one title for DC now due to his other duties. Granted helping develope T.V. properties based on DC characters most likely makes DC more money than him writing comics for DC. Though currently there isn’t any writer more popular than Geoff Johns writing for DC. Scott Snyder arguably comes close with his work on Batman. But Scott is also writing Wytches for Image and he may leave Batman and DC after issue 50 of Batman along with artist Greg Capullo.
When Geoff Johns writes a comic it sells. A rumor ran on bleedincool.com states a higher up mandated he only write one title a month. If true that’s really to bad for the comic industry.
Marvel and DC make more money on the movies and T.V. properties than their publishing business so that is their focus. Geoff Johns helps to get DC’s properties in other media such as T.V. shows.
Writers and artists that have new ideas keep them for themselves often in hopes of getting their own film or T.V. deal. Why create for Marvel or DC something they might make a movie or T.V. show out of when they can keep creative control for themselves?
Jim Starlin’s Dreadstar comic is currently being adapted for T.V. It is from the 1980s. Never thought I would type that.
Is DC up to something? September the month when DC has taken the top spot in sales from Marvel the last few years is coming up and they seem very quite. Marvel has already teased their mini re launch for this September. Marvel really doesn’t like losing just one month a year to DC. Thus the reason last September the Death of Wolverine was suppose to be a weekly limited series each week in September. But Marvel managed to bungle it and have parts of the limited series get delayed till October. Marvel even kept the delay hush hush not letting us know till the last minute.
So far though rumors of another 3D cover month for September have not been heard. The 3D covers have to be ordered even earlier than regular titles. Marc Silvestri has been rumored to be working on a new Batman project. I thought it would have been announced along with the over twenty new DC titles coming out in June. I was wrong. Could Marc’s new Batman project be coming out in September? Artist Ed Benes has been doing covers for the current Warlord of Mars comic. Could Ed Benes be working on a new DC project? Bleedingcool.com reported another rumor that seems to be the opposite of their Geoff Johns can only write one DC title rumor. This time the rumor is Geoff Johns has a Aquaman themed limited series in the work. Mera or Rise of the Seven Seas. Along with a new Shazam comic with artist Gary Frank. With Shazam announced as an upcoming movie for 2019 DC will have a Shazam comic before that of course. One by Geoff Johns and Gary Frank would be an easy sell.
Now could all this come out in September giving DC a much needed sales boost? Time will tell.
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Hope to see you at Rodman Comics! And hoping for better weather next week. I love you Iowa but why can you be so mean weather wise?