Tuesday, 7 August 2012

HARDtalk: The Dave Sim Interview (13)

Are you planning on moving fully away from the print medium?  Are you now going to let the print versions of the CEREBUS "phonebooks" go out of print?  

I can't rule it out. The logistics are becoming difficult. Bill Schanes at Diamond Comics was kind enough to buy Diamond a large supply of trades last September so I could bring in enough money to reprint CHURCH & STATE I and II (and then WOMEN). Which then extended the already lengthening "sell time". I've only had three or four orders from Diamond for the trades so far this year, as a result. The stores are hurting and I'm not Supplier #1 that they depend on.

I'm soliciting for a 30th anniversary "gold logo" edition of HIGH SOCIETY that will be signed and numbered -- it's in PREVIEWS this month -- a lot depends on how many of those Diamond gets orders for.  Then I have to reprint the CEREBUS trade again.  Calling Bill and saying, "Look, I'm all done with these.  Give me your best price for the remaining inventory and I'll sign them all and you can sell them as the Last Cerebus Trades" would solve two problems: I wouldn't have to worry about reprinting and I could cut my storage costs.
High Society: 30th Anniversary Signed/Numbered Gold Edition. On sale October 2012.
Pre-order now from Page 45 by 20 August to reserve your copy,
or ask at your local comics store.
I've also considered taking however many is the "least number of trades" and making 16-volume box-sets out of them with a 10 x 15 original drawing of Cerebus shrink-wrapped onto each one.  So, I have a specific number that exists right now:  I have this many copies of #X trade to do box sets with.  If Diamond orders some of those, I might have to slam on the brakes right away.  No more trades available while the packaging is done and I decide whether to call Bill and pull the plug on the trades permanently.   I don't know if any retailers are reading this, but I would suggest stocking up on any volumes they don't have because, as I say, the timing is out of my hands.  As soon as I get an order for that trade, I slam on the brakes, announce it and however many Diamond has, that's all they're going to have for maybe a good six months.  And whatever they get then will be x number of box sets and however many copies of the other 15 remaining trades we can come to terms on.

Kind of exciting, in a way, isn't it?

Unused "Box Set" design for Cerebus: The First Half.
Click image to enlarge
Which leads to our cliffhanger from Stephen:

You virtually invented the trade paperback as Stephen Bissette is reminding people to this very day in interviews and on Twitter. Since then it's become the dominant format which the Real Mainstream prefers to the periodical (although digital, here we come) to the extent that Page 45 now stocks 7,000 different titles rather than the original 50 and makes 80% of its income from them. Why on earth didn't you give your readers access to Glamourpuss in that format earlier (which could have supported the project), in six-issue bites which you could have then collected as an omnibus like Terry Moore did with Echo? Accessibility is all.

Wow!  Nice segue!  You'd think I planned it that way. As the diminishing number of comic book stores all cling to the rope attached to Vicki Vale's car which threatens at any moment to hurtle into the abyss, can the Dynamic Duo arrive with their Bat-Winch in time to save the day?  Tune in tomorrow SAME Moment of Cerebus Time, SAME Moment of Cerebus Channel!

1 comment:

adampasz said...

FWIW, I would consider buying the boxed set thing.

I might even buy two. :)