ComicsPRO is the only trade organization dedicated to the progress of direct market comic book retailers.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Free Comic Book Day to Honor a Local Hero

From ComicsPRO Director Gary Dills, owner of the Laughing Ogre in Columbus, OH:

"This Free Comic Book Day is an especially important one in Columbus because it is giving us the opportunity to honor a real life hero. On April 10, 2008 Diane Sharp, a crossing guard at Scioto Darby Elementary school in Hilliard, was killed saving the life of Christian Engle, a second grader.

Jamie Colegrove, owner of Packrat Comics located near Scioto Darby Creek Elementary, said 'it truly was amazing how quickly Diane reacted to protect Christian. We wanted to honor her sacrifice and heroism. Free Comic Book Day seemed like an excellent opportunity to acknowledge her as our own superhero.'

All the comic retailers in the community whole-heartedly agreed. Each of the participating stores will be accepting donations on behalf of the Sharp and Engle families’ funds at Fifth Third and Key Bank.

In addition, kids stopping in can fill out a form to let us know which school they attend, and for every form we receive, The Laughing Ogre will make a donation to the Make-A-Wish Foundation in Diane Sharp’s name."

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Free Comic Book Day!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

24 Hour Comics Day is October 18, 2008!

Director Rick Lowell has announced the date for 24 Hour Comics Day, and the 24HCD committee has started a new blog to keep you up-to-date on the details! Find them at:

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Going to NYCC?

The folks at ComicsPRO member-store Jim Hanley's Universe invite their fellow members to stop by and hang with Mark Evanier this Friday, April 18th, from 7-9pm, if you're in town for NYCC.

Go on over to:

Jim Hanley's Universe
4 West 33rd St
New York, NY 10001

And say hello to the JHU crew!

Monday, April 14, 2008

From the Road

ComicsPRO staffer Amanda Fisher stopped by Majesticon in Denver, CO, this Sunday, April 13th.

She set her camera to "blurry" and caught ComicsPRO member Wayne Winsett of Time Warp bringing peace, love and good deals to all.

And yes, she knows that when they have lunch next weekend, he's going to punch her in the arm if he sees this post.

Friday, April 04, 2008

Post-Meeting ComicsPRO: Actions & Reactions from Vegas Event

More than 60 retailers from 23 different states attended the 2nd Annual membership Meeting of ComicsPRO, the Comics Professional Retail Organization, which took place at the Texas Station Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas NV. The ComicsPRO annual meeting is the comics industry’s only retailer-directed trade event, offering face-to-face discussions and programming for professional retailers with peers and key suppliers.

Additional attendees were personnel from sponsoring suppliers, including Cartoon Books, DC Comics, Diamond Comic Distributors, Dynamite Entertainment, Graphitti Designs, Bitter End Systems (makers of MOBY point of sale software) and Slave Labor Graphics. Inspiring presentations were also provided by Alan Caplan from InkWorks and the speakers from SCORE, Jim Camburn and Bob Cushman.

After the successful conclusion the group’s meeting, reactions are pouring in attending retailers and suppliers:

Filip Sablik, Top Cow Productions
"Top Cow was proud to be both a sponsor and an active participant in the 2008 ComicsPRO Annual Membership Meeting. We found the gathering to be one of the most fruitful and productive opportunities we've had in a long time to interact with our direct market retail partners. I personally want to thank Chris Powell, Amanda Fisher, Gary Dills, and all of the great retailers at ComicsPRO for inviting me to participate and creating a great environment for a dialogue between publishers and retailers."

Derrick Taylor, Comic Oasis, Las Vegas, NV
"The honest and straightforward communication with the publishers and distributors showed a lot of paths for the continued growth of my store and the industry as a whole."

Ralph Watts, Comics and Paperbacks Plus, Palmyra, PA
"I came away with important ideas to make my shop more visible in my community and I plan on implementing them soon."

Rory D. Root, Comic Relief, Berkeley CA
"The conversation on how to best grow our industry and art-form continued at the second annual ComicsPRO meeting. Retailers had ongoing discussions with creators, publishers, and distributors, as well as the non-profit organizations that serve our collective community. It was fruitful and I believe the best is still yet to come."

Charles Brownstein, Comic Book Legal Defense Fund
"ComicsPRO truly does represent the best of the Direct Market. The opportunity to interact with such a large swath of its membership in one room allowed for some tremendously useful discussion about our industry. The forum that ComicsPRO's annual meeting provided is a vital and much needed addition to the industry conversation."

Andrew Neal, Chapel Hill Comics, Chapel Hill NC
"Being able to speak face to face with publishers and the most forward-thinking retailers in the industry is always great. I came away from the meeting not just with new ideas for the store, but with renewed excitement for the medium and the industry."

