Having just heard more bad news about the UK comic scene and what were once considered publishers, I’m having to sit down and do a lot of thinking.
It is not as though there is no interest in UK created comic books but I am in this as a business, not a hobby.
The serious advice given when I relaunched Black Tower in 2009 as Black Tower Comics & Books was that comic conventions, tables at these and ordering stock were things of the past. Everyone -“everyone”- was using the internet to buy.
Certainly, having been messed about by Diamond UK and finding that comic shops were run by fan boys instead of businessmen made me “hmm” a bit. After a bad patch and, to be honest, in a weakened state of mind, I decided (against my better judgement) to go totally online store and embrace the internet.
There are over 70…I think it’s over 70 now…comics, comic albums, graphic novels/collections covering Haiku (illustrated and in English!), illustrated prose fables, ghostly tales and even books covering UFOs, ghosts, Cryptozoology, early pioneer ballooning and wildlife. There are genres covering horror, science fiction, super hero, mystery and crime…well, a lot.
Now my whole experience in comics has been inter-acting with “punters”, talking to them and selling. I LOVE selling! All that is gone with an online store. I can push my books online on any number of groups and sites as well as Twitter and Google+ but it does not create sales. Sales I know I can get in the real world. Face-to-face.
So, I need to work out a strategy for 2014. The online store will remain open of course. But postal charges seem to be killing sales for small businesses so….