Mimi Cruz, Night Flight Comics. Salt Lake City UT
"Essentially, we all want to flourish, working together to discover successful paths in our industry is indispensable. The ComicsPRO meeting this year opened dialogs between retailers, publishers, manufacturers, artists, writers and enabling us all to connect on all our mutual goals. I believe I can operate better stores due to these positive and human interactions."

Joseph Rybandt, Dynamite Entertainment
"ComicsPRO affords publishers the opportunity for quality face time with a group of the most dedicated retail professionals in the direct market. The focus groups, panels, question and answer sessions and more allowed for a real discourse to open and continue with this group. As a publisher, hard data emerged and new communication lines opened. I encourage any specialty retailer seeking more information on ComicsPro to seek them out and add their voice to this exceptional group."

George Stasky, Brave New Worlds, Willow Grove & Philadelphia PA
"The face-to-face time with publishers and other retailers has created several interesting promotion opportunities for my stores. I also believe we’ve been able to effect change in the comic book marketplace ---and increased dialogue between retailers and publishers will ensure future changes will be beneficial to both."

Chris Powell, General Manager Lone Star Comics Dallas TX
"It was very gratifying to see the healthy interaction between retailers and our partners in publishing and distribution. A number of important discussions were begun, and I think they will lead to significant progress for our members and the industry as a whole."

John Munn, Comic Book Ink, Tacoma, WA
"The contacts that I made, both within the industry and with my fellow retailers, made the trip more than worth it! I am sure that the connections that I made will prove to be invaluable assets in the years to come."

Jim McLauchlin, The Hero Intiative
"I'm continually impressed at the membership of ComicsPRO. It continues to grow in number, and since Day One, it's been the leading edge and vanguard among proactive retailers seeking solutions to big questions. I'm convinced that in a few short years, ComicsPRO will grow into one of the most important organizations in this industry."

Atom! Freeman, Brave New World, Santa Clarita CA

"In my years as a retailer, I'd be hard pressed to point out a weekend where I learned, was inspired, or earned more than the ComicsPRO meeting. Every dime and volunteer minute paid off with the information, camaraderie and connections made. I look forward to spending some of the increased earnings we'll no doubt be making on next year's meeting."

Joe Field, Flying Colors Comics, Concord CA
"We packed a lot of business into two full days in Vegas, we continued our quest to make a difference for all direct market retailers, and we now have a packed slate of new and challenging projects. ComicsPRO continues to grow in numbers and influence, so there’s never been a better time for every direct market retailer to join."

ComicsPRO is the only trade organization dedicated to the health and progress of direct market comic book retailers. ComicsPRO goals are for direct market retailers to speak with a unified voice on important industry issues, to provide educational and mentoring opportunities to current and future retailers, and to offer opportunities for retailers to reduce some common fixed costs.

More information is available at

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Members: Send in your media contacts!

Each year, ComicsPRO sends out hundreds of press releases on behalf of its members about Free Comic Book Day and the places interested readers can pick up their FREE comics!

We target your local media with a press release about Free Comic Book Day and list your store name and address as the participating retailer in their coverage area. The press release includes information about ComicsPRO and comes directly from the organization, which can often call more attention to your event than a release from your store alone.

We are already working on the first set of press releases, so we need your media contacts right away!

Send your contact email address, the company name and your contact's name (if you have it) to today.


Should I still send my own press releases?

Yes. A press release about your store from a national organization can help call more attention to your FCBD event, but your press release should include the specific details of your promotion: what you are giving away, any special character or creator appearances, your hours of operation and anything else that describes your plans for FCBD.

Will ComicsPRO send PRs via fax and online web forms?

Yes, but the email press releases go out first for all member stores. To format press releases for individual stores and send them to particular local media outlets takes quite a bit of time, and the easiest way for us to get them out is through email. If you can't find an email address for your local media outlets, send us their fax numbers or give us the urls of their online web forms, and during our second pass of the FCBD releases, we will do our best to get your PR sent via those methods.

What if my stores are in different media coverage areas, or what if I have multiple locations in one coverage area?

ComicsPRO will send press releases for each of your locations, or list all of your location addresses in each of your press releases if you provide us with the information already collated.
You must send in your media contacts broken down by store location, and/or the full names & addresses of each location you want included for each media outlet.

What if there are other ComicsPRO member stores in my immediate area?

In previous years, ComicsPRO has split up PRs to media outlets between members in the same coverage area. Starting this year, we will send PRs to all of your local outlets with a list of local participating ComicsPRO member stores. That way, your store gets mentioned to all of your local media.

Thank you for your participation in Free Comic Book Day, and for sending us your media contacts. ComicsPRO projects are made possible by the volunteer efforts of our members, and by collecting the information of your local media you are making the FCBD PR project more efficient and more successful!